2009-12-02

Happy Holidays and Seasons Greetings

As an atheist who celebrates Christmas, because it is part of the cultural milieu I was brought up in, am I part of the "War on Christmas" for recognizing that the world does not revolve around Christianity.

Indeed, there are billions of people worldwide celebrating holidays and events other than Christmas during this season, and even at that not everyone who celebrates Christmas is Christian as it has become as much a secular as a religious holiday.

Indeed if anyone is guilty of a "War on Christmas" it is the Christians who have turned Christmas into the High Holy Day of Capitalism.

Let me take this opportunity to offer my best wishes to those celebrating these occasions and holidays this month:

Religious Holidays

Bodhi Day (Rohatsu) - Buddhism
December 8

Masa'il - Baha'i
December 12, 2009
The 15th month.

Chanukah - Judaism
December 12 through to December 29, 2009
Chanukah, meaning "dedication" in Hebrew refers to the joyous eight-day celebration during which Jews commemorate the victory of the Macabees over the armies of Syria in 165 B.C.E. and the subsequent liberation and "rededication" of the Temple in Jerusalem.

First of Muharram - Islam
December 18, 2009
Islamic New Year, 1431. The first of Muharram marks the first day of the first month (Muharram) of the Islamic year. It begins at sundown the previous day.

Tohji-taisai - Shinto
December 21, 2009
Grand Ceremony of the Winter Solstice. Celebrates the joy of the ending of the yin period of the sun, when it declines in strength, and the beginning of its growing power or yang period. The sun is of central importance in Japan, expressing the presence of Amaterasu Omikami, the Kami of the Sun.

Yule - Wicca
December 21, 2009
Yule, which marks the New Year in the Anglo-Saxon and northern traditions of Wicca, is the celebration of the birth of the Gof as the winter-born King, symbolized by the rebirth of the life-generating and life-sustaining sun. It is a time for ritually shedding the impurities of the past year, and for contemplating avenues of spiritual development in the year ahead.

Christmas - Christianity
December 25, 2009
Christmas or Christmas Day is an annual Christian holiday that celebrates the birth of Jesus, along with themes such as family, goodwill, giving and compassion.

Death Anniversary of Zarathustr
a - Zoroastrianism
December 26, 2009
The anniversary of the death of Zarathustra (Zoroaster), the founder of the Zoroastrian faith.

Ashura - Islam
December 27, 2009
The tenth day of the first Islamic month (Muharram). For Shi’ite Muslims, this day mourns the martyrdom of Hazrat Imam Husain, the grandson of Prophet Muhammad. Devout Shi’a commemorate this day of sadness with retelling the story of the battle fought in Kerbala.

Sharaf
- Baha'i
December 31, 2009
The 16th month.

Gahambar Maidyarem - Zoroastrianism
December 31, 2009
This day celebrates the creation of animals. It is also a time for the equitable sharing of food.

My apologies to anyone that I have missed, please add your holiday in the comments section.

Non-Religious Holidays and Commemorations


Rosa Park's Day
(December 1)
Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on the bus in 1955.

International Day of the Disabled Person (December 3)

International Volunteer Day (December 5)

Human Rights Day (December 10)
United Nations' Declaration of Human Rights in 1948

UNICEF Anniversary (December 11)

Winter Solstice
(December 21)
First Day of Winter

Kwanzaa (December 26 to January 1)
Kwanzaa is a unique African American celebration with focus on the traditional African values of family, community responsibility, commerce, and self-improvement. Kwanzaa is neither political nor religious and despite some misconceptions, is not a substitute for Christmas. It is simply a time of reaffirming African-American people, their ancestors and culture.

New Years Eve (December 31)
Celebration of the New Year

And many many more, too numerous to mention.

2 comments:

FFIB NAMOL said...

December 1st Aids Day

And my favorite Dec 26th Boxing Day, which being a purist, I only celebrate on the 26th.

rww said...

Oh yes. I forgot Return Your Gifts and Buy What You Really Want Day.