Winter Solstice/ December Celebrations
Winter Solstice Celebrations
all around the world :
All around the world in every culture since time began this time of year has been and still is very special. It is the shortest day of the year, when the Earth is farthest from the Sun / Helios.
For Example, in Rome
was a celebration that started on December 17th,
and would last from five to seven days . It was like a huge party.
They also celebrated Mithras and Sol Invictus on December 25th.
Also, Romans celebrated the New Year.
To name and describe all the examples of winter solstice history from around the world is daunting at best. But I have mentioned a few in the following article below :
'Eid-ul-Fitr (October 23-November 25)
Santa Lucia Day (December 13)
Saturnalia ( December 17)
Yule ( December 21)
Hanukkah (December 16-December 23)
Winter Solstice (December 21 or 22 depending if its leap year or not)
Christmas (December 25)
Kwanzaa (December 26-January 1)
Three Kings Day (January 6)
Yule, (pronounced EWE-elle) is when the dark half of the year relinquishes to the light half. Starting the next morning at sunrise, the sun climbs just a little higher and stays a little longer in the sky each day. Known as Solstice Night, or the longest night of the year, much celebration was to be had as the ancestors awaited the rebirth of the Oak King, the Sun King, the Giver of Life that warmed the frozen Earth and made her to bear forth from seeds protected through the fall and winter in her womb. Bonfires were lit in the fields, and crops and trees were "wassailed" with toasts of spiced cider.
Children were escorted from house to house with gifts of clove spiked apples and oranges which were laid in baskets of evergreen boughs and wheat stalks dusted with flour. The apples and oranges represented the sun, the boughs were symbolic of immortality, the wheat stalks portrayed the harvest, and the flour was accomplishment of triumph, light, and life. Holly, mistletoe, and ivy not only decorated the outside, but also the inside of homes. It was to extend invitation to Nature Sprites to come and join the celebration. A sprig of Holly was kept near the door all year long as a constant invitation for good fortune to pay visit to the residents.
The ceremonial Yule log was the highlight of the festival. In accordance to tradition, the log must either have been harvested from the householder's land, or given as a gift... it must never have been bought. Once dragged into the house and placed in the fireplace it was decorated in seasonal greenery, doused with cider or ale, and dusted with flour before set ablaze be a piece of last years log, (held onto for just this purpose). The log would burn throughout the night, then smolder for 12 days after before being ceremonially put out. Ash is the traditional wood of the Yule log. It is the sacred world tree of the Teutons, known as Yggdrasil. An herb of the Sun, Ash brings light into the hearth at the Solstice.
A different type of Yule log, and perhaps one more suitable for modern practitioners would be the type that is used as a base to hold three candles. Find a smaller branch of oak or pine, and flatten one side so it sets upright. Drill three holes in the top side to hold red, green, and white (season), green, gold, and black (the Sun God), or white, red, and black (the Great Goddess). Continue to decorate with greenery, red and gold bows, rosebuds, cloves, and dust with flour.
Deities of Yule are all Newborn Gods, Sun Gods, Mother Goddesses, and Triple Goddesses. The best known would be the Dagda, and Brighid, the daughter of the Dagda. Brighid taught the smiths the arts of fire tending and the secrets of metal work. Brighid's flame, like the flame of the new light, pierces the darkness of the spirit and mind, while the Dagda's cauldron assures that Nature will always provide for all the children.
Symbolism of Yule:
Rebirth of the Sun, The longest night of the year, The Winter Solstice, Introspect, Planning for the Future.
Symbols of Yule:
Yule log, or small Yule log with 3 candles, evergreen boughs or wreaths, holly, mistletoe hung in doorways, gold pillar candles, baskets of clove studded fruit, a simmering pot of wassail, poinsettias, christmas cactus.
Herbs of Yule:
Bayberry, blessed thistle, evergreen, frankincense holly, laurel, mistletoe, oak, pine, sage, yellow cedar.
Foods of Yule:
Cookies and caraway cakes soaked in cider, fruits, nuts, pork dishes, turkey, eggnog, ginger tea, spiced cider, wassail, or lamb's wool (ale, sugar, nutmeg, roasted apples).
Incense of Yule:
Pine, cedar, bayberry, cinnamon.
Colors of Yule:
Red, green, gold, white, silver, yellow, orange.
Stones of Yule:
Rubies, bloodstones, garnets, emeralds, diamonds.
Activities of Yule:
Caroling, wassailing the trees, burning the Yule log, decorating the Yule tree, exchanging of presents, kissing under the mistletoe, honoring Kriss Kringle the Germanic Pagan God of Yule
Spellworkings of Yule:
Peace, harmony, love, and increased happiness.
Deities of Yule:
Goddesses-Brighid, Isis, Demeter, Gaea, Diana, The Great Mother. Gods-Apollo, Ra, Odin, Lugh, The Oak King, The Horned One, The Green Man, The Divine Child, Mabon.
Turtle Tree of Life
In the Native American/ Turtle culture we have the tree of life. It is an old tale but was revived when Black Elk was given a vision by a medicine man named, Spotted Horse. Black Elk saw a vision of a beautiful tree at a crossroads, he was shown how the tree was ill and that it needed to be watered to make the birds sing, then the tree will flourish. He believed this strongly and traveled away from his home, around different places of the world telling his vision. When the journey was complete and he was older, he had a revelation. The tree of life was and is inside him. We all have a tree of life inside us, and we must water it until the birds sing.
[ author : Thunderfoot, BTW this lesson isn't attached to any certain of year or season ]
Stonehenge at Winter Solstice
The worship of trees as proxies of Divinity was prevalent throughout the ancient world. Temples were often built in the heart of sacred groves, and nocturnal ceremonials were conducted under the wide-spreading branches of great trees, fantastically decorated and festooned in honor of their patron deities. In many instances the trees themselves were believed to possess the attributes of divine power and intelligence, and therefore supplications were often addressed to them. The beauty, dignity, massiveness, and strength of oaks, elms, and cedars led to their adoption as symbols of power, integrity, permanence, virility, and divine protection.
