Posted by: Johan Normark | December 21, 2010

The beginning of my non-commercialized holiday

Today it is the winter solstice (at least for the areas on the GMT and westward). If you live east of this artificial line, like I do, the winter solstice actually occurs on the 22nd of December. That means that the holiday season begins for me but it does not exactly relate to this celestial event. This holiday, of course, includes the New Year and Christmas (or jul as we pagans in Sweden calls it). Jul(en) has its origin in pre-Christian Scandinavian religion and it is related to Odin and sacrificial feasts that later was incorporated into the Christian holidays. Few Swedes bother about the Christian stuff nowadays (Sweden is one of the most secularized countries today).

I have never cared much for this holiday (or any holiday at all for that matter). However, this changed two years ago when my wife and I adopted our son in Chongqing, China, on December 22. We returned to Sweden on the 2nd of January and these two dates basically marks the beginning and the end of the holiday that I care about (not the institutionalized and commercialized hysteria that I dislike). Can I still stay away from the commerce? Not really…

Merry Christmas anyway


  1. With these changes, I’m happy for your child.
    If indeed, childhood is the best that life can offer, might as well
    enjoy the ride with your family. Cheers!


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