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Well, I've resigned myself to getting nothing done tomorrow, and very little done today, 'cos it's traditional and all. Took me forty minutes to buy a case of Coke and some chicken breasts at the grocery store today...urrf. That's what I get for shopping on Christmas Eve, and I oughta know better.

Not being a Christian, I have no particular affiliation to the religious connotations of the holiday, but that's okay, because it's a pagan holiday anyhow--Yule, Solstice, "Natalis Solis Invicti," whatever you wanna call it--and as we all oughta know by now, nobody knows when Jesus was born, the Romans just slapped the date on December 25th because the peasants were going to party anyway, and it might as well have a religious patina. As a celebration of friends and family and showing your appreciation for the people you love, I approve whole-heartedly. I could do without the music. Back in college, I worked in this grocery store, in the deli, and every christmas, they'd get these musicians in, who would stand right by the deli counter and play carols. The really weird bit was that whenever they did "Rudolph" the lead...whatever he was...would put on little antlers and do this little pawing-the-ground dance in time, severely traumatizing any small children in the vicinity. (Bear in mind this was a middle-aged, six-foot-plus man.) It was like the proverbial trainwreck. You couldn't look away. When I write my memoirs, I'm putting that in.

Having no bearing on that tidbit whatsoever, and depending on who you ask, Dec. 25th was originally sacred to various deities, one of which may have been Mithras. I like Mithras. I like 'im despite the fact that his was a patriarchal, fraternal religion of the variety that mostly sees women as spoils of war and breeding material, solely because I once had this professor in college for a class called "Pagans and Christians" which was about the rise of Christianity in ancient Rome. I always suspected he was a closet Mithraic. Whenever he started talking about Mithraism and the associated rituals, he would wax passionate and eloquent, coming up with these lavish, gorgeous descriptions of rituals that, let's face it, boil down to laying in a hole while somebody slits a bull's throat on top of you. (This is where we get the phrase "bloodbath" evidentally. Well, so he said.) But this guy could make it sound like a--well, a religious experience. I suppose it's no weirder than anything else.

So, even if you're not going to be laying in any trenches slitting bull throats--and I'd look at you strangely if you were--a happy Natalis Solis Invicti to all, and to all a good night.

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Speaking of slitting throats, who wrote "Little Drummer Boy"? ;)
Good Yule to you too!

I don't think that "bloodbath"'s etymology originates in that practice.

But bloodbath or no, have a most excellent and pleasant Christmas. That's what the day is called, so relax and enjoy it. ];)

===|==============/ Level Head

I don't know the wording off the top of my head, but there's a line in the New Testament about the shepherds sleeping out in the field with their flocks around the time of Jesus' birth. Shepherds generally only did that sort of thing in spring, when there were lambs on the ground and the risk of unauthorized sheep consumption rose sharply. That's not conclusive -- nothing anywhere in any religious text ever written is conclusive -- but it does suggest he was born in the spring.

I'm glad the Romans went with Yule, though, because I'm pretty sure I wouldn't be able to deal with beaming, bouncing, apple-cheeked, inevitably tow-headed and blue-eyed Easter Baby Jesus surrounded by fluffy bunnies and ducklings. I cringe at the thought. Poor Eostre.

Merry-Happy Non-Denominational Holiday Day to you too. XD (I call it Christmas, but I'll be darned if I go sit in a church no matter how 'beautiful the service' is.) Anyway, though neither you nor I get any "religious" like experience from it, I hope you have/had/are having a good set of days. ;D

I actually just got back (well, relatively speaking) from the Christmas Eve service. It wasn't particularly beautiful, and it was time that could have been better spent watching the Lost Dinosaurs of Egypt while fondling my anonymous and suspicious bags of white powder and ground leaves (I love you, oneironaut!), but I don't regret going. I went solely because I don't see my father much, and I don't want him to feel like every time I come to visit I just stay at home and ignore him.

Which seems a good enough reason to me. It wasn't particularly inspiring, but there were good brownies and it helped my father out some.

I have a very cool friend of mine that came up with a phrase for this time of the year that seemed to at least hint at some of the major traditions. "Happy Yule-hana-mas!" (Being Tibetan Buddhist myself, we don't have a late December holiday, but I like to use his phrase anyway!)

A friend of mine named it 'Kwanzahanamas' a couple of years ago. My girlfriend modified it to 'Kwanzahanadamastice', which is well into the realm of the totally unpronouncable for most people. Probably the effect he was going for. lilairen calls it Hogswatch, which amuses me greatly.

Hows about a round of "Here comes the Hogfather"?

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