You have to know that Africa is an extremely diverse continent so different people will have different traditions and celebrations in winter. Courtesy of Food52 According to Aztec mythology this month corresponded to the defeat of the moon, Coyolxauqui, by her younger brother Huitzilopochtli, the Aztec sun deity. While Christmas is celebrated in most of the African countries, one has to acknowledge that a considerable part of Africans are of Muslim faith. Here are some customary ways to celebrate the solstice—you might notice that some resemble beloved Christmas traditions. The following are among the most popular and widely celebrated winter holidays and traditions in Africa: Christmas in Africa The big difference about the African Christmas is that unlike in USA or Europe where the earth is covered in ice and snow, December is the first month of summer in the Southern part of Africa, so people try to enjoy the warm weather as well. 3 minutes. The festivities involved periodic fasting, special foods like amaranth bread, and the elaboration of corn wreaths. On this list, you’ll find music festivals, traditional experiences, and even a bit of nudity! Western culture owes many of the traditional midwinter celebrations—including those of Christmas—to Saturnalia, an ancient Roman solstice celebration dedicated to the Saturn, the god of agriculture and time. Paul Winter's 2020 Winter Solstice Celebration featured the Forces of Nature percussion ensemble, with sounds from African, Caribbean and European … Many religious traditions have held December as a symbolic time for renewal, much of which is inspired by the winter solstice. Perhaps now for those of us dreading this time of year can look at it in a different light. At the time of the winter solstice they hold a multi-day celebration, known as the Shalako festival. Native American Solstice Celebrations. The days for the celebration are selected by the religious leaders. Traditionally the new years celebration lasted nine days and involved dances and animal sacrifices to Pachamama. Summer solstice celebrations take place throughout the northern hemisphere on or near June 21st. Summer Solstice 2020 in the Northern Hemisphere will be Saturday June 20th, at 5:44 PM Eastern Daylight Time (EDT), or 11:44 PM Central European Time. To this day, the Maya peoples of Yucatán, Chiapas, and Central America observe this transitional month as a time of reflection and purification. There are even winter holidays for the nonserious: Festivus , a holiday that originated in a joke on the TV show Seinfeld , has emerged as a celebrated observance with followers who are cynical about more traditional holiday traditions. So here’s a look at some indigenous winter solstice celebrations from around the continent – lost, recovered, and in some cases, unbroken – so you can celebrate the holidays with the ancestors. The big difference about the African Christmas is that unlike in USA or Europe where the earth is covered in ice and snow, December is the first month of summer in the Southern part of Africa, so people try to enjoy the warm weather as well. Curious how to celebrate? Here's how cultures around the world celebrate winter solstice. Of course, in this age of global capitalism, our cult of rabid consumerism has all but supplanted the intended religious significance of the Christmas season; but whatever meaning you may give it, winter solstice abides. So today people of Muslim faith sacrifice a lamb in remembrance of this day and share its meat with families or the less fortunate. It is customary for families to attend the mass and sing specific hymns on the Christmas day, and in some places they might even decorate a small palm and use it as a Christmas tree. Eid Al Adha is an important holiday in the Islamic world, when people remember the importance of faith in their lives. The Amazigh people of Mahbgreb, or the berbers, follow, unlike other parts of Africa, the so-called Julian Calendar. Similarly, Fairbanks, Alaska, has been taking advantage of the solstice with a late-night baseball game for more than 100 years. Not to mention the numerous tribes and their interesting ceremonies dedicated to the winter season. Like everywhere in the world, winter time is celebration time in Africa, especially around the winter solstice (22nd of December). Each year’s Santa Barbara Summer Solstice Celebration has a theme, and 2015 will find parade-goers donning out-of-this-world costumes befitting a sci-fi motif. It’s not surprising that the country in which Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream is based has some pretty typical summer solstice celebrations, especially given the UK’s pagan past. Archaeological evidence suggests that Taíno ceremonial grounds were oriented toward the solstices and surmise that their cosmovision gave particular importance to this day – though any celebrations that may have coincided with the event are not well documented. Ancient or modern, we all celebrate the year's end and the dwindling day light with solstice celebrations and festivals of light. Traditionally, this time of year was also popular for weddings. And we can all do SOMETHING during this season. Here, we’ve selected some of the most unique and interesting cultural celebrations of the solstice. This solstice celebration comes in June rather than December. Ancient or modern, ... **"On Mithra's Part in Zoroastrianism" Mary Boyce Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, Vol. In ancient Rome, where it was called Dies Natalis Invicti Solis, or the Birthday of the Unconquered Sun, masters even celebrated as equals with their slaves. The unique celebration of creative expression was originally conceived by artist and mime Michael Gonzales but, over the years, this whimsical event has taken on a life of its own. Lohri, a