the Christmas season is upon us… er… the holiday season….. er… Winter solstice… er…. man trying to figure out what is PC in these days is confusing. I enjoy celebrating Christmas. I get why other people don’t… but at the same time I don’t get it. Does that sound stupid? …Maybe it is… however if we think about it for a second, ignoring the religious implications (that seem to turn some people off), I think all of us should have many good reasons to celebrate the Christmas season.
As I’ve mentioned, I get why people don’t celebrate this festive holiday. In my experience there are two main reasons, with the first being obvious: If you don’t subscribe to Christian beliefs, then why bother celebrating the holiday commemorating the birth of Jesus? The second reason is general disgust with how commercialized Christmas has become, which of course turns people off, because, viewed through that lens, Christmas is just a sad reflection on Consumerism and materialism (especially here in the good ol’ U.S of A.)
So, we have the reasons why not to celebrate Christmas. I will even admit that we Christians can often go a long way to ruin the potential upside of the holiday, especially with our over the top, reactionary “war on Christmas” rhetoric, when we get upset every time that someone requests we use the more inclusive “happy holidays” at a social gathering. We can definitely rub “outsiders” the wrong way when we get so adamant about how important Christmas is. Heck, I’ve had holiday gatherings ruined by overly vocal Christmas celebrants!
With all that in mind, I think there is a good reason that, even if you don’t feel like it’s “Your” holiday, there’s still good reason to celebrate, and the reason is simple, in my point of view: Lets take away the religious origin of the holiday, and take away the consumerism, and what is there left. In my view, we have that cute phrase, “the spirit of the season!”
That catch phrase seems to get lost on most people, but it’s the phrase that can make this time of year special for everyone. the spirit is a spirit of giving, a spirit of love, tolerance, and charity. In short, it is a universal spirit, and a message that everyone, both christian and not, need to hear way more often. And it’s a time where many people are more willing to look inward and realize how much more they can be and do, especially for others.
I guess all I’m saying in this brief post is that you shouldn’t feel left out when someone says “Merry Christmas” to you. Even if the religious side of the holiday doesn’t resonate with you, and even if you don’t want to put up a giant tree that drips tiny, obnoxious green needles and decorate it with random ornaments like Jar-Jar Binks and Katniss Everdeen (I’m definitely not speaking from anyone’s personal experience there). Even if you feel turned off by the consumerism, my invitation is that you get caught up in the good spirit and philosophy behind it. Join us in celebrating the idea that we as humans can be more self-sacrificing. And if you see us christian folk not doing the same, you have my permission to call us out on it (because you and I both know that my permission is worth it’s weight in gold… which would be… nothing. I assume… Since you can’t really weigh “permission…”). Please consider having a merry Christmas this year. And even if that seems silly to you, well I still heartily wish you a happy holiday season as well.