So today is The Day of the Epiphany. One of my co-workers brought in King’s Cake and stuffed the baby Jesus inside of it.
It’s funny to me that she doesn’t really know, understand or even care how or why the tradition is carried out. Actually, many Christians have the same head-in-the-sand viewpoint about Christmas, Easter and other Christianized pagan holidays.
I knew The Day of the Epiphany had something to do with how the Catholic Church absorbed pagan rituals in an effort to “Christianize” the barbarians but didn’t remember exactly what the deal was.
It was interesting to read about it. You can find a pretty cool article here.
Here’s the part that kinda sums it up though.
The King’s Cake has its roots in pre-Christian religions of Western Europe. Part of the Harvest celebrations that the pagans practiced was the sacrifice ritual. It was customary to choose a man to be the “sacred king” of the tribe for a year. That man would be treated like a king for the year, then he would be sacrificed, and his blood returned to the soil to ensure that the harvest would be successful. The method of choosing who would have the honor of being the sacred king was the purpose of the King’s Cake. Several men of the tribe, would eat of the cake A coin or bean would be placed in the cake before baking, and whoever got the slice that had the coin was the chosen one.
Glad I live in the 21st century.
“Epiphany” by Staind
I’m not a particularly superstitious person. Maybe it’s the deist in me…. maybe it’s the UU in me. I don’t know. Never really understood why people throw salt over their shoulder. Black cats… eh i’d rather stay away from any cat. Don’t like ’em.
Don’t walk under ladders. Knock on wood. Don’t open an umbrella in the house. All those things…. they don’t really do anything for me.
I was trying to sell my house a couple of years ago and my mom said I should bury a figurine of St Joseph in my front yard upside down… you know, with his feet pointed to heaven. I thought it was kinda funny, dismissed my mom’s old Mexican wives’ tale and proceeded with using my realtor and good ol’ fashioned marketing.
Sometimes The History Channel and other networks will show programs about the history of religion or do some sort of documentary of certain topics such as The Apocolypse, hell, the Book of Revelations, The Devil, etc. and I become fascinated… hooked if you well, stopping everything I was doing to watch. Afterwards I have sometimes wondered to what degree did superstition have in creating these stories and concepts of heaven and hell and the devil and salvation.
I suppose it makes it easier to keep on keepin on if we mere mortals can affect fate by hanging a horseshoe over the threshold or picking up a heads-up penny or carrying a cross around our neck for protection.
Hmmm… i don’t know.
Never did sell my house though. Eight months on the market and not a nibble.
[Deist jumps over a crack as he heads out to lunch]