Several ancient peoples--notably the Hindus and Scandinavians---regarded the Macrocosm, or Grand Universe, as a divine tree growing from a single seed sown in space. The Greeks, Persians, Chaldeans, and Japanese have legends describing the axle tree or reed upon which the earth revolves. Kapila declares the universe to be the eternal tree, Brahma, which springs from an imperceptible and intangible seed--the material monad. The mediæval Qabbalists represented creation as a tree with its roots in the reality of spirit and its branches in the illusion of tangible existence. The Sephirothic tree of the Qabbalah was therefore inverted, with its roots in heaven and its branches upon the earth. Madam Blavatsky notes that the Great Pyramid was considered to be a symbol of this inverted tree, with its root at the apex of the pyramid and its branches diverging in four streams towards the base.
The Scandinavian world-tree, Yggdrasil, supports on its branches nine spheres or worlds,--which the Egyptians symbolized by the nine stamens of the persea or avocado. All of these are enclosed within the mysterious tenth sphere or cosmic egg--the definitionless Cipher of the Mysteries. The Qabbalistic tree of the Jews also consists of nine branches, or worlds, emanating from the First Cause or Crown, which surrounds its emanations as the shell surrounds the egg. The single source of life and the endless diversity of its expression has a perfect analogy in the structure of the tree. The trunk represents the single origin of all diversity; the roots, deeply imbedded in the dark earth, are symbolic of divine nutriment; and its multiplicity of branches spreading from the central trunk represent the infinity of universal effects dependent upon a single cause.
The tree has also been accepted as symbolic of the Microcosm, that is, man. According to the esoteric doctrine, man first exists potentially within the body of the world-tree and later blossoms forth into objective manifestation upon its branches. According to an early Greek Mystery myth, the god Zeus fabricated the third race of men from ash trees. The serpent so often shown wound around the trunk of the tree usually signifies the mind--the power of thought--and is the eternal tempter or urge which leads all rational creatures to the ultimate discovery of reality and thus overthrows the rule of the gods. The serpent hidden in the foliage of the universal tree represents the cosmic mind; and in the human tree, the individualized intellect.
The concept that all life originates from seeds caused grain and various plants to be accepted as emblematic of the human spermatozoon, and the tree was therefore symbolic of organized life unfolding from its primitive germ. The growth of the universe from its primitive seed may be likened to the growth of the mighty oak from the tiny acorn. While the tree is apparently much greater than its own source, nevertheless that source contains potentially every branch, twig, and leaf which will later be objectively unfolded by the processes of growth.
Man's veneration for trees as symbols of the abstract qualities of wisdom and integrity also led him to designate as trees those individuals who possessed these divine qualities to an apparently superhuman degree. Highly illumined philosophers and priests were therefore often referred to as trees or tree men--for example, the Druids, whose name, according to one interpretation, signifies the men of the oak trees, or the initiates of certain Syrian Mysteries who were called cedars; in fact it is far more credible and probable that the famous cedars of Lebanon, cut down for the building of King Solomon's Temple, were really illumined, initiated sages. The mystic knows that the true supports of God's Glorious House were not the logs subject to decay but the immortal and imperishable intellects of the tree hierophants.
Trees are repeatedly mentioned in the Old and New Testaments, and in the scriptures of various pagan nations. The Tree of Life and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil mentioned in Genesis, the burning bush in which the angel appeared to Moses, the famous vine and fig tree of the New Testament, the grove of olives in the Garden of Gethsemane where Jesus went to pray, and the miraculous tree of Revelation, which bore twelve manners of fruit and whose leaves were for the healing of the nations, all bear witness to the esteem in which trees were held by the scribes of Holy Writ. Buddha received his illumination while under the bodhi tree, near Madras in India, and several of the Eastern gods are pictured sitting in meditation beneath the spreading branches of mighty trees. Many of the great sages and saviors carried wands, rods, or staves cut from the wood of sacred trees, as the rods of Moses and Aaron; Gungnir--the spear of Odin--cut from the Tree of Life; and the consecrated rod of Hermes, around which the fighting serpents entwined themselves.
The numerous uses which the ancients made of the tree and its products are factors in its symbolism. Its worship was, to a certain degree, based upon its usefulness. Of this J. P. Lundy writes: "Trees occupy such an important place in the economy of nature by way of attracting and retaining moisture, and shading the water-sources and the soil so as to prevent barrenness and desolation; the), are so
From the "Breeches" Bible of 1599.
Most Bibles published during the Middle Ages contain a section devoted to genealogical tables showing the descent of humanity from Father Adam to the advent of Jesus Christ. The tree growing from the roof of the Ark represents the body of Noah and its three branches, his sons--Shem, Ham, and Japheth. The nations by the descendents of Noah's three sons are appropriately shown in the circles upon the branches of the tree. While such tables are hopelessly incorrect from a historical point of view, to the symbolist their allegorical interpretations are of inestimable importance.
Trees are useful to man for shade, for fruit, for medicine, for fuel, for building houses and ships, for furniture, for almost every department of life, that it is no wonder that some of the more conspicuous ones, such as the oak, the pine, the palm, and the sycamore, have been made sacred and used for worship."
The early Fathers of the church sometimes used the tree to symbolize Christ. They believed that ultimately Christianity would grow up like a mighty oak and overshadow all other faiths of mankind. Because it annually discards its foliage, the tree was also looked upon as an appropriate emblem of resurrection and reincarnation, for though apparently dying each fall it blossomed forth again with renewed verdure each ensuing spring.
Under the appellations of the Tree of Life and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil is concealed the great arcanum of antiquity--the mystery of equilibrium. The Tree of Life represents the spiritual point of balance--the secret of immortality. The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, as its name implies, represents polarity, or unbalance--the secret of mortality. The Qabbalists reveal this by assigning the central column of their Sephirothic diagram to the Tree of Life and the two side branches to the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. "Unbalanced forces perish in the void," declares the secret work, and all is made known. The apple represents the knowledge of the procreative processes, by the awakening of which the material universe was established. The allegory of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden is a cosmic myth, revealing the methods of universal and individual establishment. The literal story, accepted for so many centuries by an unthinking world, is preposterous, but the creative mystery of which it is the symbol is one of Nature's profoundest verities. The Ophites (serpent worshipers) revered the Edenic snake because it was the cause of individual existence. Though humanity is still wandering in a world of good and evil, it will ultimately attain completion and eat of the fruit of the Tree of Life growing in the midst of the illusionary garden of worldly things. Thus the Tree of Life is also the appointed symbol of the Mysteries, and by partaking of its fruit man attains immortality.
