My miraculous travels with Santa
A journey to the roots of European culture through St Nicholas
Beyond the feast of St. Nichlas lays a rather frightening Indo-European myth; Odin’s army of dead warriors: The Wild Hunt.
He braught gifts and fertility, welfare, plentiful crops as well as bounties of fruits and nuts. And as tradition has it, he coummunicated through the chimneys, riding his white horse or reindeer through the skies, along with his black faced sidekick, named Black Peter, using his rod of fertility.
Holland played a major role in the spread of the St. Nicholas or ‘Sinterklaas’ cult. Odin’s army still exists not only in myth, but also in ritualistic practices.
While other investigators studied the subject from behind the books in their libraries, he [Arnold-Jan Scheer] took trains, cars, even helicopters and went climbing in search of remote villages within Europa (some villages before 150 years so isolated, they had almost no contact with the outside world) where still until this day annual primitive and unknown Saint Nicolas rituals are celebrated.
These rituals can strongly differ from the feast rituals in more urban area. Scheer discovered throughout these travels in places in Europe (and even in his own country) the thin lines connecting these rites to the ancestors of Europeans and many Americans.
This myth and ritial forms, annually celebrated by the ancient Europeans, became mixed with other traditions during and after the middle ages through the influence of the Roman Catholic Church with the Bishop of Myra (nowadays Turke; the Bisshop died around 340 AD).
Meanwhile this cult reached Northwestern Europe via the Rhine and the sea, later arriving in Holland and its capital Amsterdam. Much later this cult came with the first Dutch settlers to their colony New Amsterdam (New York), where St. Nicolas (Dutch Sinterklaas) over the ages transformed into todays Jolly Old St. Nick.