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by The United Kingdom of Blechingia. . 40 reads.

Blechingia Public Holidays

Blechingia Culture is full of holidays and Festivals bring Ancient Germanic traditions and Christian traditions to create a nation that celebrates both but without the human/animal sacrifice.

Please note that some of these holidays have been turned into Christian holidays and are basically the same but Blechingia still celebrates both in remembrance of there ancestors. Pagan and Christian.


1 January: New Year's Day

New Year's Day, also simply called New Year, is observed on 1 January, the first day of the year on the modern Gregorian calendar as well as the Julian calendar.

In pre-Christian Rome under the Julian calendar, the day was dedicated to Janus, god of gateways and beginnings, for whom January is also named. As a date in the Gregorian calendar of Christendom, New Year's Day liturgically marked the Feast of the Naming and Circumcision of Jesus, which is still observed as such in the Anglican Church and Lutheran Church. The Roman Catholic Church celebrates on this day the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God.

In present day, with most countries now using the Gregorian calendar as their de facto calendar, New Year's Day is among the most celebrated public holidays in the world, often observed with fireworks at the stroke of midnight as the new year starts in each time zone. Other global New Year's Day traditions include making New Year's resolutions and calling one's friends and family


8 January: Queen's Birthday

Queen’s Birthday is a holiday that celebrates the birthday of Queen Emily II from the year she became Queen of Blechingia to the year she dies. And then will move be celebrated on the new monarchs birthday. The first record holiday celebrated the King/ Queens birthday was in 1599 for Christina II.

8 March: Freedom Day (Independence Day)

Freedom Day or sometimes called Independence Day is the celebration of the Kingdom of Blekinge declaring it independence from the Kingdom of Denmark and the Kalmer Union on 8 March 1499. Most people celebrate the holiday with large bond fires and eating traditional Gothian foods and singing traditional Gothian music.

17 March: St. Patrick’s Day



18 [u]March: Irländska drottningar Dag

Saint Patrick's Day was made an official Christian feast day in the early 17th century and is observed by the Catholic Church, the Anglican Communion (especially the Church of Ireland), the Eastern Orthodox Church, and the Lutheran Church. The day commemorates Saint Patrick and the arrival of Christianity in Ireland, and celebrates the heritage and culture of the Irish in general. Celebrations generally involve public parades and festivals, céilís, and the wearing of green attire or shamrocks. Christians who belong to liturgical denominations also attend church services and historically the Lenten restrictions on eating and drinking alcohol were lifted for the day, which has encouraged and propagated the holiday's tradition of alcohol consumption.

Saint Patrick's Day is a public holiday in the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador (for provincial government employees), and the British Overseas Territory of Montserrat. It is also widely celebrated in the United Kingdom, Canada, United States, Brazil, Argentina, Australia and New Zealand, especially amongst Irish diaspora. Saint Patrick's Day is celebrated in more countries than any other national festival. Modern celebrations have been greatly influenced by those of the Irish diaspora, particularly those that developed in North America. However, there has been criticism of Saint Patrick's Day celebrations for having become too commercialised and for fostering negative stereotypes of the Irish people.

But this Day also celebrates the Gotiska Queens of Irland as they have helped create the modern Blechingia everyone knows today. Irish women have played an important part of the Gothian government since at least the 7th century no one really knows why Gothian men went all the way to Ireland but because they did it has created a strong cultural twit between the two nations.


Spring Equinox: Ostara

Ostara is celebrated on the spring equinox around March 21. This feast marks the beginning of the summer half of the year. It is named after the goddess Ostara (Anglo-Saxon Eostre), who was such an integral part of heathen Germanic culture that the Christians stole and absorbed it as their own spring feast which was adapted for the Paschal holiday, and was converted to the Christian Easter. Her name is related to the Germanic words for "east" and "glory"; she was the embodiment of the springtime and the renewal of life.
At the equinox, the sun rises directly in the east and sets directly in the west. In the northern hemisphere, before Ostara, the sun rises and sets more and more to the south, and afterwards, it rises and sets more and more to the north.

