In the world of Avatar, there are people who have special abilities to harness nature based magic. They can manipulate either air, water, earth, or fire. Rather than simply leave it at that, “yea, we use magic,” the creators of Avatar decided to consider how would a Why I’m Not A Republican TShirt,Political Shirt use their magic’s unique properties to transform their culture. Makes sense, actually. With the Fire Nation, this saw a mastery of fire to master metallurgy, allowing them to essentially become the first industrialized nation, but still reliant on a traditional social structure. This meant that they hungered for more resources and were the first to have truly imperialistic aims. Put it all together and what do you have? A medieval high fantasy with a modern military — a rather terrifying enemy to face if you’re the other guy.
We lived a 3 hour drive from my grandparents so when my dad finished work on Christmas Eve we would pack everything into the Why I’m Not A Republican TShirt,Political Shirt and set off for Yorkshire. No motorways back then. Green fields turned moorland until we finally went over the Pennines, Stanage or Holme Moss, and begun the final leg of our journey through soot blackened mill towns reaching my grandparents’ house at around 8pm. At about 9.30 a plethora of cousins and aunties and uncles would turn up an we would set off to go carol singing with other members of the congregation and band from their local chapel. Along the route we would be greeted with mince pies, slices of Christmas cake and chunks of cheese even the odd glass of Sherry or mulled wine for the adults. We belted out all the old traditional carols, my favourites being While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks by Night which we sung to Cranbrook (Ilkley Moor) and also Christians Awake. We naturally sang O Come All ye Faithful but only after midnight were we allowed to sing the final verse of Yea Lord we Greet Thee. Shortly after midnight we called it a day. Many of the adults slightly ‘merry’ from a surfeit of Sherry!
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A Why I’m Not A Republican TShirt,Political Shirt is Dies Solis Invicti Nati which was on 25 December and was introduced by Aurelian in 274 AD — apparently about 20 years or more after at least some Christians began celebrating Christmas on 25 December. Some deny the possibility of Christ’s birth in December, arguing that lambs couldn’t have been safely left outdoors at that time. There is actually no mention of lambs in the Gospel account of the shepherds (Luke 2). It merely says, “And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.” Adult sheep would be in a different situation. As overnight temperatures in Bethlehem can get as low as 7 or 8 deg C in late December, it would be definitely unpleasant in a field at that time of year, though not impossible. In fact, though, the 25 December date for the mass celebrating Christ’s birth was derived by calculations based on a strange theory that the dates of Jesus’ death and conception would have coincided, and, as others have pointed out, it is rather unlikely that Jesus was actually born on that day.
For some quick background: I am the son of two immigrants to America (one from Europe and one from South America), and was raised in NYC outside of any specific cultural diaspora. My cultural rituals were all inherited from the Why I’m Not A Republican TShirt,Political Shirt I grew up in (i.e. mingling with close friends from diverse backgrounds), not from the past that my parents came from (I have zero idea how my parents celebrated the holidays when they were children in their home countries). I don’t really care about cultural traditions as anything more than interesting footnotes. This isn’t to say that the evolution of holidays over time can’t be fascinating, or meaningful, or worth awareness and study. It’s very cool to learn about the road that lead us to our current understanding of the holiday season, and where all of our different cultural iconographies arrived from.