People of call colors, religions, ethnicities, and sexes seem to have various rituals to mark the end of one year and the beginning of another. A little bit about that, New Years’, specifically. Have you ever wondered about where New Years’ celebrations came from or even who decided when New Year’s eve was going to mark the end of one year and the beginning of another? New Years itself began about 4000 years ago in Babylon. Back then New Years’ was celebrated at the Spring Equinox. There was an 11-day festival called Akitu. The Babylonians made promises to their gods to get their lives together in order to get on the good side of one god in particular, Marduk. Things continued in this fashion each year until the next big change to New Years’ happened. It was during the reign of Julius Caesar when the calendars switched over to the Julian Calendar.
So there’s a little bit about the origins of New Year’s resolutions. This brings us back to the present day. Over the years I’ve developed three rituals that come up at this time of the year. The first is that I like to do a Tarot Card Reading for the coming year to see what sort of vibe the year is likely to have and what opportunities for personal growth are there. The second is one that started when I was living in Seattle. I love to start the year with a black-eyed pea salad. the third is one from a long time ago. I like to smudge the house. It cleans out the energy and prepares the year for all good things.
What are some New Years’ rituals you like to celebrate? When is YOUR New Years’? For Pagans, it’s Samhain, for the vast majority of people it’s January 1st. I’d love to hear from you.