Christmas Special * Includes Ten Christmas Customs with Pagan Roots* Christmas Quotes, Humour, and Musical Winterludes

Merry Christmas!

Before launching into more serious apects of this post, let's enjoy some holiday humour!

Christmas According to Kids - Southland Christian Church

Southland Christian Church
Published on Dec 24, 2015

What happens when you ask a bunch of kids to tell the story of Christmas? Enjoy this story of Bethle-ha-ha-ham and the magical star that appeared.

Category: People & Blogs
License: Standard YouTube License

A Kids View of the Christmas Story

Portland Christian Center
Published on Dec 16, 2009

The story of Christmas told by preschool & kindergarten students from Hilltop Preschool & Kindergarten.

Category: Entertainment
License: Standard YouTube License

Blue Christmas with Porky Pig

expresscourier
Published on Dec 23, 2011

Category: Nonprofits & Activism
License: Standard YouTube License

Thus ends safe humourous content for adults and the kids, however -

CAUTION: The adult humour section further down requires parental review and/or guidance before "children" of any age (yes, we're talking to your inner child as well) are allowed access. And for those adults who consider some elements of the humour section distasteful, can't say we didn't warn you!

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Now for some serious contemplation.

Is Christmas a Utopian celebration?

The answer may depend on your viewpoint:

Do you think of Christmas as -

• Myth based nostalgia for the past while cash registers ring and good times roll, at least for awhile?
• Ongoing genuine effort to maintain traditional spiritual values?
• A combination of both?

Not the easiest question to answer considering the ongoing state of human affairs.

And if Christmas in NOT a Utopian celebration for most of us, is there the potential for Christmas and related pagan beliefs to facilitate a Utopian future?

Discuss before and/or after reading/viewing the below entries.

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First, some interesting details on ten Christmas customs.

Ten Christmas Customs with Pagan Roots

Courtesy of and thanks to: https://www.thoughtco.com/christmas-customs-with-pagan-roots-2563021

Content written by by Patti Wigington
Updated June 18, 2017 and other dates
See ThoughtCo. site for additional details and related pics

During the winter solstice season, we hear all kinds of cool stuff about candy canes, Santa Claus, reindeer and other traditions. But did you know that many Christmas customs can trace their roots back to Pagan origins? Here are ten little-known bits of trivia about the Yule season that you might be unaware of.

1. Christmas Caroling

The tradition of Christmas caroling actually began as the tradition of wassailing. In centuries past, wassailers went from door to door, singing and drinking to the health of their neighbors. The concept actually harkens back to pre-Christian fertility rites -- only in those ceremonies, villagers traveled through their fields and orchards in the middle of winter, singing and shouting to drive away any spirits that might inhibit the growth of future crops. Caroling wasn’t actually done in churches until St. Francis, around the 13th century, thought it might be a nice idea.

As part of this, they poured wine and cider on the ground to encourage fertility in the crops.

Eventually, this evolved into the idea of Christmas caroling, which became popular during the Victorian era, and is still seen today in many areas. If you think your family or friends might enjoy starting up a new, musical tradition, why not gather them together to go out a-wassailing for Yule? (MORE at ThoughtCo. site)

2. Kissing Under the Mistletoe

Mistletoe has been around for a long time, and has been considered a magical plant by everyone from the Druids to the Vikings. The ancient Romans honored the god Saturn, and to keep him happy, fertility rituals took place under the mistletoe. Today, we don't quite go that far under our mistletoe (at least not usually) but it could explain where the kissing tradition comes from. The Norse Eddas tell of warriors from opposing tribes meeting under mistletoe and laying down their arms, so it’s certainly considered a plant of peace and reconciliation. Also in Norse mythology, mistletoe is associated with Frigga, a goddess of love – who wouldn’t want to smooch under her watchful eye?

MISTLETOE AS MEDICINE
In 50 C.E., the Greek physician Dioscorides wrote his Materia Medica, establishing himself a place in medical history. As one of the ancient world's most knowledgeable herbalists, Dioscorides found that mistletoe helped cure his patients of external tumors. He wrote that it “has the power to disperse, soften, drawing and assisting tumors of the parotid gland and other lesions…” Some forty or so years later, Pliny the Elder wrote of the treatment of sores and epilepsy with mistletoe in his Natural History.