spring equinox is the beginning of spring in the northern hemisphere. The holiday is a celebration the rejuvenation of the Earth, fertility and growth; traditional decorations include budding boughs, flowers, decorated eggs and the Rabbit motif.
Heathen folk customs associated especially with Ostara's feast include the painting and hunting of Easter eggs, which, according to German tradition, were brought or laid by the 'Easter Hare' (the earliest form of the slightly diminished American 'Easter Bunny'). The Hare was the holy beast of Ostara, slain and eaten only at her blessing. In Germany, bakeries sell hare-shaped cakes at this time of year. Fires were also kindled on the hilltops at dawn, especially in Germany. Another common folk-custom which still survives in rural areas is the performance of plays at which Summer battles with Winter and drives him out, or at which an effigy embodying Winter is beaten, burned, or drowned.
Today, Ostara is seen as the feast to awakening the Earth, the gods and goddesses, and the human soul. Life becomes brighter and more joyful after the Ostara feast has been rightly held.


22 March: Monarch's Day

Monarchs Day is a celebration of all the King’s and Queen’s that have ruled Blechingia. The first recorded Monarchs Day was in 1486 by Geatish Historians Remundus and Hafthor. In there book “Important holidays and festivals of the Gothian people”. The festival happens on the 22nd day of March around the First Day of Spring. But historians aren’t completely sure when the festival was originally celebrated because no one ever told the time of year that they celebrated it. Ever since the first recorded Monarchs Day it has been celebrated in six different months.


March/April: Easter

Easter, also called Pascha (Greek, Latin) or Resurrection Sunday, is a festival and holiday commemorating the resurrection of Jesus from the dead, described in the New Testament as having occurred on the third day after his burial following his crucifixion by the Romans at Calvary c. 30 AD. It is the culmination of the Passion of Jesus, preceded by Lent (or Great Lent), a 40-day period of fasting, prayer, and penance.

Most Christians refer to the week before Easter as "Holy Week", which contains the days of the Easter Triduum, including Maundy Thursday, commemorating the Maundy and Last Supper, as well as Good Friday, commemorating the crucifixion and death of Jesus. In Western Christianity, Eastertide, or the Easter Season, begins on Easter Sunday and lasts seven weeks, ending with the coming of the 50th day, Pentecost Sunday. In Eastern Christianity, the season of Pascha begins on Pascha and ends with the coming of the 40th day, the Feast of the Ascension.

Easter and the holidays that are related to it are moveable feasts which do not fall on a fixed date in the Gregorian or Julian calendars which follow only the cycle of the Sun; rather, its date is offset from the date of Passover and is therefore calculated based on a lunisolar calendar similar to the Hebrew calendar. The First Council of Nicaea (325) established two rules, independence of the Jewish calendar and worldwide uniformity, which were the only rules for Easter explicitly laid down by the council. No details for the computation were specified; these were worked out in practice, a process that took centuries and generated a number of controversies. It has come to be the first Sunday after the ecclesiastical full moon that occurs on or soonest after 21 March. Even if calculated on the basis of the more accurate Gregorian calendar, the date of that full moon sometimes differs from that of the astronomical first full moon after the March equinox.

Easter is linked to the Jewish Passover by much of its symbolism, as well as by its position in the calendar. In most European languages the feast is called by the words for passover in those languages; and in the older English versions of the Bible the term Easter was the term used to translate passover. Easter customs vary across the Christian world, and include sunrise services, exclaiming the Paschal greeting, clipping the church, and decorating Easter eggs (symbols of the empty tomb). The Easter lily, a symbol of the resurrection, traditionally decorates the chancel area of churches on this day and for the rest of Eastertide. Additional customs that have become associated with Easter and are observed by both Christians and some non-Christians include egg hunting, the Easter Bunny, and Easter parades. There are also various traditional Easter foods that vary regionally.


May/June: Ascension Day

The Feast of the Ascension of Jesus Christ,[2] also called Ascension Day, Ascension Thursday, or sometimes Holy Thursday,[3][4] commemorates the Christian belief of the bodily Ascension of Jesus into heaven. It is one of the ecumenical (i.e., universally celebrated) feasts of Christian churches, ranking with the feasts of the Passion, of Easter, and Pentecost. Ascension Day is traditionally celebrated on a Thursday, the fortieth day of Easter (following the accounts given in Mark 16:19, Luke 24:51 and Acts 1:2), although some Christian denominations have moved the observance to the following Sunday. In the Catholic Church in the United States, the day of observance varies by ecclesiastical province.