The oak, the pine, the ash, the cypress, and the palm are the five trees of greatest symbolic importance. The Father God of the Mysteries was often worshiped under the form of an oak; the Savior God--frequently the World Martyr--in the form of a pine; the world axis and the divine nature in humanity in the form of an ash; the goddesses, or maternal principle, in the form of a cypress; and the positive pole of generation in the form of the inflorescence of the mate date palm. The pine cone is a phallic symbol of remote antiquity. The thyrsus of Bacchus--a long wand or staff surmounted by a pine cone or cluster of grapes and entwined with ivy or grape-vine leaves, sometimes ribbons--signifies that the wonders of Nature may only be accomplished by the aid of solar virility, as symbolized by the cone or grapes. In the Phrygian Mysteries, Atys--the ever-present sun-savior--dies under the branches of the pine tree (an allusion to the solar globe at the winter solstice) and for this reason the pine tree was sacred to his cult. This tree was also sacred in the Mysteries of Dionysos and Apollo.
Among the ancient Egyptians and Jews the acacia, or tamarisk, was held in the highest religious esteem; and among modern Masons, branches of acacia, cypress, cedar, or evergreen are still regarded as most significant emblems. The shittim-wood used by the children of Israel in the construction of the Tabernacle and the Ark of the Covenant was a species of acacia. In describing this sacred tree, Albert Pike has written: "The genuine acacia, also, is the thorny tamarisk, the same tree which grew around the body of Osiris. It was a sacred tree among the Arabs, who made of it the idol Al-Uzza, which Mohammed destroyed. It is abundant as a bush in the desert of Thur; and of it the 'crown of thorns' was composed, which was set on the forehead of Jesus of Nazareth. It is a fit type of immortality on account of its tenacity of life; for it has been known, when planted as a door-post, to take root again and shoot out budding boughs above the "threshold."
It is quite possible that much of the veneration accorded the acacia is due to the peculiar attributes of the mimosa, or sensitive plant, with which it was often identified by the ancients. There is a Coptic legend to the effect that the sensitive plant was the first of all trees or shrubs to worship Christ. The rapid growth of the acacia and its beauty have also caused it to be regarded as emblematic of fecundity and generation.
The symbolism of the acacia is susceptible of four distinct interpretations: it is the emblem of the vernal equinox--the annual resurrection of the solar deity; under the form of the sensitive plant which shrinks from human touch, the acacia signifies purity and innocence, as one of the Greek meanings of its name implies; it fittingly typifies human immortality and regeneration, and under the form of the evergreen represents that immortal part of man which survives the destruction of his visible nature; it is the ancient and revered emblem of the Mysteries, and candidates entering the tortuous passageways in which the ceremonials were given carried in their hands branches of these sacred plants or small clusters of sanctified flowers.
Albert G. Mackey calls attention to the fact that each of the ancient Mysteries had its own peculiar plant sacred to the gods or goddesses in whose honor the rituals were celebrated. These sacred plants were later adopted as the symbols of the various degrees in which they were used. Thus, in the Mysteries of Adonis, lettuce was sacred; in the Brahmin and Egyptian rites, the lotus; among the Druids, the mistletoe; and among certain of the Greek Mysteries, the myrtle. (See Encyclopædia of Freemasonry.)
As the legend of CHiram Abiff is based upon the ancient Egyptian Mystery ritual of the murder and resurrection of Osiris, it is natural that the sprig of acacia should be preserved as symbolic of the resurrection of CHiram. The chest containing the body of Osiris was washed ashore near Byblos and lodged in the roots of a tamarisk, or acacia, which, growing into a mighty tree, enclosed within its trunk the body of the murdered god. This is undoubtedly the origin of the story that a sprig of acacia marks the grave of CHiram. The mystery of the evergreen marking the grave of the dead sun god is also perpetuated in the Christmas tree.
The apricot and quince are familiar yonic symbols, while the bunch of grapes and the fig are phallic. The pomegranate is the mystic fruit of the Eleusinian rites; by eating it, Prosperine bound herself to the realms of Pluto. The fruit here signifies the sensuous life which, once tasted, temporarily deprives man of immortality. Also on account of its vast number of seeds the pomegranate was often employed to represent natural fecundity. For the same reason, Jacob Bryant in his Ancient Mythology notes that the ancients recognized in this fruit an appropriate emblem of the Ark of the Deluge,
Hanukkah (Hebrew: חֲנֻכָּה, Tiberian: Ḥănukkāh, nowadays usually spelled חנוכה pronounced [χanuˈka] in Modern Hebrew, also romanized as Chanukah or Chanuka), also known as the Festival of Lights is an eight-day Jewish holiday commemorating the rededication of the Holy Temple (the Second Temple) in Jerusalem at the time of the Maccabean Revolt of the 2nd century BCE. Hanukkah is observed for eight nights and days, starting on the 25th day of Kislev according to the Hebrew calendar, which may occur at any time from late November to late December in the Gregorian calendar.
The festival is observed by the kindling of the lights of a unique candelabrum, the nine-branched Menorah or Hanukiah, one additional light on each night of the holiday, progressing to eight on the final night. The typical Menorah consists of 8 branches with an additional raised branch. The extra light is called a shamash (Hebrew: שמש, "attendant" or "sexton") and is given a distinct location, usually above or below the rest. The purpose of the shamash is to have a light available for use, as using the Hanukkah lights themselves is forbidden.
For more information here is the Wikipedia link for the rest of that article :
Christmas Tree History
It is difficult to say where exactly the Christmas tree tradition started. Some say Germany, some say Scandanavia, some say Druids
The Christmas tree tradition comes from ancient symbology .
It is really the Tree of Life, referenced throughout this article.