He also described its use in magic and ritual.

THE DRUIDS AND ABUNDANCE RITUALS
Pliny wrote that Druid elders performed rituals in which they harvested mistletoe -- a botanical parasite -- from oak trees with golden sickles. It was collected under a waxing moon phase, and then fed to animals to guarantee their fertility. As part of the rite, a pair of white bulls were sacrificed, and if prayers were answered, prosperity would be visited upon the villages.

THOSE WILD ROMANS AND SATURNALIA
No one loves a party like the ancient Romans, and their festival of Saturnalia is one of the most well-documented celebrations of the Winter Solstice. This week-long bacchanal included exchanging of gifts, lots of food and wine, dancing and music. Slaves got the week off work, courts were closed, and all kinds of debauchery took place. This festival honored Saturn, of course, and he was an agricultural god.

To keep him happy, fertility rituals took place under the mistletoe. Today, we don't quite go that far under our mistletoe (at least not usually) but it does explain where the kissing tradition comes from.

JESUS AND THE NAUGHTY MISTLETOE
As the Roman Empire crumbled and Christianity spread, a rumor began in France that the cross upon which Jesus died was made of mistletoe wood.

As punishment for its involvement in the crucifixion, the plant was forbidden to grow out of the earth, and was demoted to being a botanical parasite. It now has to have a host plant, such as the oak or the ash, apparently more well-behaved and virtuous trees.

MISTLETOE AS MEDICINE ONCE MORE
During medieval times mistletoe was again recognized for its medicinal properties, and appears in several folk remedies. To ward off demons, twigs of mistletoe could be hung in bundles over a door. In some countries, springs were placed in the stable to protect livestock safe from local witches. Mistletoe was also known to rural people as the best cure for barren women; in fact, mistletoe seems to have been a cure-all for any problems with conception, because early societies were baffled by its method of propagation. Interestingly, the Cherokee people used the North American strain of mistletoe as an abortaficient.

MISTLETOE AS A PARASITE
The plant we know today as mistletoe has no roots of its own. What it does have is tiny extensions called holdfasts, that grip onto the bark of the host plant. They also serve as a sort of umbilical cord, and suck the nutrients from the host. Because of its dependence on the host, mistletoe is only found on living trees.

Mistletoe plants can be either female or male; only the female has the beautiful but highly toxic berries. (MORE at ThoughtCo. site)

3. Gift-Delivering Mythical Beings

Sure, we’ve all heard of Santa Claus, who has his roots in the Dutch Sinterklaas mythology, with a few elements of Odin and Saint Nicholas thrown in for good measure. But how many people have heard of La Befana, the kindly Italian witch who drops off treats for well-behaved children? Or Frau Holle, who gives gifts to women at the time of the winter solstice?

Ho ho ho! Once the Yule season rolls around, you can't shake a sprig of mistletoe without seeing images of a chubby man in a red suit. Santa Claus is everywhere, and although he's traditionally associated with the Christmas holiday, his origins can be traced back to a blend of an early Christian bishop (and later saint) and a Norse diety. Let's take a look at where the jolly old guy came from.

EARLY CHRISTIAN INFLUENCE
Although Santa Claus is primarily based upon St. Nicholas, a 4th-century Christian bishop from Lycia (now in Turkey), the figure is also strongly influenced by early Norse religion.

Saint Nicholas was known for giving gifts to the poor. In one notable story, he met a pious but impoverished man who had three daughters. He presented them with dowries to save them from a life of prostitution. In most European countries, St. Nicholas is still portrayed as a bearded bishop, wearing clerical robes. He became a patron saint of many groups, particularly children, the poor, and prostitutes.

In the BBC Two feature film, "The Real Face of Santa," archaeologists used modern forensics and facial reconstruction techniques to get an idea of what St. Nicholas might have actually looked like. According to National Geographic, "The remains of the Greek bishop, who lived in the third and fourth centuries, are housed in Bari, Italy. When the crypt at the Basilica San Nicola was repaired in the 1950s, the saint's skull and bones were documented with x-ray photos and thousands of detailed measurements."

