Christmas is a season of spiritual wonder. We know that prayer works, but going to church?

A new study strongly suggests that regular attendance at religious services reduces the risk of death by approximately 20%. And new archeological findings have unearthed evidence that over a thousand years ago, people believed that the soul was separate from the body.
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What would the holidays be without those familiar scents?the fresh spruce tree, peppermint candy canes, mulled cider? But alas, some of these smells can be torture for those of us who carry a specific gene.

We know that smells trigger memories and the absence of holiday smells would confuse our brains. Neuroscientist Tyler Lorig says that our sense of smell is central to our ability to make sense of a particular experience. If, for instance, you walk into a room with a nice, fresh evergreen tree and there is no odor to it, or the odor is not what you expect, that experience will not make as much sense to you.
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Eight years ago, Anne Strieber wrote about Christmas as a spiritual journey. We feel that this diary is still important today, so we’re reminding you about it for THIS Christmas. If you love Anne’s diaries, support this site: Subscribe today!

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UPDATE from Marla Frees! – Many people think that Jesus was the author of “the golden rule,” but he was actually demonstrating his scholarship by quoting Rabbi Hillel. But is this a good rule to live by? Only if by “doing unto others,” you’re talking about POSITIVE things.

Psychologists have discovered that, in everyday social exchanges, being mean to people has a lot more impact than being nice, which may be why people in power, such as movie and TV executives, act the way they do.
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