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Posts Tagged ‘Natal’

Christmas gift

24 Dec

In December 1947, right around Christmas, three Bell Telephone engineers (William Shockley, John Bardeen and Walter Brattain) invented the transistor (TRANsfer reSISTOR) that revolutionary communication and later computing, also ICs (Integrated Circuits) have as a base the transitor.

The big event this Christmas will be the launch of the James Webb Space Observatory (jwst, James Webb Space Telescope) from the Kourou space base, in French Guiana, at 9:20 am EDT, which will be taken to the Ariane 5 spacecraft. made at the cost of $10 billion, the most expensive space project in history.

What are we going to look for in space, in addition to other puzzles, the origin of the universe in its early stage, and it’s curious why this happens this Christmas, and why it is so special.

Lights decorate cities even in attention with a possible new wave of the pandemic and also a new flu, they light up hope and make us look to the future and to the beginning of our lives, our planet and humanity.

There is no way to escape from utopians, cosmogonies and religious eschatologies, even if we can solve many enigmas, the philosophical question remains: why there is everything and not nothing.

The answer can only be ontological, there is a reason for being and there is a promising future, where there is hope if we return to the logic of Being, of dialogue and of the encounter with the Other.

The message cannot be any other than that which speaks of brotherhood and peace, both not yet fully achieved by humanity, Christmas reopens this hope.

This is the prophecy that Isaiah announces (Is 52,7 when there will be true peace: “how beautiful they are, walking on the mountains, the feet of him who proclaim and preach peace, of him who proclaims good and preaches salvation, and says to Zion, ‘Reign thy God,’” the message that believed in the coming of the Savior, the birth among men of the Messiah.

The lights in the city not only announce this light visible to the eyes, but those that open the heart to friendship and peace (Jn 1:4-5): “in her was life, and life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness could not overcome it”, because a tiny point of light already dissipates the darkness, and this is our hope.

May Christmas renew hopes for a possible and sustainable future for humanity, and may justice and peace reign in a new world.

 

 

Christmas lighting in Brazil

23 Dec

São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro stand out both for their creativity and tradition, as well as for the investment that largely came from the private sector, for Christmas lighting.

All these two populous cities have scattered lighting and it is possible to take a Christmas tourist tour, so great are the news and curiosities, in São Paulo, for example, Avenida Paulista and countless other avenues: São João and Avenida Brasil, for example , the Vila Lobos park, which received special lighting, but the highlight is the lighting of Ibirapuera, a traditional leisure park in São Paulo, which received special lighting from the lake, which already has a fountain that dances with the waters to the rhythm. the music plays, and the surroundings are lit with more than 200 trees decorated with a million LED lamps.

The special at Ibirapuera this year is the lighting of the lake with a very creative shine and special decoration, highlighted below in the photo above, but the entire park is lit and it is a great highlight in the lighting of the city of São Paulo.

In Rio de Janeiro, all the seafront districts are lit, in addition to special lighting in restaurants and hotels, but the big show is the year-end fireworks at the seaside, financed by the private sector, it was not canceled despite a crisis the flu that Rio de Janeiro is experiencing, in the photo it is possible to see the burning from the image of Christ the Redeemer (also illuminated) from where you can see the fireworks (photo below).

Salvador’s Christmas lighting is also worth mentioning, last year it was a success with more than 1.3 million visitors, in a year of pandemic it is good to remember, with illuminated squares and avenues, some form a true tunnel of lights, with concerts and attractions, including drone performances.

North and Northeast also have several capitals and their attractions, Maceió has been standing out for several years for its Christmas lights, in the south the traditional tourist regions Gramada and Canela (close by), Blumenau and Curitiba stand out.

It is difficult to trace the entire Christmas scene in the country, several cities in the interior have attractions, such as Campos do Jordâo (SP), Petrópolis (RJ) and Monte Verde (MG), the important thing is that there is always an intention and there is always an intention to rescue the spirit. Christmas of love and peace.

 

 

Christmas in Lisbon

22 Dec

Lisbon is the Portuguese capital and Christmas there is a special destination for Brazilians, Portuguese was experiencing an explosion in tourism when the pandemic hit, a European vaccination champion reopened trade, but these days have returned to days of uncertainty and concern as new sanitary restriction measures

The commercial square is its central point, where there is always lighting with a beautiful Christmas tree (photo 1) and illuminates the triumphal arch (man to King José I), it starts its main street of commerce and restaurants by going to Praça do Rossio, and it gives way to Praça da Figueira, another characteristic and central point.

From the commerce square you have a view of the Tagus river where it connects to the sea, the region called “low Chiado” or simply “downtown” can be climbed via the stairs, the subway or the historic and tourist elevator Santa Justa even the Chiado.

Chiado is the point of an older trade, with its famous Camões square from where you have access to shopping streets and famous bars and restaurants such as the “cantinho do Avilez”, an internationally known chef who makes traditional Iberian food with good taste and creativity, there are many things to see and eat in Chiado, in addition to being a traditional cable car stop (electric as they are called there).

