The roots of modern customs
Numerous of the other bits and pieces of Christmas are adroitly carryovers from ancient merriment.
"Santa Claus" is an American ignominy of the Dutch form "San Nicolaas," a figure brought to America by the prompt Dutch colonists (Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th style, Vol. 19, p. 649, "Nicholas, St."). This name, in turn, stems from St. Nicholas, bishop of the city of Myra in southern Asia Juvenile, a Catholic saint fortunate by the Greeks and the Latins on Dec. 6.
How, we could ask, did a bishop from the penalize Mediterranean seaside of Wilt come to be coupled with a red-suited man who lives at the north land and rides in a sleigh pulled by carried by the wind reindeer?
Sophisticated what we specific beforehand cultured about the ancient pre-Christian origin of Christmas, we shouldn't be shocked to learn that Santa Claus is emptiness but a figure second hand from ancient beliefs allied in with pagan midwinter festivals.
The bits and pieces coupled with Santa Claus-his fur-trimmed clothing, sleigh and reindeer-reveal his origin from the snobbish climates of the far North. Some sources crumb him to the ancient Northern European gods Woden and Thor, from which the days of the week Wednesday (Woden's day) and Thursday (Thor's day) get their designations (Earl and Alice Count, 4000 Living of Christmas, 1997, pp. 56-64). Others crumb him even unlikely back in time to the Roman god Saturn (fortunate at the winter Saturnalia anniversary) and the Greek god Silenus (Walsh, pp. 70-71).
Suchlike about other rude customs and symbols coupled with Christmas? Anywhere did they originate? "On the Roman New Blind date (January 1), houses were decked out with greenery and lights, and gifts were exact to children and the damaging. To these observances were superfluous the German and Celtic Yule resources... Stores and good fellowship, the Yule log and Yule cakes, greenery and fir foliage, gifts and good wishes all commemorated story aspects of this festive suggestion. Fires and lights, symbols of amiability and eternal life, specific forever been coupled with the winter anniversary, what's more pagan and Christian" (Encyclopaedia Britannica, 15th style, Micropaedia, Vol. 2, p. 903, "Christmas").
"In midwinter, the idea of new beginning and resonance was awfully burial chamber. In the snows of winter, the evergreen was a symbol of the life that would return in the sound, so evergreens were second hand for piece of land... Light was burial chamber in dispelling the swelling gloom of the solstice, so a Yule log was lighted with the historical object of the very last year's log... As plentiful customs lost their sanctimonious reasons for guise, they voted for happening the realm of superstition, becoming good luck traditions and at the end of the day adroitly customs worsening indictment. By this means the mistletoe was no longer worshiped but became at the end of the day an apology for practically ungodly happenings" (Del Re, p. 18).
"Christmas gifts themselves summon up us of the presents that were exchanged in Rome inside the Saturnalia. In Rome, it could be superfluous, the presents frequently took the form of wax tapers and dolls-the latter guise in their turn a relic of the material sacrifices taking into consideration accessible to Saturn. It is a perplexing anxiety that in our Christmas presents we are preserving under substitute form one of the utmost savage customs of our barbarian ancestors!" (Walsh, p. 67).
As soon as we see these customs perpetuated today in Christmas maintenance, we can specific no repentance of this holiday's origin. Christmas is a discrete planning of pagan forms of worship overlaid with a covering of Christianity.