Kwanzaa Day 5 – NIA – Purpose…

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( Here is a question. Christ is said to have been born on December 25th, and we supposedly measure time from the date of his birth. Then why does the New Year begin on January 1st? Shouldn’t it start on December 25th? Where did the extra week come from?  

The Romans had a few days at the end of their year that didn’t fit into their calendar of 12 months of 30 days each. They spent this “extra time” in feasting and revelry. Does Christmas Week stem from that, or does it grow out of an absolute need to stop, and relax, at the end of the year? Is it merely coincidence that just before businesses close their books on December 31st,  there is a final, furious spate of economic activity as we buy presents for everyone and splurge on food and drink and all sorts of entertainment?

Note the frenetic pace in the days before Christmas. Afterwards, everything slows to a crawl in the final few days of the year. Nothing seems to be happening. There is no school, and at work, little gets done. The noisy city is suddenly silent. Yes, there is a bit of a looking forward to New Years, but overall, things are down. And after the brief mania of New Years Eve, a kind of depression settles in as winter enfolds the land.

Listen! Listen to the chill wind blowing whispering through the barely leafed trees in December’s dying days. It seems to cry, forlorn, “Purrrpose. Puurrpose.” In synch, we ask ourselves inside, “What is my purpose? Is this all there is to life? A cycle of hot and cold, light and dark and throughout it all, the frantic, desperate paper chase for dollars and credentials and the things they bring?”

On this the fifth day of Kwanzaa, we are asked to ponder NIA, that is, Purpose.                                   

Think what it is you were put here for? For surely you were not made for naught. How shall you make your mark? What is it that you’ll strive for, that will help, not only you, but your family and above all our community? And is that not the basic “purpose” of the entire week of Kwanzaa? To give us time to think, yes think, about where we are, and where we are headed, and how we can work together to arrive as one! 

Staff Writer; Arthur Lewin

This talented author has just published a NEW book which is entitled; AFRICA is not A COUNTRY!.