ODIN AND HIS MIGHTY HORSE
Among early Germanic tribes, one of the major deities was Odin, the ruler of Asgard. A number of similarities exist between some of Odin's escapades and those of the figure who would become Santa Claus. Odin was often depicted as leading a hunting party through the skies, during which he rode his eight-legged horse, Sleipnir.

In the 13th-century Poetic Edda, Sleipnir is described as being able to leap great distances, which some scholars have compared to the legends of Santa's reindeer. Odin was typically portrayed as an old man with a long, white beard — much like St. Nicholas himself.

TREATS FOR THE TOTS
During the winter, children placed their boots near the chimney, filling them with carrots or straw as a gift for Sleipnir. When Odin flew by, he rewarded the little ones by leaving gifts in their boots. In several Germanic countries, this practice survived despite the adoption of Christianity. As a result, the gift-giving became associated with St. Nicholas — only nowadays, we hang stockings rather than leaving boots by the chimney!

SANTA COMES TO THE NEW WORLD
When Dutch settlers arrived in New Amsterdam, they brought with them their practice of leaving shoes out for St. Nicholas to fill with gifts. They also brought the name, which later morphed into Santa Claus.

The authors of the website for the St. Nicholas Center say, "In January 1809, Washington Irving joined the society and on St. Nicholas Day that same year, he published the satirical fiction, 'Knickerbocker's History of New York,' with numerous references to a jolly St.

Nicholas character. This was not the saintly bishop, rather an elfin Dutch burgher with a clay pipe. These delightful flights of imagination are the source of the New Amsterdam St. Nicholas legends: that the first Dutch emigrant ship had a figurehead of St. Nicholas; that St. Nicholas Day was observed in the colony; that the first church was dedicated to him; and that St. Nicholas comes down chimneys to bring gifts. Irving's work was regarded as the 'first notable work of imagination in the New World.'"

It was about 15 years later that the figure of Santa as we know it today was introduced. This came in the form of a narrative poem by a man named Clement C. Moore.

THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS
Moore's poem, originally titled "A Visit from St. Nicholas" is commonly known today as "​Twas the Night Before Christmas." Moore went as far as to elaborate on the names of Santa's reindeer, and provided a rather Americanized, secular description of the "jolly old elf."

According to History.com, "Stores began to advertise Christmas shopping in 1820, and by the 1840s, newspapers were creating separate sections for holiday advertisements, which often featured images of the newly-popular Santa Claus. In 1841, thousands of children visited a Philadelphia shop to see a life-size Santa Claus model. It was only a matter of time before stores began to attract children, and their parents, with the lure of a peek at a “live” Santa Claus."

4. Deck Your Halls with Boughs of Green Things

The Romans loved a good party, and Saturnalia was no exception. This holiday, which fell on December 17, was a time to honor the god Saturn, and so homes and hearths were decorated with boughs of greenery – vines, ivy, and the like. The ancient Egyptians didn't have evergreen trees, but they had palms -- and the palm tree was the symbol of resurrection and rebirth. They often brought the fronds into their homes during the time of the winter solstice. This has evolved into the modern tradition of the holiday tree.

5. Hanging Ornaments

Here come those Romans again! At Saturnalia, celebrants often hung metal ornaments outside on trees. Typically, the ornaments represented a god -- either Saturn, or the family's patron deity. The laurel wreath was a popular decoration as well. Early Germanic tribes decorated trees with fruit and candles in honor of Odin for the solstice. You can make your own ornaments to bring the spirit of the season into your life. (MORE at ThoughtCo. site)

6. Fruitcake

The fruitcake has become the stuff of legend, because once a fruitcake is baked, it will seemingly outlive everyone who comes near it. Stories abound of fruitcakes from winters past, magically appearing in the pantry to surprise everyone during the holiday season. What’s interesting about the fruitcake is that it actually has its origins in ancient Egypt. There’s a tale in the culinary world that the Egyptians placed cakes made of fermented fruit and honey on the tombs of their deceased loved ones – and presumably these cakes would last as long as the pyramids themselves. In later centuries, Roman soldiers carried these cakes into battle, made with mashed pomegranates and barley. There are even records of soldiers on Crusades carrying honey-laden fruitcakes into the Holy Land with them.

