Holidays and Traditions
Holidays, celebrations and festivals from around the world. This category covers religious and non-religious holidays and their associated traditions, as well as some multicultural events.
When was Christmas first celebrated?
Answer: Only shepherds celebrated with his parents the day Jesus Christ was born over 2000 years ago. Record of this celebration and the related details, but not an exact date, can be found in the Bible (Luke chapter 2). It is thought that the early Christians did not widely celebrate the birth of Jesus. This is most likely true, since the primary focus was on His life, crucifixion, and particularly His resurrection. There certainly were some early Christian celebrations. Early writings, including a "feast calendar" written in 243AD, indicate that there were some celebrations in the third century and perhaps even in the second century. Christmas celebrations did not gain widespread prominence, however, until the Middle Ages or starting from around 400AD. Christmas day, December 25, is not necessarily the actual date of Christ's birth. The true date is not known because we lack enough information to pinpoint it precisely. (Beware that there are many who claim to have calculated the actual date; they are no more likely than December 25.) Other dates beside December 25 were used for this feast. December 25 finally was settled on by the church for reasons that are not absolutely clear, though there are some logical reasons for choosing that date. There were pagan celebrations on and about December 25th, celebrating the solstice, or the return of the solar light. Christians may have simply chosen to celebrate the advent of the "Light of the World" at such an appropriate time of year. Answer: Some historians and scholars studying the history of Christianity have proposed that it is precisely because 25 December is so close to the pagan solstice celebration, that the church chose this date, in order to placate the (then) numerous pagans and not to initiate violent protests or uprisings that might have been caused had they been stripped of all their sacred days immediately following the acceptance of Christianity as the official religion of the Roman Empire. This was probably in the hope that gradually paganism would die out or that pagans would assimilate into Christianity for fear of persecution and/or lack of freedom. The SIMILARITIES between pagan midwinter celebrations and Christmas are amazing. There was a centuries old, ongoing pagan and secular mid-winter celebration, which was wildly poplular, that the church could not stop. Many scholars agree that apparently, the church figured, "If you can't stop them, join them!" and placed the celebration of Jesus's birth on December 25th, and, over time, the origins of the original midwinter party were forgotten. According to the new Encyclopædia Britannica later Christians likely "wished the date to coincide with the pagan Roman festival marking the 'birthday of the unconquered sun'." The festival was celebrated with similar customs (gift giving, feasting) that are done to celebrate Christmas today. Many pagan customs on Dec 21st to Dec 25th were eventually stopped under missionary influence/pressure. In temperate climates, the midwinter festival was the last feast celebration, before deep winter began. Most cattle were slaughtered so they would not have to be fed during the winter, so it was almost the only time of year when a supply of fresh meat was available. The majority of wine and beer made during the year was finally fermented and ready for drinking at this time. Saturnalia gift-giving midwinter celebrations predate Jesus by 100s of years, as do many other popular midwinter celebrations. These celebrations are EVEN MENTIONED in the bible, since they were so popular. And biblegod forbids christians from joining in on these pagan/secular celebrations, in Jeremiah 10: 1-5, and spcifically demands HIS followers do NOT decorate trees, but, apparently, they did not listen, as christians today DO join in the decorating of the trees in midwinter. The pagan celebration of the birth of the Sun, or any number of December born gods, on December 21st, or Brumalia, on Dec 25th, does indeed contain almost all the customs you will recognize as 'Christmas' celebrations---the red and green decor, the yule logs, the 12 days of feasting, <i>gift giving</i>, mistletoe, holly wreaths, decorating trees, an elf, singing, gathering with friends and family, etc etc. The sun, was incredibly important to ancient people, as Stonehenge and other constructions of the times attest. Celebrating the shortest day of the year, the midwinter solstice, <b>(which HAS changed dates through the milennia, 'leap years' were not invented yet) was a huge event, long before Jesus was ever born. It was Constantine, the first christian emporer, who posted Jesus's birthday as December 25th, in