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A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY
haycraftd

Two questions about our calendar and religion

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The number of days we have in a year was last decided by a pope.  Our calendar is mostly filled with old gods and one religious festival (Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, January, February, March, April, May, June). 

 

Of course, there's the labels of Annos Domini (AD) and CE (Common Era).  As a researcher, every researcher I know (and I) are sticking with AD.  The label CE is based on an event, it just doesn't reference it.  Whether or not it's actually a year of the Lord is irrelevant to my mind.  First world issues.  😊

 

Even the seven-day week is somewhat religious--seven was mystically significant in Babylon, it is significant in Judaism because of the creation myth, and Constantine formally adopted it, making the first weekday the Christian Sabbath (Sunday) and the last the Jewish day of rest (Saturday). 

 

There's basically no way to avoid religious symbolism in our current calendar.  And yet, there's a strong urge to try to take it out--most evident by the debate between AD vs CE.

 

My two questions are 1) should we take it out and 2) how would we do it?

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Fair question. I can see a case for rebuilding a calendar to be entirely secular. But man, what a disruption to society that would involve. As a computer administrator in a prior life, I remember the struggle we went through to keep computers running smoothly after a minor adjustment of Daily Savings Time. Tell me that we're going to switch to a ten-day week and you'd find me cowering under my desk.

 

I'd imagine it wouldn't be feasible until humanity becomes a multi-world society. Colonies on Mars could arguably form their own calendar that makes sense for them, but then communications with Earth would constantly have to be translated.

 

Perhaps generational ships leaving the solar system could develop their own calendar with minimal risk of being out of sync with Mother Earth, but of course we're a long way away from those--hundreds of years at least.

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I've always thought it would be a good idea to have all the months of equal length (ie all the same amount of days), and add the remaining few (5, if we go with 30 day months) to the last month of the year. They must also be vacation days, where possible 🙂

 

Everything else I would leave alone. Confusion would reign, otherwise.

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That's a decent idea, Elgee.

 

So much of our monthly calendar falls into one of two camps. Do we track time by the phases of the Moon? Or the movement of the Sun? Despite our wishes, neither system is neat and orderly, requiring us to have leap years, uneven months, etc.

 

The universe can be very inconsiderate, frankly.

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I can never remember what months have 30 vs 31. 

 

Don’t quote me on this, but I think the Soviets tried to create a ten-day week and I think there have been attempts to rename days and months.  Everyone who tried failed at it.  

 

The universe can be quite--disordered.  

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Pretty close, haycraftd.

 

Quote

But in the eyes of the Soviet government led by Joseph Stalin, Sundays represented a genuine threat to the whirr and hum of industrial progress. For one day in seven, after all, machines sat silent, productivity slumped to zero and people retreated to comforts thought to be contrary to the revolutionary ideal, like family life or religious practice.

On the following Sunday, no such collective pause for breath took place. Eighty percent of the workforce were told to go to work; 20 percent to stay home. The ordinary seven-day week now had a new bedfellow: the nepreryvka, or “continuous working week.” It was five days long, with days of rest staggered across the week. Now, the Soviet economist and politician Yuri Larin proposed, the machines need never be idle.

The nepreryvka was supposed to revolutionize the concept of labor, set a match to productivity and make religious worship too troublesome to be worth the effort. But it failed on virtually every count.

 

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On ‎12‎/‎12‎/‎2018 at 11:49 AM, JamesBrown said:

That's a decent idea, Elgee.

 

So much of our monthly calendar falls into one of two camps. Do we track time by the phases of the Moon? Or the movement of the Sun? Despite our wishes, neither system is neat and orderly, requiring us to have leap years, uneven months, etc.

 

The universe can be very inconsiderate, frankly.

 

The Jewish calendar is a lunar one. 

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