30 April- 1 May: Walpurgis Night

Waluburgis Night (Valborgsmassoafton in Swedish, Vappu in Finnish, Walpurgisnacht in German) is a holiday celebrated on April 30, in Finland, Sweden and Germany.
It is named after a woman called "Valborg" (alternative spellings are "Walpurgis", "Wealdburg", or "Valderburger") born in 710 somewhere in Dorset / Wessex as a niece of Saint Boniface. Together with her brothers she later travelled to Württemberg, Germany where she became a nun and lived in the convent of Heidenheim, which was founded by her brother Wunibald. Valborg died on February 25, 779 and that day still carries her name in the Catholic calendar. However she wasn't made a saint until May 1 in the same year, and that day carries her name in the Swedish calendar.
Viking fertility celebrations took place around April 30 and due to Valborg being declared a saint at that time of year, her name became associated with the celebrations. Valborg was worshipped in the same way that Vikings had celebrated spring and as they spread through out Europe the two dates became mixed together and created the Valborg celebration.

Waluburgis is one of the main holidays during the year in both Sweden and Finland, alongside of Yule and Midsummer. One of the main traditions is to light large bonfires, and for the younger people to collect greens and branches from the woods at twilight, which were used to adorn the houses of the village. The expected reward for this task to be paid in eggs.

The tradition which is most spread throughout the country is probably singing songs of spring. The strongest and most traditional spring festivities take up most of the day from early morning to late night on April 30.

Historically the Walpurgisnacht is derived from heathen spring customs, where the arrival of spring was celebrated with bonfires at night. With the Christianization of Germany these old customs were condemned as heathen.

No true Germanic Heathen name survives for May Eve; the German Walpurgisnacht is derived from the well-documented Christian St. Walpurga. In order to avoid confusion, and because no better name survives, Many Germanic heathens have replaced 'Walpurga' with the name of the second-century Germanic seeress 'Waluburg'. This festival marks the beginning of summer in Scandinavia. In all the Germanic countries, it is seen as a time when witches are particularly active, a belief memorialized in Goethe's description of the witch-moot on the Brocken (Faust, Act I) and Mussorgsky's "Night on Bald Mountain". It is also the Germanic equivalent of Valentine's Day and a night of love: young men are expected to go out into the woods to gather green branches and wildflowers with which they decorate the windows of their beloveds. For both these reasons, Heathens consider Freya to be the ruler of this festival, as she is mistress of both witchcraft and love. The traditional 'Maypole' or 'May Tree' is also a part of the celebration of this feast; in Scandinavia, the 'May Tree' is carried about in processions, a practice which probably goes back to the Vanic fruitfulness-procession of earliest Heathen times. Fires were kindled on grave mounds or other high places on this night; it is traditional for folk to leap through the flames for luck. A fire kindled by friction (the 'need-fire') might also be used to protect cattle against illness or cure them.


1 May: May Day

The earliest known May celebrations appeared with the Floralia, festival of Flora, the Roman goddess of flowers, held from 27 April – 3 May during the Roman Republic era, and the Maiouma or Maiuma, a festival celebrating Dionysus and Aphrodite held every three years during the month of May. The Floralia opened with theatrical performances. In the Floralia, Ovid says that hares and goats were released as part of the festivities. Persius writes that crowds were pelted with vetches, beans, and lupins. A ritual called the Florifertum was performed on either 27 April or 3 May, during which a bundle of wheat ears was carried into a shrine, though it is not clear if this devotion was made to Flora or Ceres. Floralia concluded with competitive events and spectacles, and a sacrifice to Flora.

