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Pagan Christmas Song ?

GUEST,Tunesmith 20 Nov 03 - 01:31 PM
Leadfingers 20 Nov 03 - 01:35 PM
GUEST,MMario 20 Nov 03 - 01:53 PM
GUEST,MMario 20 Nov 03 - 01:54 PM
open mike 20 Nov 03 - 02:00 PM
GUEST 20 Nov 03 - 02:00 PM
GUEST,ClaireBear 20 Nov 03 - 02:03 PM
GUEST,MMario 20 Nov 03 - 02:05 PM
GUEST,ClaireBear 20 Nov 03 - 02:15 PM
GUEST,MMario 20 Nov 03 - 02:20 PM
GUEST,ClaireBear 20 Nov 03 - 02:24 PM
Catherine Jayne 20 Nov 03 - 03:28 PM
GUEST,MMario 20 Nov 03 - 03:29 PM
treewind 20 Nov 03 - 04:08 PM
GUEST,MMario 20 Nov 03 - 04:10 PM
Sandy Mc Lean 20 Nov 03 - 04:15 PM
GUEST 20 Nov 03 - 04:17 PM
Sandy Mc Lean 20 Nov 03 - 06:01 PM
greg stephens 20 Nov 03 - 06:07 PM
McGrath of Harlow 20 Nov 03 - 07:29 PM
greg stephens 21 Nov 03 - 02:19 AM
GUEST,melanie 21 Nov 03 - 06:09 AM
The_one_and_only_Dai 21 Nov 03 - 06:28 AM
Peg 21 Nov 03 - 11:32 AM
Zany Mouse 21 Nov 03 - 02:59 PM
Gypsy 21 Nov 03 - 10:09 PM
GUEST,Boab 21 Nov 03 - 10:33 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 21 Nov 03 - 10:57 PM
Jacqk 22 Nov 03 - 02:25 AM
Jerry Rasmussen 22 Nov 03 - 08:25 AM
GUEST,Tunesmith 22 Nov 03 - 08:37 AM
CapriUni 22 Nov 03 - 01:55 PM
GUEST,Tunesmith 22 Nov 03 - 06:25 PM
Jerry Rasmussen 22 Nov 03 - 07:48 PM
Peg 23 Nov 03 - 03:05 PM
Jerry Rasmussen 23 Nov 03 - 04:36 PM
Margret RoadKnight 23 Nov 03 - 04:49 PM
Malcolm Douglas 23 Nov 03 - 05:37 PM
Jeanie 24 Nov 03 - 06:32 AM
CapriUni 24 Nov 03 - 11:50 AM
Dave Bryant 24 Nov 03 - 12:10 PM
Jeanie 24 Nov 03 - 01:34 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 24 Nov 03 - 02:46 PM
Fiona 24 Nov 03 - 04:07 PM
Cluin 24 Nov 03 - 11:54 PM
Wolfgang 25 Nov 03 - 12:22 PM
GUEST 12 Dec 04 - 04:48 PM
Nerd 12 Dec 04 - 11:01 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 12 Dec 04 - 11:10 PM
GUEST 23 Dec 10 - 03:07 PM
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Subject: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST,Tunesmith
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 01:31 PM

I had the idea of writing a song - to be sung at Christmas Time - but based on one of the many Pagan Gods that seems to have been the inspiration for much of Jesus's biography in the bible. This song, of course, would ruffle more that a few feathers. When the song begins, it would be for all the world about Jesus - mentioning mid-winter, stables, stars,etc but then , just as the name Jesus would be expected, the listener would be surprised( offended!) to hear the name Mithras or whoever ( there are many who fit the bill ). Is this an original idea for a song?


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Leadfingers
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 01:35 PM

Sounds good to me mate - and nothing wrong with Mithras.


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST,MMario
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 01:53 PM

I don't think I've ever heard a song exactly - have seen poetry and stories that work that way.

it wouldn't necessarily cause a flap or fuss either - unless your purpose is to ruffle feathers? In which case I think you would have to specifically state that it *ISN'T* about Jesus in order to raise the hackles of any but the most rabid bible-thupers.


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST,MMario
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 01:54 PM

and then you'd get those like me - who would just read in their own personal interpretation anyway...


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: open mike
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 02:00 PM

the song i just posted mentions heathen and pagan
as being on the same side as the rebel jesus.

also there is a song called the christians and the pagans
by Dar Williams which says that now only pumpkin pies are burning..
well you have to hear it to get it i guess..


