Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Yule Blog - Epiphany

e⋅piph⋅a⋅ny
Pronunciation: [i-pif-uh-nee]
–noun, plural -nies.
1.     (initial capital letter) a Christian festival, observed on January 6, commemorating the manifestation of Christ to the gentiles in the persons of the Magi; Twelfth-day.
2.     an appearance or manifestation, esp. of a deity.
3.     a sudden, intuitive perception of or insight into the reality or essential meaning of something, usually initiated by some simple, homely, or commonplace occurrence or experience.
4.     a literary work or section of a work presenting, usually symbolically, such a moment of revelation and insight.

I was once asked why there are twelve days of Christmas. I explained to the person asking the question that it was twelve days between Christmas and Epiphany. That was the origin of the twelve days. When I was young, it was on January sixth that we took down the Christmas decorations.

They went up the Friday after Thanksgiving, and they came down on Epiphany. The first time I can remember seeing Christmas decorations up beyond that point was when I moved to Tampa. They stayed up... and stayed up... and stayed up... eventually, I asked someone.

In mid-February, I was told, they would be re-used for the big Gasparilla Day festival. The garlands and lights became a celebration of a mythical pirate who purportedly sacked Tampa in the nineteenth century and kidnapped and killed the mayor.

Hm... an interesting thing to use Christmas decorations to celebrate. Though, the way that the celebration of Christmas is evolving of late, I suppose it isn't that far off the mark.

Wherever you are today, I hope that your Christmas season has been a joyous one!

Don Bergquist - January 06, 2009 - Lakewood, Colorado, USA

2 comments:

Sara Lynne said...

It always bothers me to see the trees that get tossed on the street December 26th...before the kings arrival! Jan 6 or sometime in Feb is much better ;)

Evermore said...

we had a family tradition of being the first to get ours out on the street, christmas day morning