Tag Archives: Wintertime

Beginning of a festival of lights

Next Sunday is a double celebration. The Jewish people begin the Festival of Lights — Hanukkah, the Dedication of the Temple, and many Christians will light the first Advent candle in preparation for Christmas.

The Winter-season started to give signs it is on its way. We did not get the Autumn storms, but temperatures went already under zero. We also got already very gruesome days were we did not see much of the sun. and when we got some flashes of sun-rays in the afternoon it became already dark around 5pm.

As we enter the last couple of months remaining in 2018, our thoughts turn to giving thanks for everything the year has brought.

Sometimes, many forget how lucky we are to live in a wealthy country where there is no war and where there are not so many real problems. After Thanksgiving lots of people went mad and invaded shops like they had been without food and goods for months. Their greed brought them even to fight with each other to be first and about getting certain goods. We could see many video’s of people shrieking, being grabbed, poked, whistled at, yelled at and stuff fought over.

In many American families Thursday turkey was on the dish and in other countries on Sunday nice food could fill the stomachs after prayers were said. Though looking around and at social media more eyes where fixed on Black Friday and Cyber-Monday trying to get some stuff cheaper. Already a few days before Black Friday through Cyber Monday our inbox was flooded with discount announcements even from Christian organisations. They did not seem to dare to go against that American consumerism that got infecting West Europe as well.

A few years ago Thanksgiving was a day of free and meditation time and when it was on a Tuesday or Thursday a bridge was made giving the employees some extra free time to celebrate with the family. Today capitalism and consumerism lets employers to call their employees to work for Black Friday. It is as there may not be a moment of silence and meditation considering what blessings we do have, living in our industrialised world.

The world wants also to give a picture and the feeling that man can not have enough and that those who are happy with not much are fools. Those who don’t feel the need to constantly be buying the latest and greatest stuff seem to become an exception. Those who spend more time being careful about what they purchase and those who prefer to save their money for fewer things that they can enjoy much more, seem to become “strange birds”.

Society is pressing to consume and the majority of people are loving others to see that they can be better off without god and limited ways of living. They do forget that perhaps that minimalist way of life can be a much better and a much happier life. The moral of today seems to have gone far away form from real ethical moral ways and for sur far away form the Law of God.

Coming to the close of the year 2018 at out Christadelphian ecclesia site we present an overview of some important matters.

Starting with “The Way of the LORD” we want you to give some keys to open the way to a better living, much more filled than with the worldly goods. It goes from the “Eagerness to learn and to teach others” to ” The Call of Christ” looking at the Book of books and why Jesus had to die at the stake. giving some time to explain why we have to live a certain way and why we have to look for a certain future and and a certain king. You also shall find reasons why we do have to  be a believer in Christ and should look forwards to his return.

The coming days let us also look at the many religions and their festivals. Look at their power and authority. Nothing of God does tell we may not enjoy life. Nothing of God does tell us that we may not come together with family to enjoy the blessings we can find around us. The only thing God requires from us is that we abstain from the heathen rites and feasts and live according to His Will.

The darker and colder days may have us looking for more warmth. You may do that. Do so with pleasure and with gratitude for what you receive from God.

Let the coming festivals of light bring light and warmth to your soul which you shall want to share with others.

Let us this coming Sunday dedicate ourselves to God, like Jesus did in ancient times. When you eat potato latkes on Sunday remember that such a holiday treat traditionally fried in oil is to remind the person who eats them of the miracle that God performed with the oil and the dedication of the Temple. Let us these coming days think of the black period in Jesus his life. Let us see how he had also his weak moments, asking his heavenly Father for help, even at one time asking why God would have abandoned him. We in our weakness are materialistic, spoiled,and often forget what a wonderful Gift God has given us . It is that only begotten son of God which is the most precious gift we ever could get. And for that we should be most thankful.