the midst of the ongoing pagan celebrations* that the bible ordered christians to avoid as pagan. (Jeremiah 10: 1-5, best read in an older version of bible) *(with all the red and green decor, decorated trees, gift-giving, feasting, yule logs, 12 days of feasting, focusing on children, mistletoe, elves, holly wreaths, fancy dinners with families, etc etc). Answer: The idea that Christmas was designed to placate or gradually displace pagan winter celebrations is overstated and not historically correct. Many scholars, including early church fathers, calculated the date of Christ's birth to December 25th. The December 25th date goes back to as early as Hippolytus (A..D. 165-235). In the Eastern church January 6th was the date used for Christ's birth, a close winter date. Even though the exact date is not definitively known, there are logical reasons for the December 25th date including calculations made from other known dates. Early Christmas celebrations were on various dates. The final, commonly accepted date of December 25th was the result of a confluence of factors and not a plan to preempt pagan celebrations. Due to the fact that pagan celebrations were seasonal, year round, and often not limited to a particular day, any date chosen to celebrate the birth of Christ could be seen as supplanting a pagan practice. December 25th is close to the period of some pagan celebrations, but there were no specific celebrations for that particular day. Mithras' birth was not celebrated on that day and in fact had no public celebrations. Sol did not specifically coincide with that date either. Solstice was close to December 25th, but the differences between solstice celebrations and Christmas are stark. Christmas is based on the birth of Jesus Christ. Although many scientist out not sure of the exact date of this. Many believe it took place sometime in the summer due to vital information that is given in the Bible. Well Christmas started when Jesus Christ was born. The word Christmas has a meaning, just think about it.... Christ/mas Christ's Mas took part when he was born so you are celebrating Christ's Mas. Thankyou for questioning
Asked in Holidays and Traditions, Peru
What are some customs in Peru?
To celebrate eating and drinking To play futbol To keep contact with all relatives and meet them periodically: aunts, uncles, grandfathers and grandmothers, nephews, nices, grandchildren, cousins, and so on. Also to help them or get hepl from them. To live in parents home until get married. To eat the main meal by noon (12 to 2.30 p.m.) Brides usually get late to the marriage ceremony, that is why usually the invitation is one hour bfore the real hour. Authorities always are late for meetings and celebrations. Someone has told peruvians in general (long time ago), that being late is a symbol of status...
Asked in Holidays and Traditions
What are the holidays in Wisconsin?
Legal holidays in Wisconsin include the following: New Year's Day; Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Birthday; President's Day; Good Friday (11am-3pm observed for purpose of worship); Memorial Day; Independence Day; Labor Day; any primary election day in September; Columbus Day; any general election day in November; Veterans Day; Thanksgiving; Christmas.
Asked in Holidays and Traditions, Lent
How many days of Lent are there?
40 Days of Lent Lent starts on Ash Wednesday, lasts 40 days not counting Sundays and ends on Holy Saturday, the day before Easter. There are 46 days because Sundays are not included during Lent. Some say that Sundays aren't counted in the 40 days of Lent, because every Sunday carries with it a part of the glow of Easter Sunday. So it's not all gloom and doom. But even on the Sundays, the theme of repentance (turning from our ungodly ways) holds true. When you repent, you please God whether you fast or not, and that is what most counts for Lent. Others say that Sundays are not included because Lent is a serious time but Sundays are always a day of celebration in the Christian Church.
Asked in Holidays and Traditions, Judaism, Hanukkah
What are the Jewish holidays or festivals?
Festivals and holy days Shabbat - every Saturday (from Friday at sunset until Saturday after twilight) Rosh Hashanah - the Jewish New Year, 2 days Yom Kippur - a fast day, the Day of Atonement, 1 day Pesach - Passover - 7 or 8 days Shavuot - Feast of Weeks; Yom HaBikurim - 1 or 2 days Sukkot - Feast of Booths - 7 days Shemini Atzeret and Simchat Torah - 1 or 2 days Minor holidays and occasions (in which work is not forbidden): Rosh Chodesh - the new moon, every 29 or 30 days Hanukkah - the Festival of Lights - 8 days Tu Bishvat - New Year of the Trees - 1 day Purim - 1 day, followed by 1 day of Shushan Purim Sefirah - Counting of the Omer - 49 days Lag Ba'omer - 1 day The Three Weeks and the Nine Days (days of mourning preceding Tisha b'Av) Tu B'Av - 1 day
Who is the sinhalese god?
