January 7, 2017

Meteorologist: Climate Change and Trump Have Driven Me to Therapy

Meteorologist Eric Holthaus, who has appeared a couple of times on these pages in the past (more on that shortly), is in therapy.

Well, okay, lots of people are. But get a load of what has driven Holthaus into therapy: “I know many ppl feel deep despair about climate, especially post-election.” And it’s because of this, “There are days where I literally can’t work,” and “We don’t deserve this planet.”

(more…)

Shhh! Six Months After Brexit Vote, UK ‘Has World’s Top Economy’

In June, when UK voters decided to leave the European Union in the “Brexit” referendum, the U.S. press told the American people that the UK economy would suffer greatly as a result. Moody’s economist and max Hillary Clinton contributor Mark Zandi predicted that it would be “going down the rabbit hole.” At CBS News, Mellody Hobson said that “they’re acting as if a recession is a foregone conclusion.”

It’s one thing to predict a disaster that doesn’t happen. It’s quite another to predict bad news and have things turn out pretty darned well, which is thus far what has occurred. You’d never know it from reading U.S.-based establishment press coverage, but the UK economy, as reported in the UK Times, “ended last year as the strongest of the world’s advanced economies with growth accelerating in the six months after the Brexit vote.”

(more…)

Positivity: Want to know the history behind Jan. 6 feast of the Epiphany?

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 8:00 am

From Washington:

Jan 6, 2017 / 03:01 am

While the hustle and bustle of Christmas ends for many people on Dec. 26, throughout Christian history Christmas lasts for twelve days – all the way until Jan. 6.

This feast marking the end of Christmas is called “Epiphany.”

In the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church, Epiphany celebrates the revelation that Jesus was the Son of God. It focuses primarily on this revelation to the Three Wise Men, but also in his baptism in the Jordan and at the wedding at Cana.

In the Eastern rites of the Catholic Church, Theophany – as Epiphany is known in the East – commemorates the manifestation of Jesus’ divinity at his Baptism in the River Jordan.

While the traditional date for the feast is Jan. 6, in the United States the celebration of Epiphany is moved to the next Sunday, overlapping with the rest of the Western Church’s celebration of the Baptism of Christ.

However, the meaning of the feast goes deeper than just the bringing of presents or the end of Christmas, says Fr. Hezekias Carnazzo, a Melkite Catholic priest and founding executive director of the Virginia-based Institute of Catholic Culture.

“You can’t understand the Nativity without Theophany; or you can’t understand Nativity without Epiphany.” The revelation of Christ as the Son of God – both as an infant and at his baptism – illuminate the mysteries of the Christmas season, he said.

“Our human nature is blinded because of sin and we’re unable to see as God sees,” he told CNA. “God reveals to us the revelation of what’s going on.”

Origins of Epiphany

While the Western celebration of Epiphany (which comes from Greek, meaning “revelation from above”), and the Eastern celebration of Theophany (meaning “revelation of God”), have developed their own traditions and liturgical significances, these feasts share more than the same day.

“The Feast of Epiphany, or the Feast of Theophany, is a very, very early feast,” said Fr. Carnazzo. “It predates the celebration of Christmas on the 25th.”

In the early Church, Christians, particularly those in the East, celebrated the advent of Christ on Jan. 6 by commemorating Nativity, Visitation of the Magi, Baptism of Christ and the Wedding of Cana all in one feast of the Epiphany. By the fourth century, both Christmas and Epiphany had been set as separate feasts in some dioceses. At the Council of Tours in 567, the Church set both Christmas day and Epiphany as feast days on the Dec. 25 and Jan. 6, respectively, and named the twelve days between the feasts as the Christmas season.

Over time, the Western Church separated the remaining feasts into their own celebrations, leaving the celebration of the Epiphany to commemorate primarily the Visitation of the Magi to see the newborn Christ on Jan. 6. Meanwhile, the Eastern Churches’ celebration of Theophany celebrates Christ’s baptism and is one of the holiest feast days of the liturgical calendar. …

Go here for the rest of the story.

Saturday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (010717)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:00 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.