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Related

  1. A Day of Thanksgiving (2018)
  2. Thankful for a wonderful Thanksgiving
  3. One small voice – 26: Be Genuinely Thankful
  4. Family Thanksgiving + Black Friday 2018
  5. Knock Knock – Morning Meditation
  6. Holiday retail observations
  7. Black Friday?
  8. The Real Black Friday
  9. Is Black Friday compatible with minimalism? (Minimalism, post 13.)
  10. How Minimalism is Improving My Life
  11. Red and Greed: Condemning Capitalism at Christmas?
  12. ‘Grinch bots’ are ruining holiday shopping. Lawmakers hit back
  13. Brands That Were Anti-Black Friday in 2018
  14. Black Friday down, Cyber Monday up. But the shopping never ends.
  15. Ebay says that Cyber Monday and Black Friday set sales records for the site (EBAY)
  16. Cyber Monday: New Record, Tough Comparison
  17. Brands That Were Anti-Black Friday in 2018
  18. Earlier Sales and Late Christmas Dent Thanksgiving Weekend Turnout
  19. It should again see light
  20. Hannuka 2016
  21. Hanukkah, a Time to Remember
  22. Hannuka history and customs
  23. Preparing: are you?
  24. Happy Hanukka!

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the winter chill

writings & wildflowers

the winter chill in the air

means it’s quiet overhead

but the silence

of the trees

doesn’t mean they’re dead

just asleep, hibernating like a bear

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The cold hitting in the northern hemisphere

Dealing with ongoing cardiac problems in their younger son, now an adult, who was born with a rare genetic disorder that includes multiple disabilities, the father fights against Stage IV cancer and the mother finds herself struggling daily with feelings of hopelessness that threaten to defeat her natural optimism.  They see that life is hard, and for most of us, it is likely to get harder in the future. Yet it is also filled with blessings and promise.  {About Defeat Despair}

Julia, the writer of the blog Defeat Despair writes

Our wooded lot feels enchanted in winter. February 2010Many of us who live north of the equator have been enduring record-cold temperatures. Some have been hit with a particularly nasty flu or other seasonal aches and pains. Power outages, weather delays and traffic snarls, along with wind chills below zero, can make wintertime something to dread. So let’s get cozy and enjoy what’s good about this season. {A poet in January}

When it is so cold outside, who doesn’t love to sleep in? For many the aversion to getting up in the morning is much greater in the winter, when the cold weather makes a snug warm bed all the more appealing. {Nonetheless}

While winter brings a lazy streak, it also sparks Julia’s inner drive to get organized, set goals and form good habits. She writes

Those winter resolutions, along with the beauty of the snowfalls such as the one I’m seeing right now, are reasons why I love winter despite the discomfort and inconvenience of inclement weather.

I hope you are enjoying January too, whatever kinds of weather it brings to where you are. If you are in the midst of your summer, or live in a tropical climate, enjoy it! Sip an iced tea for me, and go barefoot in the sand of a seashore whenever you have the chance.

If you, like me, are in “cozy hibernation” mode, keep that kettle on and lots of tea, coffee or cocoa handy. Check out some of the many self-improvement articles that proliferate in January via magazines and websites, and dream of springtime. As I keep reminding myself, it will be here before we know it! {Nonetheless}

Brew a cup of your favorite cold-weather beverage. Pull up a comfy chair, light a crackling fire, or if you don’t have that kind of fireplace (alas, I don’t), try switching on your gas or electric fireplace, or just snuggle up with a warm fuzzy throw. Take out your favorite poetry book, or grab your laptop, tablet or phone and go on a poetry scavenger hunt for some wonderful undiscovered gems, or lifelong favorites you can’t fully remember.

If you find anything lovely, funny, thought-provoking or heartwarming, we’d love to have you share it with us here. For every comment that links us to a poem, I’ll answer with a favorite of my own for us to read. Our high school English teachers would be proud!

