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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Stuff Your Stocking Blogfest: Sapphire Phelan

Mistletoe is More than for Kissing Under!


Kissing under the mistletoe is more than just a chance to get your honey to kiss you. It is also symbolic of the eventual rebirth of vegetation that will occur in spring. More so than any other of the Christmas evergreens, it is a plant of which we are conscious only during the holidays. Mistletoe has long been regarded as an aphrodisiac and fertility herb. It may also possess abortifacient qualities, which would help explain its association with uninhibited sexuality.

Kissing under the mistletoe got its start in Celtic rituals and Norse mythology. In Gaul, the Druids considered it a sacred plant. It was believed to have medicinal qualities and mysterious supernatural powers. After preparing for a sacrifice and a feast under the oak, they hail the mistletoe as a cure-all, bringing two white bulls with horns that have never been bound before. A priest dressed in a white robe climbs the oak and with a golden sickle cuts the mistletoe,. It is caught in a white cloak. After sacrificing the victims, they ask the god to make the mistletoe propitious for them. There was belief that a potion prepared from it will make sterile animals fertile and that kit was an antidote for any poison.

Mistletoe and the kissing are traced back to ancient Scandinavia. It was also the plant of peace there. If enemies met by chance beneath it in a forest, they laid down their arms and maintained a truce until the next day. This ancient Scandinavian custom led to the tradition of kissing under the mistletoe.

But this tradition went hand-in-hand with the myth of Baldur. Baldur's mother was the Norse goddess, Frigga. When he was born, Frigga made every plant, animal and inanimate object to promise not to harm Baldur. But the goddess overlooked the mistletoe. Loki took advantage of this oversight and tricked one of the other gods into killing Baldur with a spear fashioned from mistletoe. The demise of Baldur, a vegetation deity in the Norse myths, brought winter into the world, although the gods did eventually restored Baldur to life. Frigga pronounced the mistletoe sacred, ordering that it should bring love rather than death into the world.

Sapphire Phelan

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Sapphire Phelan is giving away to one lucky commenter a download of her latest release, A Familiar Tangle With Hell, which is set during New Year’s Eve.

Tell her what you think about kissing under the mistletoe. Also leave an email so she can contact the winner.

18 comments:

Janice Seagraves said...

Hi Sapphire,

That's an interesting story about the mistletoe. Thank you for telling us.

Good luck with your release and I wish you many sales.

Janice~

elaing8 said...

I have never had a kiss under the mistletoe. Come to think of it,I don't think anyone I know ever has mistletoe up.


elaing8(at)netscape(dot)net

Jean P said...

That was very interesting info regarding the mistletoe, but have never had any up in the house and I don't know of anyone near and dear to me that has it up either.
Happy New Year!

skpetal at hotmail dot com

Andrea I said...

Thanks for the mistletoe info. I remember seeing it growing on trees, but never had it in our house.

ainfinger@comcastDOTnet

Sapphire Phelan said...

Janice, it's been out a while--since June. Been doing fine.
On mistletow, I think I bought it a couple times and put up, though never, kissed anyone under it.

shadow_kohler said...

Hi! We've never done the mistletoe here either. I really cant think of anyone that has. Thanks for sharing! Happy holidays!
shadowluvs2read(at)gmail(dot)com

Debby said...

Interesting history. We always have mistletoe in our house.
debby236 at gmail dot com

GladysMP said...

I don't have an ereader, but I enjoyed the information about mistletoe. You don't find much mistletoe here in my part of Texas, but in West Texas there are a lot of mesquite trees and they are often covered in mistletoe. I'm for kissing with or without mistletoe.

Sapphire Phelan said...

Gladys, you don't need an ereader to read an eBook. You can read an eBook on your computer or smart phone even. So do, post your email on another comment.:)

I've admit never seeing any mistletoe on trees, but just getting some from a store a couple of times. Cool, that West Texas has a lot in trees there.

Mountain Laurel said...

I remember as a kid going out with my dad with the shotgun in the woods...we would spot mistletoe on the top of a tree and he would shoot it down and we would hang it up in the house. Now I still hang mistletoe but it is a fake kind...much friendlier on my live-in fuzzy critters...lol

Vanessa A. Johnson said...

Thanks for sharing info about the mistletoe. I didn't know that. I've never been kissed under a mistletoe. Continued success with your releases.

Happy New Year
Vanessa Alexander Johnson

Naomi Bellina said...

I have a real cute Mistle Toad, a stuffed frog, that I hang in a good spot every year. I can usually steal a few kisses from my honey!

June M. said...

I think Mistle Toe and the the traditions are fun. I don't think I have ever kissed underneath it though. Maybe next year, lol.
Have a safe & happy New Year's!
manning_j2004 at yahoo dot com

VampedChik said...

I love hearing all this new stuff bout mistletoe! Thanks so much!
-Amber
goodblinknpark@yahoo.com

flchen1 said...

I've read so many stories that included kissing under the mistletoe but haven't ever seen it in real life! Funny, isn't it?!

Hope your celebrating's been merry and memorable, Sapphire!

f dot chen at comcast dot net

CelticAmazon said...

Kissing under the mistletoe is the most common theme you hear about while little and as you're growing up. Unless you are into history or follow the pagan traditions, most would not know the history you gave today. Thank you.
Patricia
panthers.ravens@yahoo dot com

Sapphire Phelan said...

Thak you, filchen, it was a good one.:)
You're welcome, Amber and Patricia.

Sapphire Phelan said...

The winner of the eBook, A Familiar Tangle with Hell, is Amber. I will be emailing you this morning to see what version you want of it. Congratulations!