Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Christmas Through New Years

The interesting thing about the "Holiday Season" in Medieval America is the swing between between the secular and the sacred, and the government vs. the private. In the old Middle Ages, Christmatime was one of revelry, to the point many protestant sects would ban it. its origins as a pagan festival,a nd its status as an industry unto itself in modern times, means there was always a battle between the two forces. Because the Federal Government recognized as Christmas as a holiday, and because the Non-Denominational Church made the U.S. federal holidays into liturgical ones, this brought this conflict into the new era. How do they thread this needle? Well, basically, by making the 12 Days of Christmas a strange cycle of binge and purge.

Basically, starting from roughly Thanksgiving, the habit seems to be party, get your act together, party again, and so and so on. You have a week of feasting and drinking, and then going and praying extra hard to Jesus, and attending services. Then, the winter solstice, and from the 21st, the 24th, you go hog wild, all the rum and Frosty and Rudolph, and wassling that in many ways resembles the Industrial Age Office Christmas Party, and which got the Holiday banned in the first place. But once Christmas Eve is here, you go to services, and spend it with your family. But come the 26th, it's one more week of just having a good time by New Years Eve the expectation is that you get it out of your system and spend New Years Day in the Church. Christmastide does not extend into January, and some scholars even claim the Wise Men were just in time for Christ's birth. It was seen as an economically conservative move.

The Quebecois follow the fairly traditional Catholic European model of Advent, Christmas and Epiphany, with the New Year being informally celebrated as a "12th" night, but being largely secular.

The ascetic lifestyle of the Mormons usually keeps Christmas as sacred as possible, equal in both stature and restraint as Easter, thought the tabernacle choir remains a tradition. It should be said some of the singers are career, will sometimes ensure they stay soprano. They recognize the Gergorian calendar, but do not make any big deal of it besides services, especially since nobody gets drunk.

The Buddhists of the Northwests celebrate the new year between January and February 20th, due to the Asian influence, and that the relative mildness of the climate keeps them from really embracing winter festivals. Christmas is celebratted

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