7. Presents for Everyone!

Today, Christmas is a huge gift-giving bonanza for retailers far and wide. However, that’s a fairly new practice, developed within the last two to three hundred years. Most people who celebrate Christmas associate the practice of gift giving with the Biblical tale of the three wise men who gave gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh to the newborn baby Jesus. However, the tradition can also be traced back to other cultures – the Romans gave gifts between Saturnalia and the Kalends, and during the Middle Ages, French nuns gave gifts of food and clothing to the poor on St. Nicholas’ Eve. Interestingly, up until around the early 1800s, most people exchanged gifts on New Years’ Day – and it was typically just one present, rather than the massive collection of gifts that we’re inundated with each year in today’s society. (MORE at ThoughtCo. site)

8. The Resurrection Theme

Christianity hardly has a monopoly on the theme of resurrection, particularly around the winter holidays. Mithras was an early Roman god of the sun, who was born around the time of the winter solstice and then experienced a resurrection around the spring equinox. The Egyptians honored Horus, who has a similar story. While this doesn’t mean that the tale of Jesus and his rebirth was stolen from the cult of Mithras or Horus – and in fact, it’s definitely not, if you ask scholars - there are certainly some similarities in the stories, and perhaps some carryover from the earlier Pagan traditions.

Sound familiar?

The cult of Mithras was a mystery religion, like that of Cybele and many other Roman Pagan beliefs. Author Ceisiwr Serith describes the cult's temples, or Mithraea, as being relatively small, and typically hidden underground. He also points out that it was only open to men, and very secretive, so it's unlikely that it was truly a big rival to the incoming Christian belief system.

In one legend, Mithras, who was popular amongst members of the Roman military, was ordered by the Sun to sacrifice a white bull. He reluctantly obeyed, but at the moment when his knife entered the creature's body, a miracle took place. The bull turned into the moon, and Mithras' cloak became the night sky. Where the bull's blood fell flowers grew, and stalks of grain sprouted from its tail. Mithras himself ascended to the light, and spent the rest of eternity hanging out with the Sun.

British author and poet Rudyard Kipling, who was fascinated by Mithraism, wrote Song to Mithras, which concludes as follows:

Mithras, God of the Midnight, here where the great bull dies,
Look on thy children in darkness. Oh take our sacrifice!
Many roads thou hast fashioned--all of them lead to the Light:
Mithras, also a soldier, teach us to die aright!

Ceisiwr Serith has a great essay on his website about why Christianity isn't stolen from the cult of Mithras, and it's one well worth reading.

If you're interested in more about Mithras, check out his Mithraism Index.

9. Christmas Holly

For those who celebrate the spiritual aspects of Christmas, there is significant symbolism in the holly bush. For Christians, the red berries represent the blood of Jesus Christ as he died upon the cross, and the sharp-edged green leaves are associated with his crown of thorns. However, in pre-Christian Pagan cultures, the holly was associated with the god of winter – the Holly King, doing his annual battle with the Oak King. Holly was known as a wood that could drive off evil spirits as well, so it came in very handy during the darker half of the year, when most of the other trees were bare.

In many Celtic-based traditions of neopaganism, there is the enduring legend of the battle between the Oak King and the Holly King. These two mighty rulers fight for supremacy as the Wheel of the Year turns each season. At the Winter Solstice, or Yule, the Oak King conquers the Holly King, and then reigns until Midsummer, or Litha. Once the Summer Solstice arrives, the Holly King returns to do battle with the old king, and defeats him.

In the legends of some belief systems, the dates of these events are shifted; the battle takes place at the Equinoxes, so that the Oak King is at his strongest during Midsummer, or Litha, and the Holly King is dominant during Yule. From a folkloric and agricultural standpoint, this interpretation seems to make more sense.