What are some things people do for Kwanzaa?
Where did oktoberfest start?
Oktoberfest was first celebrated in Munich, Germany. The first festival was to publicly celebrate the marriage of Crown Prince Ludwig and Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen with a horse race. It was so sucessful that they decided to celebrate it again the next year, and it eventually became the yearly event that it is today.
What does it mean if the Groundhog sees his shadow on February 2nd?
Tradition holds that if the groundhog sees his shadow, we'll have six more weeks of winter. If he does not, we will have an early spring (in about a month and a half). The answer above says that it will be a month and a half i he doesnt see his shadow, or six weeks if he does. Six weeks and a month and a half are the same amount of tie.
Asked in Nigeria, Holidays and Traditions, Flags
What is the history of flag day celebration in Africa?
Flag day is the celebration of the birthday of the flag of a country. It is today recognized and observed by nations with high respect for their symbol of freedom and those who value patriotism. Many nations of the world have joined in this celebration especially in Europe and the Americas. In Africa it is highly unpopular, some observers have attributed this to poor motivation towards living a patriotic life and lack of respect to national symbols, values and ordinance by governments whose life and unpatriotic conducts of abuse of power and corruption has eaten deep into. Little wonder our society does not radiate with the same kind of glow and excitement towards national patriotic celebrations like this talkless of signing such into law. Liberia happens to be the first African nation to observe the Flag day celebration in Africa since August 24, 1847. The second country however to celebrate this event however was Nigeria on the 3Oth of September 2OO7. Although the celebration is still not yet recognized officially by the Nigerian government, but the group (the Building Our National Image Flag Project, a.k.a BONI FLAG PROJECT) who pioneered the event in Nigeria are engaging all stake holders towards supporting the passage of the Nigerian Flag day bill which will make it a national celebration. This fight is been lead by Akinola Solanke, a patriotic and flag educator who is one of the leading youth voice and authority on the subject of flag and patriotic education and one who is credited to have brought the Flag day initiative to Niger. Unfortunately for Nigeria however, while she is still battling to get her government to recognize the celebration, Ethiopia has robbed her of the honor of being the 2nd African country to observe the event. The Ethiopian government celebrated their first colorful historic celebration which took place on the 5th of July 2008, and was attended by millions of Ethiopians, government officials, diplomats and invited foreign guests, to play a vital role in strengthening the harmony of the people. The Ethiopian National Flag Day has enabled people of Ethiopia to forge unity on the bases of mutual respect, commonality, and equality. The celebration not only strengthens the solidarity and unity of Ethiopians but also expedites peace, democracy and sustainable economic development of the nation. In 2OO9, Ethiopia celebrated her 2nd Flag day and has establish October 5 as her flag day. For now no other nation has joined in this Patriotic celebration but the earlier the better African nation arise to engage their citizenry the better our chance of having a Patriotic driven African continent filled with a highly charged atmosphere of selflessness and patriotism both of which form the backbone of good governance and hence development, as with patriotic leaders in power, Africa can be assured of sincere and genuine development.
Asked in Holidays and Traditions, Boxing Day
Why do Canadians Celebrate Boxing Day?
Boxing Day is celebrated on December 26th. It is a statutory holiday in the federal jurisdiction and in Ontario. If it falls on a Saturday or a Sunday, the working day immediately preceding or following Boxing Day is considered a legal holiday. Boxing Day, also known as the Feast of St. Stephen (after the first Christian martyr), originated in England in the middle of the nineteenth century under Queen Victoria. It originated as a holiday for members of the merchant class to give boxes containing food and fruit, clothing, and/or money to trades people and servants. The gifts were an expression of gratitude similar to the bonuses many employers offer their employees today. These gifts, usually given in boxes, gave the holiday it's name, "Boxing Day".