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Christmas Article 3 (DOC)

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					3. Fancy Tales Related to Christmas
      A lot of what is widely regarded as true about Christmas or held as
a
tradition cannot or has not been verified, or, has changed through the
years.
Even Christmas Day itself, Dec. 25, has been questioned about whether
that is
the exact day on which Jesus was born. Skeptics have asked why would
shepherds
be out in the cold watching their flocks by night during the winter.
Those
skeptics have put forward the thought that Jesus may really have been
born in
the spring instead. It is therefore little wonder that there are many
fancy
stories and tales that are told about Christmas and the Christmas season.
      The most common fancy tale that everyone tells, particularly to
children,
is about Santa Claus, also called St. Nicholas. But even if it were
accepted
that Santa Claus existed, where does he live and how is he able to get to
all
the houses of good boys and girls on Christmas Eve?
      In the United States, Santa Claus is said to have two homes. There
is a
home in Torrington, Connecticut, which is used as a distribution point
for Santa
and his many helpers, who are elves, to hand out gifts. And then, a
second home
is said to be located in Wilmington, New York, and that is where Santa
Claus and
his delivery reindeer crew are located.
      But Santa can be visited in Cyberspace at anytime and what about
the
widely held belief that Santa Claus really lives in a village at the
North Pole?
      The people of Finland also claim that their country is the official
residence of Santa Claus. That's because in Finland, you can actually
visit a
village any time during the year and see Santa's workshop and observe
Santa and
his elves hard at work as they prepare for their very important Christmas
gift
delivery job on Christmas Eve. The only day when Santa's workshop is
closed to
visitors is of course, on Christmas Eve.
      Maybe a very smart visitor could visit Santa's workshop on the day
before
Christmas Eve to see if there are any clues to how Santa and his
reindeers plan
to make their trip the next day. That's because as the tale goes, in
Finland
Santa Claus and his reindeers do not reach their destinations around the
globe
by flying.
      Finland welcomes visitors to Santa's workshop but there is nothing
said
about whether visitors actually have any chance of having a word with the
man
himself. While the chances of doing so are believed to be non-existent,
among
the questions that inquiring minds could ask Santa is whether Rudolph is
the son
of Donner (and to confirm the spelling - Donner or Donder) or whether
Santa
spotted him in a different reindeer village one foggy Christmas Eve when
he had
already started on his Christmas toy-delivery mission.
If mere mortals got a chance to question Santa, then he also would likely
have
some questions for us humans. He may want to know whose idea was it to
have
Christmas trees and for the gifts to be placed under them.
      The tradition of Christmas tree as it exists today comes from
Germany by
way of immigrants. But it isn't clear how the tradition really gained a
foothold
in Germany. One story is that Christians in Germany during the 16th
century
started to bring trees that were decorated into their homes. Some of
those
Christians would build pyramids for Christmas. The pyramids were made of
wood
and would be decorated with evergreens and candles if wood was in short
supply.
      It is however Martin Luther, a Protestant reformer, who is said to
have
been the first to add lighted candles as decoration to a tree based on
his
inspiration from the brilliant light of twinkling stars that shone
through
evergreen trees as he walked home one winter evening.
      As the legend goes, Martin Luther placed a tree in a primary room
of his
house and placed wires with small, lighted candles around the branches of
the
tree. And that is how, as the tale goes, the Christmas tree as known
today, was
started.

				
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Maggie Mills Maggie Mills Owner http://itmfinancial.org
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