Add flour and baking powder. ©. So each “pagan Christmas” article echoes the previous ones, like an endless succession of ghosts of Christmas past. Two male members of the coven wear crowns of either oak or holly and perform a ceremonial fight. "Then we drum and chant to bring up the sun" said Ms West, whose coven, called the Hearth of Hecate, wears black robes for the occasion "because they don't show the dirt as much as white ones." Firstly, the customs of giving presents, eating too much and generally having fun comes from the Roman festival Saturnalia which used to be celebrated around December 17. The third celebration is New Year's Eve, originally dedicated to the two-faced Roman god Janus, who looked both forward and back. In 1659, a law was established in Massachusetts outlawing the celebration of Christmas, with the exception of church attendance. Hanging the holly and ivy wreath outside the house. 99. Christians and the more secular Christmas revellers may be relieved to learn that Pagans in Britain do not tend to cavort around holly bushes stark naked, or "skyclad", to celebrate their version of Christmas. " It is often called Yule, after the Scandinavian tradition, or Mother-Night from the Anglo-Saxon tradition. For modern Pagans, the solstice is the most important time. Big feasts were generally laid on by the rich to feed their poorer neighbours. Two male members of the coven wear crowns of either oak or holly and perform a ceremonial fight. When they get to the middle of the maze, they say a few healing prayers and go home and have a big party. High Priestess Druids, the priestly class in ancient Celtic society, celebrated the festival of Alban Arthuan (also known as Yule) at the time of the Winter solstice. "For us we decided to have fireworks to mark the return of light. The longest day of the year, the Summer Solstice, is a day that scientists, astronomers, and meteorologists all observe with interest. When they get to the middle of the maze, they say a few healing prayers and go home and have a big party. The pegan origins of Christmas can be traced back to the commemoration of the Winter Solstice celebrated in Europe on or around December 22nd. The Yule log, (usually made from a piece of wood saved from the previous year) is burned in … Mistletoe was revered as a sacred plant by the Celts, the Norse, … Atheist activists, on the other hand, are meant to check things carefully. he said. According to The Etymological Dictionary Of Scottish-Gaelic the word cailleach itself means "veiled one" or "old woman". (32) In Celtic tradition, trees were considered sacred because they were the homes of deities and spirits. We celebrate the rebirth of the sun, not the son," said Kate West, High Priestess of a Wiccan coven in Cheshire. "It's certainly too cold at this time of year to run about with no clothes on," said Dhyan Sargam, a witch from Berkshire. The tradition continues today. By Sarah Franklin. Yet many of the holiday’s ritual are centered deep in old Irish and Celtic traditions. "I'm not a Pagan because I'm anti-Christian, I'm a Pagan because I believe in a variety of Pagan deities." This was the one adopted by Christians sometime around the 4th century as the birthday of Jesus. Decorating the Christmas tree was originally a pagan Irish celebration. Pagan families would bring a live tree into the home so the wood spirits would have a place to keep warm in the cold winter months - food and treats were hung on the branches for the spirits to eat. But the most important date in the festive season for Pagans is the winter solstice which always takes place around December 21. Stonehenge is a celebrated venue of festivities during the winter solstice - the shortest day of the year in the northern hemisphere - and it attracts thousands of revelers, spiritualists and tourists. On this, the longest night of the year, they celebrate the return of light and an end to darkness. Ms West said that the winter solstice was not the most important Pagan ceremony for Wiccans, that distinction goes to their new year at Hallowe'en. Leaving a candle in the window of the house to guide Mary and Joseph on their way to Bethlehem to give birth was inspired by an old Celtic ritual of lighting a way for the spirits to pass peacefully. Merry Pagan Christmas Germanic and Scandinavian customs and symbols were also incorporated in what we will now lovingly call Pagan Christmas. For 17 years, our presentation of A Christmas Celtic Sojourn has entertained and enlightened audiences throughout New England during this darkest time of the year. 4.5 out of 5 stars 1,135. Until the mid-nineteenth century, the Christmas tree was seen as a primarily pagan tradition in the United States. The date of Christmas was most likely taken from the Celtic winter solstice. Much of the ancient new year celebrations, such as gathering greenery in the form of a fir tree or holly, have now moved back to start at what is the beginning of the modern Christmas season. Many Pagans say that Christmas was superimposed over their great year-end festivals which were very popular in the Graeco-Roman world. Away In A Manger - Trad/carol 2. Happy Christmas War Is Over - John Lennon 5. Arrives before Christmas Only 2 left in stock - order soon. In The Bleak Midwinter - Trad/carol 4. Historical debate has been raging for a long time over the exact date of the birth of Jesus Christ, with estimates ranging from sometime in September to much later in February. Big feasts were generally laid on by the rich to feed their poorer neighbours. Eating mince pies. At this festival there were torchlit processions, lots of songs, present giving, fortune telling and people would decorate their houses with all sorts of greenery to symbolise new life. A church I was formerly a member of, which condemned Christmas observance as paganism, for almost sixty years, today has turned its back on its former beliefs, and encourages its members to observe this pagan mid-winter festival "in honor of Christ"! "For us we decided to have fireworks to mark the return of light. Available instantly. Ancient Celtic religion, commonly known as Celtic paganism, comprises the religious beliefs and practices adhered to by the Iron Age people of Western Europe now known as the Celts, roughly between 500 BCE and 500 CE, spanning the La Tène period and the Roman era, and in the case of the Insular Celts the British and Irish Iron Age. Called Yule, it is one of the traditional Celtic fire festivals and marks the return of the light after the longest night of the year. However, she features prominently in mythology and is not just a destroyer, but also a creator goddess. Apparently, the season of good cheer did not start out as exclusively a Christian festival. At this festival there were torchlit processions, lots of songs, present giving, fortune telling and people would decorate their houses with all sorts of greenery to symbolise new life. In pre-Christian times they warded off evil spirits. But the most important date in the festive season for Pagans is the winter solstice which always takes place around December 21. Celtic Wind’s Pagan Christmas Bash ‍♂️ ‍⬛ Songs: 1. Pagan Claus - A look at Christmas Symbols, The Holidays of Witchcraft - Witches' Voice. "The commercialisation is not something we like ... to make this time of year an overtly commercial affair is inappropriate." … Celtic spirituality stems from the pagan Celts, a collection of tribes in Ireland that were converted to Christianity by St. Patrick in the fifth century A.D. 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