Maiouma was celebrated at least as early as the 2nd century AD, when records show expenses for the month-long festival were appropriated by Emperor Commodus. According to the 6th-century chronicles of John Malalas, the Maiouma was a "nocturnal dramatic festival, held every three years and known as Orgies, that is, the Mysteries of Dionysus and Aphrodite" and that it was "known as the Maioumas because it is celebrated in the month of May-Artemisios". During this time, enough money was set aside by the government for torches, lights, and other expenses to cover a thirty-day festival of "all-night revels." The Maiouma was celebrated with splendorous banquets and offerings. Its reputation for licentiousness caused it to be suppressed during the reign of Emperor Constantine, though a less debauched version of it was briefly restored during the reigns of Arcadius and Honorius, only to be suppressed again during the same period.

A later May festival celebrated in Germanic countries, Walpurgis Night, commemorates the official canonization of Saint Walpurga on 1 May 870. In Gaelic culture, the evening of April 30th was the celebration of Beltane (which translates to "lucky fire"), the start of the summer season. First attested in 900 AD, the celebration mainly focused on the symbolic use of fire to bless cattle and other livestock as they were moved to summer pastures. This custom continued into the early 19th century, during which time cattle would be made to jump over fires to protect their milk from being stolen by fairies. People would also leap over the fires for luck.

Since the 18th century, many Roman Catholics have observed May – and May Day – with various May devotions to the Blessed Virgin Mary. In works of art, school skits, and so forth, Mary's head will often be adorned with flowers in a May crowning. 1 May is also one of two feast days of the Catholic patron saint of workers St Joseph the Worker, a carpenter, husband to Mother Mary, and surrogate father of Jesus. Replacing another feast to St. Joseph, this date was chosen by Pope Pius XII in 1955 as a counterpoint to the communist International Workers Day celebrations on May Day.[15]

The best known modern May Day traditions, observed both in Europe and North America, include dancing around the maypole and crowning the Queen of May. Fading in popularity since the late 20th century is the tradition of giving of "May baskets," small baskets of sweets or flowers, usually left anonymously on neighbours' doorsteps.

In the late 20th century, many neopagans began reconstructing some of the older pagan festivals and combining them with more recently developed European secular and Catholic traditions, and celebrating May Day as a pagan religious festival.

The Feast of the Ascension of Jesus Christ, also called Ascension Day, Ascension Thursday, or sometimes Holy Thursday, commemorates the Christian belief of the bodily Ascension of Jesus into heaven. It is one of the ecumenical (i.e., universally celebrated) feasts of Christian churches, ranking with the feasts of the Passion, of Easter, and Pentecost. Ascension Day is traditionally celebrated on a Thursday, the fortieth day of Easter (following the accounts given in Mark 16:19, Luke 24:51 and Acts 1:2), although some Christian denominations have moved the observance to the following Sunday. In the Catholic Church in the United States, the day of observance varies by ecclesiastical province.


Summer Solstice: Midsummer's Day

Midsummer is the religious celebration held at the summer solstice. This feast usually falls around June 20-21. Midsummer-related holidays, traditions and celebrations are found in all the Germanic countries of Northern Europe. Midsummer's eve is considered the second greatest festival of the Germanic holy year, comparable only to the 12 days of Yule.
The Summer Solstice is an astronomical term regarding the position of the Sun in relation to the celestial equator. The Summer Solstice is the date with the longest day and hence with the shortest night. This date usually falls near June 21. At the time of this solstice, the Earth is in that point of its orbit at which the hemisphere in question is most tilted towards the sun, causing the sun to appear at its farthest above the celestial equator when viewed from earth.

Certain celebrations take place on the evening of the summer solstice. Great roaring Bonfires, speeches, songs and dancing are most traditional. Folk traditions include the making of wreaths, the kindling of fires, the burning of corn dollies (human figure made out of straw), and the adornment of fields, barns, and houses with greenery. Midsummer as particularly a time to make blessings to Baldur. Model Viking ships are also sometimes made out of thin wood, filled with small flammable offerings, and burned at this time. Midsummer is the high point of the year, the time when deeds are brightest and the heart is most daring. This is the time when our Viking forebears, having their crops safely planted, sailed off to do battle in other lands. It is a time for action and risk, for reaching fearlessly outward.
Other traditional events include raising and dancing around a huge phallic maypole. Before the maypole is raised, greens and flowers are collected and used to cover, to "may", the entire pole. Raising and dancing around a maypole to traditional music is primarily a fertility ritual.

