Wednesday, January 14, 2009

I Don’t Believe in New Year’s Eve

Yep, I don’t believe in New Year’s Eve. Or New Year’s Day, for that matter.


I know the inconvenient truth in the science of astronomy: One year is 365.2424 days. One trip around the sun just doesn't add up to an even number of days.

But the time between the ball dropping in Times Square from year to year is exactly 365 days (or 366 days in leap year).

So when the ball drops, it’s NEVER exactly 1 year since the last time it dropped.

New Year’s Eve is a fraud! It's not 1 year since the last New Year's. It's either a bit more or less than a full year!

That’s the inconvenient truth of astronomy!

So, where did this fraud come from? It’s a product of government and religion that for over 2,000 years sought to impose their sense of order on something that’s not that nice and neat. Early cultures had a better sense of time. First of all, rather than start a year freezing yourself on a winter’s night, many cultures started the year in spring, fresh with the hope for the rebirth of nature. These cultures often used events in nature or astronomical observations such as the spring equinox as the start of a year.

Perhaps the most accurate early calendar was developed by the Persians who used the date of the spring equinox to start each year. This was self-correcting calendar, and did not depend on numerical rules like the Julian and Gregorian calendars developed in Europe.

The Gregorian calendar was based on 365.2425 days which created creeping error over the centuries as the difference between 365.2425 and 365.2424 eventually catches up. The current Julian calendar is based on 365.25 days and included a leap year every 4th year, with some other exceptions every 100 and 400 years. This was the beginning of the bureaucratic control of the calendar.

Thanks to the bureaucrats, the New Year has no relationship to astronomical events such as the equinoxes and solstices.

Religion’s contribution to all this is that the years are supposed to be measured from the birth of Jesus Christ. But New Year’s Day isn’t on Christmas. Instead, we have New Year’s Day on the 8th day after Jesus’ birth, the day that Jesus was named and circumcised. Add to this, the fact that Jesus was not born in December (this remembrance of his birth was moved near the winter solstice to blend in with the pagan Roman celebrations) nor was he born in the year 0 (more likely 2 BC) [see to find out when Jesus was really born, based on science applied to scriptural references).

So, New Year’s Day on January 1st really relates to absolutely nothing. It’s just an arbitrary date based on the current calendar. It doesn’t relate to any reoccurring annual astronomical event. And each New Year’s at midnight is never exactly one year since the previous New Year’s.

Once again, the inconvenient truth of science tells us that New Year’s is all just a fraud!