The history of the emergence of Ivan Kupala, as an antagonist of the new religion, is traditionally associated with the advent of Christianity. The whole year has been waiting for this day, they were preparing for it in the hope of receiving some kindness from the gods, to whom certain sacrifices were made. The holiday begins at night, on the bank of a river or another reservoir, when a modern person sees only the possibility of his participation in ancient rituals, where you can, undressed naked, circle in a round dance, jump over a fire and then dive into the water. The girls wove wreaths and let them adrift, in the hope of attracting their narrowed.
The main attribute of the holiday of Ivan Kupala was the fern flower, which fulfills desires and opens all castles and treasures. The belief said that the fern blooms only on the Kupala night, and many who wished to enjoy this wonderful phenomenon made a lot of effort to find it.
The mythological significance of this holiday has long been lost among the people, and therefore the ancient pagan tradition is used only in witchcraft practices and folk omens, which need not be interpreted. Neither scholarly historians, nor theologians who deny all paganism as a whole, nor the pagans themselves, who are trying to recreate the old custom, know this value. Only the general rite has been preserved, which includes round dance, fire and water.
Interpretation of the ancient folk festival on Ivan Kupala by religious figures or their opponents - representatives of science, who are trying to explain the essence of pagan customs, is far-fetched and does not correspond to reality. At the same time, both sides have equal positions, where the “renegade” scientist should not be perceived as a representative of science, and the theologian-scholar has knowledge in this matter no less than that of an academician from history.
One of the factors contributing to the attraction of people to pagan holidays was the emergence of Russian fiction, a kind of fairy tale, built on a pagan worldview. Alexander Green said on this occasion that the tale is needed not only for children, but also for adults. Fairy tale causes excitement - the source of high and human passions. She does not allow us to calm down and always shows new, glittering distances, a different life, she is disturbing and makes us crave for this life. This is its value.
Pagan views have long been preserved among the people and manifested themselves in game variants, rituals, round games, songs, fairy tales, the religious essence of which has long been eroded. The symbolic principles of paganism were forgotten, and fairy tales lost their mythological meaning. And the forms of pagan creativity repeated by descendants are represented by peasant culture, in which the belief of “small” deities (village magic) has survived. For example, belief in the brownie and other representatives of the parallel world, cutting the “fetus” of a born child or when hiding the first tooth that fell out and much more.
Paganism in Russia is preserved in the form of celebrations and rituals on New Year's holidays, and the Christmas of John the Forerunner (Ivan Kupala) is in the circle of the calendar opposite the birth of Jesus Christ, so he is called the Forerunner. In Christianity there is a corresponding story about this when the unborn Jesus and John met and got to know each other.
The people do not want to forget the pagan rite they like, subconsciously considering it an important event in their lives, and rightly so, such festivities bring people together. They allow people, as Alexander Green spoke about this, to meet with a fairy tale, which is necessary not only for children, but also for adults, for awareness of inner sensual excitement. For such a purely personal peace on the background of a general holiday, no paganism with its incomprehensible views is needed. Therefore, there was a holiday in which the people do not make special religious judgments.