Praça do Rossio and Praça do Comércio are also tram stops, in the case of Praça do Rossio there is also a train station (trains in Portugal), from there you can go to Belém, where there is the famous tower and the traditional “ pastel de Belém”, or go to the most modern part of Portugal, going to Marques de Pombal square by metro or bus (buses, modern trams are nice and comfortable).

Unfortunately, sanitary restrictions are back, both for travel and circulation, so Christmas and New Year tours are limited there too.

 

 

Some European cities “illuminated” at Christmas

21 Dec

Many European cities are lit up and decorated at Christmas, there is a wave of denying the Christian feast, but the atmosphere of friendship and peace remains in many places.

City with strong cultural traits, it is in the north of Switzerland, between Germany and France and therefore with strong influences from both, has approximately 200 thousand inhabitants, being the third largest city in Switzerland, after Zurich and Geneva.

In Swiss Basel, whether in the market market of Barfüsserplatz where is the Christmas Pyramid (photo below), a tower decorated with figures of the nativity scene, around there are several hot drinks kiosks and typical foods such as the Basel Läckerl biscuit and the raclette, other The city’s famous museum is also adorned by the Münsterplatz, with workshops and a tree decorated by the Johann Wanner shop, there is also a skating rink and concerts in the Cathedral.

In Strasbourg, since 1570 there is one where the biggest Christmas markets in Europe, it was even believed that some traditions were born there, such as the Christmas decorations in the half-timbered houses, in the Historic Center with its cobblestone streets (photo above).

In next post more Christmas cities.

 

 

The Christmas of the pandemic

21 Dec

It will be a quieter Christmas, despite groups that insist on holding gatherings and parties with many people, it will be more like the child who was born in a humble stable in the city of Belém, where they went due to a census, it is not a coincidence (the city illuminations in this year).

The Child was contacte among men, it was in the divine and human logic because the census was done by order of the Roman empire, so He was (for those who believe he is) among us, what the prophecies of the Old Testament called Emmanuel (God with us).

The pandemic isolated us as a family, and the tendency for those who understand that prevention is necessary will be to gather in small groups, perhaps with less noise, most New Year’s parties are already canceled, fires and celebrations will be sober.

The waiting for the vaccine, most are still in the testing phase, it is good to say, and there are still controversies about side effects, they are important to be known, the package insert is necessary like any other medicine, where there are contraindications.

There is no expectation that it will not cause any anxiety, however when it comes to health it is necessary not to skip any stage, the vaccines are not approved because they have not completed the testing phase, even in England where the Pfizer vaccine was authorized, the stage will not be completed vaccination until Christmas as the government intended.

There is news from the WHO itself about mutations in the virus, it is necessary to check if these mutations do not affect gravity, British scientists called the variation found in the south of England “VUI-202012/01”, which includes a genetic mutation in the protein “spike”, as reported in several online news citing the Reuters agency.

The wait for Christmas has also become different because we haven’t seen many friends and relatives for years, and in this period, the people return to loved ones as much as possible, and at least an online contact will be possible, they will become more meaningful.

 

Innocence and politics

22 Dec

From Plato and Aristotle, through Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, Hegel, and Marx, to Habermas, jesusluzJohn Rawls, Charles Taylor, and Edgar Morin and Manuel Castells,  apolitical question is fundamental and underlies every elaborate political discourse: how will we live together in society?

Little known and completing his sabbatical in Brazil, the Italian Antonio Baggio wrote about the forgotten motto of the French Revolution: the fraternity, with a good Brazilian translation.
What an innocent child born in a colony of the mighty Roman Empire might have to do with all this would have nothing if not for this “forgotten motto” of the last great civilizing revolution, since the socialist did not complete its cycle, and perhaps not Complete, but the social problems: concentration of income, ecology and now disglobalization are there.

Returning to Edgar Morin in his Earth-Country and Manuel Castells with the Information Society, a world that is seen there, but this world can elaborate forms of peaceful coexistence?

At this moment it seems like a setback, but it takes a certain dose of naivety, of love for humanity and respect for diversity, and this innocent child, this God-child has something to say, the pure and even somewhat naive look to the Other, To different can help us.

It is possible, more than this, it is necessary to create the idea of ​​a world where all can live together, and there is no other way than to respect differences, to live and to extend the heart to all.

A born child was counted among the men (it was the period of the census), then fled to Egypt, for Herod orders to kill all newborns, and later because “he loved his to the end” will be killed, but left to the world His message, his new commandment: “love yourselves as I love you”, that is to the end, even unto death.

But do not confuse one Jesus, and his politics are not to be confused with human structures, powers and passions too, one only understands fraternity if one sees oneself with fraternity brothers.

 

In the name of God ?

16 Dec

Some for gaining notoriety and adherence think they should speak in the namejesus of God, but if they were really attentive, the Bible would read, for example, what Ahaz stated in the text of Isaiah 7: 11-12:

 

“Ask the Lord your God to show you a sign, whether from the depths of the earth or from the heights of heaven.” But Ahaz answered, “I will not ask, nor will I tempt the Lord.”

