Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy New Year

Everyday is a new year's day and every night is new years eve! Why do we celebrate so vigorously on this particular 31st December night? Last night was a restless night. Fireworks and crackers made the night sleepless. I was, I don't know why, in a depressed mood. I tried to sleep off early and the firecrackers kept me awake till one o'-clock in the early morning.
Lying on my bed I was thinking why the hell we celebrate this new year so ecstatically? What is the reason behind 31st December being the last day of the year? I mean to say the year could have been started at any other day - say 1st February!
There must be a reason behind the calenders we follow - a real astronomical or socio-economic reason. Say if the new year starts after the last day of harvest it is well justified. Over a century of evolution that particular last-day-of-harvest could be fixed to be a particular day in a particular calender. Reasonable, isn't it? But to be more authentic, the calender should follow astronomical events, not simple earthly events, which are not so perfectly regular. For example if a calender is based on the Equinoxes and Solstices, it will be a perfectly reasonable calender.
I think every calender is based on astronimcal events. But I was wondering which astronomical events form the basis of the Julian calender that starts on 1st January, 11 days after the Winter Solstice.

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