Friday, December 16, 2016

Christmas Manger Scene


The folks who live in this house are very religious and announce their devotion to Jesus at every opportunity. Many others in Ocala feel much the same way and you will see numerous signs on lawns, cars, houses, businesses, etc., claiming "Jesus is the reason for the season."

Actually, that's not correct if you want to get technical.  In fact, the early church didn't give a flip about when Jesus was born until the mid-4th century.  Then the church fathers argued about the date because no one had any idea.  They finally settled on December 25, which was the time that that many other religions celebrated the birth of their savior, not a few of these saviors also being born of a virgin in a cave or manger.

Mithraism was the big competitor to Christianity in the early 4th century and their god/savior was one of those born on Dec. 25.  In fact, all of Rome came out to celebrate this birth on Mithras Eve, December 24.

So, it worked out well.  People were already celebrating December 25, why not Christians?

But the reality is that this date was chosen, not so much because it was when Mithras was born, but rather because the popular sun god was born on December 25 and and that birth had been a festival in the Roman empire for many years.  




16 comments:

Francisco Manuel Carrajola Oliveira said...

Um belo presépio, gostei.
Um abraço e bom fim-de-semana.
Andarilhar

William Kendall said...

That place is a serious shade of blue.

Catalyst said...

Wisdom in Florida. What a concept.

Kay said...

It's unfortunate that some Christians get incensed at the use of "Happy Holidays" rather than "Merry Christmas." I guess they don't have Jewish and Buddhist (and other denominations) friends and family as I do.
(BTW: the view you enjoyed in my post today was taken from the back of our property.)

stardust said...

How and why the date of Christ’s birthday was decided is interesting. I’ve read many of the Christmas traditions like Santa Clause, 12 Days of Christmas, English boxing day, tying apples to trees, and so son, date back to the time before the birth of Christ.

Yoko

Shammickite said...

And of course, the winter solstice is on December 21....
I wonder what normally sits in that central island when the nativity scene is put away in the garage?

Judy said...

All those people....and me. How about that!
I'm doing OK, thanks for asking. In a blogging slump at the moment. I ran out of pictures and not getting out much to take any. The roads around here are so crowded and everyone in such a big hurry. I think I'll just stay out of their way.

Optimistic Existentialist said...

I love Christmas but not for any religious reasons at all. Mainly for the sweets LOL

Sharon Anck said...

You are a fountain of wisdom today! Actually, you are a fountain of wisdom most any day!

Linda said...

Very nice! I like it!

Small City Scenes said...

Well if you look at most of the popular Christian holidays they were/are on Pagan holidays too. Go figure and who cares anyway
MB

bill burke said...

A blue Christmas in that house and a sky to match :)

RedPat said...

Something I have never seen here!

Andy said...

Closest thing I've seen this year to what Christmas is all about.

magiceye said...

Very interesting

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

Yes. Same over here in this part of Florida (though my several neighbors who proudly display "the reason" sign are from other states...). Like you, and as you know, we certainly often feel out of place and in the minority here. But then I remember how it feels to have cold feet (literally) and I know why we are.

Thanks for posting this. I couldn't wait to read the comments and was pleasantly surprised.

"Photographers deal in things which are continually vanishing and when they have vanished there is no contrivance on earth which can make them come back again." — Henri Cartier-Bresson