The Significance of Holidays
Holidays are cultural rituals. Humans have celebrated rituals since we first huddled together in caves.
The hunters dragged home a mammoth? We celebrated. Time for a newborn to be named and inducted into the clan? We celebrated. The search for a larger, more spacious cave was successful? We celebrated. And each time, we followed the celebratory customs handed down to us by our forebears.
The purpose of ritual is to teach, reinforce and revel in the shared values and beliefs of a society. The benefits of ritual are numerous. We acknowledge our commonality, thereby strengthening our bonds. We elucidate our place in the greater scheme, instilling in each of us a sense of security and purpose. And we simply let loose, blow off steam, rejoice, briefly casting aside our burdens and transcending our mortality.
So celebrating rituals is good for everyone, individuals as well as groups. And chocolate—giving it, sharing it, relishing it—has long been customary in many rituals around the world.