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Makar (Makara) means Capricorn and Sankranti means transition, so the festival celebrates the transition of the Sun from Sagittarius to Capricorn, and the ascendancy of the Sun god into the Northern Hemisphere.It is the Sun god who transcends time and who rotates the Wheel of Time.

Considering that the austerity and bleakness of Winter (in contrast to the relative abundance and warmth of Summer) would be so impactful upon the lives of primitive peoples living in temperate climates these festival times — and even Sun-worship — should come as no surprise.

Stonehenge and hundreds of other megalithic structures throughout the world were constructed to receive a shaft of sunlight in their central chamber at solstice dawn.

The Chinese Dongzhi ("extreme of winter") Festival is viewed within the Yang and Yin philosophy as a time of returning of positive energy associated with lengthening daylight hours.

The Sun is associated with yang (male), whereas the Moon & Earth are associated with yin (female).

But to preserve the king, a criminal was made into a mock king, who was treated as if he was a king until he was slain.

Year-end celebrations in which masters acted as slaves and slaves acted as if they were masters became popular in several regions of the Mediterranean.And while the Aussie fellas were within touching distance of the top accolade, Australia's beautiful women were only voted in sixth place, with Armenian, Barbadian, American, Colombian and English ladies being voted sexier in the poll conducted by travel dating website Miss Travel.English men (David Beckham) make up the top five, with Scottish (Calvin Harris), Italian (Joe Manganiello), Nigerian (Tinie Tempah), Danish (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) and Spanish (Gerard Pique) making it into the top 10.The Spring Equinox occurs around March 21st when the sun crosses the celestial equator, and days have the same duration as nights ("equinox" comes from a Latin word meaning "time of equal days and nights").The Spring Equinox marks the beginning of Spring, and for the ancient Mesopotamians was the beginning of their new year festival.The Mesopotamians believed that their god Marduk did battle with monsters of chaos at the end of the year.

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