Wednesday, December 16, 2009

12 Days of Yule: Day Four

Welcome to Day Four of the Twelve Days of Yule. Today, I’m going to tell you about different winter traditions from around the world. This is by no means a complete list.

Bodhi Day: This is a Buddhist festival, on December 8th, celebrating the day the Buddha (Siddhartha Guatama) experienced enlightenment

Samhain: October 31-Nov. 1. This is the Celtic New Year, and the mark of the beginning of winter

Winter Solstice: Dec. 21: this is the longest day of the year

Imbolc: February 1 or 2 (there is some debate), this marks the official end of winter for the Celts

Chinese New Year: This happens in late January-early February, and is considered the end of winter on the Chinese calendar.

Saint Nicholas’ Day: Dec. 6th, a Christian feast day

Christmas: Dec. 25: This is the so-called day that Christ was born. The original date was stolen from the Romans (see below)

Twelfth Night: January 5; this is the end of the twelve days of Christmas

Candlemas: February 2, this is the day when Christ was supposedly presented at the Temple.

Yule: The Germanic winter solstice festival, celebrated on Dec. 21

Diwali: The festival of Lights in Hinduism. This is a five day festival that celebrates good over evil. It occurs between mid October and mid November

Hanukkah: this is an eight day Jewish festival commemorating the miracle of the oil after the desecration of the Temple in 165BCE

Purim: This occurs in late February or March, it celebrates the victory of the Jews over the Persian Empire.

Eid ul-Adha: This is a Muslim holiday commemorating the Prophet Ibrahim’s willingness to sacrifice his son Ismael. This date changes, as it is based on a lunar calendar. For the first decade of the 21st century, it will fall in the winter months

Inti Raymi: This is a winter solstice festival, though it is celebrated in June, as it is in the Southern Hemisphere. This is an Incan celebration that is still celebrated in Cuzco.

Matariki: Another Southern Hemisphere festival. This is the celebration of Maori New year, when the Pleiades star cluster rises.

Yalda: A Persian festival that celebrates the winter solstice, and the victory of light over dark (good over evil).

Saturnalia: This is the Roman winter solstice festival, taking place from Dec. 17 to the 25. The Christians adopted this holiday so that the Roman soldiers would convert. This is the feast of Saturn.

Lupercalia: This is a Roman end-of-winter festival celebrated on February 15th.


A lot of my information is directly copy-pasted frm my own Book of Shadows, collected over the past couple of years from a variety of sourses. I try to credit where I can, and I try to paraphrase and change words around without changing meanings as much as I can.
IF YOU SEE YOUR INFORMATION HERE: Please let me know, I'll be more than happy to credit you. The best way to contact me is to leave a comment on the post, and I'll be sure to edit the post as soon as I get the message.