The Christmas tree has become one of the most popular symbols of Christmas.
If you want to know more :
Here are links to good pages about it
christmas tree wikipedia page
Ancient Egypt and Christmas
Well the ancient Egypts celebrated a feast-day on the 25th of July which was the start of the Egyptian year. The feast was the celebration of the messiah in Egypt in the cult of Horus. The feast involved an abundance of food and wine and was known as the Wag festival. This festival was linked to the coming of the Inundation of the Nile river which brought forth food, grain, trees and all manner of vegetation, in short: all of life was sustained by the Nile. Before this time they had fasted for some 40 nights in commemoration of the ending of the 40 years of famine whilst Horus wandered the wildnerness and was challenged by "temptation" by Apep-Sut (The Papyrus of Hu-nefer)
According to astrological data the 25th of July begun in the sign of Leo but due to the procession (of the equinoxes) through time the 25th was configured into the 25th of December; the vernol equinox in the sign of pisces and thus heralding a new age of enlightenment. The annula cycle of the inundation of the Nile waters coincides with what the Egyptians referred to as "the House of a Thousand Years"; the time in which Horus was set to rule the world after the battle with Sut.
Thus the coming of Horus coincided with the battle with Sut and the promise of a new age after Sut and his "evil" reign had ended in the lake of Osiris (the Lake of Fire) at Edfu.
Astrological data confirms that during pre-dynastic Egypt the easter equinox was in the sign of Leo (thus the birth of the messiah was placed in the house of Leo), then as the years progressed the procession changed when the equinox entered the sign of the crab, then in the sign of the heavenly twins (Gemini), and then in the sign of the Taurus the Bull (coinciding with the Cult of Amun) and then to Aries the ram (during the late dynastic period) and finally to Pisces which heralds the return of the flood and consequently a new age begins. Notice that this comprises the concept of Zep-tepi which principally pertains to the concept of time-travell (i.e going back in time) and the return to the primeval state - from when the Great flood first began.
Horus was actually born twice! Once for the "New Year" on the 25th of July (Horus the Younger) and again on the 25th of December (Horus the Elder).
When was Jesus believed to have been born? Some say 25th of March, and some say 25th of December. But according to the gospel of James, Jesus was born on the equinox when he observed whilst looking up at the night sky and the pole of heaven stood still, that the flowing of the river had stood still and the children were not drinking from the river.
Today, Christians claim that Christmas is all about the birth of Jesus. Originally it was to the pagans that Christmas was first celebrated. The celebration of Christmas was observed in ancient Egypt for the Rebirth of Osiris (incarnated as the new born King Horus).
You might have a tree in your home. Is this pagan? Yes! The Christmas tree is the Asert tree mentioned in the writings of King Unas, which when the Hebrews encountered the wisdom of Egypt became the "burning bush" (Asher) mentioned in the Hebrew Bible. The "burning bush" (in the desert) was not really on fire according to the Hebrew Bible. The fire was simply a "light" ; the same light which is mentioned by Unas for the Asert tree from which the god Wepwawet "the Opener of the Ways" appeared in the desert by the mountain of the Pole Star.
Then: Muslims believe that more than 1,300 years ago, in the month they call Ramadan, the prophet Mohammed received the Koran (Muslims' holy book). Muslims show their love for the Koran and Allah by praying and fasting during Ramadan.
Now: The daily fast is very important. For the whole month, everyone except small children, older adults, or adults who might get sick eat nothing between sunrise and sunset. Children join the fast when their parents decide that they are old enough. Each night of Ramadan, families have a small meal, and at the end of the month, they break the fast with a three-day festival, 'Eid-ul-Fitr.
During 'Eid-ul-Fitr, Muslims give gifts to each other and donate to charities. Children may take a day off of school and parents may take a day off from work.
Activity: Create a charity jar to emphasize the importance of sharing with the less fortunate.
• Have your child paint a jar with holiday symbols.
• For one month, save coins or dollars in the jar the whole family can contribute.
• At the end of the month, give the money to an organization that helps the needy.
ASHERAH - THE CHRISTMAS TREE CUSTOM
BAAL & ASHERAH: THE SUN KING & HIS CONSORT
Asherah is known in Scripture as the "Queen of Heaven", and is called "Artemis" by the Ephesians in the book of Acts (chapter 19). The word "Asherah" is found at least 40 times in the TaNaKh*, and refers to a wooden object used in worship of a consort of BAAL, known by the name of ASHERAH.
The image of Asherah was a tree (a date palm) used by the Pagan Canaanites and Phoenicians. One of these Pagan Phoenicians was "Jezebel" (Izebel - meaning "virgin of Baal"), who married Ahab, king of Israel (Samaritan king). When northern Israel was dispersed into the nations by the Assyrians in 722 BCE, they carried this "tree" custom with them. The lost tribes of dispersed Israel have preserved one of their most cherished Pagan customs among them: the Christmas tree. "Izebel" is also referred to at Rev. 2, and her "teachings". The Greeks gave the "Phoenicians" their name, Phoenicia, which means "date palm". They called themselves Sidonians or Tyreans, after their city-states of Tyre and Sidon. Their "date palms" were called ASHERIM, and Izebel taught this practice to northern Israel through her marriage to Ahab.
Asherah was the "Queen of Heaven" (see Jer. chaps. 7 & 44). Now, read specifically how the Creator feels about it:
Wreath: woman's vagina Tree: penis Balls: testicles Tinsel: semen
Taken together, these are the signs of fertility, false worship, and IDOLATRY before our Creator, Yahuah.
Nature worship is witchcraft, and behind it is the enemy's craftiness and deception. Do you feel led astray? Are your eyes opening now? Do you want to remain asleep and not realize what everyone is really doing? Too late, you are now responsible for the Truth.
" Do not bring a detestable thing into your house or YOU, like IT, will be set apart for destruction. Utterly abhor and detest it, for it is set apart for destruction." (Look at the verses around Rev. 2:20, again we see Izebel's influences)
Yahuah distinctly warned Israel to not erect an Asherah next to His altar, nor bring a "detestable thing" into your house. Even though YOU may not remember what it represented long ago, Yahuah hasn't forgotten at all. He does not change.