Let’s bring our virtual Verandah indoors while it’s too cold to be outside. What we lack in sunshine and warm breezes we can more than make up for in congenial online company and realtime hygge.*  Cookies, pastries and savory snacks optional. {A poet in January}

In any case this is the time to enjoy the small things.

A charming display of teapots greeted us at a Pennsylvania bed & breakfast inn, Jun 2015

A charming display of teapots greeted us at a Pennsylvania bed & breakfast inn, June 2015

Despite the deceptively warm days of this past December, cold weather will be our frequent companion for weeks to come. Time for bundling up– or perhaps I should say settling down? for some cozy comforts to chase away the chill. Whether your day will take you indoors or out, be sure to make time for tea.

Note that I said “make time for tea,” not “have some tea” or “drink tea.” One of the great transforming qualities of becoming a tea lover is the inevitability that it will become a centering ritual, calming our nerves even before we take that first taste. Coffee drinkers also understand this, though that beverage is more often associated with busy days and drinking “on the run” — a shame, really, given the salutary benefits of serene sipping.

This winter morning, I invite you to sit down with me for a few minutes of reflective enjoyment. The kettle is on, and there has never been a better time to appreciate the greatness of small things. What are some of the everyday joys you look forward to this week? {Greatness in small things}

January bliss: a comfy chair, poetry, and tea in a lovely cup given by a dear friend. You’re invited to drop in and tell us your favorites– poets, teas, or both!

 


“When one reads a poet in January, it is as lovely as when one goes to walk in June.”
— Jean Paul Friedrich Richter

 

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Note: Hygge has been called everything from “the art of creating intimacy”, “cosines of the soul”, “the absence of annoyance” to “taking pleasure from the presence of soothing things”, “cosy togetherness” but I think my personal favourite is “the pursuit of everyday pleasures”.

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The Proper Place of Excess

The Word of God given to us in the Bible or Holy Scriptures tells us to know Who we should worship and what we should not worship. Idolatry of money has crept into the soul of mankind and has poisoned their hearts.

The wisdom teacher of Ecclesiastes says, there is a time for all things under the sun, no to agree with the excess man loves so much, but as a warning how to behave and how and to what to focus.

For those who want to celebrate Christmas for whatever reason they want to give, Christians should remember that it is originally a pagan festival and should better abstain from it. But we do agree in Wintertime it is ideal to socialise at the dark hours and it may be lovely to exchange presents around the turn of the year.

When we provide presents for others they should be given with joy and when it brings such a stress like we hear many tell on television, than there is certainly something wrong.

In so called Christian countries, we also see lots of Christmas markets, but at those ‘great events’ there is not much to see about what they call would be the “reason of the season”. At most Christmas markets there are not many stall about the nativity of the Nazarene Jew nor about that man’s ransom offering. Jesus Christ his birth they often call the reason for the season, but we can not see him much in that season or in people’s homes. Also the attitude of those people gathering at those markets does not speak of such an attitude that master teacher asked from his followers. Most people strolling around at those markets are more concerned about the food and drink opportunities and in buying (ridiculous) gadgets and not to expensive presents.

So many feel obliged just to find an other gadget or an other extra surprise and do hope they themselves also will receive many presents.

In this society where excess has become a way of life, for many it might well be also a way of understanding the world, a way of being and interacting in the world, but for sure many chapters in the bible warn for such an attitude and ask us to focus on the more important immaterial things.

Those who call themselves Christian should wonder where they fall in the consumer trap of the capitalist society and why they do not keep to the festivals ordained by the Most High? the festival for the goddess of light and a celebration for a Santa Claus for sure are no part of those.

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To remember

Thanksgiving here + gone > too much to eat + drink = Excess = regular part of natural order

Excess > consequences = plays important role in survival process

Survival of the fittest + the fertilized

Northern Hemisphere winter = season of rest + recuperation

ancestral winter seasons > forebears rejoiced in gathered harvest, savored freshly slaughtered meat, + delighted in new beer + wine.

