This has been something that hasn’t sit well with me for a long time now, and that’s religious references and undertones in MLP. This is mainly seen through the character Rarity, who- on occasion, uses terms such as “For Celestia’s Sake”, which is a phase that switches out “God’s” (sake) and replaces it with “Celestia’s” (sake). Now this is a problem, because it replaces God’s name with that of a fictional character’s. Furthermore, this implies that Rarity, and perhaps other ponies, might view Celestia as some sort of deity (as many of the fandom tends to do). The phrase in and of itself in its original context, could be seen as blasphemy toward God, as Rarity uses it (“for Celestia’s sake.”/ “with Celestia as my witness”) or Rainbow Dash uses it when addressing Derpy (“In the name of Celestia, just sit there and do nothing!”) (God replaced with Celestia, and thus revering her as God) as a sign of urgency, impatience, or annoyance, does not “bless”, “praise”, or “glorify God”, as Psalm 113: 2-3 clearly states, in relation to Exodus 20:7, which outlines that God condemns those who take up the name of him in “a worthless way” (or abuse of his name by disrespecting it; or by saying it in vain). King James Version “Blessed be the name of the Lord from this time forth and for evermore. From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the Lord's name is to be praised.” New World Translation: “May Jehovah’s name be praised From now on until forever. From the rising of the sun to its setting, let Jehovah’s name be praised.” New American Standard version: Blessed be the name of the Lord From this time forth and forever. From the rising of e sun to its setting The name of the Lord is to be praised. Byington: “Be Jehovah’s name blessed from now to eternity! From sunrise land to sunset Jehovah’s name is to be praised” Aside from Rarity and Rainbow, we’ve often seen ponies bow before Celestia, who they clearly seem as God, or a god(dess). Exodis 20:4 states “Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth” while Exodus 20: 5 states “Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them” The Hebrew word for “image” (tselem (צלם)) translates to “likeness”, as seen in the scripture of Genesis 1:27 “God made man in his image” (or likeness) "b'tselem elohim". The Summer Sun Celebration in FiM also points back to religious origins, as the Summer Solstice (irl) was a time of the year where the sun was at its highest peak in the sky, and where many ancient cultures marked this date as significant enough to implement the tradition of sun worship. Societies that were agricultural (such as Ponyville, in fiction), depended on the sun for life and sustenance, and thus, the sun became defied. Celestia fits the definition of being a ‘God”, as she is the image- or “likeness” of the sun, has power over the sun itself- thus, a SUN GOD(dess), much like real life lore of sun gods/ goddesses, who have the populace of their kingdom held in reverential awe and worship of them (“bowing down” Exodus 23: 24 “You must not bow down to their gods or be persuaded to serve them, and you must not imitate their practices ” Exodus 20:5 “You must not bow down to them or worship them, for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God who will not tolerate your affection for any other gods”. Deuteronomy 4:15 “Therefore, watch yourselves closely- that you may not act corruptly by making for yourselves any carved image having the form of any symbol, the representation of male or female, the representation of any animal on the earth or the representation of any bird that flies in the sky, the representation of anything creeping on the ground or the representation of any fish in the waters under the earth. And when you raise your eyes to the heavens and see the sun and the moon and the stars—all the army of the heavens—do not get seduced and bow down to them and serve them.”) Sun Worship is also evident in the tradition of MLP’s Hearth’s Warming, which is seen as a parallel to Christmas, which is frequently focused on, moreso than any other holiday tradition. Louis Réau, a member of the famed French Institute who occupied the chair of Middle-Age art at the Sorbonne, France’s leading university, wrote “Despite the theologians’ aversion to admitting the pagan origin of Christian ceremonies, most of them recognize however that one must look to the agrarian and funeral rites of the [pagan] Romans to find the origin and explanation of numerous Christian celebrations.” Réau says, Christian leaders “maintained the date of the [pagan] religious feasts.” He points out that the adoption of heathen holidays and the continuing of them under another name “considerably facilitated the rapid Christianization of the pagan world.” The Great Soviet Encyclopedia states ““Christmas .... was borrowed from the pre-Christian worship of gods ‘dying and rising from the dead,’ which was especially prevalent among agricultural peoples who, in a period usually confined to the winter solstice from December 21-25, annually celebrated the ‘birth’ of the God-Savior, who wakens nature to new life.” Originally, this was adopted from pagan practices who venerated the sun. Ancient northern peoples feared that the long darkness of December would conquer the sun. As part of a magical rite, they decorated their homes with holly, ivy, mistletoe, laurels and other evergreens because these seemed to have supernatural ability to survive. Candles and fires were burned in an attempt to revive the dying sun. In parts of Europe the ceremonial burning of a log is still practiced. This largely coincides with the Roman festival of Saturnalia, which involves feasting at one anothers’ houses, roaming the streets calling to one another ‘Io Saturnalia”, which is equivalent to “Merry Christmas”. In the middle of this period of general gaiety,” explains The Story of Christmas, “there was a day set aside for special reverence to the sun whose apparent rebirth on the Winter Solstice had originally provided the excuse for all these widespread pagan jollifications. This day was known as Dies Solis Invicti Nati, the Day of the Birth of the Unconquered Sun, and it fell on what corresponds to 25 December in our calendar.” This celebration was later labeled Christmas so that the Roman population might be attracted to a decadent “Christianity.” As the book Christmas admits: “The Christian Church .... in the 4th century found it convenient to take over the sacred pagan day of December 25, the winter solstice ... The birthday of the sun became the birthday of the Son of God.” We see many of these things incorporated into the Equestrian festival of Hearth’s Warming. Lights with the evergreens, dancing, the exchanging of gifts, and the burning of candles and fireplaces. the New Americanized Encyclopedia Britannica, 1900, Vol. IX, page 5236, says: “Saturnalia . . . celebrated on the 19th . . . lasted seven days. During the festival schools were closed. . . . Gambling with dice, at other times illegal, was practiced. All classes exchanged gifts, the commonest being tapers and clay dolls. These dolls were especially given to children. Varro thought that these dolls represented original sacrifices of human beings (children to the ‘Infernal God’).” The fact that Equestrian ponies also exchange dolls and leave them on the fireplace- fire being attributed to the sun god- is telling. The celebration can be further traced back to ancient Babylonia where the people worshiped the sun-god Shamash.