Thank you for joining us for this FREE Wheel of the Year Online Video Course, a year long journaling adventure to find our place in Nature Based Spirituality!
This segment is a brief overview of the Wheel of the Year, the circular calendar that is the hidden blueprint behind the popular seasonal holidays, Christmas, Halloween, and Easter, along with five others!
If you haven’t done so already, please do explore the Introduction Segment, first!
Now, in Segment 2, we’ll learn the names, dates, and significance of each of the eight seasonal celebrations on the wheel of the year. Enjoy!
Afura’s Perspective: What did the holidays mean to me, growing up?
If you’re like most people growing up in the modern world, you were probably always told that Christmas and Easter were uniquely Christian Holidays… so how and why is it that they seem to match up to pre-Christian festivals with similar traditions? Well, that’s a controversial question, and everyone will have their differing opinions on that matter. This Year and a Day journey is non-denominational, and is designed to simply educate and inspire people from all walks of life to attune themselves to nature. We will not use this platform to open up a debate on religious history. However, I will provide a brief overview of my research and experience as I’ve come to understand it, to get you thinking about what the holidays have meant to you thus far!
While I don’t choose to label myself as a member of any particular religion now, I do come from a background of American Islam. My parents were raised Christian like most African Americans, and they chose to convert to Muslim when I was a year old. My family’s approach to the holidays was an interesting one, and I’ll share it here to help you understand why this subject is such an important part of my life now.
As a child, I was not allowed to partake in the celebration of any of the major seasonal holidays… and the main reasoning for that may actually surprise you! When I tell people that my Muslim family didn’t celebrate Christmas, people tend to assume that it was due to a rejection of the belief in Jesus Christ… But quite to the contrary, I believe my parents would have been more open to the idea of Christmas if it was more about Jesus and less about commercial consumerism and hidden pagan undertones!
As you may know, many people (including some devout Christians) have their doubts about whether or not Christmas and Easter were the actual days of Jesus’s birth and re-birth. Many believe that these were the dates of pagan holidays that were so deeply ingrained into people’s lives that the Church had to convert them to Christian holidays in order to draw people to the new religion. I was always taught to respect Christianity, but not to take the holidays and traditions as true celebrations of Christ, but in stead to reject them as disguised pagan holidays… And in my upbringing, “pagan” was a four-letter-word!
Till this day, I’m still extremely thankful that my parents raised me to think outside the box, and to question things rather than to just follow the crowd… And ironically, its exactly that type of curiosity that caused me to break away from the Muslim crowd and learn about life in my own way! I always longed for a better explanation; a deeper understanding of why these holidays, that I was so bombarded with in society , were shrouded in so many layers of mystery…
In my adult life, I’ve finally been able to do my own research and form my own opinions about history spirituality, and the holidays… And what I’ve come to understand is that every faith has truth in it, and all religions are right in some way! What differs is really just the way we choose to see ourselves in the grand scheme of things. My personal brand of spirituality is based on the cycles of nature, and so it feels healthiest for me to learn from the Earth on a personal level, rather than subscribing to religions that would require me to live by someone else’s example. I’m all about experiential faith, rather than blind faith, so this Year and a Day journey is meant to open up your life to experiencing the miracle of nature with your very own eyes!
Whether you’ve always celebrated a version of the seasonal holidays and are longing to find deeper meaning in them, or if you’re like me and are forming your seasonal traditions on your own for the very first time, this Year and a Day course will help you to find just what it is you’ve been longing for!
Now that that awkward bit about religion is out of the way, lets get to the fun stuff… The part that can benefit every human being; attuning ourselves to the cycles of nature!
Thank you for reading about my personal experience prior to my first Year and a Day study in 2014!
What were your experiences with the meaning of the holidays in the past? I’d love to hear about it in the comments below!
Join us for this year long journaling adventure!
If you haven’t done so already, please do sign up for my free Year and a Day course where we journal our way through the Wheel of the Year together! You will receive email updates, exclusive journal prompts, personal stories from myself and our members, as well as gain access to all of our lessons in chronological order!