Northern Hemisphere ancestors celebrated = winter solstice = December 21 = marking the rebirth of the sun = traditionally been associated with feasts + festivals replete with excesses => secular Christmastime holiday = direct descendant of these revelries.

Roman Saturnalia + misrule, centered on feasting + gift-giving > societal role reversals where servants + peasants became lords + ladies for a day or short season => usually steady tables of fortune turned for a moment

misrule (common in European societies and colonial America) individuals of low socioeconomic status demanded wealthier neighbors + patrons treat them – the servants + peons of society – as if they were the wealthy + deserving

Puritans of Massachusetts infamously outlawing Christmas in late 1600s =/= legendary anniversary of the Savior’s birth > simultaneous misrule celebrations that exalted excesses, some acceptable + others decidedly distasteful.

1800s, misrule evolved > new type of social inversion > persisted to our own day => Christmas made for children

children = miniature adults = occupied bottom rung of social hierarchy along with peasants + servants

Modern secular Christmas – family celebration – created at this time with children becoming focus of charity + goodwill

starting with Black Friday Eve (used to be called Thanksgiving) + continuing through New Year’s Day celebrations = unmatched devotion to consumerism, materialism, consumption, waste, and over-indulgence.

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Preceding

The Culture of Excesses- Losing Humanity

Learning that stuff is just stuff

Material wealth, Submission and Heaven on earth

Looking for the consummation of presents

One can buy a lot in the supermarket, but not hope

 

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Additional reading

  1. A time for everything
  2. The truth is very plain to see and God can be clearly seen
  3. Irminsul, dies natalis solis invicti, birthday of light, Christmas and Saturnalia
  4. Holidays, holy days and traditions
  5. A new year with hopes and challenges
  6. Opportunity!
  7. A season of gifts
  8. How to Find the Meaning of Life and Reach a State of Peace
  9. Material wealth, Submission and Heaven on earth

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Further reading

  1. Presents, Presents, and more Presents.
  2. Christmas Stress
  3. Buying All the Gifts
  4. Christmas time!
  5. The spirit of Christmas
  6. Christmas is not as much about opening our presents as opening our hearts. ~J.L.W. Brooks
  7. It’s the Thought that Counts?
  8. 30 Ways to Have Yourself a Thrifty Little Christmas
  9. 17 Things Only Girls Who Hate Shopping Understand
  10. How The Garden Grinch Saved Your Christmas
  11. 2015 Holiday Gift Guide
  12. My Christmas Gift Guide 2015
  13. 15 ways to get into the Christmas Spirit
  14. A Special Package
  15. The Gift & the Giver
  16. Baby Jesus Brings the gifts
  17. Blogmas Day 14: Christmas Gift Guide 2015
  18. On the 14th day of Christmas…
  19. Dear Santa
  20. Secret Santa!
  21. Why we don’t do Santa
  22. Nativity?
  23. Christmas Blogging Challenge Day 2 – My Favourite Christmas Tradition
  24. The Gift That Keeps on Giving
  25. The Holiday Gifting Struggle
  26. Do you search? ✨BlogMas✨
  27. Finding God
  28. Why Not Do Something Different This Christmas

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The T. Carlos Blog

Thanksgiving, once again, is here and gone. I know I had too much to eat and drink. How about you?

Excess is a regular part of the natural order. Our bodies turn excess calories into fat cells – technically, stored energy for later use. Most excess weight, however, is simply lugged around serving unwittingly as a contributing factor to health problems. Alcohol, on the other hand, is eliminated by the body. But a morning-after dehydration headache, caused by excessive drinking, lets you know you overdid it. Long-term excessive drinking, of course, will kill you.

Excess has its consequences.

Excess, nevertheless, plays an important role in the survival process. You and I are here thanks to an excessive amount of spermatozoa, from which emerged one little victor to join forces with an ovum. Survival of the fittest and the fertilized! And not only that, some of the plants which provide food, oxygen, and beauty upon the earth produce seeds for their own reproduction numbering in excess of hundreds…

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