December 16, 2001
Q. I'm a Multiculturalist Pagan. I want to celebrate the shortest day of the year at the exact same moment as all the indigenous peoples on Mother Earth. Exactly when will that moment occur?
A. Never. Unlike Christianity, pagan religions are local. This causes practical problems for politically correct American pagans who want to use the seasons of the sun to commemorate the unity of humanity under nature. Their problem is that nature treats humans very differently depending upon where they live. For example, while Dec. 21 is the shortest day for the Inuit (i.e. Eskimos), it's the longest day for Australian Aborigines. And for Africans living on the equator, it's just another twelve-hour day like all the others. In truth, Winter Solstice celebrations are (gasp) Eurocentric! Or, to be precise, "Nordocentric."