The holiday is considered the time of the death of the Fair God of sunshine, Baldur and thus the turning point at which summer reaches its height and the Sun shines longest, but at the same time it is when the days will soon begin to shorten and the Earth is beginning its slow descent into winter again. It is important to note that midsummer is not the middle of summer. Indeed, summer may be defined to begin with the summer solstice.


1 August: Lammas

The name Lammas is taken from an Anglo-Saxon heathen festival which was forcibly Christianized. The name (from hlaf-mass, "loaves festival") implies, it is a feast of thanksgiving for bread, symbolizing the first fruits of the harvest.
heathens mark the holiday by baking a figure of the God Freyr in bread, and then symbolically sacrificing and eating it.

Again, no purely Heathen name has survived for this festival, which takes place at the beginning of August, as this was the time when the first fruits of harvest were brought to the church as gifts; since this was taken over from Heathen custom. In English and German tradition, the First Sheaf was often bound and blessed as an offering to Heathen deities or the spirits of the field at the beginning of harvest, just as the Last Sheaf was at its end. English folk custom also includes the decoration of wells and springs at this time. In Heathenism today, the feast is especially thought of as holy to Freyr as a fertility God, Thor as a harvest God and his wife Sif, whose long golden hair can be seen in the rippling fields of ripe grain. The warriors who had gone off to fight at the end of planting season came back at this time, loaded with a summer's worth of plunder and ready to reap the crops that had ripened while they were gone. Loaf-Feast is the end of the summer's vacation, the beginning of a time of hard work which lasts through the next two or three months, while we ready ourselves for the winter.


Autumn Equinox: Fall Feast

Fallfest of is another joyous festival in the Asatru holy calendar, and falls on the Autumn Equinox, and is the beginning of autumn in the northern hemisphere: the moment when the sun appears to cross the celestial equator, heading southward; the equinox occurs around September 22 - 24, varying slightly each year according to the 400-year cycle of leap years in the Gregorian Calendar. Fallfest represents the second harvest of the season.
Bonfires, feasting and dancing played a large part in the festivities. Even into Christian times, villagers cast the bones of the slaughtered cattle upon the flames, cattle having a prominent place in the pre-Christian Germanic world. (Though folk etymology derives the English word "bonfire" from these "bone fires,") With the bonfire ablaze, the villagers extinguished all other fires. Each family then solemnly lit their hearth from the common flame, thus bonding the families of the village together.

Materially speaking it marked the beginning of the gathering of food for the long winter months ahead, bringing people and their livestock in to their winter quarters. To be alone and missing at this dangerous time was to expose yourself and your spirit to the perils of imminent winter. In present times the importance of this part of the festival has diminished for most people. From the point of view of an agricultural people, for whom a bad season meant facing a long winter of famine in which many would not survive to the spring, it was paramount.

At the equinox, the sun rises directly in the east and sets directly in the west. In the northern hemisphere, before the autumnal equinox, the sun rises and sets more and more to the north, and afterwards, it rises and sets more and more to the south.

In ancient times, our European ancestors celebrated their Harvest Feast, where they have found many reasons to be thankful and to celebrate. Our people have done this for as long as we can trace our history. Although what our people have felt thankful for has certainly changed over the many years, remember you sit down this year with your family, you're participating in an ancient tradition. And it's a great time to figure out what you're thankful for.


31 October: All Hallows' Eve (Harvest Fest / Winter Nigths)

Today's Halloween customs are thought to have been influenced by Christian dogma and practices derived from it. Halloween is the evening before the Christian holy days of All Hallows' Day (also known as All Saints' or Hallowmas) on 1 November and All Souls' Day on 2 November, thus giving the holiday on 31 October the full name of All Hallows' Eve (meaning the evening before All Hallows' Day). Since the time of the early Church, major feasts in Christianity (such as Christmas, Easter and Pentecost) had vigils that began the night before, as did the feast of All Hallows'. These three days are collectively called Allhallowtide and are a time for honoring the saints and praying for the recently departed souls who have yet to reach Heaven. Commemorations of all saints and martyrs were held by several churches on various dates, mostly in springtime. In 609, Pope Boniface IV re-dedicated the Pantheon in Rome to "St Mary and all martyrs" on 13 May. This was the same date as Lemuria, an ancient Roman festival of the dead, and the same date as the commemoration of all saints in Edessa in the time of Ephrem.