In some Wiccan traditions, the Oak King and the Holly King are seen as dual aspects of the Horned God. Each of these twin aspects rules for half the year, battles for the favor of the Goddess, and then retires to nurse his wounds for the next six months, until it is time for him to reign once more.

Franco over at WitchVox says that the Oak and Holly Kings represent the light and the darkness throughout the year. At the winter solstice we mark "the rebirth of the Sun or the Oak King. On this day the light is reborn and we celebrate the renewal of the light of the year. Oops!

Are we not forgetting someone? Why do we deck the halls with boughs of Holly? This day is the Holly King’s day - the Dark Lord reigns. He is the god of transformation and one who brings us to birth new ways. Why do you think we make “New Year’s Resolutions”? We want to shed our old ways and give way to the new!"

Often, these two entities are portrayed in familiar ways - the Holly King frequently appears as a woodsy version of Santa Claus. He dresses in red, wears a sprig of holly in his tangled hair, and is sometimes depicted driving a team of eight stags. The Oak King is portrayed as a fertility god, and occasionally appears as the Green Man or other lord of the forest.

HOLLY VS. IVY
The symbolism of the holly and the ivy is something that has appeared for centuries; in particular, their roles as representations of opposite seasons has been recognized for a long time. In Green Groweth the Holly, King Henry VIII of England wrote:

Green groweth the holly, so doth the ivy.
Though winter blasts blow never so high, green groweth the holly.
As the holly groweth green and never changeth hue,
So I am, ever hath been, unto my lady true.
As the holly groweth green with ivy all alone
When flowers cannot be seen and greenwood leaves be gone

Of course, The Holly and the Ivy is one of the best known Christmas carols, which states, "The holly and the ivy, when they are both full grown, of all the trees that are in the wood, the holly bears the crown."

THE BATTLE OF TWO KINGS IN MYTH AND FOLKLORE
Both Robert Graves and Sir James George Frazer wrote about this battle.

Graves said in his work The White Goddess that the conflict between the Oak and Holly Kings echoes that of a number of other archetypical pairings. For instance, the fights between Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, and between Lugh and Balor in Celtic legend, are similar in type, in which one figure must die for the other to triumph.

Frazer wrote, in The Golden Bough, of the killing of the King of the Wood, or the tree spirit. He says, "His life must therefore have been held very precious by his worshippers, and was probably hedged in by a system of elaborate precautions or taboos like those by which, in so many places, the life of the man-god has been guarded against the malignant influence of demons and sorcerers. But we have seen that the very value attached to the life of the man-god necessitates his violent death as the only means of preserving it from the inevitable decay of age.

The same reasoning would apply to the King of the Wood; he, too, had to be killed in order that the divine spirit, incarnate in him, might be transferred in its integrity to his successor. The rule that he held office till a stronger should slay him might be supposed to secure both the preservation of his divine life in full vigour and its transference to a suitable successor as soon as that vigour began to be impaired. For so long as he could maintain his position by the strong hand, it might be inferred that his natural force was not abated; whereas his defeat and death at the hands of another proved that his strength was beginning to fail and that it was time his divine life should be lodged in a less dilapidated tabernacle."

Ultimately, while these two beings do battle all year long, they are two essential parts of a whole. Despite being enemies, without one, the other would no longer exist.

10. The Yule Log

Nowadays, when we hear about the Yule log, most people think of a deliciously rich chocolate dessert. But the Yule log has its origins in the cold winters of Norway, on the night of the winter solstice, where it was common to hoist a giant log onto the hearth to celebrate the return of the sun each year. The Norsemen believed that the sun was a giant wheel of fire which rolled away from the earth, and then began rolling back again on the winter solstice.

As the Wheel of the Year turns once more, the days get shorter, the skies become gray, and it seems as though the sun is dying. In this time of darkness, we pause on the Solstice (usually around December 21st, although not always on the same date) and realize that something wonderful is happening.

On Yule, the sun stops its decline into the south. For a few days, it seems as though it’s rising in exactly the same place… and then something amazing and miraculous takes place. The light begins to return.

