William Hopper received his Bachelor's degree at Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario, with a major in World Religions and a minor concentration in Classical Studies. He is the author of the bestseller The Heathen's Guide to World Religions, which is no longer available through Amazon but which can be ordered directly from the the author's website.
Christian theology as expressed by Paul maintains that it is essentially impossible to love a sexual partner and God at the same time. How, then, did celibate nuns and priests come to permit the celebration of a holiday which was dedicated to sexual love?
Never mind that he wasn't named Patrick and wasn't Irish, even the most ardent heathen has to hold some modicum of respect for St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland. After all, the guy's responsible for more annual beer sales than the Budweiser frogs and Paul Hogan combined.
Depending on whether you are or are not a Christian, everything you might (not) want to know about the non-Christian origins of one of the most important Christian holidays.
Most modern Christians will tell you that the holiness of Halloween has been co-opted over the years by "evil influences." It's actually the other way around. It was the Catholic Church that tried to change what they saw as an "evil" festival into a good and holy Christian celebration. It didn't work.
Have you ever wondered what it is that trees, holly, and mistletoe have to do with the birth of Jesus or the Jewish Festival of Lights? This brief synopsis on the origins of Christmas customs will shed light on some of the more obscure references.
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