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Subject: Lyr Add: EASTER CAROL (Jonathan Berger)
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 02:00 PM

My years-ago band Cyderman's Fancy worked up an Easter carol written by our brilliant violinist, Jon Berger. It was along the same lines, and it surely did ruffle a few feathers. We tended to be pretty selective about where we sang it. Here it is:

EASTER CAROL

written by Jonathan Berger

A baby was born of nature most pure
To shower the blessings of heav'n here on earth
To ev'ry ill circumstance he is the cure
And all humankind is enriched by his birth.

ch: Come fill up your glasses, drive sorrows away,
Our savior, John Barleycorn, has died on this day."

But this day he died, for the sake of our sins,
So let him be brought from the place where he stood
In a cart to the barn, in a keg to the inn
Where we'll eat of his body and drink of his blood.

(ch)

So under the earth, beneath the cold clay,
We'll bury his body, borne on this bitter bier,
Then he will arise again on the third day,
And live to redeem us again all next year.

(ch)

---

So no, it's not a *completely* original idea -- but please don't let that stop you!


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST,ClaireBear
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 02:03 PM

sorry, that was me posting the Easter Carol as an anonymous guest instead of my perpetual guest-name, which I DO hope to lose once I have Internet access at home (if ever...)

Claire


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST,MMario
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 02:05 PM

*that* ruffled feathers? WHY?


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST,ClaireBear
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 02:15 PM

Umm...I'm not sure why, now that you've asked. Brought up in an intellectual, casually Catholic household, I've never been one to point fingers at text as "blasphemous." Particularly when it's not irreverent (as this isn't).

But I do recall lots of squirming when we sang specific lines that drew an inescapable parallel between JB and JC -- for example, "he will arise again on the third day." It seemed to make lots of folks very uncomfortable.

What do y'all think?


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST,MMario
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 02:20 PM

actually - I'm the wrong one to ask as I have used various versions of John Barleycorn to *teach* the resurection story in Sunday school.


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST,ClaireBear
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 02:24 PM

As am I; I tend to send out Christmas cards that say "Unto us are children born, Jesus and John Barleycorn." I've never seen a conflict netween Christianity and my particular brand of "low-church" paganism.

Anyone else?


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Catherine Jayne
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 03:28 PM

Pagan Christmas Songs.....isn't that an oxymoron??!!!!!


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST,MMario
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 03:29 PM

Thank you. I didn't want to say it.


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: treewind
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 04:08 PM

Many traditional Christmas Carols (and most other trappings of the midwinter festival) have pagan roots already.

See if you can beg or borrow a copy of
"Who really killed Cock Robin? : nursery rhymes and carols restored to their original meanings" by Norman Iles, for some fine examples.

Anahata


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST,MMario
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 04:10 PM

virtually all of *CHRISTIANITY* has pagan roots.


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Sandy Mc Lean
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 04:15 PM

Pagan is only a matter of one's perspective.
The Celtic religion of the Druids used trees as sacred objects and from that derives the Christmas tree and also the use of mistletoe.
How many Christmas songs have pagan origin ? Probably many!
       Slainte,
            Sandy


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 04:17 PM

I thought the Christmas tree derived from Germanic custom?


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Sandy Mc Lean
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 06:01 PM

The heart of early Celtic culture was in the Danube Valley. The tradition of tree worship predates Christianity or the movement of Germanic tribes into this area of Europe. Certainly the modern Christmas tree tradition stems from Germany but from pagan roots shared with both Celtic and Germanic peoples.


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: greg stephens
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 06:07 PM

Anahata: Charming guy Norman Iles, know him well, but his restored pagan carols are barmy unsingable drivel. Purely my opinion of course.


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 07:29 PM

Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer? And many many more.


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: greg stephens
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 02:19 AM

TThe traditional Lake District Christmas greeting song was called "Hunsup through the woods" or "Hunsup in the morning". It was also translated into Gaelic and used in the Isle of Man. It was played at night at Christmas Eve by groups going the village greeting all the inhabitants. However, Hunsup is a contaction of Hunts Up or "The hunt is up", and I imagine that many modern pagans will be as hostile to fox hunting as they are to Christianity: so I cant see this catching on widely.
    Wordsworth documented this practise, by the way. He was a very unmusical bloke, so it's fairly rare to find him actually noticing musical activity.


