The Presentation of the Lord: what a celebration, when celebrated, history
People say about this day: winter meets in spring and both argue; who will win, this and the weather will continue. But of course, church people and priests look at the Meeting of the Lord in a completely different way.
What kind of holiday is it and with what church, folk traditions is it connected in our country?
New Testament Meeting
This holiday is associated with the birth of the Son of God. According to the tradition of that time, which is called the law of Moses, on the 40th day after giving birth a woman was considered pure and could attend church (as many of you already know, such a tradition exists in our time).
If the firstborn boy was born in the family, in honor of the infant it was supposed to offer God to the victim. More prosperous people bought lamb, people of moderate means and not rich (which included the family of the carpenter Joseph and his wife Mary) — pigeons.
When the Holy Family entered the temple (Joseph was holding a cage with a pair of pigeons in his hand — this is depicted on many icons), an interpreter-scholar, the righteous sage Simeon the God-bearer, came out to meet them.
This old man translated the Scriptures into Greek. While working on the book of Isaiah, he came to a place that spoke of the Virgin, who is to give birth to the Son of God.
The sage doubted whether the virgin could give birth, and having decided that it was a slip of arms, he began to write the word “wife” in translation. However, the angel himself stopped his hand. The heavenly messenger said that the prophet would personally be convinced of the truthfulness of what was written, although he would have to live a very long time.
And so it happened: Simeon’s earthly journey lasted about 300 years.
That day the Holy Spirit told him to come to church. When he saw the Virgin Mary carrying the baby Jesus, he immediately realized who was before him.
He took the child in his arms, uttering a prophecy about the future acts of Jesus. On the same day, the elder died in peace.
By the way, on some icons another old woman is depicted. This is the prophetess Anna, who was also in the temple at that time.
Seeing the Son of God, she went to Jerusalem to inform people about His birth.
What is the meaning of the holiday?
The priests are sure: The Presentation (that is, the “meeting”) is the meeting of the Old, Old Testament in the face of the old prophet — and the New Testament in the face of the Lamb of God. This day means: the old tenets of faith must remain in the past, since with the birth of Jesus a new page was opened in the annals of human service to the Lord.
The date of the Meeting is not “floating”, but fixed. It is celebrated on the 40th day after Christmas, which means February 15th.
Although this date is relevant for Russian Orthodox. For example, Armenians celebrate the Meeting a little differently — February 14, and Catholics — February 2.
In our country, Candlemas may be celebrated in a different way than in other European countries. The fact is that during the baptism of Russia, many church holidays were closely associated with the pagan ones existing at that time — it was easier for people to accept and understand them.
The same happened with the Presentation of the Lord: the pagan analogy was the celebration of the meeting of winter and spring. And, even though pagan deities no longer honored for a long time, and the Lord in our country was adopted more than a thousand years ago, the mythical meeting of these two elements is still remembered in many children’s tales and folk beliefs.
On this day, it is customary to consecrate special candles in the church and distribute to the parishioners. People bring them home and store them for a whole year. In some countries (Belarus, Ukraine) they are called loud.
The fact is that people believe: if strong thunder rumbles in the sky and a thunderstorm slides into the house, you should light such a candle in a dwelling, and bad weather will bypass both the house and the yard, and the garden with the field without bringing trouble.
During the year, the candle is lit:
- immediately after being brought from the church (so that the spring flood does not erode the field, and frosts do not ruin the garden);
- during the movement of black clouds, indicating future bad weather (snowstorm, hail);
- in case of fire (in the house or in the neighborhood);
- with childish hysterics;
- if in the house a woman in labor — the candle should help her resolve;
- during an epilepsy attack;
- during a house quarrel (as is the case with children crying, the candle should calm the screamed person, even a drunkard);
- when a dead person is in the house (when a person gives his soul to God, a candle will help her to go more calmly, peacefully).
It is interesting that if believers consecrated water from the priest in the church, then superstitious grandmothers collected drops flowing from the roof, from melting icicles — they considered that water to be healing water.
People believed that the Sretenskaya water:
- will help in the treatment of wounds;
- protects against the evil eye or «vrokov» (that is, evil witchcraft);
- it is necessary to sprinkle the cattle before the first pasture in the pasture, and the hives — after they were taken out in the spring to clean air;
- they also sprinkled water on such people, going to distant lands.
- You can not ignore the church service. If you can not stand all the worship, go at least for a moment, pray and put a candle in front of the images.
- Do not leave the house of God without a loud candle.
- Do not chop wood and do other physical work. The only exception is: helping a person in need (for example, for a lonely neighbor, cutting wood on this day is not a sin, but on the contrary, a godly cause). Also concoction and care of cattle are considered not sinful affairs.
- You can not quarrel, yell loudly and viciously (this rule applies to any church holiday).
- Also do not be bored. Go visit, and if there is no one to whom — just choose «between people» (to the cinema, theater).
- Folk custom says: At the Meeting you can not go on a long journey. The road may not end as you plan.
- Also, people are banned for many water procedures: our ancestors were washing in a river, but on this day washing was prohibited. Many even refused to go to the bath.
- And besides, superstitious people are afraid to touch the kitchen table with money (any), otherwise the money may leave the house.
- At night on this day the sky is starry, clear, without clouds — wait for a bountiful harvest of fruits.
- The beekeepers also rejoice in the clear, calm weather: she says that spring will bring many flowers, which means that the bees will have something to hum.
- The thaw has begun: spring is late.
- Snowy weather: spring will be long and rainy.
- The weather is windy: but this is already bad, the harvest will be poor (although there is a sign that the Sretensky wind only threatens the garden and the field, and garden trees, on the contrary, will give a good harvest).
- The clouds promise fast frosts.
After this holiday, people traditionally began to prepare for the spring: they sorted out the seeds harvested for planting, distilled the cattle into the corral from the barn.
And to make it easier for your children, grandchildren or godchildren to get acquainted with this holiday, you can not read this long article to them, but show a short video. It was shot specifically for children. The host and her two little helpers will not only understand the history of the holiday together, but also draw beautiful holiday cards:
Guess today with the help of the tarot spread "Day map"!
For proper divination: focus on the subconscious and do not think about anything at least 1-2 minutes.