Here are mid-January’s ancient and still-practiced holy days and their esoteric meaning.
Jan 7 – Eastern Orthodox Christmas, meaning Russian, Greek, Egyptian, Middle Eastern, etc. Christmas. Yes, they still to this day have Christmas every January 7. The explanation is because they follow the old Julian Calendar which is 13 days behind. But celebrating on January 7 is very close to the day the earliest Christians celebrated Jesus’ birthday: January 6. It’s nice that the Christians of the Middle East celebrate the “big day” on January 7, so close to the original date their ancestors insisted on for the first THREE centuries of Christianity. Too bad in 2015 it had to be the day the terrorists chose to attack Charlie Hebdo newspaper office and slaughter Europeans for insulting Islam.
English speaking Christians in the 1500s would bake a cake with a coin on it every January 7th — they considered January 7 to be part of the Epiphany holiday where the Magi / Wisemen find the Christchild. Epiphany is now celebrated January 6, and in Spain to this day, the children receive their Christmas presents on the 6th. As for January 7, whoever got the piece of cake with the coin in it was hailed as King for a day (or Queen). Symbols such as a cross, would be drawn in white chalk on the door post, lintel, or ceiling to keep dark forces out of the home.
Jan 8 – Druid New Year’s Day
Midwifes Day (ancient Greece)
Justicia’s Day (ancient Rome)
Freya’s Day (Norse / Viking holiday)
Jan 11 – Carmentalia, old Roman festival for the childbirth goddess, Carmenta
Juturna’s Day – ancient Italian goddess of “still waters” aka pools, lakes, ponds, Roman baths
Jan 13 – Ancient Irish Druid Feast of Brewing
-Saint Silvester’s Day
-Old Calendar New Year’s Eve (still celebrated in Switzerland with clanging of bells to scare off evil spirits)
Jan 14 – Feast of the Donkey (also called Feast of the Ass)
The donkey saved the Virgin Mother and her child during the flight to Egypt, but few people know the donkey also saved the Roman goddess Vesta, goddess of Virgins. According to Ovid, she had fallen asleep and was almost raped by Priapus when a donkey brayed to wake her up. Ever after donkeys were honored in her name and she is often depicted with a donkey beside her.
Jan 17 – 19 Feast of Fate – Ruler of Past, present, and Future, honoring Goddess as Moirai (old Greek), Norns (Old Norse), Coatlicue (Aztec), Pachamama (Inca), Manat (Old Arabic-Sufi) & Providence (Christian).