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The Mother Of All Pagan Holidays
Part One

By Shlomo Phillips © December 29, 2010 (last updated December 01, 2015)

         'Tis the season to debate Christmas, Falalalalalalalala!

This is: Part 1: The Mother of All Pagan Holidays
Go to: Part 2: The Birth of Y'shua ben Yosef
Go to: Part 3: The Real Reason for the Season
Go to: Part 4: The Dark Truth About Santa Claus
Go to: Part 5: Saint Nicholas and the Nicolaitan Heresy
Go to: Part 6: A Christmas Song

The Mother of All Pagan Holidays

Each December Christians battle devout Atheists, people of other religions and people who just enjoy watching them squirm over the public face of the Christ Mass: Christmas. Many Nicene Christians feel they are being unfairly attacked by anti-Christian Grintches for celebrating the birth of Jesus. Some of them have very thin skins when it comes to this holiday! If someone innocently says: "Happy Holidays" sincerely wishing them well but wanting to be inclusive of all the winter holiday traditions, or to merely be politically correct, the greeter is frequently chastised with an acerbic, "Its 'Merry Christmas' not 'Happy Holidays' -- Jesus is the reason for the season!"

But is he really?

Almost every religion and culture observes holidays around the Winter Solstice. Christmas is based firmly on these practices of its predecessors. "Jesus" didn't enter the Yuletide festivities until much much later. He certainly is not the reason for these ancient yuletide observances.

Besides, what's wrong with wishing people a "joyous holiday" instead of specifically saying:

You get the idea.

These are but a few of the annual Winter Solstice celebrations. Why is everyone supposed to wish people a "Merry Christmas" when they may not observe it? When for them the birth of Christendom may be anything but good news? "Happy Holidays" says, Whatever is bringing you light and joy during these cold winter days I wish you the best! How is this a bad thing? I don't get it .

... Even if they're celebrating Festivus (celebrated on December 23)!

By design, ours is a very religiously diverse society with people of many different religious and secular backgrounds and beliefs. Even though Christianity remains the largest religion in the US, in no sense is the U.S. a Christian country anymore. This annual brouhaha would be rather silly if tensions weren't already rising to the boiling point. Christmas is after all a very stressful time of year! Falalalalalalalala!

But still many Christians honestly believe that if non-Christians don't like being bombarded from loud speakers with songs like "Little Town of Bethlehem" and "Joy to the world, the Lord has come;" if they have a problem with Old Saint Nick breaking into people's houses by night; if they don't like coerced kisses under strategically placed sprigs of mistletoe by people they have no desire to be kissed by, if they dislike the rampant and all consuming greed of the socially mandated 'gift' giving... well... then they just don't love Jesus, the sinners! Besides, no one says they have to gather around O Tannenbaum (an idol Torah specifically forbids) or yon Virgin anyway! If celebrating the birth of the "Prince of Peace" in whose name some of history's greatest evils were done so alienates people, if it promotes overwhelming greed and avarice in children and adults alike, if it replaces God's priceless love with material objects crafted by sinister elves hiding in the snowy hinterlands, if it causess millions of people to suffer annual bouts of depression and displaced anger, if the observances result in frequent legal challenges, and occasionally leads to bankruptcies, crimes, and broken marriages... well so be it! 'Its a holly jolly time of year' so 'have a cup of cheer' and shut up! Just celebrate Jesus' birth (in the wrong season and with biblically condemned traditions) and be quiet about its origins and symbolism!

To its credit the Church of England once tried to stop this Pagan holiday. Consider the following:

In January 1645 a group of ministers appointed by parliament produced a new Directory of Public Worship, which set out a new church organization and new forms of worship to be adopted and followed in England and Wales. The Directory made clear that Sundays were to be strictly observed as holy days, for the worship of God, but that there were to be no other holy days - 'festival days, vulgarly called Holy Days, having no warrant in the Word of God, are not to be continued'. Parliamentary legislation adopting the Directory of Public Worship, initially as one of several forms which could be followed in England and Wales, but then as the only form which was legal and was to be allowed, abolishing and making illegal any other forms of worship and church services, therefore prohibited (on paper at least) the religious celebration of all other holy days, including Christmas. In June 1647 the Long Parliament reiterated this by passing an Ordinance confirming the abolition of the feasts of Christmas, Easter and Whitsun, though at the same time parliament said that the second Tuesday in each month was to be kept as a non-religious, secular holiday, providing a break for servants, apprentices and other employees.