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST,melanie
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 06:09 AM

The best in my opinion is 'Deck the Halls' which I will sing with gusto (terrible guy) at every opportumity!

Merry Yule to all

Mel XX


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: The_one_and_only_Dai
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 06:28 AM

Historical evidence suggests that the Druids venerated trees, yes, but only if they were bedecked with the severed heads and limbs of their victims...


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Peg
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 11:32 AM

My friend Darragh Nagle wrote a song (recorded by the choral group I used to belong to, MotherTongue on their CD This Winter's Night) called (I think) Yule Carol. the lyrics describe a holy   birth, and have imagery of two children, one dark and one light...

There are other songs on the CD which aree about winter, the solstice and generally a pagan approach to the time of year (most of the "traditional" songs of Christmas contain references to evergreen, candles, light etc. and the "birth of the son/sun" of course   is metaphorical when we consider that the days lengthen and the light grows stronger at this time).


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Zany Mouse
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 02:59 PM

I understand that The Holly and The Ivy is banned in some so-called "live" churches because of its Pagan connections.

ZM


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Gypsy
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 10:09 PM

Tunesmith, is your whole intent to offend people? If so, chose that personality type when singing your song. However, Jesus Himself was a rabble rouser, and made alot of people uncomfortable. Still does. Get the feeling, that were He present, he would get a kick out of it.


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST,Boab
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 10:33 PM

The connection is kinna hard to see, but "All Around my Hat" was a number one Christmas hit from Steeleye Span.


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 10:57 PM

Hell dude!!!

There is mountains and mountains of stuff available on Saturnalia....and occompaning festivals....

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Jacqk
Date: 22 Nov 03 - 02:25 AM

Hi all,

When I read Pagan Christmas Song, I immediately thought of the "Birth of the Rebel Jesus", one of my favorites. And wouldn't you know it, I can link to it:

Birth of the Rebel Jesus


I have heard the Chieftans version and it is worth getting.

Jack


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Jerry Rasmussen
Date: 22 Nov 03 - 08:25 AM

As discussion in here always end up getting down to the meaning of words, take a look at what Christmas means. Christmas is a Christ Mass. A mass is a celebration. Christmas is the celebration of Jesus Christ. Either you celebrate it, or you don't.

Jerry


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST,Tunesmith
Date: 22 Nov 03 - 08:37 AM

Sorry Jerry, I don't think Christmas has the same meaning now as previously. Now , for a lot of people, the "Christ" connection has given way to a general feeling of "peace on earth", family get-togethers, and present giving. A more secular ocassion. It is possible that the word " Christmas" will eventually lose its original meaning, for the majority of people ( like lots of other words), and just come to mean a mid-winter holiday.


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: CapriUni
Date: 22 Nov 03 - 01:55 PM

I agree with Jerry on this one. I think of Christmas itself as "Christ's mass," and very specific. I celebrate a Winter Solstice holiday, but as I am not Christian, I am very careful not to call it "Christmas," but rather "Yule."

You may be right, Tunesmith, about "Christmas" becoming as general a word as "Thursday" or "Saturday" (after all, Christians have no trouble using those words, even though they were named for the Pagan gods Thor and Saturn), but I think that if it really is happening that way, it's very sad. I would hope that no one of faith would take their beliefs so much for granted.

Yule, by the way, comes from the Old English word for "Coal" or "ember," and refers to the ritual lighting of fires to celebrate and call back the sun from the darkness. Last year, I wrote a Yule carol, and posted it here.


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST,Tunesmith
Date: 22 Nov 03 - 06:25 PM

I've just realised that there is a precedent for my suggestion that, given time, the word " Christmas" will become simply a word meaning "mid-winter holiday". The word "holiday", it self, originally meant " holyday", but that meaning is now, of course, obsolete.


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Jerry Rasmussen
Date: 22 Nov 03 - 07:48 PM

While the word may be meaningless to some people, I don't believe that Christ Mass is likely to disappear. The stuff they sell in stores is not necessarily Christ Mass.

Jerry


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Peg
Date: 23 Nov 03 - 03:05 PM

I thought Yule came from the Scandinavian word which mean "wheel."

???


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Jerry Rasmussen
Date: 23 Nov 03 - 04:36 PM

I thought it was Swedish for y'all..


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Margret RoadKnight
Date: 23 Nov 03 - 04:49 PM

... or "mid-SUMMER holiday" for many of us!!!


