Monthly Archives: December 2010

Reflections on #winter customs

Yesterday we brought in our young evergreen from the yard and I purposely adorned it in loving memory of those indigenous tribal peoples of northern Germany who were once slaughtered for their desire to do likewise.

Years ago in northern Germany:

“In 780 Charlemagne decreed the death penalty for all Saxons who failed to be baptized, who failed to keep Christian festivals, and who cremated their dead…

He returned to Saxony in 782 and instituted a code of law… The laws were draconian on religious issues, and the indigenous forms of Germanic polytheism were gravely threatened by Christianisation. This revived a renewal of the old conflict. That year, in autumn, Widukind returned and led a new revolt, which resulted in several assaults on the church. In response, at Verden in Lower Saxony, Charlemagne allegedly ordered the beheading of 4,500 Saxons who had been caught practicing their native paganism after conversion to Christianity, known as the Massacre of Verden (“Verdener Blutgericht”). The killings triggered three years of renewed bloody warfare (783-785).

“…Using the clippings of evergreen shrubs from the landscape to decorate houses, a common practice during the December celebrations of Saturnalia, was strictly forbidden by the Church. The associations between decorating with evergreen shrubs and paganism were just too strong. Already in the early third century Tertullian had warned his fellow Christians against falling into the Saturnalian rut by using laurel wreaths as Christmas decorations (Tertullian, “On Idolatry,” XV, ).”

So in memory of these people, in particular the peasants, who simply wished to encourage themselves with reminders that the darkest part of the year had arrived and that the days would now begin to get longer again, I have adorned our lovely little evergreen with lights and pretty things.

May they rest in peace.

#EPA Knowingly Allowed #Pesticide That Kills #Bees


EPA Knowingly Allowed Pesticide That Kills Bees
hether writes “The mystery of the disappearing bees has been baffling scientists for years and now we get another big piece in the puzzle. From Fast Company: ‘A number of theories have popped up as to why the North American honey bee population has declined — electromagnetic radiation, malnutrition, and climate change have all been pinpointed. Now a leaked EPA document reveals that the agency allowed the widespread use of a bee-toxic pesticide, despite warnings from EPA scientists.’ Now environmentalists and bee keepers are calling for an immediate ban of the pesticide clothianidin, sold by Bayer Crop Science under the brand name Poncho.”

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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