 

Also in the wilderness, a recurring theme in troubled times today, Jesus being tempted recalls Isaiah and repeats in Matthew 4:6-7 :

 

“If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down. For it is written, ‘He shall give his angels charge over thee, and with their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash dash upon a stone.’ Jesus replied, “It is written, ‘You shall not tempt the Lord your God.'”

 

To those who want to speak in the name of God, they must first ask themselves if they are indeed authorized to do this, I speak not only of fundamentalists but especially of those who use sacred scripture to promote their political interests of various kinds, arrogance will give them Even greater desert, the absence and silence of God.

 

Moses, Ahaz, Mary, and so many other biblical characters were humble, how much arrogance in the mouth of those who swear to be in the divine company.

 

When the angel appears to Mary and says that she will conceive a child, she becomes humble and says “let her will be done” even though she may be confused, and Joseph himself withdraws not to “dishonor Mary”; Law to stone her.

 

Today, how much arrogance in the name of God, are these men of God?

 

Is there still Christmas spirit?

01 Dec

We have explained in previous years (see the our post) that Noel appeared in thechristmas 1920s in a Coca-Cola® marketing relating Santa Claus (American Santa Claus) with Christmas, and with impressions in magazines such as Saturday  Evening Post, but it is clear that the birth of Jesus is much older, indeed dates in the years, since we are in 2016 AD, even though the measure of the years is imprecise due to the Gregorian calendar.


But this year, Trump’s election, crisis in the country with various nuances: impeachment, jet launder, crisis in Rio and with other states showing exhaustion of finances, now the tragedy with the team of the city of Chapecó (Brazil), there would still be climate for the true Christmas spirit, peace and justice, solidarity with the peripheries (now also existential), or are we in “depression”?


Remember that the year that Jesus is born is the year of the census made by the Roman Empire, and at that time people should go to the Christmas city, so Mary and Joseph go to Bethlehem, where they end up being born in a stable, due to lack of accommodation: the God-boy named Jesus was born.


Yes indeed there may be a historical confusion, Luke (Lk 2: 2) narrated that the census was taken when Quirinus was governor of Syria, where from the emperor Cesar Augustus, but the order of Cesar Augustus is 5 BC, while Quirinus (or Cyrene) became governor in 6 AD.


What is important is that the historical fact occurred, and Jesus entered into history “was a contact between men” not only by a whim of history, but by a divine coincidence, and there were others said the Prophecy of Isaiah: “The Lord will give you A sign, the virgin shall become pregnant … “(Isaiah, 7:14).


Then it is necessary to remember the humble birth of Jesus, the difficult years that will follow that will force his parents to flee to Egypt, avoiding the persecution of Herod who promoted the slaughter of all newborns want to kill the “future king” of the Jews, But this ruled until 4 BC, new confusion.


Yes it is necessary to remember that persecution, humility and crises always accompany this birth, but that it brings hope, confidence in the future and inner peace, yes the spirit of Christmas remains, even among those who do not believe, it is necessary to stop and breathe, otherwise it does not going forward.

 

Christmas for dont believe

23 Dec

Sorry those who believe sometimes insult, deride and say something that doesNatal not have the slightest connection with the universe and the size of God is only a human being and not God.

Belief has nothing to do with prejudice, intolerance and division, it is just the opposite of all this.

Belief has nothing to do with prohibitions, limitations and lack of respect and freedom, it is just the opposite of all this.

Belief has nothing to do with the power of money, disrespect life and every human being, because it is precisely the opposite of this.

The child born in Bethlehem suffered all this life, to prove that nobody is better than anyone and even though God made the last, with no place to be born without titles and end of life more fragile and dying on a cross, Christmas is see it all without exception as coexisting on this planet, and in this spirit I wish you all a Merry Christmas.

God came to share life with all of us and coexisted with us for 33 years on this planet.

 

Christmas around the world

20 Dec

TheArmenian Apostolic Church celebrates Christmas on January 6th, is the day we celebrateChristmasInWorld Epiphany (which means the revelation that Jesus was the Son of God) , unlike Catholic churches that celebrate the arrival of the Magi in visit to the baby Jesus, and also celebrate the Baptism of Jesus (when he began his adult ministry) on Epiphany .

The curious custom is to eat nothing the week before Christmas , I mean start the
year doing fasting.

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In China, where only about one percent of the people are Christians, most people only know a few things about Christmas celebration due in large cities as Christmas in the World site.

In these big cities there are Christmas trees , lights and other decorations on the streets and in department stores , and Santa Claus is called  “Shen Dan Lao Ren ” in Mandarin and “Seng Dan Fai Lok ” in Cantonese .

Ghana celebrate Christmas tough two weeks , from 20 December to first week of January, with many different activities . It is common to travel to visit their relatives and friends in other parts of the country , where more than 60 languages ​​, each with their own traditions and
customs !

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There is the harvest period of cacao, being the country ‘s second-largest producer in the world.

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But the Christmas mood because there is something very extraordinary happened: a different child born in a stable and placed in a manger.