Today (December 21) just happens to be the summer solstice …

Comment on Santa’s big day: Hot and maybe wet by Alex Nelson.

Today (December 21) just happens to be the summer solstice in the southern hemisphere, the longest day of the year.
This means we can all now look forward to blazing hot weather for the next two or three months – just what you all wanted to know, I’m sure!
Of course, the situation is the reverse in the northern hemisphere; and indeed the winter solstice is the actual original date and reason for celebration in pre-Christian times, before being replaced by Christmas Day.
So, merry solstice, everybody!

Alex Nelson Also Commented

Santa’s big day: Hot and maybe wet
@ John Bell: You might like to check out “How December 25 Became Christmas – Andrew McGowan” (google it) which provides a very interesting account of the rise to dominance of this particular date. It’s much more complex than the commonly held belief that the Emperor Constantine was responsible for this choice.
You’re right – the actual birth date of Christ doesn’t matter which is exactly what the earliest Christians thought, too.
Originally Christ’s birth day wasn’t considered important and that is why nobody is even certain what year it was, let alone the date.
You say that Christmas “celebrates coming out of darkness into everlasting enlightenment, love and hope” but in fact that was the purpose behind the Resurrection of Christ which was the primary focus, indeed the core, of early Christian belief – without that, everything else was irrelevant.
There’s nothing wrong with going around in seasonal circles, that’s our planet’s reality. As a life-long gardener and nature observer, I cherish the seasons – we know of no other place in the universe that is as benign as our own world.
And as for history repeating, one has only to look at the overwhelming dominance of crass consumerism masquerading as “gift giving” to realize that Christmas these days is as pagan as it ever might have been in ancient times.
So yes, I prefer to ignore Christmas and downplay the significance of birth days (especially as I get older) and accept every day I’m in good health, alive and breathing, to be just as significant as any other day.


Santa’s big day: Hot and maybe wet
@ John Bell: I retrieved my copy of the Good News Bible (Catholic Study Edition), blew the dust of the top, and opened it to the very first story in the Book of Genesis, “The Story of Creation.”
Here I find the tale of how God created the universe and the world in six days; and with each day after He had created some aspect of the world as we know it, “God was pleased with what he saw.”
It was on the fourth day that God created the sun, moon and stars “to separate day from night and to show the time when days, years, and religious festivals begin; they will shine in the sky to give light to the earth – and it was done.”
So, according to the Catholic version of the Book of Genesis, it was on the fourth day of Creation we can take it that God made such events including solstices and equinoxes.
Yep, sure enough, at the end of the fourth day we’re told: “And God was pleased with what he saw.”
Seems to me it’s kind of hard to be critical of the pagans of long ago celebrating these perfectly natural occasions as religious festivals.
Incidentally, I stand to be corrected on my first comment, this year the actual solstice occurred at about 2am Australian Central Standard Time on December 22.
OK, so we have confirmation that the Bible approves the natural events like solstices because “God was pleased with what he saw.”
How about Christmas as Jesus Christ’s birthday? Well, from a recent posting “What history really tells us about the birth of Jesus” (google it) I obtain this quote: “Firstly, the actual birth day of Jesus was not December 25. The date we celebrate was adopted by the Christian church as the birthday of Christ in the fourth century. Prior to this period, different Christians celebrated Christmas on different dates.”
Oh dear, methinks the pagans have it. Ho! Ho! Ho! indeed.


Recent Comments by Alex Nelson

NT tourism turbocharger out of gas as Feds eye off Kakadu
A cash splash of $216m versus $220m for Kakadu/Jabiru as the race commences for this year’s Federal election campaign.
Hmm, is it Tweedledum and Tweedledee, or Heckle and Jeckle? Cartoonists could have fun with this double act.


Traditional owners unite to dump Anzac as gallery site
It’s worth keeping in mind that the council-owned lease for Anzac Oval extends over the car park area in front of the school.
The NT Governent-owned lease starts from the front of the main school building and extends through the rear of the campus, so it’s not as big an area as many probably assume.


National Indigenous Art Gallery future in doubt: Gunner
This utter debacle should mean that several heads will roll, from the Chief Minister down.
If this happened anywhere else in Australia, that is what would happen.
An absolutely disgraceful performance, and I predict it will get worse before this matter is terminated.


The financial crisis in the Northern Territory
While we navel-gaze at our own dire financial situation in the NT, a report just posted on the ABC News site states: “Since its recent peak in late-August, the local market has plummeted by about 12% — as investors grow increasingly concerned about an unresolved trade war, slowing global economic growth and the United States raising interest rates too quickly.
“Sentiment is as bad as I’ve seen it for a long, long time … the negativity is absolutely rife,” Chris Weston, head of research at Pepperstone, said.
“Ultimately, the market is concerned if we do see a resolution between those two nations [the US and China] … the damage has actually been done to the global economy and we’re hurtling towards a recession.
“Equities is a confidence game, and if it goes down in China, Japan, Europe and the US, we are going down as well — there’s no doubt about that situation.”
That “we are going down as well” is us – Australia as a whole.
If recession is now on the cards, I think we can forget about assistance for the NT. The money is just not going to be there.
In my article “The forgotten lesson” I stated near the conclusion “currently both national and world circumstances appear decidedly tentative at best. We’re likely to find ourselves overtaken by events well outside of our control.”
At present it appears those events are now starting to overtake us.


Alice has hottest day on record
@ Fiona Walsh (Posted January 2, 2019 at 3:12 pm): Thank you, Fiona, for your most informative post.
The closure of the CSIRO in Alice Springs is, I consider, one of the most short-sighted and regrettable decisions ever made as far as Central Australia is concerned but typical of the myopia that afflicts contemporary coast-oriented bureaucracy.
Maintaining the presence of the CSIRO in the Centre would surely have been as vital in these times of worsening climatic conditions and consequent impacts on the environment as it ever has been in the past.
However, the loss of the CSIRO in Alice Springs is symptomatic, and certainly symbolic, of the lack of concern and real regard for so much of the real Australia.


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