Thursday, October 28, 2010

How "Harvest" Festivals are More Pagan than Halloween...

It is time again for the Great American Tradition of Halloween. Unknown to most, many of our customs from this popular holiday are actually very modern in origin. The parties, Trick or Treating, and outlandish costumes are a wholly modern invention, created to keep children off the streets and out of trouble.

In the past, especially the 19th Century, it was customary for delinquents to go out and cause havoc by burning down buildings and performing a whole host of other frowned upon activities. It finally reached a point where it could not be tolerated any longer, and the custom of Trick or Treating, and throwing lavish Halloween and Costume Parties began, to keep the children out of trouble. It was also a plan to teach new Halloween traditions to the littlest ones and prevent future generations of delinquency.

This Holiday does fall upon the same date as the old European, (mostly Irish) festival of  the end of the harvest season called Samhain. In the Dark Ages, The Roman Catholic Church aimed to replace Samhain with a succession of church approved holidays falling on roughly the same date. It was all part of a plan by the church to gradually integrate the past pagan practices into the new order of things the church brought about after the fall of Rome.

This has been carried on, into modern times, though this time by mostly Protestant religious organizations, the Catholic Church having long ago won the battle when most of Europe was converted to Christianity. Many of these more modern organizations have taken aim at what they believe to be ancient traditions, but which in reality are actually very modern inventions aimed at correcting social problems. They typically hold "Harvest" festivals, seeking to rid the season of it's supposedly pagan image.

The irony of this comes from the fact that the "Harvest" festival is actually more in line with the pagan Samhain holiday than the modern inventions of trick or treating, and spooky costumes. The old holiday was a celebration of the final harvest and the coming of Winter, the season when all the farm plants die off. The farm animals were also slaughtered for winter food supplies. It also marked the end of the old Irish year, who followed a different cycle than our current Romanic system. So in a way, the new alternative to Halloween, the Harvest Festival, is actually much closer to the original than the current modern practices of spooks and hobgoblins.

The irony. The more you try to escape from it, the more it is the same. My advice...

Just have fun and enjoy it! It is the best holiday around!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

This Should not be Happening...

Socialist Europe appears to be winning the personal wealth game as we slip into a Mexican style economy.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Humanity's Dangerous Delusion of It's Own Importance

"Evolution progresses to complexity and intelligence, and Homo Sapien's are the star on the Christmas Tree of life". Unfortunately, the facts point in a different direction.

Humanity has long labored under the mystical delusion that life developed from simple mindless organisms and evolved into complex, intelligent, and spiritual forms. This anthropocentric view of the Universe, while it justifies much of Mankind's actions, behavior patterns and cultural identities, is not supported when the origin of life is looked at in a scientific and objective manner.

Much of Humanity believes that we are the reason the Universe exists at all, paying no heed to the facts of the matter whatsoever. This "identity" being the remnants of a cultural meme spread many generations ago during the domain of religious dominance, before the development of true and accurate scientific methods.

There are several crucial facts that this hierarchical "Christmas tree" view of our own self-importance ignores. All life consists of reproducing cells driven by a simple chemical code representing genetic material, and has arisen from a common bacterial ancestor. In essence, all life is of bacterial origin, as recent developments in exo-biology has shown us.

Life is a process by which bacterial based lifeforms have deviated from their original bacterial base to gain access to untapped resources. When viewed objectively, it does not represent a progression upwards towards more complexity and intelligence. It is simply a deviation sideways, away from the bacterial base. Instead of a "Christmas Tree" we are left with the shape of a tree growing against the wall in the shade.

As the center or base becomes overshadowed and dark, the limbs must spread further to reach the light. Instead of a pyramid shaped tree where we Humans are the utmost pinnacle, we are left with a flat-topped tree sprouting from a wall, where humans are on tip of the longest, thinnest branch furthest from the shaded trunk.

All life is driven by the simple needs to reproduce genetic materials, and to tap new resources for survival. This new view of the tree of life is a reflection of this; everything else being extras in the grand scheme of things, created by the complexities of tapping the resources needed to spread the genetic code.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Truly a Most Amazing Evil...

The creepily amazing world of Walter Potter and his grotesque taxidermy collection. This 19th century Taxidermist is the man who invented the original card-playing dogs on velvet, only he didn't paint them.

One is left wondering where he got all those kittens?