celebration of the end of winter and the harvest season, is one of the most popular festivals in northern India, particularly in the states of Punjab and Haryana. Though it started out as a one-day celebration earlier in December, this pagan festival later expanded into a riotous weeklong party stretching from December 17 to 24. Though the individual celebration can vary, they often include feasts, fortune telling, art making, symbolic processions, and an opportunity to pay homage to the ancestors. International Day of the Celebration of the Solstice: History, Top Tweets in South Africa, 2020 date, Facts, calendar, things to do and count down. Even further south, Chile’s Mapuche people celebrate their new year with several days of festivities kicking off on June 21st and heating up a few nights later on the 23rd. Ukrainians also celebrate summer solstice as Kupala Night, or Ivan Kupala Day. Celebrations surrounding the June Solstice have a time-honored history. That’s more or less why we’re all currently running around finishing up our last minute Christmas shopping. Saturnalia: Of course, half of this great continent is on the flipside of the equator, which means winter solstice actually falls in late June rather than December. It is also traditionally a month when the Maya refrain from bathing in order to avoid contaminating the water and allow mother earth a rest. Much of indigenous Taíno spirituality was lost or folded into folk beliefs after the Spanish conquest of the Caribbean, but modern Taíno identity movements are reviving many of these lost practices both in the Antilles and the stateside diaspora. There are numerous festivals in Africa celebrating this evens, the most popular being the Timket Festival in Ethiopia. Yule is probably the most well-known Winter Solstice celebration, because of its close ties to Christmas. 32, No. This page gives the day length in hours, minutes and seconds on Solstice day, including previous and next day. African Solstice is a great anytime tea. In fact, we have very little reason to believe that Jesus was actually a Sagittarius, and at least one hypothesis holds that the Church chose December 25th due to its convenient correlation with Saturnalia – the Roman winter solstice festivities. Winter doesn’t always have to be a bleak time for us gardeners – it’s a time for celebration. Many families celebrate by cleaning their homes before gathering for a communal dinner, and may abstain from alcohol and meat consumption. Make it the deep jungles o... Africa is for certain not a first option when it comes to luxury travel – with its deep jungles, huge deserts and thir... Africa stands for wilderness, safaris, jungles, the Sahara desert and adventure. The ancient Maya were deeply in touch with the cosmos, and had one of the most advanced body’s of astronomical knowledge of any civilization of their time. In one particularly violent ritual, a specially designated runner was forced to cover more or less the extension of modern-day Mexico City in four hours while slaves where sacrificed at a number symbolic locations. The first Midnight … Festivities in pre-Christian times focused on fairies, unicorns and other suitably mystical creatures, until Christianity duly stamped these traditions out. It also lists astronomical sunrise and sunset timings on Winter Solstice day. The origin of this holiday is the Biblical story of Isaac and Abraham, in which Abraham was asked by God/Allah to sacrifice his only son as a sign of faith. One being the Angel of death coming and the first born son of each home dying. Throughout history, celebrating the solstice has been a way to renew our connection with each other and with the numinous through acts of goodwill, special rituals, and heightened awareness. The days for the celebration are selected by the religious leaders. The word ‘solstice’ originates from the Latin words meaning “sun” and “to stop”. Kwanzaa, a celebration of African American and pan-African culture and community based on Zulu and Ashanti harvest festivals, is situated during the festive midwinter weeks. So here’s a look at some indigenous winter solstice celebrations from around the continent – lost, recovered, and in some cases, unbroken – so you can celebrate the holidays with the ancestors. Pesach: late March or in April Festival celebrating the Hebrews captivity in Egypt at the time when God commanded Moses to ask for the Hebrew people to be released. Needless to say, not everyone looked forward to Panquetzaliztli, and Fray Pedro de Gante ultimately brought forced Christian converts their first Christmas celebration in 1528. Also known as “Shab-e Yalda,” this is the ancient Persian Winter Solstice celebration, which still takes place in modern-day Iran. Learn about unique traditions, celebrations, and holidays that occur around the world during December and January. As with so many events in 2020, a great many winter events in the pagan world have gone online, including the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids’ Winter Assembly, usually held in Glastonbury, but now to be streamlined and streamed as a Winter Solstice Ceremony on the evening of Saturday 19th December at 7.00 p.m.. OBOD is not the only organisation to stream its celebrations. We Tripantu is characterized by large gatherings that include folk music, traditional alcoholic beverages like muday, children’s games, and dancing. As a result of being denied 10 plagues came open Egypt. In Scandinavia, St. Lucia Day on December 13 (the solstice by the old calendar) marks the start of the Christmas season with a procession of young women in … The modern celebrations of the solstice are like living history. Build a Yule Altar. In more remote indigenous communities throughout the Andes, the celebration has been preserved through the ostensibly