Hope you enjoyed your moon gazing, haijin. Many of you did.
Congratulations, last week’s contributors:
Haikai Challenge Participants
|1. Dwight L. Roth|
2. Toni Spencer2
3. Jane Dougherty
4. Jules @ Strands
|6. Tina Stewart Brakebill|
7. Violet Lentz
9. The Dark Netizen
10. Xenia Tran
|11. Ken Gierke / rivrvlogr|
12. Revived Writer
13. Helene Vaillant
I know, I know: I’m a day late. However, with the delay comes opportunity. For today is the first day of advent:
Advent is a season observed in many Christian churches as a time of expectant waiting and preparation for both the celebration of the Nativity of Jesus at Christmas and the return of Jesus at the Second Coming. The term is a version of the Latin word meaning “coming”. The term “Advent” is also used in Eastern Orthodoxy for the 40-day Nativity Fast, which has practices different from those in the West.
The Latin word adventus is the translation of the Greek word parousia, commonly used to refer to the Second Coming of Christ. For Christians, the season of Advent anticipates the coming of Christ from three different perspectives. Philip H. Pfatteicher, formerly a professor at East Stroudsberg University, notes that “since the time of Bernard of Clairvaux (d.1153), Christians have spoken of the three comings of Christ: in the flesh in Bethlehem, in our hearts daily, and in glory at the end of time”. The season offers the opportunity to share in the ancient longing for the coming of the Messiah, and to be alert for his Second Coming.
Advent is the beginning of the Western liturgical year and commences on the fourth Sunday before Christmas (sometimes known as Advent Sunday), the Sunday nearest to St. Andrew’s Day (30 November), in the Roman Rite of the Catholic Church, the Western Rite of the Orthodox Church, and in the Anglican, Lutheran, Moravian, Presbyterian, and Methodist calendars. In the Ambrosian Rite and the Mozarabic Rite of the Catholic Church, Advent begins on the sixth Sunday before Christmas, the Sunday after St. Martin’s Day (11 November).
Practices associated with Advent include keeping an Advent calendar, lighting an Advent wreath, praying an Advent daily devotional, erecting a Christmas tree or a Chrismon tree, lighting a Christingle, as well as other ways of preparing for Christmas, such as setting up Christmas decorations, a custom that is sometimes done liturgically through a hanging of the greens ceremony. The equivalent of Advent in Eastern Christianity is called the Nativity Fast, but it differs in length and observances, and does not begin the liturgical church year as it does in the West. The Eastern Nativity Fast does not use the equivalent parousia in its preparatory services.
Today also begins the eight-day festival of Hanukkah:
Hanukkah (/ˈhɑːnəkə/ HAH-nə-kə; Hebrew: חֲנֻכָּה ḥanuká, Tiberian: ḥanuká, usually spelled חֲנוּכָּה, pronounced
[χanuˈka] in Modern Hebrew,
[ˈχanikə]in Yiddish; a transliteration also romanized as Chanukah or Ḥanukah) is a Jewish holiday commemorating the rededication of the Second Temple in Jerusalem at the time of the Maccabean Revolt against the Seleucid Empire. Hanukkah is observed for eight nights and days, starting on the 25th day of Kislev according to the Hebrew calendar, which may occur at any time from late November to late December in the Gregorian calendar. It is also known as the Festival of Lights(Hebrew: חַג הַאוּרִים, ḥag ha’urim).
The festival is observed by lighting the candles of a candelabrum with nine branches, called a Hanukkah menorah (or hanukkiah). One branch is typically placed above or below the others and its candle is used to light the other eight candles. This unique candle is called the shamash (Hebrew: שַׁמָּשׁ, “attendant”). Each night, one additional candle is lit by the shamash until all eight candles are lit together on the final night of the holiday. Other Hanukkah festivities include playing dreideland eating oil-based foods such as latkes and sufganiyot, and dairy foods. Since the 1970s, the worldwide Chabad Hasidic movement has initiated public menorah lightings in open public places in many countries.
It’s no accident that both Christians and Jews celebrate light within darkness during December. Yes, the days will shorten, and the Winter Solstice will bring the shortest day of the year. However, every day after becomes a little longer–a return of the light. All we need to do is wait. And prepare.
This week, write the haikai poem (haiku, senryu, haibun, tanka, haiga, renga, etc.) of your choice that alludes to Advent and/or hanukkah.
Here’s how the challenge works:
1. write the haikai poem of your choice.
2. post the link of your post to Mister Linky.
3. pingback by posting the link to the challenge on your site.
4. read and comment on other contributors’ posts.
Happy Hanukkah, for those celebrating. And for those celebrating Advent, have a blessed season!