The Chinese city of Langfang near Beijing banned any public displays celebrating Christmas, including Christmas trees, lights, banners, and any “religious activities” in public in an attempt to win a Communist Party award for being “civilized,” state media reported on Monday. The Chinese Communist Party has spent years attempting to dissuade the population from engaging in Christmas festivities, even more secular ones like displaying Christmas trees and exchanging gifts. The Communist Youth League has taken a particularly strident stance on Christmas, calling it “China’s day of shame” in propaganda messages last year and filling campuses with banners urging young Chinese people not to partake in celebrations.The Global Times, a state newspaper, announced the decision of the Langfang government as an attempt to maintain a “clean environment,” suggesting that celebrating Christmas makes the city unclean. Citing the … [Read more...] about Chinese City Bans Christmas Celebrations to Maintain ‘Clean Environment’
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Viet Nam News KABUL — At least 50 people were killed in a suicide attack on a religious celebration in Kabul on Tuesday, officials said, in one of the deadliest assaults to strike Afghanistan this year. It follows a wave of bloody violence across the war-torn country in recent weeks that has killed hundreds of people as militants step up assaults amid a flurry of diplomatic efforts to end the 17-year conflict. At least 72 people were wounded in the blast, health ministry spokesman Wahid Majroh said, which targeted religious scholars and leaders inside a wedding hall where hundreds had gathered to mark the Prophet Mohammad’s birthday -- one of the holiest days in the Islamic calendar. Religious studies lecturer Mohammad Hanif said verses of the Koran were being recited when there was a deafening explosion followed by "chaos" inside the packed hall. "More than 60 or 70 people were martyred," Hanif, 31, said outside a trauma facility run by Italian NGO … [Read more...] about At least 50 killed in suicide attack on Kabul religious gathering
INDIA’S Independence Day marks the day in 1947 when India became independent from the British Empire. Here is all you need to know about the milestone date which is celebrated by the world’s second most populous nation. When is India Independence Day 2018? It is celebrated religiously throughout the subcontinent country on August 15 every year. This date was when independence came into effect. What happened on August 15? On August 15, 1947, at the stroke of midnight, India was declared independent from the British Empire, which was also known as the Raj. It was accountable to London as part of British colonial system that operated for 100 years after the trading organisation, the UK based East India Company, gradually took over with a private army after the native Mughal Empire crumbled. How did in India win independence from the British Empire? During the Raj, the UK invested hugely in infrastructure such as railways and mines and developed a legal and … [Read more...] about When is India Independence Day 2018, what happened on August 15 and how is it celebrated?
THOUSANDS of revellers travel to Stonehenge every year to mark summer solstice. But do you know why the Wiltshire monument attracts so many people on the longest day of the year? Here's the lowdown... When is the summer solstice? The midsummer date is set based on the planet’s rotational axis. It’s decided based on the sun’s tilt towards the sun, which hits its maximum at 23° 26′ and falls between June 20 and June 22 in the northern hemisphere. This year, the summer solstice will take place on June 21. What is the summer solstice? The ‘longest’ day of the year marks the middle of summer. This is because the tilt of the Earth’s axis is most aligned with the sun, providing us with the most daylight of the year. When it ends, the nights will began to close in as our planet rotates away from the sun. The date where Earth is the furthest from the star is marked by the winter solstice. What has the summer solstice got to do with Stonehenge? … [Read more...] about When is the summer solstice 2018 and why do people visit Stonehenge to celebrate the longest day of the year?
World Greek Orthodox Easter 2018 Religious Holidays Easter celebrations are not quite over, as members of Eastern Orthodox Church are preparing to celebrate Greek Easter on Sunday, April 8. The two holidays commemorate the resurrection of Jesus on different dates because they are based on two different calendars. Western Christians celebrate Easter based on the Gregorian calendar, while Eastern Christians use the old Julian calendar. Occasionally the two dates on both calendars coincide. Lebanese Christian priests distribute painted eggs to celebrate Greek Orthodox Easter after an Easter service at St. George church in central Beirut, Lebanon April 16, 2017. This year Greek Orthodox Easter lands on April 8, 2018. REUTERS/Jamal Saidi Like the Western Easter, Greek Easter continues the fasting of Lent throughout Holy Week and ends on Greek Easter Sunday. Preparations for Easter begin on Holy Thursday, when Easter bread, or tsoureki, is made and eggs are dyed red as a … [Read more...] about When is Greek Easter 2018? Orthodox Holiday Celebrates The Resurrection of Jesus