Articles/Essays From Pagans
March 9th. 2014 ...
Healing the Witch Within
Discovering Wicca as a Young Child
March Pisces Energy: Pre-natal Memories and Standing Upright
March 2nd. 2014 ...
Lessons of Ostara: Six Ways to Move Forward
The Wiccan Priest - The Misunderstood Role
Which is Which? Am I a Warlock or a Witch?
The Secret Teaching: Selected Aspects
February 23rd. 2014 ...
Wicca or Traditional Witchcraft: Some Differences
Everything is Not Under Your Control: Making Sense of the Senseless
The Wonders and Gifts of Paganism and Community
What Makes Us What We Are
February 16th. 2014 ...
Death, Grief, and Psychopomp Work in Shamanic Healing
The Stones of Fear: Anxiety Relief
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Alternative Medicine – What Is It?
February 9th. 2014 ...
Words of Power!
The Allure of Glamour in the Apocolypse
Lunar Insight Planetary Preponderances: Year of the Horse, Imbolc and Mercury Grazings
February 2nd. 2014 ...
The Magick of Jewelry and Metals
Building a Magick Mirror
The Golden Bough: a Study Guide (Part 2)
January 26th. 2014 ...
Love of Self: The Hardest Thing To Do
The Golden Bough as a Seminal Work in the Neo Pagan Movement (Part 1)
13 Keys: The Mercy of Chesed
Lightworking In The Screen Age: Staying Connected
January 19th. 2014 ...
Open Letter to the Goddess
A Southern Girl's Guide to Hospitality
Social Conventions and the Pagan World
January 12th. 2014 ...
Never Once Was There a An Athame Near My Chalice: My Very Sheltered Occultist Upbringing
One Wiccan's Journey Through Depression
January 5th. 2014 ...
Religion vs Practice: Defining Witchcraft in a Modern Age
Traditional Apprenticeships: Training in the Modern Pagan Abbey
2014's Magickal Magnificent Manifestations!
Lunar Insight Moon Musings, Planetary Preponderances: Wise and Wild
December 29th. 2013 ...
My Top Ten Favorite Cauldrons (Part 3)
13 Keys: The Might of Geburah
Beyond The Season of Greed
December 22nd. 2013 ...
My Top Ten Favorite Cauldrons (Part 2)
December 15th. 2013 ...
The Hex Murder of 1928
My Top Ten Favorite Cauldrons (Part 1)
Lady of the Forest Mist (A Story of the Woods)
Lunar Insight Moon Musings: Hunting, Fires and Parting Shots
December 8th. 2013 ...
Help and Thoughts for Pagans New to the Journey
Using Your Wand in Reverse
Leaving a Group - Part 2: Leaving, Healing and Moving Forward
The Cry of the Soul
December 1st. 2013 ...
The Tarot as a Tool for Raising Consciousness
A Pragmatic Look at Neo Paganism
Leaving a Pagan Group – Part 1: To Leave or to Stay?
November 24th. 2013 ...
The Pagan and the Papacy
The Groovy Aquarian Christ: Jesus From a Pagan Perspective
November 17th. 2013 ...
For Love of the God
Which Witch? Philosophical and Psychological Roots of Wicca
A Threat to Religious Liberties?
November 10th. 2013 ...
Where did Aleister Crowley’s Influence on Wicca Go?
Thoughts on the Threefold Law/Law of Return
The Celtic Tree Calendar
Nine Creeds: A Statement and Explanation of My Beliefs
November 3rd. 2013 ...
The Mundane/Spiritual Mirror: What Does it Say About Your Life?
October 27th. 2013 ...
Thoughts On a Miley-Cyrus/ Robin-Thicke Society
On Being Wiccan: Some Unsolicited Advice
Pagan Religious Communities in your Area: Connecting With and Creating Them
Banishing, Invocation and the Lesser Ritual of the Pentagram
October 20th. 2013 ...
Bottle Spells and Magick in Hoodoo Tradition
Weather Magick: Who is Responsible for the Weather?
Broom Closet: In or Out?
On Coven and Claws
October 13th. 2013 ...
Destroying to Create: A Lesson from the Dead
Consume the Scorpion- Scorpion Energy Revisited
October 6th. 2013 ...
UPG and U: A Breakdown and Building Up of Unverified and Unsubstantiated Personal Gnosis
Answering The Call from Spirit
Coping with the Loss of a Familiar
The Five-way Road: A Pagan Pilgrimage, Part 2 (The South)
September 29th. 2013 ...
Six Reasons Why Covens are Here to Stay
Priestessing and Titles: What's the Point?
Truth or Convenience? Questioning Motives for Spiritual Advancement
Speaking Up: The Conflict Between the Spiritualist and Our Human Experience
September 22nd. 2013 ...