Winternights is held the 31st of October. Winternights marked the final end of harvest and the time when the animals that were not expected to make it through the winter were butchered and smoked or made into sausage. The festival is also called "Elf-Blessing", "Dis-Blessing", or "Frey-Blessing", which tells us that it was especially a time of honouring the ancestral spirits, the spirits of the land, the Vanir, and the powers of fruitfulness, wisdom, and death. It marks the turning of the year from summer to winter, the turning of our awareness from outside to inside. Among the Norse, the ritual was often led by the woman of a family - the ruler of the house and all within. One of the commonest harvest customs of the Germanic people was the hallowing and leaving of the "Last Sheaf" in the field, often for Odin and/or his host of the dead, though the specifics of the custom vary considerably over its wide range. The Wild Hunt begins to ride after Winternights, and the roads and fields no longer belong to humans, but to ghosts and trolls. The Winternights feast is also especially seen as a time to celebrate our kinship and friendship with both the living and our earlier forebears. It marks the beginning of the long dark wintertime at which memory becomes more important than foresight, at which old tales are told and great deeds are toasted as we ready ourselves for the spring to come. It is a time to think of accomplishments achieved and those which have yet to be made. Winternights also marks the beginning of a time of indoor work, thought and craftsmanship.
These festival and feast celebrated the accessibility, veneration, awe, and respect of the dead. This was also a time for contemplation. To the ancient Germanic peoples death was never very far away, and it viewed as a natural and necessary part of life. To die was not as much of a surprise or tragedy it is in modern times and death as not viewed as something "scary" or "evil". Of higher importance to the Germanic people was to live & die with honour and thereby live on in the memory of the tribe and be honoured at this great feast.

Starting on this night, the great divisions between the worlds was somewhat diminished which can allow the forces of chaos to invade the realms of order, the material world conjoining with the world of the dead. At this time began the Wild hunt in which the restless spirits of the dead and those yet to be born walked amongst the living. The dead could return to the places where they had lived and food and entertainment were provided in their honour. In this way the tribes were at one with its past, present and future.

Again, the Christians forcefully subverted the sacred Germanic Heathen calendar to honour Christianity, Winter nights on October 31 became "All Hallows Eve" and November 1st was declared "All Saint's Day".


1 November: All Saint's Day

In the Western Christian practice, the liturgical celebration begins at Vespers on the evening of 31 October, All Hallows' Eve (All Saints' Eve), and ends at the close of 1 November. It is thus the day before All Souls' Day, which commemorates the faithful departed. In many traditions, All Saints' Day is part of the season of Allhallowtide, which includes the three days from 31 October to 2 November inclusive and in some denominations, such as Anglicanism, extends to Remembrance Sunday. In places where All Saints' Day is observed as a public holiday but All Souls' Day is not, cemetery and grave rituals such as offerings of flowers, candles and prayers or blessings for the graves of loved ones often take place on All Saints Day. In Austria and Germany, godparents gift their godchildren Allerheiligenstriezel (All Saint's Braid) on All Saint's Day, while the practice of souling remains popular in Portugal. It is a national holiday in many Christian countries.

The Christian celebration of All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day stems from a belief that there is a powerful spiritual bond between those in heaven (the "Church triumphant"), and the living (the "Church militant"). In Catholic theology, the day commemorates all those who have attained the beatific vision in Heaven. In Methodist theology, All Saints Day revolves around "giving God solemn thanks for the lives and deaths of his saints", including those who are "famous or obscure". As such, individuals throughout the Church Universal are honoured, such as Paul the Apostle, Augustine of Hippo and John Wesley, in addition to individuals who have personally led one to faith in Jesus, such as one's grandmother or friend.


