virus: Birth of Sun/Son

Eva-Lise Carlstrom (
Tue, 12 Nov 1996 23:22:30 -0800 (PST)

On Wed, 28 Aug 1996, David Leeper wrote:

> Ken Pantheists,
> > > D.Leeper:
> > > Then we got smart and realized
> > > it took the sun 365 days to circle the earth. To explain this
> > > discrepancy,
> > > priests made the 359'th day the birthday of the Sun God. Through the
> > > power
> > > of his birth we got an extra five days.
> > > -------------------------------------------------
> >
> > I have never heard this.
> >
> > What culture are you speaking of? What years? Who are "we"? And I still
> > don't get the connection to Lucifer.
> >
> > Do you have a source?
> Frazer's "The Golden Bough". Somebody said I was wrong about this being
> Lucifer. It's been five or so years since I read the book, so maybe I
> am wrong about "Lucifer".
> The Christians took over the holiday, so I would guess it's pre-christian.

The Roman Saturnalia was only one of many pagan festivals around the
winter solstice. Though Saturn isn't a sun god, some of the others were.

I'm sorry I don't have any religious references handy other than magick
books and my notes from Frazer's _Golden Bough_.

Frazer cites multiple examples of winter celebrations involving a period
of anarchy or role-reversal lasting from 3 to twelve days and apparently
derived from the 'intercalary days' inserted between years to even out the
lunar year (28 * 12 = 348 days) with the solar year. There are also
examples of similar holidays at other times, where the local calendar is
or was begun at a different time of year (for instance, the old Roman year
began in March).
He also describes midwinter fire celebrations in honor of the birth of the
sun, or in order to encourage the return of the sun. Here's what I quote
him as writing in my notes about the date of Xmas:
"For the ecclesiastical authorities saw fit, about the end of the thrid or
the beginning of the fourth century, arbitrarily to transfer the nativity
of Christ from the sixth of January to the twenty-fifth of December, for
the purpose of diverting to their Lord the worship which the heathern had
hitherto paid on that day to the sun." You are of course free to
doubt Frazer and/or his own sources.

Modern Witches celebrate the winter solstice ('Yule' in Old English) as the
time when the Horned God is reborn with the early returning light [_Spiral
Dance_, or virtually any book on modern paganism].