Weekly Features

The Weekly Shaman

One of the lesser-known apparitions connected to the winter Solstice is the figure of St. Thomas. Sometimes known as Bloody Thomas this mid-winter traveler may have his origins in the Norse god Odin. Odin was said to lead a wild Hunt during the night of the winter solstice. At midnight on Yule night St. Thomas was said to fly across the sky and stop at each cemetery to resurrect any one deceased by the name of Thomas. If one see’s the cross in the cemetery given off a glow, then they know St. Thomas is nearby. He then blesses the spirits of all those named Thomas and then flies on to the next cemetery. St. Thomas’s link to the dead suggests he maybe an incarnation of Odin who also ruled over the dead, in his case as members of his Wild Hunt in Merry Old England the night of St. Thomas’ travels was also a night to go “A Thomassin’ or “a good in which consisted of the trick or treat like practice of going door to door begging for food, drink, or money. In exchange for this act of charity the beggars would offer a sprig of holly or mistletoe to the household as a way to ensure good luck in the coming year. In old time Macedonia it was young boys who went door to door. This time it was an olive branch that was offered to get New Year on the proverbial right foot. As bloody Thomas the figure o Thomas was a Krampus or Knecht Ruprecht like figure. And so, it goes