Sunset of the Winter Solstice: YULETIDE

Yuletide is the pre-Christian Germanic Midwinter celebration. The name Yule is derived from the Old Norse HJOL, meaning 'wheel,' to identify the moment when the wheel of the year is at its lowest point, ready to rise again. HJOL has been inherited by Germanic and Scandinavian languages from a pre-Indo-European language level, and is a direct reference to the return of the Sun represented as a fiery wheel rolling across the heavenly sky. Yule celebrations and traditions at the winter solstice predate Christianity by thousands of years. There are numerous references to Yule in the Icelandic sagas, and in other ancient accounts testifying to how Yule was actually celebrated. It was a time for feasting, giving gifts, feasting and dancing.
The Yule holiday is the holiest and most popular of all the native Germanic spiritual celebrations, as Yule marks the return of the God Baldur from the realm of Hel and the loosening of winters grip on the frozen Earth.

The commencement of the Yuletide celebration has no set date, but is traditionally 12 days long with the start of the festivities beginning at sunset on the winter solstice (In the northern hemisphere, this date usually falls on or around December 20th) This Germanic Heathen holiday was forcibly stolen by early Christian missionaries and became known as the "12 days of Christmas".
The first night of Yule is called The Mothernight, where Frigga and the Disir (female ancestral spirits) are especially honoured on this night. Mothers Night is appropriately named, as it represents the rebirth of the world from the darkness of winter. This is the date with the shortest day and the longest night of the year.
A traditional vigil from dusk to dawn is held on the Mothers night, to make sure that the sun will rise again and welcome her when it does.

Yule is the season at which the gods and goddesses are closest to Midgard: our deities were called 'Yule-Beings' by the Norse, and Odin himself is called Jólnir, the "Yule One" and is where the image of Santa Claus is derived from. Yule is also the season during which the dead return to earth and share the feasts of the living. Elves, trolls, and other magical beings roam freely at this time, and must either be warded off or invited to come in friendship and peace. Yule is the time of the year at which the Wild Hunt - Wodan's host of the restless dead - rides most fiercely; it is dangerous to meet them, but gifts of food and drink are left out for them, for they can also bring blessing and fruitfulness.
Yule is a time for dancing, feasting and family. Sun wheels are sometimes burnt as part of folk festivities at this time. It was the practice in Germanic Heathen times to swear oaths on a hallowed boar (the totem animal of Freyr and Freya). This survived in Swedish folk-custom; a large boar-shaped bread or block of wood covered with pigskin was brought forth at Yule for this purpose through the beginning of this century, and boar-cakes are used for Yule-oaths by most Heathens today. Especially meaningful oaths were also sworn on the horn or cup while drinking at the Yule-feast. The 'New Year's Resolution' is a diminished form of the holy Yule Oath. The fir or pine-tree which is carried into the house and decorated is an ancient Germanic custom, brought to America by German immigrants. The tree on which holy gifts are hung was Heathen in origin representing Yggdrasil, the mighty cosmic tree of life. In Germany, those who kept the old custom hid it inside lest the church authorities notice, but in England and Scandinavia, the trees and various spirits received their gifts outside. In those latter countries, it was a candlelit and ribbon-bedecked wreath, the ring of which may have reflected the holy oath-ring or the Yule sun-wheel, that was traditionally brought in to decorate the home. The Yule-log is also an old Heathen custom. This log was supposed to burn all night during the longest night of the year to symbolize life lasting even in the time of greatest darkness, its fire rekindling the Sun in the morning. Its ashes or pieces were used as protective amulets during the rest of the year. Those who lack large fireplaces often use 24-hour candles instead.

The 12 days of Yule is largely devoted to baking cakes, cookies, and breads and making the unique decorations which beautify every Heathen home at this holiday season. There are, for example, intricate paper cutouts to make and put on the walls; festoons, stars, wooden toys, and straw animals in the shape of Goats, and Wild Boars to hang on the Yule tree. The straw animals, which are still widely found throughout Sweden, are intimately related to ancient Norse Germanic mythology; originating in legends of the sacred animals of the gods; the Goats of Thor, the thunder God, and the Wild Boar of Freyr, God of Fertility.

