Why Today is Important: 11th May

The 11th May marks the beginning of Lag BaOmer, a Jewish festival that historically marks a brief reprieve in the Omer, a period of mourning in Judaism. According to tradition, a long time ago a plague killed thousands of students of the Rabbi Akiva, a significant figure in Judaism. The plague ended on Lag BaOmer,Continue reading “Why Today is Important: 11th May”

Matariki

One of the more beautiful New Year celebrations I’ve been fortunate enough to research, Matariki is both the name of the Maori New Year festival, and the star system seen above, known as Pleiades, or The Seven Sisters. When translated, Matariki means: the eyes of God. The story goes that the paternal sky god, Ranginui,Continue reading “Matariki”

Why Today Is Important: 1st May

Today is May Day! And before the term was commonly associated with danger, anyone who heard “May Day” would think of people in bright clothes dancing around a pole with countless ribbons. They’d think of springtime, a new year, and a resounded end to the frost and death of winter. Since Ancient Rome, May DayContinue reading “Why Today Is Important: 1st May”

Why He Studied Arabic

While I studied Chinese, my boyfriend went to the same university to study Arabic. We were both in the languages department, with intense interests in history and politics, and we were both crazy enough to choose some of the most difficult languages in the world. People still ask us “which one’s harder?” And honestly, I’veContinue reading “Why He Studied Arabic”

Why Today Is Important: 20th March

It’s Iranian New Year folks! Or Persian New Year, or Nowruz, depending on who you ask. Where I am, we talk about the Western New Year, or Chinese New Year, but we rarely talk about others, which is a shame because Nowruz is really intriguing. Its origins lie in Zoroastrianism, one of the oldest religionsContinue reading “Why Today Is Important: 20th March”

(China-436) March 8, 2020 – A young man in Hong Kong interested in the history of the Jews in China — Getting 2 Know You – China

CAN THE JEWS OF KAIFENG, CHINA, SURVIVE XI JINPING, AS THEY HAVE 1,400 YEARS OF CLOODS, REVOLUTION, AND INTERMARRIAGE? Dwindling community in city in Henan province is threatened by a campaign against ‘unaurthorised religion’ It has an unlikely ambassador in the form of an 18-year-old schoolboy from Hong Kong Etan Smallman SCMP March 8, 2020 […]Continue reading “(China-436) March 8, 2020 – A young man in Hong Kong interested in the history of the Jews in China — Getting 2 Know You – China”

Why Today Is Important: 17th March

I’m sure most of the Western readers will have at the very least heard of St Patrick’s Day. It’s known for being a night of drunken revelry and mayhem, in the best kind of way. It’s a time when friends and family come together to celebrate the patron saint of Ireland: St Patrick. And thisContinue reading “Why Today Is Important: 17th March”

Why Today Is Important: 9th March

This day is important for more than one religion, in two distinctly different parts of the world. The first holiday I stumbled across, was Purim. Purim, a Jewish festival that falls on different dates each year on the Western calendar, but routinely falls on the 13th day of the Hebrew month of Adar (late winter/earlyContinue reading “Why Today Is Important: 9th March”

Is Filial Piety Still A Thing?

For myself, yes. Personally, I grew up in a very working class neighbourhood. Everyone who could work did, taking it in turns to look after us children. Mum and dad weren’t married, and didn’t live together, so she counted as a single mum. The same could be said for my sister, who had her firstContinue reading “Is Filial Piety Still A Thing?”

Why Today Is Important: 1st March

Saint David (approx. 520AD), the patron saint of Wales, was a man of mystery and legend. Today, the 1st March, is the day the Welsh dedicated to this holy man, a home grown hero and icon to many. Some rumoured that he was the nephew of King Arthur, and the overall consensus is that heContinue reading “Why Today Is Important: 1st March”

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