The Dark side of Christmas: Or the Curious truth about St Nickolas and his Demon Servant Krampus. (Part 2): The True Saint Nickolas: Saint or Sorcerer?

“St Nicholas’ Day is celebrated on 6 December across the world in honour of the benign bringer of gifts. But the story behind the saint, who is the model for Santa Claus, has a much darker history peppered with tales of murder, mutilation, cannibalism and infanticide. It’s a widely known fact that the tradition of Christmas is descended from ancient Pagan rituals, notably the Fertility Festival.  This celebration, involving copious food, drink and orgies a‘plenty, fell on the 24th of December, the shortest day of the year.  December 25 was venerated as the “birth” of the sun, or the start of the days growing progressively longer.

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Most of us are now aware, December 25 was NOT the actual birth of Christ (which is believed to fall somewhere in July), yet in 350 A.D. Pope Julius I decreed that it would be celebrated on that date.  A shrewd decision, as it combined the Pagan and Christian festivals (essentially making the Sun and the Son one and the same) and appears to have succeeded in inspiring people to join the Catholic Church–apparently the Pope’s main goal all along.
Incidentally, the tradition of Yuletide cookie making reportedly began in Finland with eight carefully cut cookies, including one whose shape (representing the power “Hel”) corresponds directly to that of the present-day swastika!

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St. Nicholas, as stated above, was an actual historical figure who lived in the region of modern-day Turkey during the Third Century A.D.  A man of deep faith known for his boundless charity and generosity, St. Nick established many of our most cherished holiday traditions, including the name Santa Claus, which began as a mispronunciation of Sinterklaas, a Dutch contraction of Saint Nicholas.

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The tradition that most concerns us is that of leaving out stockings on Christmas Eve, which emerges from a (probably apocryphal) story of how St. Nick helped out three poverty-stricken sisters by tossing bags of gold through each of the girls’ windows at night.  This is indeed how the stockings-on-the-mantelpiece tradition got started, but it’s also the source of the three gold balls symbol adopted by pawn-brokers the world over, for whom St. Nick was the patron saint.

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According to a traditional French children’s song from the 17th century, three children are killed and chopped up by a butcher in his shop and stowed away in a large salting tub, with overtones of cannibalism. St Nicholas revived them and returned them to their families, hence his reputation as a children’s protector. But by what means or “dark agencies” did he use to do so? And why did he unleash The demon Krampus on ill behaved children, if he is their protector?

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In Hungary Santa Claus is known as Mikulas, or “Winter Godfather,” and celebrated via an elaborate series of rituals beginning on December 5, when children take special baths so they’ll be extra clean for Mikulas’ arrival.  They also put out shoes for him to fill with goodies (in observance of the “three gold bags” tale outlined above).  But here’s the thing: only good children get the goodies.  The bad ones get a golden birch so they can be beaten! In Belgium and the Netherlands, these helpers are called Zwarte Pieten (Black Pete) who kidnapped all the naughty children and tied them up in sacks.

Santa’s Evil Companions:   European folklore has it that several companions travel with Santa on Christmas Eve. These not-so-nice helpers carry a rod (with which to beat unruly children) and a sack (to kidnap especially bad kids).  These include Knecht Ruprecht, or Servent Ruprecht, and the horned incubus Krampus.  It’s apparently a tradition in Germany for young men to dress up like Krampus and scare people during the first two weeks of December. So why is this “Holy” figure is always going about his work employing evil helpers to assist him?

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And we mustn’t forget Zwarte Piet, or Black Peter.  Perhaps the most famous of Santa’s companions, this personage is especially prevalent in the Netherlands and Flanders.  The Black in his name isn’t accidental, as Black Peter was originally  in some traditions depicted as a devil and others a loyal helper, but in Belgium and the Netherlands, these helpers are called Zwarte Pieten(Black Pete) who kidnapped all the naughty children and tied them up in sacks. This has caused controversy in recent years, with many regarding  most of them appear to agree on the fact that Black Peter is a profoundly evil individual.

