Is It a New Year?

We have a clean slate, an unwritten story or is it a continuation of an old one?  The calendar may say it's new. Our lives may not. As with December 25th, New Year's Day is a man-made date, a designation on a calendar, merely a way of marking the passage of time. Isn't it?

Our minds are geared to think in absolutes, in finite numbers. Science has proven we cannot remain sane when deprived of a method of marking time, as knowing night from day. We then count the days, the weeks, the months and years. Every culture has a method of marking time.

We currently use the Gregorian, switching from the earlier Julian calendar. Both use celestial events in their calculations. However, the Gregorian is the more accurate when adding in a leap year, which is necessary to keep the calendar in alignment with the earth's rotation around the sun. This rotation is the basis for our year.

It took three hundred years to switch from the Julian Calendar to the Gregorian. The first countries to change were in Europe and did so in 1582. The last country to adopt the calendar for civil use was Turkey in 1927. Only a few countries do not use this calendar: Afghanistan and Iran, which use the Persian calendar, Saudia Arabia, which uses the Islamic calendar, and Ethiopia which uses its own calendar. Other countries use the Gregorian as their official calendar in conjunction with their own, such as China.

Some other calendars are the Revised Julian, Jewish, Islamic, Persian, Mayan, Chinese, and Roman.

The year the Gregorian was implemented, ten days were removed from the calendar. For countries waiting longer, some lost as much as thirteen days from their old calendars. This reduction in days brought them into conjunction with the equinoxes.

Thus, we can say, by using the earth's rotation, along with lunar months, equinoxes, and seasons, we have a new year, fixed by physical, celestial events, not just a thought or attitude.

I raise a toast to this New Year. I hope yours is filled with blessings and enough challenges to keep you from being bored, but not enough to overwhelm you.

Happy New Year!


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