As I grow older, I feel increasingly certain that there are more fundamental forces at large than those promoted by organised religions - no matter what the brand names - Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism - they're all the same to me - utter poppycock! Here at "Christmas" in the northern hemisphere, we feast to celebrate the passing of the darkest day and the prospect of a new year dawning. The holly, ivy and mistletoe remind us the Earth's fertility and Santa Claus is but a caricature of the legendary Green Man who - metaphorically speaking - watches over us and annually brings us his precious gifts - the fruit and the grain, the sunshine and the leafy forest, the pastures and the berries, the beasts of earth and water and the birds of the air. We will eat, drink and be merry, glad to be alive as passengers we have known and love disembark from this ship that is the vessel upon which we voyage through time.
To learn more of the pagan view of "Christmas", click on the Victorian Yuletide picture below - it will take you to an old BBC article about pagan Christmases. Happy Yuletide everyone! And let's hope we are all around to celebrate next December, grateful for the gifts of life and health and the precious bounty of our homes, our families and our friends.