The sun begins its journey back to the north, and once again we are reminded that we have something worth celebrating. In families of all different spiritual paths, the return of the light is celebrated, with Menorahs, Kwanzaa candles, bonfires, and brightly lit Christmas trees. On Yule, many Pagan and Wiccan families celebrate the return of the sun by adding light into their homes. One very popular tradition – and one that children can do easily – is to make a Yule log for a family-sized celebration.

History and Symbolism

A holiday celebration that began in Norway, on the night of the winter solstice it was common to hoist a giant log onto the hearth to celebrate the return of the sun each year. The Norsemen believed that the sun was a giant wheel of fire which rolled away from the earth, and then began rolling back again on the winter solstice.

As Christianity spread through Europe, the tradition became part of Christmas Eve festivities. The father or master of the house would sprinkle the log with libations of mead, oil, or salt. Once the log was burned in the hearth, the ashes were scattered about the house to protect the family within from hostile spirits. (MORE at ThoughtCo. site)

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Christmas Quotes:
Courtesy of: https://www.brainyquote.com/topics/christmas

Let's be naughty and save Santa the trip.
Gary Allan

Santa Claus has the right idea - visit people only once a year.
Victor Borge

Christmas is a tonic for our souls. It moves us to think of others rather than of ourselves. It directs our thoughts to giving.
B. C. Forbes

Christmas is doing a little something extra for someone.
Charles M. Schulz

Maybe Christmas, the Grinch thought, doesn't come from a store.
Dr. Seuss

Every gift which is given, even though it be small, is in reality great, if it is given with affection.
Pindar

Expectancy is the atmosphere for miracles.
Edwin Louis Cole

What I don't like about office Christmas parties is looking for a job the next day.
Phyllis Diller

I stone got crazy when I saw somebody run down them strings with a bottleneck. My eyes lit up like a Christmas tree and I said that I had to learn.
Muddy Waters

Now, the essence, the very spirit of Christmas is that we first make believe a thing is so, and lo, it presently turns out to be so.
Stephen Leacock

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Pagan and X Rated Christmas Humour (NOT For Kids):

And if you don't appreciate any of this humour then you probably wouldn't enjoy our version of Utopia, where the absolute truth, like it not not, prevails!

Adam Ruins Everything - The Drunken, Pagan History of Christmas

truTV
Published on Dec 23, 2016

OF COURSE the Puritans banned Christmas.

Adam Ruins Everything - The Drunken, Pagan History of Christmas

Category: Entertainment
License: Standard YouTube License

Driving With Liza Holiday Edition Plus Jingle Ballin' Preview!

Published on Dec 9, 2016

Thank you, lil ho ho hos!

Love,
Liza

Category: Comedy
License: Standard YouTube License

CAUTION: This SCTV entry is X rated so NOT for kids! Sexy Adults however, will enjoy, especially Dusty's version of "Twas The Night Before Christmas" at the end of her performance!

The Dusty Towne Sexy Holiday Special

SCTV
Published on Jul 22, 2010

Dusty's first special, and first TV show. She gets things rolling with a song and a story. Marcie performs a suggestive dance. Dusty does her own special medley of Christmas hits (Ricky keeps jumping on the punch line). Dusty and Divine have quite a rapport. Divine's brought a Christmas tape: "Santa Bring My Baby Back to Me" on ice (complete with pink flamingoes). Dusty recites "The Night Before Christmas".

Dusty Towne - O'Hara; Marcie Odette - Martin; Divine - Candy; Juul Haalmeyer Dancers - Juul Haalmeyer, Bob Dolman, Doug Steckler, Mert Rich, Ivan Lynch, extras; Wally Hung Trio: Drums (Ricky) - Moranis; Wally Hung on Korg Organ - Paul Flaherty; Bass - Dick Blasucci; announcer - staff announcer

Category: Comedy
License: Standard YouTube License

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Musical Winterludes:

The Blind Boys Of Alabama "Go Tell It On The Mountain"

Pannellctp Traditional Gospel Music
Published on Feb 5, 2011

The Blind Boys Of Alabama "Go Tell It On The Mountain"

Category: Music
License: Standard YouTube License
Music: "Go Tell It On the Mountain (Live in New York)" by The Blind Boys of Alabama (iTunes)

A Colbert Christmas - Please be patient (Feist)

MinisterOfSincerity
Published on Jun 1, 2011

Please be Patient by Feist off the Stephen Colbert Christmas special.

