Winter solstice: What was the denominator for the ancient Slavs Karachun?

Winter solstice: What was the denominator for the ancient Slavs Karachun? As is known, 22 December, the winter solstice - the shortest day (it lasts for only seven hours and one minute: the sun rising in the lowest height above the horizon, rising in 9 hours 2 minutes and comes in 16 hours 3 minutes). Ancient, our ancestors believed that this happens by the will of Karachun - cruel god underworld, ruler of darkness, lord of death, the lord of the cold.

However, it is curious that in classical mythology and the winter solstice was called Karachun (or Korochunom). And since this is a very special time associated with the upcoming solar Christmas, then the Slavic peoples, except the horror stories about the evil deity Karachun (incidentally, came out to his relatives later Grandfather Frost), formed and other usages.

At first glance, they have the same name, but the meaning in themselves are quite different. So, the Slovaks Kracun translated as Christmas, the Bulgarians krachunets - Christmas Day, in Transcarpathia krachun - a Christmas cake. It would seem - a paradox. But no, all had a deep meaning.

Our ancestors, deified the sun rose in this time of year for him the mountain and "helped" to cope with the annual scourge. Realizing that it is from naipochitaemeyshego light comes life on Earth, they perform the ritual, which embodied the victory of light over darkness.

And in this case acted in two different directions. On the one hand, tried to appease the terrible Karachun, exposing the windows sacrificial food for him: pudding, porridge, and so on. And not out of flattery, but out of respect to another world.

On the other hand, burn bonfires and jump over them, taking in a spirit of fire-light, danced, competed in the strength and prowess - they say, were not born yesterday, not giving up, but still comes Kolyada, then uzho and see. In general, the strength of spirit and loyalty to the heavenly gods demonstrated Slavs - on the power inherent in their sincerity and loyalty to the birth canal.

But the sacrifice on the day of the winter solstice and had an additional meaning: if Karachun the kingdom of death, in short, its board should commemorate ancestors, before they fall asleep to the warmth of spring, because they asked: 'Do not wake do not wake us white winter wake up, wake us early in the spring ... "

And yet it was the custom to run a solar wheel. Ordinary wooden wheel from the peasant carts were coated with tar, set on fire and put it on the slope. You know, I once saw this start in Tver, a village in our time: instead of wagon wheel boys took the car tire and slide it lowered.

Incidentally, the solar wheel - this is a sign of cultures of many peoples of the world. His pictures if you want wherever you will not meet: in Egypt, for example, in India, Scandinavia, and even in Mexico. A Buddha is sometimes styled King of the wheels ... and you must understand that not anyhow any ...

Never doubting in overcoming The Light of Darkness, ancient Slavs laid saying about the day of the winter solstice: the sun in summer and winter - the cold. What a positive meaning implied in these words! In them - a deep belief in the imminent departure cold dashing and daring - feel?

But back to the evil spirit Karachun. It was believed that his servants are storms and blizzards. The first bear-treated connecting rods that do not lay down sensibly into hibernation and roam the wintry woods and lie in wait for prey, and the latter allegedly turned into wolves. It is the wolves in the icy season on Dec. 22 were considered the most fierce and bloodthirsty beast.

But the "correct" bears on this very day, changing sleeping position, turning from one side to another, continuing to sleep peacefully, and the people, attributing Bruin bound by such a rearrangements, considered a sure sign that polzimy already passed, but the second half and be patient possible. Imagine: In December, it turns out, halfway to spring passed, - is not fiery optimism?

And what's more noteworthy. On a frosty day, December 22 Slavs cared about the future, perhaps not even sown crops. Ukrainians, for example, considered key to its riches special conditions baking bread for the winter solstice. Moreover, in the middle of the loaves and put the grain of various cereals, garlic, herbs, capsule, oat stalk or fir or juniper twig or even a jar of honey placed either poured holy water into it, in a word - that is related to the sun and celestial heights, so also the owner was supposed to engage in a bakery in the casing, turned inside out, and mittens.

Oh, and heavily did it was just before the hot stove to stand in a dress ... But what to do if the underground world of the opposite, and therefore the clothes have to evert, and protect themselves from the cold, not to carried away with him. In VJ Propp, and even earlier by Levi-Strauss on this podrobnenko well painted ...

Baked loaf to erect a straw pad on the table and kept it - where before the new year, where before baptism and then were given a piece of whole household, but kept the piece as a means of healing ailments, evil eye and other evil attacks. The Slovaks were given some bread and eat karachunskogo domestic animals, and placed ostatny piece at the entrance door to the house to protect themselves from vedmacheskoy force.

Was considered the bread special and was used in antiquity the Slavs on different occasions. For example, in dark rural. First and foremost, as a forecast for the harvest. It rolled out a loaf from the threshold to the table, so consider how many turns it will make on the way - though many loads of grain is expected in the coming year. And if you turned around and stood in the position of the upper crust on the floor - to know, the trouble at the threshold: cattle polyazhet or someone in the family dies.