Welcome to Good Friday 2016 though it apparently isn't very good for millions of people across the planet. People are mourning the loss of those who died by acts of terrorism that pervade our reality. What do the holidays mean? Different things to different people. For some it's a trip down memory lane through historical sites, tomes, legends, traditions and their personal experiences in both past and present lifetimes. For others it's about family gatherings or having a few personal days to relax and catch up on the things they never get to do. We know religions are not the same now as perceived throughout humanity's experiences in this part of reality. All holidays are based on mythologies - the historical record altered through time to fit the storyline one is experiencing. In 2016 many will honor the meaning of holidays in their culture - but life will go on in ways shaped by the linear past that focuses our consciousness in the present. Enjoy your holiday, if celebrating.
Was William Shakespeare's skull stolen from his grave?
CNN - March 25, 2016
Blessed the man that spares these stones
And cursed be he that moves my bones.
April 23, 1564 - April 23, 1616
The Easter holiday is a time of music, in which one musical instrument plays a central part: the pipe organ. Mozart once called it "the king of instruments." The first known organ was the Greek hydraulis, or water organ, from the third century B.C. But it didn't evolve into the instrument we're familiar with until the 17th century. Musical instruments used to be considered too secular for church, but the pipe organ began to gain acceptance, some believe, for its power to lift the soul. Today, the instrument's rich and resonant sounds seem almost inseparable from the religious setting. A major portion of its repertoire - among the largest and oldest of all the instruments in Western music - is sacred in nature. Often built with thousands of pipes, it is a marvel of engineering. Inside the organ, banks of knobs, or stops, control air valves to sections of pipes. When all the stops are pulled out, each set of pipes opens fully and the organ is pumped up to maximum volume. And that's where the phrase "pull out all the stops" comes from.
The famous cherry blossoms in Washington D.C. are expected to reach peak bloom in the next few days, as warmer temperatures coax the flower buds to unfurl. Washington also blooms with historic change in this presidential election year. New York Times Friday News Briefing
The cherry blossom is considered the national flower of Japan. The trees are also blooming in Tokyo, signaling spring's arrival in Japan's capital. It was Tokyo's mayor that gave 3,000 cherry blossom trees to the U.S. capital in 1912 as a symbol of friendship. Japan's love affair with the trees dates to 794, when the imperial capital was moved to Kyoto, where it's thought many cherry trees grew. From then on, the pink and white blossoms - which burst into life then drift away a few days later - were mentioned frequently in literature and poetry as a symbol of death as well as a metaphor for human life. The annual blooms appear first in the south before advancing slowly up the archipelago. Wherever they appear, blossom-viewing parties, or picnics, follow closely behind. The cherry blossoms are so revered in Japan that the peak bloom forecast is front-page news, while radio and TV broadcasters give hourly reports during their brief life span. The budding usually coincides with the beginning of the school year and the fiscal year for companies. The whole country starts anew.