Origin and History of Christmas in India
According to history Christmas was celebrated centuries before the birth of Jesus Christ. This winter celebration was observed by Mesopotamians, Persians, Babylonianís, Romans etc. to welcome the change in nature. With Jesusí fame and the popularity of the Christianity, people decided to celebrate the birth of almighty Jesus on December 25th as Christmas. Although Christianity was brought to India in around 52 A.D., the Christmas celebration was introduced in India only with the immigration of Europeans. Even though Europeans left India after independence, the traditions, customs and the festivals have stayed on. India being a multi-religious, multi-lingual and multi-cultural country has adopted Christmas as part of the Indian culture.
Local name: Christmas
Ways to celeberate Christmas in India
Like many other countries, in India Christmas is celebrated with great enthusiasm and joy. People visit shopping malls and markets; decorate their homes with Christmas trees, dress up like Santa Claus and give out various gift items. Like other countries, in India the celebration of Christmas begins with special prayer services in the Church and then includes activities like festive meals, get-togethers, sharing gifts etc. Even though the theme behind the celebration remains same all over the country, the variations are seen in the observances because of the local cultural influences. For instance in South India Clay lamps are lit in the same as the Hindus decorate their homes during Diwali. The tribal Christians of North-Western India, go out during night to sing the carols. In some other parts of the country on Christmas day homes are decorated with traditional mango leaves to welcome the festive mood. The methods of celebration vary from one part of the country to other but the main idea behind the festival remains same everywhere.