Death of a Friendship within the Craft
NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
Keeping Christ in Xmas
Article ID: 15287
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 451
Times Read: 2,971
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Author: Realta Dragonfly
Posted: December 16th. 2012
Times Viewed: 2,971
Well, it is that time of year again. Lights everywhere, carols piped into each department store, and the ever-present “Keep Christ in Christmas” sign on every street corner. It is the time when all we hear about is the supposed ‘War on Christmas’. I am pretty tolerant of other religious beliefs but am sick and tired of seeing “Keep Christ in Christmas” everywhere I turn.
By now the true origins of modern Christmas are widely known. So, that is not why I am writing this. I am writing to answer a question I once had: “Where did the 'Xmas' come from anyway?” Having found my answer, I now wonder what exactly is wrong with the term “Xmas”. Today we are told that Xmas is a mere abbreviation and an attempt to remove the religious aspect of this most commercial of holidays.
Jesus. We have all heard that name. Most of us know the story. I like to think of him as Joshua. In Aramaic/ Hebrew, he would be called Yesua/ Yehosua. In Latin and Greek, we find Iesus and Iesous respectively. Over time the 'I' becomes a 'J' and we get Jesus, which is Latin for Joshua.
What of Christ? The Christ in ‘Jesus Christ’ is not a name but a title. It is derived from the Greek ‘kristos’, which means ‘anointed one’. This being a translation of the Hebrew “masiah”, which is where the word ‘messiah’ comes from. So we have the Latin ‘Jesus” and the Greek ‘Christ” which would translate in modern English to ‘Joshua the anointed”. I like it.
But what about that pesky X? Why, I thought you would never ask.
You may have seen this symbol. You may even know what it is. Well I never knew. For those like me, this is called a CHI-RHO. It is the Catholic Church’s monogram of Christ. See that X. It is the Greek letter CHI. Now depending on who you ask, Christmas means ‘Christ sent’ ort ‘ day of Christ’ and while December 25 is not the actual birth date of Jesus (not even close) , it is still the day celebrated as such by millions of Christians everywhere. So the next time a follower of Christ gives you the “We’re keeping Christ in Christmas” line, ask them “What is wrong with the ‘X’ part anyway?” Chances are they don’t have a reasonable answer. You, on the other hand, now have a logical answer.
Of course, it doesn’t matter anyway when you look at the true origins of modern day Christmas celebrations. Each time-honored tradition is a remnant of a pagan past. The majority of us all know these, so let’s just take a quick glance*:
Why not Dec 25?
1. December is the cold rainy season in the region. What shepherd would be out in the fields on such a night? Freezing to death.
2. The Roman census was not taken in the winter because the hazardous conditions made travel unlikely and therefore would make the census pointless.
3. Luke’s account of the birth of the Christ suggest either summer or early fall.
Traditions and Possible origins
1. The Date- Early Christianity was not very popular among adherents to the old religions so church leaders made efforts at conversion by placing their holy day over more popular celebrations, most notably, the week long celebration of Saturnalia (which was debauchery at its finest, I hear) and Sol Invictus, one of the holiest days in the Mithras cult.
2. O Christmas Tree- The Asheira cult worshipped trees and would decorate them during celebrations. (I haven’t found much more than this but am interested.)
3.Presents- Now, the main focus of this holiday for many, this custom has possible origins during the Saturnalia where the people were urged to give gifts to the emperor. This becomes popular amongst the general population and absorbed into Xmas.
4.Mistletoe- Featured in Norse mythology involving Baldor. Also highly prized by the Druids. (I do not know the Xmas connection here though. Please enlighten.)
5. Holly- Myth of the Battle of the Oak King and Holly King where the Holly King reins at this time of year.
6. Santa Claus- Ah, yes the jolly elf. Based on Saint Nicholas, who in life was a Bishop of the church and a member of the Council of Nicaea. His death is recorded as December 6. He become a patron saint of sailors who carried his story to Italy where he become merged with Pasqua Epiphania, an Italian grandmotherly figure believed to give gifts to children by placing them in their stockings. He eventually made his way north again where he merged with Woden and gained some of his more familiar appearance and mode of travel. Of course, over the years, we got our modern Santa Claus.
Well, I hope this helped somebody out there. If you want to have a healthy, logical and reasonable discussion about ‘the reason for the season’, I am more than thrilled to participate. Just please, leave the willful ignorance and knee-jerk reactions at the door.
Have a Merry Xmas, Happy Chanukah, and a Joyous Yule Celebration!
*I intentionally left the information vague to encourage further exploration on the reader’s part. If you feel I have incorrect information please feel free to let me know. I am always open to learning.
All information in this article can be found at Wikipedia. Some found at ucg.org (not what I expected either) .
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