Just throwing in my 2 holiday cents. While we are celebrating our beliefs, I think it is also a good idea to challenge them as well. If they are solid, you will feel a renewed commitment toward them, if they are off, you can adjust them as needed.
I've always thought (and I don't claim to have originated this thought...) that many/most if not all Christian holidays have their basis in Earth religions... which everyone was before the emergence of more modern day religions. Because it was more than just something to do on Sunday back then, it was a way of life.. honoring the earth, the seasons, directions and cycles of life and working with them instead of against them or despite them. Our very existence depended on it. (And by us I mean humans) The funny thing is, it still does, regardless of our denial or arrogance.
So, here is my belief... Jesus was black or blackish in color. I do not think he was even born in the winter. I believe that the facts have been distorted over time to suit the Holy ruling class, the only ones who were allowed to be educated... But more importantly his messages have been abysmally twisted and misshapen as well. I also believe he was one of many holy men who have been worshiped or whose teachings were thought to be of higher good throughout history.
What I am celebrating here in the middle of winter is human evolution and perseverance in the face of adversity (winter), and practicing our gratitude and fortitude. But whatever you celebrate or why, it is a great time to reflect on what you want for yourself, your family and the wider world community. It's fun to snuggle up at night and read or watch a good movie, write in your journal or whatever. It's good to contribute to the higher good of our wider community by volunteering or donating to charities...It's fun to wake up and drink something hot and soothing and feel good about all the blessings you enjoy in your life and wishing the same for those who are less fortunate.
I pilfered the following post from another site, because I thought it was interesting, not because I believe all of it... I find it fun to ponder new perspectives, so if you like to do that too, read on.... and Happy Celebrating, whatever holiday or reason that you do it! Peace, pf
Christianity: what’s different?
Was Jesus’ appe darance
closer to this ...
or to this ...?
Which of the images on the right is closest to how Jesus might have looked?
The first is influenced by the art of the Middle Ages and shows Jesus with European, rather than Jewish, looks.
- In reality, Jesus must have had Semitic features with olive skin, darkened by exposure to the sun. His hair and beard would have been black, curly and bushy – untrimmed in obedience to the command in the Law [Leviticus 19:27]
The Bible says He was not physically attractive [Isaiah 53:2]
Leviticus 19:27“Do not cut the hair at the sides of your head or clip off the edges of your beard.”
Beauty, in God’s eyes, comes from within [1 Peter 3:3-4]
Isaiah 53:2He grew up before him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground.
He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.
1 Peter 3:3-4Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.
- On the other hand, the devil is handsome [Ezekiel 28:14-17]
Ezekiel 28:14-17“You were anointed as a guardian cherub, for so I ordained you. You were on the holy mount of God; you walked among the fiery stones.
You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created till wickedness was found in you.
Through your widespread trade you were filled with violence, and you sinned. So I drove you in disgrace from the mount of God, and I expelled you, O guardian cherub, from among the fiery stones.
Your heart became proud on account of your beauty, and you corrupted your wisdom because of your splendor. So I threw you to the earth; I made a spectacle of you before kings.”
- The gospel rings true in my heart is because it is the opposite of the way man normally thinks.
- Who would have conceived a philosophy where salvation would come through believing that God would come to us as a helpless baby, born in a stinking stable, a peasant among a despised, subjugated people in an obscure land, and would later be nailed up to die like the worst of criminals.
- The natural mind is more attracted to youth and beauty, success and acclaim.
But, God’s thoughts are the opposite of man’s thoughts [Isaiah 55:8-9]
Isaiah 55:8-9“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, declares the Lord. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.”
OK IT'S ME, PF ...I"M BACK, JUST TO SAY.... THE FOLLOWING PICTURES ARE ONES THAT I THOUGHT WERE PARTICULARLY BEAUTIFUL. THEY ARE NOT RELATED TO THE CHRISTIAN POST.