On this gloomy December evening, we begin the Second Annual 25 Days of Nightlight Readings. I began this blog tradition last year, in hopes to bring back some of the old ways of long Winter nights. Before the modern technologies of television and Internet, which seem to now fill up our dark days, families would gather before the hearth as stories were read aloud. Suddenly the dark, cold night would be replaced by the warmth of a lover's embrace and audiences would be swept away from their mundane lives to fly over the streets of a Victorian village or traverse a land of Mice Kings and Sugar Plum Fairies.
Now we can revisit those dark nights of long ago, and dust off some traditional Holiday literature to help warm our hearts.
“To study history is to study the motives, the opinions, and the passions of men in order to know all the successes, the initiatives and the detours, and finally all the illusions that they make known to the mind and the surprises that they make the heart feel. In a word, it is to learn to known oneself in others.”—Jean Mabillon, 15th c. Benedictine scholar.