Sunday, November 29, 2009

Is Christmas Really Pagan? Not so fast...

For some timely reading on this the first Sunday of Advent, how about a little critical look at the critics?

We're so often told that Christians celebrate December 25th as the Feast of the Nativity of Our Lord only because we were co-opting the Pagan festival of the Winter Solstice that we actually believe it uncritically.

However, in this article, historian Dr. William Tighe, history professor at Muhlenberg College and contributing editor of Touchstone Magazine makes a good argument that this conclusion is drawn from false premises and is only based on the wrongheaded theories of two professors, one from the 17th and another from the 18th centuries - theories that became "conventional wisdom" in an age of skepticism.

In fact, Tighe argues, the Pagans were attempting to co-opt the Festival of the Nativity from the Christians. It is their religion that was changed to ape Christianity in the second century, not vice versa.

PS: Here is a post by Gene Edward Veith on the same topic.

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