Merry Christmas. May All Your Horoscopes Be Good.
Every year I give my spiel about how the three Magi were in fact, astrologers. Astrologers were the wise men of their day. In fact, there are many instances of the role of astrology in the time of Jesus. Astronomers and astrologers agree that the stars were aligned in such a way as to create an especially bright star in the heavens around that time. Astrologers add that there was a great planetary alignment going on as well.
This particular explanation seems the most accurate to me: In September of 3 B.C., Jupiter came into conjunction with Regulus, the star of kingship, the brightest star in the constellation Leo the Lion. Leo was the constellation of kings, and it was associated with the Lion of Judah. Just a month earlier, Jupiter and Venus had almost seemed to touch each other in another close conjunction, also in Leo. Then the conjunction between Jupiter and Regulus was repeated in February and May of 2 B.C. Finally, on June 17, 2 B.C., Jupiter and Venus, the two brightest objects in the night sky except for the moon, came so close that their disks appeared to touch. This exceptionally rare event could not have been missed by observers such as the Wise Men.
The three wise men (or Magi) were by most accounts, astrologers since astrologers in those days were the ones who were learned and wise.
In addition to the astrology component of Christmas there is also an aromatherapy aspect. The gifts of frankincense and myrrh are symbolic of the two major religions of Jesus with frankincense representing Christianity and myrrh representing Judiasm.
No matter what you celebrate this time of year, all the best for a very happy holiday!