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Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by Smallpotatoes, Dec 20, 2006.

  1. jgmacg

    jgmacg Guest

    From the Austin American-Statesman


    Question: The annual celebration of the birth of Jesus is less than two weeks away. We've all seen the nativity scenes that pop up in front of churches and front doors across the country.

    But how do we know that Jesus Christ was actually born on Dec. 25th?

    Answer: We don't. In fact, there's a good chance he wasn't even born in December. The Web site The Jesus Police (http://www.jesuspolice.com) monitors and corrects commonly held presumptions about the Christian messiah, and one of the biggest misconceptions is that Christmas is his actual birthday.

    While it is impossible to nail down an exact date, Jesus police chief Dr. James Gardner believes that Jesus was likely born in June. Why? Luke 2:8 describes Jesus's birthplace as "In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over the flock by night." That sure doesn't sound like December, does it? Gardner writes that shepherds slept with their sheep from June to November, and that June was known as the month men traditionally fed their flocks the remains of the wheat harvest.

    So, if logic points toward a warm Christmas, why celebrate it in the middle of winter? Scholars believe the Roman church appointed Dec. 25 as the big day in the 200s because pagans were already worshipping their sun god on the same day. That's right, Dec. 25 was believed to be the Sun's birthday. (It's also just a few days after the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year, after which the days grow longer.)

    So in a sense, Christmas is a syncretic celebration that allowed Christians to party along with the prevailing religion.

  2. three_bags_full

    three_bags_full Well-Known Member


    Merry Christmas.
  3. tommyp

    tommyp Member

    I don't say anything. I let other folks say what they want to me, and I respond in kind.
  4. JR

    JR Well-Known Member

    Merry Winter Solstice and a Happy Pagan New Year works.
  5. jgmacg

    jgmacg Guest

  6. three_bags_full

    three_bags_full Well-Known Member

  7. JR

    JR Well-Known Member

    In those tenuous early days of Christianity, however, Church fathers debated strategies for supplanting the Mithras cult with their own religion. Since it was well known that Roman patricians and plebians alike enjoyed festivals of a protracted nature, Christians recognized that they needed an alternative to the December celebration of Natalis Solis Invincti. They needed a celebration in which all participants — Mithraists, Christians, and those in between — could take part with pride. Accordingly, the Church officially recognized Christ's birth, and to offer head-on competition to the sun worshipers' popular feast, the Church located the Nativity on December 25. The mode of observance would be characteristically prayerful: a Mass. In fact, Christs' Mass. As one theologian wrote around 320 CE:

    We hold this day holy, not like the pagans because of the birth of the sun, but because of him who made it.

    So, Christmas began as an exercise in branding and product placement by the church's PR department. :)
  8. Pastor

    Pastor Active Member

    I think it would. Why wouldn't it?

    I have a Christmas tree up in the house yet my wife is Buddhist. She says Merry Christmas to people as well as Happy Holidays.

    This is the "Holiday Season" since there are many holidays going on about this time. I think to many, nobody gives a shit. I usually end up saying Happy Holidays. If it is on Christmas day, I say Merry Christmas more. But why limit it to one day?
  9. JR

    JR Well-Known Member

    All this is bullshit of course, conceived by those idiots yammering on about "The War on Christmas"
  10. zeke12

    zeke12 Guest

    I now only say Merry Dickmas.
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