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Devil worship and the cult of St Nicholas is more clearly defined in Germanic folklore. In Austria, Bavaria and Tyrol, the saint is accompanied by the demon Krampus.

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Saint Nicholas (15 March 270 – 6 December 343), was also called Nikolaos of Myra, was a historic Christian saint and Greek Bishop of Myra, in Asia Minor (modern-day Demre, Turkey). He has many miracles attributed to him and other titles include Nikolaos the Wonderworker.”

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Many churches in Europe, Russia and the US claim to possess small relics, such as a tooth or a finger. It is said that in Myra the relics of Saint Nicholas each year exuded a clear watery liquid which smells like rose water, called manna (or myrrh), which is believed by the faithful to possess miraculous powers. A flask of this liquid is extracted from the tomb of Saint Nicholas every year on 6 December by priests.

He is the patron saint of sailors, merchants, archers, repentant thieves, children, brewers, bakers, pawnbrokers and students.

The Dark side of Christmas: Or the Curious truth about St Nickolas and his Demon Servant Krampus. (Part 1): KRAMPUS An offering of children Sacrifice?

“Why my dear sir Mr. Kringle, I would have a word with you about your hired help I say.” (Mike Strange.)

Many have been lead to believe only that what they have been told about Christmas, without questioning this yearly rite of worship of the old pagan gods thinly veiled under the quise  of  Christian religion.

KRAMPUS:

“The Dark Side of Kris Kringle
By: Steven Heller | November 15, 2012

Christmas is not all about decking the halls and joy to the world. St. Nick’s “dark servant” (no elf is he), who goes by the name Krampus, is a hairy, horned, supernatural beast whose pointed ears and long, slithering tongue give the naughty something to think twice about. St. Nikolaus (a.k.a. Mr. Klaus) rewarded good children, but the little baddies found Krampus slithering down the chimney. Don’t worry you American and Western European kids, Krampus is mostly found in Northern and Eastern Europe—Germany, Austria, Croatia, Slovakia, Slovenia, and northern Italy. Hmmmmm.

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In Old High German, Krampus suggests the word for claw (Krampen). Traditionally, young men dress as the Krampus in the first two weeks of December, particularly on the evening of December 5th, and administer corporal punishment with a birch rod. Images of Krampus usually show him carrying away naughty tykes to the bowels of Hell. How can a truly benevolent Santa allow this to happen? The old boy had yet to be commercialized into the symbol of consumption when the mythic Krampus was conceived.

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Krampus in many Alpine European towns, the celebration of St. Nicholas Day would not be the same without a celebration on its Eve, December 5th, honoring this dark servant.

Originating in Germanic folklore as early as the 1600s, Krampus is believed to be a beastial creature who accompanies St. Nicholas on his earthly journey. While St. Nicholas rewards the good children with gifts and sweets, Krampus dispenses punishment to the wicked children who have strayed from the path of good. It is said he takes care of St. Nick’s “naughty list.” Why, the mere sight of Krampus alone is enough to turn any wrong-doer toward more peaceful pursuits.

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The name Krampus is derived from the Old High German word for “claw.” This towering, seven foot tall, hairy creature is depicted as having bulging eyes, a whip-like tongue, pointed ears and horns atop his head. He carries a pitchfork or, more traditionally, a bundle of birch switches, to menace children as he travels through town on a pair of mismatched feet: one cloven hoof, the other a bear-like claw. Wayward children caught by Krampus are spanked, whipped and even shackled to be spirited away in either a basket or barrel to Krampus’ lair. Once there they receive further punishment until they are repentant.

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Krampus festivals throughout Alpine communities kick off the holiday season with townspeople dressing in Krampus costumes, running rampant through the streets and putting a scare in the youngsters. After the children have been given a proper fright to ensure they stay on the straight and narrow, the rowdy Krampus are rewarded with holiday spirits, traditionally beer and schnapps. In fact, Krampus celebrations have become so popular that they can last for days before the arrival of Saint Nicholas on December 6th.”