As some have said, the Asherah is a deal-breaker with Yahuah - He won't stand for it. He dispersed the northern tribes of Israel into the nations, and they have lived as Pagans for 2700+ years. They left Yahuah's Covenant, but they have held fast to the Asherim (plural of Asherah).
"ASHER" is a Hebrew term meaning "happy", and is a word used as a proper noun, the father of the tribe of Asher (alef-shin-resh). This term was modified, and became the word "ASHERAH", a proper name used by Pagans for the female consort of Baal (Celtic Bel). Baal/Asherah worship is clearly seen during the time of "Elijah" (ElYahu), when 450 prophets of Baal and 400 prophets of Asherah assembled at Mt. Carmel, and ElYahu (Elijah) challenged them to decide whether Yahuah is Elohim, or Baal (and his consort, Asherah).
A sister asked the following questions regarding Asherim:
Having read and re-read The Scriptures over seven times..... I have read about the Asherah hundreds of times.
What is an asherah?
Answer: The adversary misled mankind with various fertility rites, and receives "worship" through these rites. Yahuah doesn't
provide us with the details of the heathen rites, but we know generally from Scripture they performed their rituals in forests or "groves".
The word "Asherah" is often translated as "groves". He mentions how the Israelites would bring "Asherim" and put them near His Hekal (Temple), behavior which we see inherited
as the "Christmas Tree". Most probably the trees used were date palms. Modern witchcraft and Satanism in general follow most closely to the worship of Asherah. The name is most likely directly related to Ishtar, and Artemis, worshipped by modern day witches as well as the ancient Ephesians (Acts 19:28). Stumps of trees found in groves were also used as the altars of Asherah, which may be directly related to the fallen Nimrod, cut down by Shem (as tradition informs us). The purpose of the tree object was to display the fertility emblems (phallus, testes, semen) in the pole, balls, and tinsel, but the object was also a type of ALTAR, where offerings and sacrifices were placed. This is how people have come to place the wrapped "presents" beneath the tree, and bowing to it as they do so. Generations of people have been deceived with this behavior for thousands of years. While it is easier to see that the imagery associated with Halloween and Easter stem from Paganism, the words "Christmas tree" seem to cleanse the object of any former Satanic origin, but this is all part of the scheme. The "boughs" of holly were Saturn's emblem. The two swooping curves of holly are breasts, and wreath is the womb. All of these items used for decoration have significant meaning to the Pagan, the nativity of Sol Invictus - and must have no part in our lives.
What does she look like?
The "Maypole" was originally a huge wooden phallus, and people would dance around it, wrapping it in colorful ribbons as they worshipped their sex deity, Asherah. It was later simplified into a pole, and it's previous meanings have been veiled in ignorance through tradition and denial. Look carefully, and you'll see there is a boy and a girl closely aligned to the pole, being told to stand there, yet being completely unaware of the significance of the setting they are at the center of. This is why Pagan worship is called "occult" -- the true meaning of things is "hidden" from view, yet in plain sight to those who are initiated to the secrets.
Why is it so difficult to do research on an asherah?
Answer: Images of Asherah vary. One example is the "pole" above, and you can see photos of many alternate ancient versions of this deity on several popular witchcraft web sites (not that I'm endorsing witchcraft, but they do worship Asherah and some display the symbols that represent her).
Yahuah has not wanted His people to study this demonic worship, yet it persists today. The most insidious part is right out in the open, and not "occult" (hidden) at all: the Christmas tree object! A more secretive side is also growing in popularity. In fact, it is the most popular fad among teens and young adults today. The reason it is not very easy to learn about is mostly because it is "occult" (hidden); it has been so since
the patterns of worshipping the adversary went "underground" after the execution of Nimrod. They had once practiced their
rebellion openly, but then withdrew into secrecy to hide their worship behind symbolism, which could only be interpreted correctly by those initiated in the occult. One dominant pattern found in occultic behavior is the matrilinear (mother-goddess) ideal. Rebellion against Yahuah is accentuated by this matrilinear focus, as opposed to the patrilinear - so we see the moon being used to represent the female astrologically.
People imagine "sin" lurking in men's hearts over many issues. Some even believe that celebrating Hanukkah might be "adding" to Torah, and therefore is sinful. In all of Scripture, Hanukkah is mentioned once (if one ignores Maccabees I & II), at Yn. 10:22. So, Hanukkah is found in Scripture, yet "Christmas" is not. If a person shuns Christmas, and begins to celebrate Hanukkah, it will have consequences for them. Relatives and friends will shun or persecute them for it, thinking they have become influenced by radical ideas. Christmas has been celebrated for 5000 years by Pagans, it simply has a new name and application. The Romans used "womb-wreaths" at Saturnalia, so what could these possibly have to do with Yahuah's people?
Although the original concept of Asherim worship has remained hidden from the general public, I feel that the acceptance of the solstice tree is drawn directly from the Pagan worship, transformed for public consumption. The Asherim were considered altars in themselves also, where animals and humans were ritually sacrificed. This altar could take the form of a tree stump, with the trunk snapped-off, leaving jagged spike-like splinters. The Christmas tree phenomenon is also a type of altar, where gifts and offerings are placed. (Easter is a word derived from Ishtar, Astoreth, and Astarte. Tree worship is the most prominent feature, however the serpent gets involved also. It seems that the adversary has the tree and the serpent seared into "his" mind indelibly. A serpent around a stump is one of the symbols we find used in ancient Pagan religions. The Tree of Life (ets chayim) and the Tree of the knowledge of good and evil may be the sources this fallen being is borrowing from in the design of the false worship. But we know it is forbidden to worship Yahuah in any false or perverted manner. Rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and we certainly know that any involvement with Asherah is witchcraft. Some have even suggested that the symbol of "the cross" may have been a style of Asherah pole used by certain Pagans, and that it was brought into the mixed worship of Christianity. Certainly, the Christmas tree is considered a "Christian" symbol, yet the common culture has no idea how it actually relates to anything associated with Yahuah, or "Santa Claus" for that matter!
