Imagine, if you will, long ago — the moment when humankind first started to become aware of its surroundings on a deeper level. Who was that first curious, inspired human to look up to the sky and make sense of the patterns? The sun’s path, the moon’s shapes, repeating. Two pieces, intertwined, marking time — clocks!
In an epoch without internet to pass the days and nights in entertainment and diversion, Man observed the movements of the sun and moon, day after day, night after night, taking note, memorizing. Our YouTube was his waxing crescent, our Netflix his sun at the vernal equinox. A perfectly full moon must have been seen as an object of awe — so much so that as a group they would have stayed up all night in revelry (by a crackling bonfire, perhaps?), which surely meant they were too exhausted to rouse the following day until the sun was already high in the sky. The first formal rest day in human history! Then it was back to work — gathering, building, the daily grind. It would be many suns rising and setting, and its light on the moon incrementally waning and waxing again, until the next night of revelry, and the next rest day — about 28 or 29 or even 30 suns in a row! That’s a long haul! How they must have anticipated that special night and the following day of rest. Surely only once per moon cycle is not enough! And it wasn’t. At some point, someone clever must have proposed, “And what of the full moon’s opposite — when there is no light on the moon and it appears fully dark? Certainly there must be auspice in that! Another, albeit lesser, night of revelry? Indeed! And the following day, another rest day!” And so it was, two nights of revelry per moon cycle, about 14 suns separating the full moon from the new moon. And again in time, someone clever — a union of workers, lobbying perhaps? — must have proposed, “And what of the perfect half-moons? Are they not auspicious as well?” “Certainly,” the leaders in time must have concluded, “on the night of the waning half-moon we will revel, as well as on the night of the waxing half-moon, with a rest day to follow each.”
And so it was that the rest days were established from then on — seven suns separating the full moon from the waning half-moon; seven suns separating the waning half-moon from the new moon; seven suns separating the new moon from the waxing half-moon; and seven suns separating the waxing half-moon back to the full moon. One moon cycle. One “month.” And the span of seven suns separating the nights of revelry had come to be called a “week.” And the weekend, the day of rest, four per moon cycle, was called the Sabbath.

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