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The Real St. Nicolaus Would Be Pissed.


The Sage Nabooru
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So here we have the ol' Jolly Elf, St. Nick, Santa Claus. We say he lives in a magical swiss chalet on the North Pole, is fond of warm (alcoholic) cider, milk, and cookies, oversees a labor camp of elves dressed in tights, bright tunics and jingle bells, and owns eight reindeer (or nine, depending on your source) which fly through the air every year on the night of Dec. 24 to give presents to all the good children.

 

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As you can see, in appearance, he is enormously fat, old with a heavy white beard, and wears a red polyester suit trimmed in white. He enters homes via the chimney, keeps a list of every (Christian) child on earth and is constantly watching their behavior. He's not afraid of infantile humor and holiday sappiness, which explains his appearance in countless shitty Christmas movies for almost a century.

 

This does not bother me, really, but you have to feel sorry for the real guy for being so trivialized:

 

Nicholas was born in Asia Minor during the 3rd century in the Greek colony [1] of Patara in the province of Lycia, at a time when the region was Hellenistic in its culture and outlook. Nicholas became bishop of the city of Myra. He was very religious from an early age and devoted his life entirely to Christianity. He is said to have been born to relatively affluent Christian parents in Patara, Lycia, Asia Minor, Roman Empire where he also received his early schooling.

 

As the patron saint of sailors, Nicholas is claimed to have been a sailor or fisherman himself. More likely, however, is that one of his family businesses involved managing a fishing fleet. When his parents died, Nicholas still received his inheritance but is said to have given it away to charity. So was Saint Nicholas a working, albeit wealthy, man who complemented his day job with caring for his congregation, or was he a full-time bishop? The impressive list of deeds of Nicholas seems to point to the latter. This does not say, however, that his appointment to priest or bishop meant a complete rupture with his former life. More likely this was a gradual process.

 

Nicholas's early activities as a priest are said to have occurred during the reign of co-ruling Roman Emperors Diocletian (reigned 284 - 305) and Maximian (reigned 286 - 305) from which comes the estimation of his age. Diocletian issued an edict in 303 authorising the systematic persecution of Christians across the Empire. Following the abdication of the two Emperors on May 1, 305 the policies of their successors towards Christians were different. In the Western part of the Empire Constantius Chlorus (reigned 305 - 306) put an end to the systematic persecution upon his accession to the throne. In the Eastern part Galerius (reigned 305 - 311) continued the persecution until 311 when he issued a general edict of toleration from his deathbed. The persecution of 303 - 311 is considered to be the longest in the history of the Empire. Nicholas survived this period, although his activities at the time are uncertain.

 

Following Galerius' death his surviving co-ruler Licinius (reigned 307 - 324) mostly tolerated Christians. As a result their community was allowed to further develop, and the various bishops who acted as their leaders managed to concentrate religious, social and political influence as well as wealth in their hands. In many cases they acted as the heads of their respective cities. It is apparently in this period that Nicholas rose to become bishop of Myra. Judging from tradition, he was probably well loved and respected in his area, mostly as a result of his charitable activities. As with other bishops of the time, Nicholas' popularity would serve to ensure his position and influence during and after this period.

 

The destruction of several pagan temples is also attributed to him, among them one temple of Artemis (also known as Diana). Because the celebration of Diana's birth is on December 6, some authors have speculated that this date was deliberately chosen for Nicholas' feast day to overshadow or replace the pagan celebrations.

 

Nicholas is also known for coming to the defence of the falsely accused, often preventing them from being executed, and for his prayers on behalf of sailors and other travelers. The popular veneration of Nicholas as a saint seems to have started relatively early. Justinian I, Emperor of the Eastern Roman Empire (reigned 527 - 565) is reported to have built a temple (i.e. a church building) in Nicholas's honour in Constantinople, the Roman capital of the time.

 

And, most importantly,

 

Whereas the importance of relics and the business associated with pilgrims and patron saints caused the remains of most saints to be spread over several churches in several countries, Saint Nicholas is unique in that most of his bones have been preserved in one spot: his grave crypt in Bari. Even with the still continuing miracle of the manna, the Roman Catholic Church has allowed for one scientific survey of the bones: In the late 1950s, during a restoration of the chapel, it allowed a team of hand selected scientists to photograph and measure the contents of the crypt grave.

 

In the summer of 2005, the report of this measurements was sent to a forensic laboratory in England. The review of the data revealed that the historical Saint Nicholas was barely five foot in height (while not exactly small, still shorter than average, even for his time) and had a broken nose.

 

So he probably looked more like a skinny Tom Cruise with Owen Wilson's schnoz.

 

Just a little reminder of how the most rediculous customs can arise from the most unpredictable sources.

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See, even despite his almost certainly being an evangelical Christian, I want to like the guy. Then I read this:

 

The destruction of several pagan temples is also attributed to him, among them one temple of Artemis (also known as Diana). Because the celebration of Diana's birth is on December 6, some authors have speculated that this date was deliberately chosen for Nicholas' feast day to overshadow or replace the pagan celebrations.

 

and my vision just turns red.

 

So much of history has been lost to the fucking intolerance and paranoia of monotheistic jackoffs like this bastard.

 

I have no sympathy for the "maligned" story of this man. If I could, I'd go to his grave sight and piss on his bones.

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We owe our thanks to Coca Cola for image of the jolly red-suited, white bearded santa I'm told.

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We owe our thanks to Coca Cola for image of the jolly red-suited, white bearded santa I'm told.

 

Just like we owe the Red River Lumber Company our thanks for that great American hero, Paul Bunyan. ;)

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Found this very interesting - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Krampus

 

............the local priest was informed by the parents about their children's behaviour and would then personally visit the homes in the traditional Christian garment and threaten them with rod-beatings.

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Yep, Today's mild Santa is a far cry from his earlyer self.

 

I remember the days when Santa was a vengefull and sadistic punisher of disobediant children.

Children were afraid of him.

and The churches loved him for it.

 

 

 

But then in the early to mid 20th century, Santa changed into the "fat, jolly, old elf".

And stoped being frightening.

 

Gradualy the new and gentle Santa became less a religious figure, and more a secular and commercial figure.

 

And has anyone else noticed the increasing hostility directed at him by the churches?

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