"For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person-such a man is an idolater -has any inheritance in the kingdom of (Mashiach) and of (Elohim). Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things (Eloah's) wrath comes on those who are disobedient. Therefore do not be partners with them.
For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the (Master). Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the (Master). Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. For it is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret . But everything exposed by the light becomes visible, for it is light that makes everything visible. Eph 5:5-14
BAAL & ASHERAH HAD A "SHOWDOWN" WITH YAHUAH, REMEMBER? 1 Kings 18:16-21:
So Obadiah went to meet Ahab and told him, and Ahab went to meet Elijah. When he saw Elijah, he said to him, "Is that you, you troubler of Israel?"
"I have not made trouble for Israel," Elijah replied. "But you and your father's family have. You have abandoned Yahuah’s commands and have followed the Baals. Now summon the people from all over Israel to meet me on Mount Carmel. And bring the four hundred and fifty prophets of Baal and the four hundred prophets of Asherah, who eat at Jezebel's table."
So Ahab sent word throughout all Israel and assembled the prophets on Mount Carmel. Elijah went before the people and said,
"How long will you waver between two opinions? If Yahuah is Elohim, follow Him; but if Baal is Elohim, follow him."
WREATH, ORNAMENTS, AND SCHEDULING OF MAIN PAGAN EVENTS:
The round wreath symbolized the sun, and at the same time the “womb”, both thought of as symbols of fertility to Pagans.
The sun was “male”, but “his” symbol was that of the female. The vertical tree was decorated with male symbols of fertility, testes (balls), yet was the image of the “female”, connecting the heavens to the Earth. This consort of Baal was worshipped as Asherah, Astarte, Artemis, Athena, Isis, Gaia, Nana, Austron, Ostara, Eastre, Easter, Aphrodite, Eostre, Astoreth, Ishtar, Diana, Ninurta, Cres, Nut, Venus, Indrani, Devaki, Tanit, and others. This "tree" was named Asherah in the Hebrew Scriptures, and her worship continued as we see recorded in the book of Acts, chapter 19. She is still worshipped today by Wiccans, and other Earth Mother cults. The Vernal Equinox pointed to the impregnation of the Earth Mother, and the Winter Solstice pointed to the birth of Baal, the sun, showing the human gestation cycle of nine months. It was all about fertility, and sex. Even the custom of throwing rice at the newlyweds is a fertility-driven act, and you can only guess what the rice really represents.
The round ornaments represented the testes as mentioned, and have also come to be known as "witch balls". It would be interesting to see what a "theologian" might use as an excuse for all this, wouldn't it?
Hear what Yahuah says to you, O house of Israel. This is what Yahuah says:
"Do not learn the ways of the nations or be terrified by signs in the sky,
though the nations are terrified by them. For the customs of the peoples are worthless;
they cut a tree out of the forest, and a craftsman shapes it with his chisel.
They adorn it with silver and gold; they fasten it with hammer and nails so it will not totter. Like a scarecrow in a melon patch, their idols cannot speak; they must be carried because they cannot walk.
Do not fear them; they can do no harm, nor can they do any good."
"Yahuah your Elohim will cut off before you the nations you are about to invade and dispossess. But when you have driven them out and settled in their land, and after they have been destroyed before you, be careful not to be ensnared by inquiring about their elohim, saying, "How do these nations serve their elohim? We will do the same." You must not worship Yahuah your Elohim in their way, because in worshiping their elohim, they do all kinds of detestable things Yahuah hates. They even burn their sons and daughters in the fire as sacrifices to their elohim."
"Do not set up any wooden Asherah pole beside the altar you build to Yahuah your Elohim, and do not erect a sacred stone, for these Yahuah your Elohim hates."
Asherah poles are a deal-breaker with Yahuah. Learn NOT the ways of the heathen, and do not bring a detestable thing into your home!
"Do not bring a detestable thing into your house or you, like it, will be set apart for destruction. Utterly abhor and detest it, for it is set apart for destruction."
More details if you can bear them:
The tree, and the ornaments on the Asherah tree, have specific meanings to them. The tree is a "phallus", the male reproductive member. The little balls are testicles, and the "tinsel" represents the semen of the deity being worshipped. During the late middle ages, the little balls were interpreted by Christians to be "witch balls", borrowed from witchcraft, to attract, then capture "evil" spirits. Where, exactly, did Yahuah tell us to do that? The wreath was used to represent the male deity, the sun, yet was the "womb" symbol. So, the male deity's symbol incorporated the feminine features, while the female's sign incorporated the masculine features. Similarly, a "witch" is seen utilizing the male characteristics of the pointed hat and broomstick - both male features.
These "figures" were clear to the initiated, but to the uninitiated they meant nothing. Now, the secrets are being shouted from the rooftops, eh? Christians went deeper and deeper into apostasy as they ADOPTED the Pagan customs from those around them. The green ivy and holly were common symbols of "Saturn", the Roman deity. Early believers thought that if they decorated their homes with these trappings, they would appear to be conforming to the Pagan culture as everyone around them was observing Saturnalia. Thus they would "blend-in", and they would suffer less persecution. As time passed, the custom became part of the Christian world, and you will see the wreaths and Asherim trees in their assemblies and homes today. If we don't "join-in" with the celebration, we're considered to be freaks, or "Scrooges" - bah! Humbug it all truly is! Now, many centuries later, the doctrinal offspring of those who might have been persecuted for avoiding these Pagan traditions, believe that we who do not adopt them are in a "cult". It's not them, but Father Yahuah that we would not wish to offend. We know His heart, and He has called us to "Come out of her" (Rev. 18).
HOLLY, a plant "sacred" to the Roman deity "SATURN"
The word "PAGAN" comes from the Latin word, pagus, and referred to a person that was from the "rural" hinterlands. It also means Seeker, and one who does not follow mainstream religions.
As the darkness of the world without the Torah of Yahuah became increased, those who thought themselves to be wise were themselves fools. "Pagan" became a label for anything that was outside the accepted religious practices of those in the majority who practiced the universalized state religion, which after Constantine was termed "Catholic", the Roman word for "universal".