Category: Music
License: Standard YouTube License
Music: "Please Be Patient" by Feist (Google Play • iTunes)

Elvis Presley, Martina McBride - Blue Christmas

ElvisPresleyVEVO
Published on Oct 25, 2009

Category: Music
License: Standard YouTube License
Music: "Blue Christmas" by Elvis Presley, The Jordanaires (Google Play • iTunes)

The Byrds Turn! Turn! Turn! to Everything There is a Season folk rock band

EverythingThere
Published on Jun 22, 2010

Category Music
License Standard YouTube License
Music "Turn! Turn! Turn! (To Everything There Is A Season)" by The Byrds (Google Play • iTunes)

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One final question: Who among us can deny the Spirit of the Season?

We at UFF suggest true Utopians embrace any and all mythologies that promote an ongoing, healthy, happy future for humanity and Mother Earth.

AMEN!

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Amen
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The word amen (/ˌɑːˈmɛn/ or /ˌeɪˈmɛn/)[a] is a declaration of affirmation[1][2] found in the Hebrew Bible and the New Testament. It is found in Jewish, Christian, and Muslim worship as a concluding word or response to prayers.[2] Common English translations of the word amen include "verily" and "truly". It can also be used colloquially to express strong agreement,[2] as in, for instance, amen to that.[3]

Etymology

The usage of Amen, meaning "so be it", as found in the early scriptures of the Bible is said to be of Hebrew origin;[5] however, the basic triconsonantal root from which the word was derived is common to a number of languages, such as Aramaic, in the Semitic branch of the Afrasian languages. The word was imported into the Greek of the early Church from Judaism.[1][6] From Greek, amen entered the other Western languages. According to a standard dictionary etymology, amen passed from Greek into Late Latin, and thence into English.[7] Rabbinic scholars from medieval France believed the standard Hebrew word for faith emuna comes from the root amen. Although in English transliteration they look different, they are both from the root aleph-mem-nun. That is, the Hebrew word amen derives from the same ancient triliteral Hebrew root as does the verb ʾāmán.[8]

Grammarians frequently list ʾāmán under its three consonants (aleph-mem-nun), which are identical to those of ʾāmēn (note that the Hebrew letter א aleph represents a glottal stop sound, which functions as a consonant in the morphology of Hebrew).[7] This triliteral root means to be firm, confirmed, reliable, faithful, have faith, believe.

In Arabic, the word is derived from its triliteral common root word ʾĀmana (Arabic: آمن‎), which has the same meanings as the Hebrew root word.

Popular among some theosophists,[9] proponents of Afrocentric theories of history,[10] and adherents of esoteric Christianity[11][12] is the conjecture that amen is a derivative of the name of the Egyptian god Amun (which is sometimes also spelled Amen). Some adherents of Eastern religions believe that amen shares roots with the Hindu Sanskrit word, Aum.[13][14][15][16] Such external etymologies are not included in standard etymological reference works. The Hebrew word, as noted above, starts with aleph, while the Egyptian name begins with a yodh.[17]

The Armenian word ամեն (amen) means "every"; however it is also used in the same form at the conclusion of prayers, much as in English.[citation needed] In French, the Hebrew word amen is sometimes translated as Ainsi soit-il, which means "So be it."[citation needed]

See Wikipedia site for related footnotes and further details on the word AMEN.

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DISCLAIMER: UFF does not own any of the above works, nor do we claim responsibility or ownership for any images or audio tracks shown in these and other videos UFF has posted. All rights go to their respective owners.

UFF TRANSPARENCY:

UFF Commentary notes are the sole responsibility of the President of UFF.

See post of November 29, 2017 for full transparency notes.

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