Last Updated on December 27, 2021 by David Vause
Our daughter and son-in-law had a luncheon with us on the 25th. My wife and I are not Christians, so the holiday trappings have only sentimental appeal to her. To me, the uniquely Christian traditions mean nothing. Gift-giving and feasting at this time of year preceded Christians, going back as far into the hominid past to the point when we first started looking up at the stars. Yule logs, decorating evergreen, both have separate, earlier origins.
Fourth Century Christians decided to fix the event on December 25, not coincidentally the date of the solstice in the Roman calendar. For me, Christmas and Kwanzaa boil down to the southern solstice. It is the day when the shortest day occurs for us in the north and the longest for our southern kin. For Denise and our daughter, it is the opportunity to celebrate by making an array of foods and treats to share. The darkness of 2021 brought no exception. For me, it is a reminder that our trials mean nothing in the heavens and that longer, warmer days will return.