The majority of the symbols associated with the modern holiday of Christmas (such as the Yule log, Santa Claus & his Elves, Christmas trees, the Wreath, the eating of ham, holly, mistletoe, the star...) are derived from traditional northern European Heathen Yule celebrations. When the first Christian missionaries began forcibly converting the Germanic peoples to Christianity, they found it easier to simply provide a Christian reinterpretation for popular feasts such as Yule and allow the celebrations themselves to go on largely unchanged, rather than trying to suppress them. Halloween and Easter have been likewise assimilated from northern European Heathen religious festivals.


24 December: Christmas Eve

Christmas celebrations in the denominations of Western Christianity have long begun on Christmas Eve, due in part to the Christian liturgical day starting at sunset, a practice inherited from Jewish tradition and based on the story of Creation in the Book of Genesis: "And there was evening, and there was morning – the first day. ” Many churches still ring their church bells and hold prayers in the evening; for example, the Nordic Lutheran churches. Since tradition holds that Jesus was born at night (based in Luke 2:6-8), Midnight Mass is celebrated on Christmas Eve, traditionally at midnight, in commemoration of his birth. The idea of Jesus being born at night is reflected in the fact that Christmas Eve is referred to as Heilige Nacht (Holy Night) in German, Nochebuena (the Good Night) in Spanish and similarly in other expressions of Christmas spirituality, such as the song "Silent Night, Holy Night".

Many other varying cultural traditions and experiences are also associated with Christmas Eve around the world, including the gathering of family and friends, the singing of Christmas carols, the illumination and enjoyment of Christmas lights, trees, and other decorations, the wrapping, exchange and opening of gifts, and general preparation for Christmas Day. Legendary Christmas gift-bearing figures including Santa Claus, Father Christmas, Christkind, and Saint Nicholas are also often said to depart for their annual journey to deliver presents to children around the world on Christmas Eve, although until the Protestant introduction of Christkind in 16th-century Europe, such figures were said to instead deliver presents on the eve of Saint Nicholas' feast day (6 December).


25 December: Christmas Day

The traditional Christmas narrative, the Nativity of Jesus, delineated in the New Testament says that Jesus was born in Bethlehem, in accordance with messianic prophecies. When Joseph and Mary arrived in the city, the inn had no room and so they were offered a stable where the Christ Child was soon born, with angels proclaiming this news to shepherds who then further disseminated the information.

Although the month and date of Jesus' birth are unknown, the church in the early fourth century fixed the date as December 25. This corresponds to the date of the winter solstice on the Roman calendar. Most Christians celebrate on December 25 in the Gregorian calendar, which has been adopted almost universally in the civil calendars used in countries throughout the world. However, part of the Eastern Christian Churches celebrate Christmas on December 25 of the older Julian calendar, which currently corresponds to January 7 in the Gregorian calendar. For Christians, believing that God came into the world in the form of man to atone for the sins of humanity, rather than knowing Jesus' exact birth date, is considered to be the primary purpose in celebrating Christmas.

The celebratory customs associated in various countries with Christmas have a mix of pre-Christian, Christian, and secular themes and origins. Popular modern customs of the holiday include gift giving; completing an Advent calendar or Advent wreath; Christmas music and caroling; viewing a Nativity play; an exchange of Christmas cards; church services; a special meal; and the display of various Christmas decorations, including Christmas trees, Christmas lights, nativity scenes, garlands, wreaths, mistletoe, and holly. In addition, several closely related and often interchangeable figures, known as Santa Claus, Father Christmas, Saint Nicholas, and Christkind, are associated with bringing gifts to children during the Christmas season and have their own body of traditions and lore. Because gift-giving and many other aspects of the Christmas festival involve heightened economic activity, the holiday has become a significant event and a key sales period for retailers and businesses. The economic impact of Christmas has grown steadily over the past few centuries in many regions of the world.


31 December: New Year's Eve

In the Gregorian calendar, New Year's Eve (also known as Old Year's Day or Saint Sylvester's Day in many countries), the last day of the year, is on 31 December. In many countries, New Year's Eve is celebrated at evening parties, where many people dance, eat, drink, and watch or light fireworks. Some Christians attend a watchnight service. The celebrations generally go on past midnight into New Year's Day, 1 January.


External links
LinkThe SACRED CALENDAR
LinkAll Saints' Day

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