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Posted by CB on December 16, 2011 at 09:16:21

In Reply to: Re: How do you feel about Xmas? posted by Conversation Starter on December 11, 2011 at 07:38:48:

I don't care what you call the holidays that come at this time of year. I get a amused at people who make such a BFD out of Xmas by "taking the Christ out" or those who insist that "Jesus is the reason for the season." Clearly, they know nothing about the history of western civilization and its customs. There's absolutely no historical evidence to support the belief that the birth of Jesus occured on December 25--it's just a human tradition the church developed to counteract the pagan celebration of the winter soltice. And that (the solitice) is the real reason for the season--in fact, all seasons are marked by equinoxes and soltices, both of which result from our tipsy planet wobbling about on its axis as it moves around the sun.

Since I am a follower/believer in Jesus Christ, I personally like the symbolism of celebrating the Light of the world coming into creation as a bawling, puking, messy baby born into a family of common laborers on the third day following the longest night of the year. Why would anyone in the world expect to be delivered from the darkness of death by the birth of another impoverished child, born in a time and place where the probability of survival to his first birthday was about 50/50? I love the irony.

I try to stay true to my understanding of the Master's life and teachings, and because of that, I get a little weirded out by all the cultural hoo-ha that goes on this time of year. In the United States, Christmas shopping is promoted as one's patriotic duty. Fear-based commerce has co-opted the inclination of good-willed people to be generous during a time when the earth becomes barren of fruit. That's a really bizaar cultural context, imo, for folks to be complaining about putting an "X" where Christ is supposed to be.

Supposedly, Xmas/Christmas is about celebrating family, which for religious types is smbolized by an infant born to near homeless squatters, an infant whose mother got knocked up outside of marriage. Given that kind of pedigree, I don't see getting all huffy about what people decide to call the holiday.

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