As you see them decorating with the boughs, wreaths, trees, and holly, you might help them to repent of this behavior by explaining what these things actually are, or sending them this web page. The trappings themselves are set apart for destruction, and those who decorate with them are set apart for destruction as well. All of it together is witchcraft, and blatant idolatry.
When will Ephraim repent of this idolatry?
Matt. 24: the End of Days, and the times of the Gentiles (Ephraim is sown among the Gentiles)
The really powerful point I draw first from this whole text is that Yahushua is describing the extreme last days.
He begins by saying that the massive stones will be leveled, and this happened in 70 CE - but then He moves into
more calamity that follows. Ultimately He describes how a great tribulation will occur which could only be
compared with the time of creation itself. He declares that if the days of this tribulation were not shortened, then
NO FLESH would survive at all. But, for the sake of the Elect (those qodeshim observing His Torah) who are still
on Earth enduring to the end, He would shorten the days. So, what He is indicating here is obviously the
extreme end times, just prior to His return - which are the days we now live in. In the midst of this, He orders us to pray that our flight
will not be in winter or on a Sabbath day. So, the Sabbath is still in force in the extreme last days, not changed as
most have been taught. But there is more to understand here. The lost sheep scattered in 722 BCE are to come to their senses after 2730 years.
The prophecy at Ez. 4:4,5 concerning the exile of the lost sheep of the house of Israel (Samaritans driven into the nations in 722 BCE) shows us that 390 years was the original prescribed penalty for their Baal/Asherah worship. Having not repented after 390 years in captivity, the northern tribes then had to endure the seven-fold increase of the 390-year penalty (see Lev. 26:27,28).
This means that 7 x 390 years from 722 BCE (2730 years), Israel's punishment will be lifted, and Ephraim will cry out to return to the Torah. (see YermeYahu 31).
About when is this cry to take place? They've been living among the Gentiles with their Asherim (Christmas trees) for 2730 years as of the Roman year 2008. The olive tree's blossoming will indicate that Yahushua's Return is imminent!
We are praying that our flight will not be in winter or on a Sabbath because of the hardship it will cause the weak among us.
The flight will be caused by a great distress that is apparently planet-wide, and may include nuclear fallout:
"So when you see standing in the holy place 'the abomination that causes desolation,' spoken of through the prophet Daniel-let the reader understand- then let those who are in Yahudah flee to the mountains. Let no one on the roof of his house go down to take anything out of the house. Let no one in the field go back to get his cloak. How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! Pray that your flight will not take place in winter or on the Sabbath. For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now-and never to be equaled again. If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened. At that time if anyone says to you, 'Look, here is the Mashiach!' or, 'There he is!' do not believe it. For false Mashiachim and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect-if that were possible. See, I have told you ahead of time.
"So if anyone tells you, 'There he is, out in the desert,' do not go out; or, 'Here he is, in the inner rooms,' do not believe it. For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man."
Now consider Revelation, and the mentioning of Izebel and "sexual" immorality:
"To the messenger of the assembly in Thyatira write:
These are the words of the Son of Yahuah, whose eyes are like blazing fire and whose feet are like burnished bronze. I know your deeds, your love and faith, your service and perseverance, and that you are now doing more than you did at first.
Nevertheless, I have this against you: You tolerate that woman Izebel, who calls herself a prophetess. By her teaching she misleads my servants into sexual immorality and the eating of food sacrificed to idols. I have given her time (390 years?) to repent of her immorality, but she is unwilling. So I will cast her on a bed of suffering, and I will make those who commit adultery with her suffer intensely, unless they repent of her ways (read Ps. 80). I will strike her children dead. Then all the assemblies will know that I am he who searches hearts and minds, and I will repay each of you according to your deeds. Now I say to the rest of you in Thyatira, to you who do not hold to her teaching and have not learned Satan's so-called deep secrets (I will not impose any other burden on you). (Satan’s Deep secrets like womb-wreaths, phallus-trees, and the ornaments of the Asherim). Only hold on to what you have until I come.
To him who overcomes and does my will to the end, I will give authority over the nations- 'He will rule them with an iron scepter; he will dash them to pieces like pottery' - just as I have received authority from my Father. I will also give him the morning star. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the assemblies.”
The "woman" Jezebel is identified as having "ways" which are considered "adultrous" because they are idolatrous. "Come out of her my people" is the command to come out of Jezebel, the modern Christian assemblies which adhere to the "ways" of Jezebel.
Christianity is Jezebel.
ASHERAH: THE CHRISTMAS TREE CONNECTION
IS "ALLAH" THE SAME BEING AS YAHUAH?
To answer this, all one has to do is consider the source of some of the practices. Here's one to look at:
The followers of Yahuah do not practice the customs of Baal / Asherah worship. When the worshippers of Baal/Asherah implored their false mighty-one to answer them by fire, they cut themselves:
1Kings 18:28: "And they cried aloud, and CUT THEMSELVES AFTER THEIR MANNER WITH KNIVES AND LANCETS, till the blood gushed out upon them."
Here is what some Shiite Muslims do:
"The 6-year-old boy screamed and shook his head to avoid the razor blade. But his father held him firmly as Hajj Khodor parted the boy’s black hair and sliced his forehead three times with the blade.
Ali Madani’s cries became more violent as blood gushed from the wound, covering his small, terrified face.
His father and a few other men, waving daggers, broke into a religious chant, recalling how the 7th-century Shiite Muslim saint, Imam Hussein, was decapitated, his head placed on a lance.
In marking the holiest day of Ashura, some Shiites believe children should learn at an early age about Hussein’s suffering, which is at the heart of their faith.
Hajj Khodor, wrapped in white and wearing a white turban, said he has done cuttings on boys as young as 1-month-old and men as old as 100.
Asked if it was difficult for him to hurt the children, he said: “The child doesn’t understand what’s going on. The parents are faithful and believe by doing this, their children will be protected and will enjoy a long life.”
(quote taken from amren.com/mtnews/archives/2007/02/childrens_foreh.php, 3-6-2007)
Not all Muslims practice this; however it seems to echo the type of behavior seen in the priests of Baal / Asherah.
