Believer

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Believer

Post by Seva Lamberdar on Tue Jan 03, 2017 9:52 am


John the Baptist Baptizing Jesus
(from the Internet)


I have a question related to the Holy Season. A few days ago, after the Christmas was already over in the West on Dec. 25, the news on the TV in North America indicated that the Russian Pres. is planning to invite the families of American diplomats in Moscow to a Christmas party soon. It seems the Russians celebrate Christmas on a different day than Dec. 25. Why and what is the significance of these two different dates for Christmas in the East (Russia) and the West, and how old is this tradition for two different days?
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Seva Lamberdar

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Re: Believer

Post by Seva Lamberdar on Wed Jan 04, 2017 9:45 am

According to Wiki (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christmas),

"... by the early-to-mid fourth century the Western Christian Churchhad placed Christmas on December 25, a date that was later adopted in the East. Today, most Christians celebrate on December 25 in the Gregorian calendar, which has been adopted almost universally in the civil calendars used in countries throughout the world. However, some Eastern Christian Churches celebrate Christmas on December 25 of the older Julian calendar, which currently corresponds to January 7 in the Gregorian calendar, the day after the Western Christian Church celebrates the Epiphany."

It seems the difference in days for celebration of Christmas on Dec. 25 and Jan. 7 in the West and the East, respectively, is basically due to the dates / days not matching in Gregorian and Julian Calendars.
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Re: Believer

Post by southindian on Wed Jan 04, 2017 11:00 am

Seva Lamberdar wrote:
John the Baptist Baptizing Jesus
(from the Internet)
Who does their beard? Nice trim.

I'm looking for a good barber for trimming my beard.
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Re: Believer

Post by Seva Lamberdar on Thu Jan 05, 2017 10:00 am

What really is fascinating that water is used in many religions for initiation (including baptism, as shown in the above picture) and spiritual / religious purification (including the sprinkling of holy water in Hindu temples and during religious services, and even taking a dip in the river e.g. the holy river -- the Ganges etc.). I have also seen many Muslims from India carrying home holy water in large pitchers when they visit holy places in Arabia etc.  I wonder if there is also the custom of sprinkling the holy water on body or taking a dip in holy river (stream or water fountain) among Muslims, especially when they visit Mecca etc. during Haj?
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Re: Believer

Post by Maria S on Thu Jan 05, 2017 11:01 am

Hello Dr. Sharma:)

To my knowledge, Dec 25 was a day designated by the Catholic Church in the 3rd Century to celebrate the birth of Christ.  Most Countries and Churches have followed this tradition, but others like Russia seem to have their own Christian festival observances in Jan to March.  Like all religious observances..they are shaped by societal-cultural, local and family traditions, so it varies. Of course, Christmas has become highly commercialized..especially with Santa arriving on the festival scene, and the commercial celebrations seem to last for months with all the sales! 

In regards to Christian Baptism/Initiation, it also varies..from simply sprinkling a few drops or praying with holy water to total immersion in water.  And I think ALL major religions have a cleansing/purifying ritual..in some form..perhaps related to the significance of water with the belief that "we are all made up of water (building block of life)"..
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Re: Believer

Post by Seva Lamberdar on Thu Jan 05, 2017 3:01 pm

Maria S wrote:Hello Dr. Sharma:)

To my knowledge, Dec 25 was a day designated by the Catholic Church in the 3rd Century to celebrate the birth of Christ.  Most Countries and Churches have followed this tradition, but others like Russia seem to have their own Christian festival observances in Jan to March.  Like all religious observances..they are shaped by societal-cultural, local and family traditions, so it varies. Of course, Christmas has become highly commercialized..especially with Santa arriving on the festival scene, and the commercial celebrations seem to last for months with all the sales! 

In regards to Christian Baptism/Initiation, it also varies..from simply sprinkling a few drops or praying with holy water to total immersion in water.  And I think ALL major religions have a cleansing/purifying ritual..in some form..perhaps related to the significance of water with the belief that "we are all made up of water (building block of life)"..
Dear Dr. Maria, 
Thanks for the valuable input. 
As for your comment about Christmas being too commercialized these days, that's pretty much true about major festivals in other religions too (Diwali for example).  
I am still waiting for someone on SuCH to reply whether there is a practice in Islam with regard to sprinkling the holy water or taking a holy dip by the faithful / devotees, similar to Hindus and Christians?
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Re: Believer

Post by Hellsangel on Sat Jan 07, 2017 3:18 pm

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Re: Believer

Post by Seva Lamberdar on Sun Jan 08, 2017 3:58 pm

Thanks. 
It look like the washing before prayer for Muslims, even while reciting some sacred words, is a required activity and therefore a type of religious ritual. This type of purification among Muslims before prayer / worship, washing while chanting sacred / holy words, appears to have the same type of significance religiously as in the case of Hindu worshipers who have some water drops sprinkled on them for purification by the hymn (holy words) chanting priest before they sit down for prayer / worship. Moreover, the Muslims visiting Arabia on pilgrimage bringing home holy (Zamzam) water with them appears to be religiously similar to Hindus taking home holy water from the Ganges when they go to Benares on pilgrimage.
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Re: Believer

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