Merry Christmas. Joulupukki may be the origin of Santa. It seems that Santa is not St Nick or Christian. Was there ever any doubt?? A friend told me it goes back to the Saami, the native Finns, who dressed in red and white and would give people red and white magic mushrooms on the solstice. Ahh the flying reindeers now make sense.
I am not sure if this is the case – but a quick google shows articles about this from the NY Times and NPR.
The idea of gift giving in general is fantastic – so lets just have more festivals where we have to give gifts.