Christmas is a fascinating time of year.
While celebrating the birth of Christ is natural in the Christian faith, I understand that he was probably born in September. December 25 was apparently a big Pagan holiday, which was conveniently used (manipulated) to attract more interest in the Christian church.
On a more ethical note, it is a time of year when giving is actively promoted. It is probably the only time of the year when those less fortunate than ourselves are given a high level of media coverage with “helping them” being the key message. It seems unclear how those same “less fortunate” people manage in between Christmas’s, but at least they are helped over this holiday period.
I have to smile when I see the “Keep Christ in Christmas” signs, because while I support Christmas being a celebration of Christ (Christ and Christmas do have some common spelling), I do have trouble taking the date seriously given the apparent Pagan origin of the celebration date.
What this means to me, is simply that for those of us that wish to celebrate the birth of Christ, then we might as well use the now established date of December 25. We should however acknowledge that the date is not his actual birth date, but is now only symbolic of the event.
Taking this rationale further, we should not be negative about the crass commercialism and self-gratification aspects of Christmas. Perhaps we could believe that they are the Pagan origins coming to the surface?
I consider myself a Christian (although I was called “the most non-christian Christian I have known” by somebody a long time ago), and can use this time of year for contemplating my belief structure. I can indulge in materialistic celebrations if that is my desire but, most of all, I really should acknowledge that there are so many people in our world that are much less fortunate than me.
As Christians, or as members of other religions, or even as Pagans… we really should offer a helping hand to our struggling colleagues. As for keeping Christ in Christmas? Well the sentiment is very nice and Christians will obviously support it… but for others? All those on this planet who are not Christian but will be having a holiday over the Christmas period , please raise your hands. I thought so…….. there are lots of you!
Perhaps instead of debating Christ’s birth date; instead of criticizing the commercialism associated with Christmas, and instead of taking perhaps the “moral high ground” in general, we should just use the time of year to show that we do care about each other. Regardless of any spiritual belief, we all like to be treated with respect. We all want the security of peace; of a roof over our head, and of food in our stomachs.
Our Christmas holiday can be so much more than a convenient, and self-serving, Christian tradition. You have the power to make it so.