During the 1650s parliamentary legislation was passed to reinforce the structure that had been put in place by the end of the 1640s. Specific penalties were to be imposed on anyone found holding or attending a special Christmas church service, it was ordered that shops and markets were to stay open on 25 December, the Lord Mayor was repeatedly ordered to ensure that London stayed open for business on 25 December, and when it met on 25 December 1656 the second Protectorate Parliament discussed the virtues of passing further legislation clamping down on the celebration of Christmas (though no Bill was, in fact, produced). Legislation was passed to ensure that Sundays were even more strictly observed as the Lord’s Day, but the holding of a regular monthly fast on the last Wednesday of the month, which had never proved popular or been widely followed, was quietly dropped.          Source.

So, A Few Relevant Questions For Today's "Bible Believing Christians":

Why do so many Christians, who claim to honor, obey and practice a biblical religion, choose to engage in and promote customs and holidays that the Bible so clearly and unmistakably condemns? I'm not judging the non-Christians from whom these practices were taken, please don't misunderstand me. But those Christians who so vocally demand that everyone else must conform to 'biblical truth' (as they interpret it) the rest of the year -- who so adamantly deny equal rights to others based on "what the Bible teaches" and so on -- why, during December, do they lead the way in celebrating the mother of all Pagan holidays?! What's up with this?

Also, Santa and Paganism aside, why do Nicene Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus at the one time of year we know for a fact that he was not born? Maybe he was born during Sukkot as I believe most likely, or perhaps in the Spring or Summer... but according to the Gospel accounts he absolutely was not a Capricorn! So, why celebrate his birth in December?

Is "Jesus the Reason for the Season?"

Absolutely not! At best he was a manipulated afterthought by Pagan Rome to preserve Saturnalia and other popular Pagan traditions.

O Tannenbaum - Weihnachtslieder zum Mitsingen | Sing Kinderlieder

Nana Mouskouri - Oh Tannenbaum ( Christmas special )

What's wrong with Christmas? Let's face it, the winter holidays can be fun times to gather together and share our joy with others. Christians today do not observe the day in honor of Saturn, Dionysus, Sol Invictus, Woden, or the other Pagan gods and goddesses. Why bring all this up?

One reason is because those who condemn the rest of us to eternal torment for not embracing their "biblical belief system" need to remove this annual mote from their own eyes (Matthew 7:3)! Christmas is clearly the Mother of all Pagan holidays, and yet "Bible believing Christians" not only observe it, they force their anti-biblical traditions on the rest of us! Christmas has no biblical basis.

We need a more balanced perspective on these things I think. The US and EU are no longer Christian areas in any serious sense. Assuming that everyone you meet will share your religious holiday observances is presumptuous at best. Most people in the West are essentially Agnostic now, regardless of the labels they use in polls. Comparatively few people in the West actually observe Christianity or any other religion in their daily lives.

At the same time, we have certain cultural norms. Having someone say "Merry Christmas" is not going to infect you with Paganism! So chill out! Why get so perturbed about it? Better to reply, "Thank you. May you have a wonderful celebration." Give them the benefit of the doubt. They are probably just being friendly. Why be snarky about a friendly greeting?

We should however have an accurate understanding about the holiday's origins and practices since they so impact us all. Armed with knowledge we will be empowered to decide whether or not, and if so how, we will observe these winter festivities without compromising our own religious and/or ethical beliefs.

This is the goal of this study: Not to bash Christmas nor Christians, but to take an honest look at this holiday, its origins, and its observances. What you do with the information is your call. No judgments are intended by me.

   Continue to Part Two

Go to: Part 2: The Birth of Y'shua ben Yosef
Go to: Part 3: The Real Reason for the Season
Go to: Part 4: The Dark Truth About Santa Claus
Go to: Part 5: Saint Nicholas and the Nicolaitan Heresy
Go to: Part 6: A Christmas Song

Be the Blessing you were created to be


Don't let the perfect defeat the good.