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 23 Nov 03 - 05:37 PM

Etymological connection with "coal" or "ember" is not, I think, usually considered likely (I can't find any attributed reference, nor can I remember what the usual O.E. words for coal and ember actually were) and Chambers, at least, states specifically "Not conn. either with O.N. hjol, wheel, or M.E. youlen, yollen, to cry out or yawl."

I'm afraid that a lot of speculation and misinformation is published on websites, often repeated from old and outdated sources without attribution. Essentially, O.E. geol and O.N. jol are just old spellings of the word Yule. If anyone has the full OED to hand, it would be interesting to know what is said there about derivation. I do recall that what we now call December was called ærra geola (before-yule), and January æfterra geola (after-yule).


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Jeanie
Date: 24 Nov 03 - 06:32 AM

The word used in Old English for coal is col, with a Proto-Germanic derivation *kolam.

There certainly has been a lot of speculation and various theories put forward about the origin of the word Yule. The 'wheel' theory is generally discounted by linguists (as in the quote from the Chambers dictionary above). Linguists have postulated a Proto-Indo-European word *kWekWlo meaning 'circle' and *kWel meaning 'go round', which are the root words for 'wheel'. In one of its earliest stages in Old Germanic, this was *hwehulaz   (the k sound in IE changed to h).

Working backwards linguistically, the postulated earlier Old Germanic form for Yule would be *jehwula or *je(g)wula   (j being spoken like a y).

One theory is that the word Yule is not of Indo-European origin at all. Along with some other words which were absorbed into what eventually became the Germanic languages, but do not fit into the Indo-European 'mould' (e.g. folk, house, shoulder) it may be that it was a word used by the "Ertebolle People" (ca. 6000-3500 B.C.). These were Late Mesolithic hunter-gatherers who became farmers, occupying what is now the Denmark area. These Ertebolle people are thought to be of a different culture and language from the incoming Indo-Europeans, who were moving up from the Danube region. Given the location where the Ertebolle people lived, the Winter Solstice would have been a very important time and a great cause for celebration.

The theory is that there is no Indo-European derivative for Yule, because the Winter Solstice would have had less importance for its speakers. People only use/create words as and when they need them. 'Yule' (with the postulated early form pronounced 'Yehwula') may therefore be a 'one-off' with no other meaning (or origin) than: "the time when the days start to get longer, when we see the sun more and more" and the emotions and activities which go hand in hand with that time.

When you are going back so far in time linguistically, it must be said that a lot has to be left to speculation and theory. Hence the * symbol, which as I said on another thread here basically denotes a shrug of the shoulders and a hopeful grin !

- jeanie


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: CapriUni
Date: 24 Nov 03 - 11:50 AM

Jeanie --

Thank you! This is the clearest (and certainly most complete) explanation of why "Yule" is so inexplicable!

Do you mind if I share it on a Pagan mailing list I'm on, and / or in my Live Journal (

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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Dave Bryant
Date: 24 Nov 03 - 12:10 PM

Surely the word Yule itself was originally the name of the Winter Solstice Festival celebrated by one particular religion. Therefore using that as a catch-all for all non-christian feasts at that time of year is just as bad as using the term Christmas.

Anyway Christmas is now mainly a celebration of "retail therapy" and over-indulgence. Not that I'd want to get rid of the holiday mind you.


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Jeanie
Date: 24 Nov 03 - 01:34 PM

It's a pleasure, Capri - and I'm glad it was clear, because as I was writing it I was concerned it would be as clear as mud !!

I should maybe clarify something about these Ertebolle people. Ertebolle is a place in Jutland, Denmark, home to much archaeological evidence, and the name is used to describe a more widespread culture, "Ertebolle culture" which was not restricted only to the territory of present-day Denmark, but further afield in Northern Europe.

May I be the first to wish you *godhaz *jehwula !

- jeanie **= shrugging and grinning, shrugging and grinning !


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 24 Nov 03 - 02:46 PM

A lot of speculation and fakelore about the word Yule.
Someone asked about the OED. Pick your antique spelling- at least a dozen.
The word we use, however comes from old English geól, even earlier geoh'(h)ol and variant spellings; Christmas tide (day).
The earliest use in Britain was for the period of December or January: Example- Year 726, Baeda, De Temp. Rat., which use extended into the Middle Ages, and overlapped with its restricted use for the Christmas period, which usage appeared in print in the year 900.

