What would Christmas be without the Christmas trees, music, lights, caroling, and all the other symbols we've come to know and love? When most people think of Christmas, the first thing that comes to mind are the symbols and objects we associate with Christmas. How did these symbols come to be? You may be surprised! Take a look at the pages below to find out about your favorite Christmas symbols!
The Advent Wreath
Advent wreaths are associated with Christianity and are symbolic of the 4 weeks of Advent. A single wreath is made with the evergreen and placed horizontally with 4 candles placed on top of it over the period. The candles are placed on the wreath in an orderly fashion. The fist candle is placed on the flat wreath and lit while a prayer is said proceeded by a reading of a lesson from the Bible. Over the course of the four weeks another candle is placed for every passing week until there are 4 candles on top of the wreath culminating the period of Advent. There may be a fifth candle that is lit to signify the birth of Christ. This tradition is not restricted to the church. There are some families that will do this to keep the sanctity of a Christian Christmas alive. Learn more about the advent wreath.
The traditional Carol as it is known today is a Christmas song or hymn that centres around the theme of Christmas or Winter. They are generally sung in the period preceding Christmas and sometimes a few days after. For Christians Christmas songs are beautiful reminders of the miracle of Christ's birth and the nativity story. For others, they are pleasant tributes to the holiday season that are easy to remember because of their simple rhyming patterns and memorable lyrics. Carols are said to be based on medieval chord patterns that give them their distinct sound. If you'd like to learn much more about Christmas music, check out http://www.christmassongs.org and http://www.christmassongs.net. Learn more about Christmas caroling.
Christmas presents or gifts are definitively what makes the season such a jolly and enjoyable one. Children adore Christmas because they get beautifully wrapped gifts from their parents, adults too partake in this tradition by exchanging gifts among themselves. While the notion is a lovely one, give without expectation, it has been criticised in recent years for what people see as the commercialization of Christmas. Critics argue that people are not so much focused on the actual thought behind giving gifts but more so on buying gifts that are expensive and impressive in stature. However, the idea is still a lovely one when done with the true benevolence we have all come to expect. Learn more about Christmas presents.
The Christmas tree has become a prominent symbol of Christmas. It is an evergreen that is decorated with ornaments during the festive season. It may be real or artificial depending on the owner's preference. Some people may decorate an outdoor evergreen in addition to one that may be placed in the home. A major feature of the Christmas tree is the star or angel at the apex. This star is representative of that which shone in Bethlehem to signify the birth of Christ. Also to make it more magnificent by night lights are used to give it luminance, earlier trees, on the other hand, were lit using candles. The tradition of decorating evergreens actually began in Germany and has since then been adopted in many cultures worldwide. The Christmas tree ties in with the tradition of gift giving; normally these gifts are placed under the tree and opened on Christmas day. If you're looking for an awesome artificial Christmas tree, check out www.santasquarters.com. Learn more about the Christmas tree.
Poinsettia is considered a traditional Christmas flower. It is indigenous to Central America and was first brought to the United States by Dr Joel Poinsett, more than 100 years ago. Although they are grown in 50 states, California remains the state with the largest numbers of Poinsettias grown each year. Its leaves are large and red and green in color. The red leaves are often mistaken for a flower however, it is the natural property of the plant to produce red leaves toward the end of the year. Poinsettias are priced according to the number of red leaves they produce, with those having an abundance of said leaves costing higher prices. They are very beautiful plants that grace many homes during the Christmas season, the red and green colors being traditional Christmas colors make them even more appropriate for decorative purposes. Learn more about poinsettias.
Santa Claus is a much beloved mythical figure appearing during the Yuletide season. He goes by several names including: Saint Nicholas, Kris Kringle, Father Christmas, St. Nick and Santa. He is the jolly old gift giver that comes during New Year's Eve to give children around the world toys of many kinds. No Christmas would be complete without the figure of Santa gracing greeting cards, shopping malls, decorative ornaments and of course Christmas films. His popularity remains intrinsic to the spirit of Christmas because of what he symbolizes, that is, the true spirit of giving. Learn more about Santa Claus.
The traditional Yule Log is a Christmas favorite. While burning the log is restricted to places that have a built in fireplace, it is still a great custom that may be used to celebrate the holidays. Basically once the log is burning no work should be done. During this time friends, family and neighbors gather to sing, dance, listen to or tell stories, eat and partake in any activities that will allow them to enjoy the brief period of merriment as much as they can. Learn more about yule logs.