1Ki 18:28: "And they cried aloud, and cut themselves, according to their ruling, with knives and spears, until the blood gushed out on them."
By the way, they do this on the "holiest day" of "Ashura". This word seems very close to the word "Asherah".
And remember, this is the fastest growing religion on Earth . . . it must be the extreme fun involved.
It's interesting that the original "Asherah" image worshipped by the Canaanites was a "date palm" tree.
This emblem is used in the Islamic faith, and it contains, by some strange coincidence, a date palm tree.
ASHERAH - CONSORT OF BAAL - MISTRESS OF SORCERIES
Nah 3:4-6: ". . . Because of the many whorings of the well-favored whore, the mistress of sorceries, who sells nations by her whorings, and clans by her sorceries. See, I am against you,' declares Yahuah of hosts, 'and shall lift up your skirts over your face, and shall show nations your nakedness, and reigns your shame. And I shall cast abominations upon you, and treat you as foolish, and make a spectacle of you.'"
Then: The word "Kwanzaa" comes from a Swahili phrase that means "first fruits." African-American activist Maulana Karenga started the holiday in 1966 to encourage people to learn about and celebrate their African heritage. Kwanzaa honors the harvest celebrations of ancient Africa as well as the culture of today's Africans and African-Americans.
• Now: Kwanzaa celebrations include the lighting of seven candles, one for each day of the festival. Each candle represents one of the holiday's seven principles: unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity, and faith. Families also celebrate with festive dinners, stories, and clothing or decorations inspired by traditional African culture.
• Activity: At the Kwanzaa feast, a woven placemat called a mkeka is placed on the table to symbolize a strong community foundation. Weave your own mkeka out of paper by overlapping strips of red, green, yellow, and black construction paper to form a rectangle. Use it when you serve your own holiday meal.
Santa Lucia Day,
an ancient Swedish festival during which blond-haired girls wear crowns of green leaves studded with
Three Kings Day,
also known as Epiphany, marks the day the three kings arrived to visit the newborn Christ child . Festive observations of this day are common in Hispanic countries and cultures; sometimes families bake a crown-shaped cake and hide tiny figures of babies inside to represent the baby Jesus.
China and Christmas
Christians in China celebrate by lighting their houses with beautiful paper lanterns and decorating their Christmas trees, which they call "Trees of Light," with paper chains, paper flowers, and paper lanterns. Chinese Children hang muslin stockings and await a visit from Santa Claus, whom they call Dun Che Lao Ren (dwyn-chuh-lau-oh-run) which means "Christmas Old Man." Since the vast majority of the Chinese people are not Christian, the main winter festival in China is the Chinese New Year, which takes place toward the end of January. Now officially called the "Spring Festival," it is a time when children receive new clothing, eat luxurious meals, receive new toys, and enjoy firecracker displays. An important aspect of the New Year celebration is the worship of ancestors. Portraits and paintings of ancestors are brought out and hung in the main room of the home.
The Christmas custom of kissing underneath a branch of mistletoe goes back hundreds of years, certainly to the early 17th century. But legends about the curious plant go back even farther, even to the time of Christ and earlier. One legend has it that the wood of the cross of Christ was made from mistletoe, and supposedly for that reason the mistletoe plant has been doomed to live as a parasite, and is so classified today, making it condemned to live on the goodwill of other trees. Shakespeare in Titus Andronicus called it “the baleful mistletoe,” no doubt referring to the fact that in large quantities the waxy white berries are toxic. On the other hand, ancient Druids thought the plant had healing, even magical, powers..
Back in Roman times in Britain, Pliny the Elder referred to the habit of Druid priests of cutting away mistletoe from oak trees where it attached itself, using golden sickles and spreading white cloth on the ground under the tree lest the trimmings touch the ground and risk losing their powers. The Druids elevated mistletoe to sacred powers, even using it in ceremonies of human sacrifice. Unlike other plants, mistletoe retained its fresh green color, and the evergreen therefore became a symbol of fertility. They also hung it over doorways to protect against evil.
for the rest of the article,
Mistletoe is rare, and when found, it is gathered with great ceremony, and particularly on the sixth day of the moon
Modern society has added its own traditions to these old pagan ways. We now have Santa Claus, Elves, Snowmen, Christmas carols, fruit cake, gift giving, blinking lights, Rudolph, the Grinch, Christmas parades, etc...
Saint Nicholas (Greek: Άγιος Νικόλαος, Aghios ["holy"] Nicolaos ["victory of the people"]) (270–6 December 343), also called Nikolaos of Myra, was a saint and Greek Bishop of Myra (Demre, in Lycia, part of modern-day Turkey). Because of the many miracles attributed to his intercession, he is also known as Nikolaos the Wonderworker (Greek: Νικόλαος ο Θαυματουργός, Nikolaos o Thaumaturgos). He had a reputation for secret gift-giving, such as putting coins in the shoes of those who left them out for him, and thus became the model for Santa Claus, whose modern name comes from the Dutch Sinterklaas. His reputation evolved among the faithful, as is common for early Christian saints. In 1087, his relics were furtively translated to Bari, in southeastern Italy; for this reason, he is also known as Nikolaos of Bari. His feastday is December 6.
The historical Saint Nicholas is remembered and revered among Catholic and Orthodox Christians. He is also honored by various Anglican and Lutheran churches. Saint Nicholas is the patron saint of sailors, merchants, archers, thieves, children, and students in Greece, Belgium, France, Romania, Bulgaria, Georgia, Albania, Russia, the Republic of Macedonia, Slovakia, Serbia, and Montenegro. He is also the patron saint of Aberdeen, Amsterdam, Barranquilla, Bari, Beit Jala, Fribourg, Huguenots, Liverpool, Siggiewi, and Lorraine. He was also a patron of the Varangian Guard of the Byzantine emperors, who protected his relics in Bari.
wikipedia link for the rest of the article is :
The Red-nosed reeindeer was born when, Robert L. May created Rudolph in 1939 as an assignment for Montgomery Wardbr
here is the link to the wikipedia article with a lot more information :
The Winter Solstice/ Christmas celebrations are always changing and evolving.
To read more about different practices of Christmas throughout the world
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