From the ancient Pagan tradition of ritual bonfires to the broadcast of Yule logs on television every culture marks the Winter Solstice in diverse way. In this special two part Holiday podcast Robert AF Thurman shares the history of solstice + midwinter celebrations from a Buddhist perspective highlighting the commonalities across traditions.
Professor Thurman begins the podcast with a meditation on Christmas, Hanukkah, Losar & Solstice and a discussion of the symbolic value of end of year celebrations in dispelling the cultural subconscious fear of the Sun not returning after winter.
With characteristic humorous story telling Professor Thurman explains how communal Holidays help individuals re-establish their connection to the divine & nature in their celebratory, mystic practices.
Second half of podcast includes a retelling of a classic joke told by the controversial Sun Myung Moon on the Jack Par Show which illustrates the core message of universal selflessness found in all traditions in & outside of their mystic expressions.
Concludes with a prayer for the changing environment, abused animals, shrinking wildlife populations, those facing oppression, enslavement, cultural genocide, ethnic cleansing, sexual assault and peoples living in oligarchies both in the United States & Russia.
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