Catholic festival of San Juan Bautista, while a recreation of the original pre-Columbian festival takes place every year at the archaeological site Saksaywaman on June 24th. Traditions include eating nuts and pomegranates, and staying up all night in order to see the sunrise. The following are among the most popular and widely celebrated winter holidays and traditions in Africa: Christmas in Africa is celebrated in a manner similar to the western countries: Christmas means carols, presents, family gatherings and joy. Mauritius has a numerous Hindu community and they dedicate the last days in January to a series of religious ceremonies and blessings. Contemporary Taíno groups hold areítos (spiritual gatherings) that include sweat lodges, purification ceremonies, and prayer circles. Christianity has always been pretty good at absorbing pagan holidays and rebranding them around some important biblical event. Celebrations of the lighter days to come have been common throughout history with feasts, festivals and holidays around the December solstice celebrated by cultures across the globe. The solstice marks the start of summer in the Northern Hemisphere, beginning this year on June 21st at approximately 12:30 p.m. (EDT). The remaining days, grouped into the five-day month of Wayeb, signify the end of the calendar year, though the Maya differed from other indigenous groups by observing this time in February, rather than December or June. Revelers take part in celebrations to mark the winter solstice at Stonehenge prehistoric monument on December 22, 2019, in Wiltshire, England. This is the day when the divine origin of baby Jesus was revealed, and therefore a great reason for joy and celebration. As we all know very well, the story had a happy ending, as God allowed Abraham to sacrifice a lamb instead. In modern times Christians all over the world celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ on Christmas Day, which falls on December 25. Before the rise of Christianity in Europe , especially Northern Europe, Yule was a midwinter holiday to celebrate the midpoint in Winter. This page provides date and local time for Winter Solstice in the year 2021 for Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa. The Epiphany Day is another important holiday for the Christian world. When it comes to experiencing unabridged wilderness, the African continent has no equivalent. Much like the vast majority of world religions, the new world’s diverse pre-Columbian peoples almost universally celebrated this mystical day when the sun seems to stands still, and Christian missionaries were largely able to reframe the context of the celebration while keeping the festivities in tact. Originally held on the winter solstice, Lohri now takes place on January 13 right before Makar … However, it's believed that this date was chosen to offset pagan celebrations of Saturnalia and Natalis Invicti. Ruby red rosehips add an enticing balance of tart and sweet and are also rich in vitamin C, one of the safest and most effective immune-supporting nutrients. 5 Indigenous Winter Solstice Celebrations That Honor the Shortest Day of the Year. During last year’s solstice celebration, children from a local preschool shared a dip in a traditional yuzu tub in the city of Toyooka as dozens of the yellow yuzu fruits … Creating a ceremony or celebration is a way for humans to acknowledge the life force energy within us and give back to Creation some of the energy and blessings that we are always receiving. The winter solstice is, for many, a good excuse to celebrate. The winter solstice is an ancient pagan holiday known for rituals and traditions that celebrate nature and setting one’s intentions for the coming season. A small but colourful celebration takes place on the archipelago of Mauritius. Thus, the New Year’s Eve is celebrated on the 12th of January – when people invite their friends in for a festive dinner with aromatic chicken and couscous. Whether or not the Church’s reasoning was all that straightforward, it certainly was a convenient coincidence – especially when Christianity started slashing and burning its way to the Americas in the late-15th century. Most importantly, around dawn on June 24th, communities head down to the nearest river to wash away accumulated negativity before being renewed by the rising sun of a new year. Another popular holiday in the Muslim word is Amazigh New Year. But unlike our more familiar Gregorian calendar, the Mayan calendar consisted of 18 months lasting 20 days each. But for Peru it is a winter solstice, and this Incan celebration is in honor of the Sun god.Originally celebrated by the Inca before the arrival of Spanish conquistadors, the festivities included … Tea Forté African Solstice contains Elderberries and blueberries, which add a fruity depth to this Rooibos tea and are also rich in antioxidants. Curious travelers can take up the community of San Pedro de la Paz, in Chile’s Bío Bío region, on an open invitation to join in their festivities each winter. This pre-Columbian Mexica festival lasted the entire 20 days of the 15 month, and apparently it got pretty bloody. At the time of the winter solstice they hold a multiday celebration, known as the Shalako festival. An interesting practice associated with this event is that of piercing. During this jolliest and most popular of Roman festivals, socia… In ancient times, the date of the June Solstice was used to organize calendars and as a marker to figure out when to plant and harvest crops. According to Peruvian chronicler Garcilaso de la Vega, Inti Raymi (or “Festival of the Sun”) was established in the early 15th century by the Inca emperor Pachacutec and was celebrated every year until it was outlawed by Catholic priests in 1535. 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