Use of the word yule for a frolic, the yule-log stuff and as a Christmas-tide greeting came in the 16th-17th centuries (I'll drink to that!).

All of this is much abbreviated from the OED discussions and examples. Look it up in your local library if you don't have the complete OED.


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Subject: Lyr Add: SILENT NIGHT, SOLSTICE NIGHT
From: Fiona
Date: 24 Nov 03 - 04:07 PM

I know the topic's wandered a bit, but I thought some people may like this one.


Silent Night
By Ellen Reed

Silent night, Solstice Night
All is calm, all is bright
Nature slumbers in forest and glen
Till the Springtime She wakens again
Sleeping spirits grow strong!
Sleeping spirits grow strong!


Silent Night, Solstice Night
Silver moon shining bright
Snowflakes blanket the slumbering earth
Yule fires welcome the Sun's rebirth
Hark, the Light is reborn!
Hark, the Light is reborn!


Silent Night, Solstice Night
Quiet rest till the Light
Turning every the rolling wheel
Brings the winter to comfort and heal
Rest your spirit in peace!
Rest your spirit in peace!

Fiona


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Subject: Lyr Add: OLD TIME RELIGION (Pagan parody)
From: Cluin
Date: 24 Nov 03 - 11:54 PM

Gimme that old time religion
Gimme that old time religion
Gimme that old time religion
It was good enough for me
         
Let us worhip Aphrodite
For she's beautiful but flighty
And she wears a see-through nightie
And that's good enough for me

Let us all bow to Hephaestus
As a blacksmith, he will test us
Cause his balls are pure asbestos
Well, that's good enough for me

But my favourite is Bacchus   
You know his ritual is a ruckus
It loosens women so they'll f**k us   
You know, that's good enough for me

Gimme that old time religion
Gimme that old time religion
Gimme that old time religion
It was good enough for me


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Wolfgang
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 12:22 PM

Hm, would you think it an oxymoron too if a Christian group would declare one Friday as a 'Christian Friday' like some groups do as a fitting label for their activities?

No? Fine, then you also should not consider 'pagan Christmas songs' an oxymoron. Like many words, 'Christmas' has moved away a bit from the original meaning. So, for some Christmas will ever be Christ Mass, and for others the name of a holiday.

For most of us, Wednesday is just a name for one day, very convenient, for others know that meaning too. But I have also respect for those who hear it as Odin's Day. Fine with me, but they should accept that others may not hear (or mean) that meaning when they use the word.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: GUEST
Date: 12 Dec 04 - 04:48 PM

Astro del ciel, Pargol divin, mite Agnello Redentor!
Tu che i Vati da lungi sognar, tu che angeliche voci nunziar,
luce dona alle genti, pace infondi nei cuor!
luce dona alle genti, pace infondi nei cuor!
Astro del ciel, Pargol divin, mite Agnello Redentor!
Tu di stirpe regale decor, Tu virgineo, mistico fior,
luce dona alle genti, pace infondi nei cuor!
Luce dona alle genti, pace infondi nei cuor!
Astro del ciel, Pargol divin, mite Agnello Redentor!
Tu disceso a scontare l'error, Tu sol nato a parlare d'amor,
luce dona alle genti, pace infondi nei cuor!
Luce dona alle genti, pace infondi nei cuor!


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Nerd
Date: 12 Dec 04 - 11:01 PM

I think Boab got confused between Steeleye's two hits. "Gaudete" was their Christmas hit, and they did go on Top of the Pops with it, which Maddy told me was quite surreal as it was an a cappella Latin chant. "All Around my hat" was their non-Christmas hit.


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Subject: RE: Pagan Christmas Song ?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 12 Dec 04 - 11:10 PM

Silent Night?


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Subject: Lyr Add: MOON OF SILVER
From: GUEST
Date: 23 Dec 10 - 03:07 PM

MOON OF SILVER

CHORUS: Oh, Moon of Silver, Sun of Gold,
Gentle Lady, Lord so bold!
Guide us ever, failing never,
Lead us in ways of old.

Maiden, Mother, Ancient Crone,
Queen of Heaven on your throne,
Praise we sing Thee, Love we bring Thee,
For all that you have shown.

Lord of Darkness, Lord of Light,
Gentle Brother, King of Might,
Praise we sing thee, Love we bring Thee
On this Solstice night.


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