It’s not just about Christmas, Channukah & Kwanzaa

Winter Festivals have been going on for a long, long time.  Well before there were organized religions, our human ancestors would celebrate the solstice in mid-summer and mid-winter… those days of greatest light and greatest darkness.

Tomorrow, in the Northern Hemisphere we celebrate the Winter Solstice… and I have been searching for an appropriate way to mark this great occasion (other than by drinking too much bourbon).  I have finally found a tradition I can get behind… it’s noted below — I’m not making this up.

The Saami, indigenous people of Finland, Sweden and Norway, worship Beiwe, the sun-goddess of fertility and sanity. She travels through the sky in a structure made of reindeer bones with her daughter, Beiwe-Neia, to herald back the greenery on which the reindeer feed. On the winter solstice, her worshipers sacrifice white female animals, and with the meat, thread and sticks, bend into rings with ribbons. They also cover their doorposts with butter so Beiwe can eat it and begin her journey once again.

That’s it… I’m moving to Finland.  But if Beiwe and her daughter wear those hats with the horns and metal brassieres, I’m coming back.


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