The Christmas Holiday seems fraught with inconclusiveness and confusion. Polls say a majority think of it as a religious holiday instead of a secular one. But, its commercialization, music and festivities are becoming less religious.
It was interesting to learn side by side celebration of the religious and the secular has been happening since day one. We all know Christmas moved into the space previously occupied by the Pagan celebration of Winter Soltice. I didn’t know they apparently existed together for a long time.
Soltice is a time to celebrate the end of shorter days and arrival of longer ones. Good gods defeated bad ones at soltice.
When Christianity arrived the celebration of Christmas did not come with it. So, early Christians celebrated the Pagan soltice for many generations. It was only later the myth Jesus was born at this time was introduced and Pagan celebrations were pushed over the cliff. We did keep the Pagan tree.
Today’s music in the malls and on the airways is majority secular it seems to me. Even the traditional hymns are upgraded to reflect contemporary styles.
Like in earlier times, then, the secular/cultural celebration, known way back as soltice, existed along side the religious, Christian. Instead of calling contemporary trends a “War on Christmas”, perhaps it would better be called “Return to the Ancient TwoferOne.”
Anyway, I’m enjoying a secular Christmas Eve and just heard Blue Christmas. I hope you heard your favorite, religious or secular.