Christmas or Christmas Day is an annual festival commemorating the birth of Jesus Christ, observed generally on December 25 as a religious and cultural celebration among billions of people around the galaxy. A feast central to the Christian liturgical year, it closes the Advent season and initiates the twelve days of Christmastide, which ends after the twelfth night. Christmas is a public holiday in many of the galaxy's nations, is celebrated culturally by a large number of non-Christian or non-human people, and is an integral part of the Christmas and holiday season.
In Other NationsEdit
Though the Ashkathi Union does not officially celebrate Christmas on Larine, Christmas festivities tend to be lumped together with the Larinian New Year the majority of the time. Ashkathi exchange gifts and sing on the Larinian New Year much like one would on Christmas. Also, Ashkathi collect toys and games and donate them to childrens' charities on Christmas Eve. However, the actual Christmas holiday is seen as sacriligious by the majority of Ashkathi due to its promotion of a higher power, which goes counter to the traditional maxim of Ashkathism that all life is equal.
While the open, public practise of any religion but Arakism is illegal in the Izeran Empire, private practise is still permitted, and many human communities still celebrate Christmas in a traditional, Terran way, even if most of them are native Izerans. As a secular phenomenon, the Christmas Season is widely celebrated across Izera, even among Therans, though it is more often referred to as the "Terranwinter Season" and blends with New Year festivities, culminating on December 30th with "Terranwinter Day," though most commercial entities are closed during the week of the 25th until January 3rd.
A particularly prominent activity that takes place during Terranwinter celebrations, especially among Therans, is called saarh lleiset and involves to practice of inviting one's neighbours over for a large meal. In small, close-knit communities, neighbours take turns hosting each other until everyone has hosted or the 30th arrives. In large communities, like city centres, the municipal government will typically host a large feast that is free for anyone who lives in the area. Gift exchanges occur throughout the season, but the 30th is seen as the most important day. The concept of "Santa Claus" is conspicuously absent from the typical Izeran understanding of the season, possibly due to the fact that "reindeer," "the North Pole," and "elves" are very much foreign subjects for most.
The history of Christmas in the Kuhneebo Conglomerate extends back to the middle of the 3rd millennium, even predating the Galactic Dark Age. Early exchanges with human traders brought the existence of the holiday to the attention of various arks. Intrigued by the concept, Kuhn advertisers attempted to capitalize on the exotic holiday.
It is most popular among females, who for several days leading up to Christmas will decorate their offices and play Christmas records containing a variety of soundscapes. On Christmas day, the typical Kuhn Leisure Hour is extended to start during the previous meal and end during the next meal in order to have a large feast, known as "Christmas Dinner". Females will typically have this meal only with their partners, resulting in groups between two and six in size, and usually in the largest office. Unpartnered females make arrangements to form their own dinner groups. Wearing stocking caps, reindeer horns, druidic robes, or similar items are a holiday tradition regardless of social status.
After meeting for Christmas Dinner and eating the meal, the participants pull out a sack filled with gifts which they have brought for their partners. The Kuhn take turns pulling out presents randomly from the bag. Each present is handed to its recipient in exchange for a leaf that is dubbed the "mistletoe" and a kiss on the lips. When there is only one present left in each sack, the remaining gifts are placed in a single pile, and one gift is drawn at random. After being drawn, the recipient and giver hold out their mistletoe, place it on the ground between them, and then begin to kiss each other and engage in other sexual actions while the others attempt to take the leaves out from under them. This repeats until the final gift has been given. Whoever has the most mistletoe after this is declared the 'naughtiest' and given a small lump of coal, which they use to smoke the mistletoe. After smoking one of each person's mistletoe, they keep the rest for future use.
Once eating and the exchange of presents are complete, the party begins, and all of the eggnog is drunk. One of the core aspects of Christmas Dinner is the consumption of eggnog, which is sold only at this time of year due to price-fixing beverage firms and advertising agencies maximizing profits. After the eggnog has been consumed, participants continue to talk, sing carols, and enjoy each other's company until they have to return to work.
Among males and simales, the holiday is of less importance, and not celebrated in the same manner. Simales enjoy dressing up as Santa while their male partner is commonly a Roman Legionary, and give their children presents (the cost of which is either added to the child's life-debt or deducted from their income).
On Prautes, the Norb Network operates a simulation city known as "Santa's Village", which is modeled after mythological aspects of Santa Claus's Workshop. Polar bears, reindeer, and other Frames greet visitors in-character and sing songs and participate in choreographed dances, plays, and other assorted performances. Due to limited immigration, only between a few hundred and a thousand individuals are able to enjoy this on Christmas day itself, with the majority of visitors being high-ranking politicians, businesspeople, or there due to the Wish A Norb Foundation.