Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Advent - Day 8

Advent - Day 8

"Merry Non-Denominational End-of-the-Year Gala (not that we're into that sort of thing) to You and Yours, or not Yours (both choices are equally valid)"

One trend that has come up recently is the push to take "Christmas" out of the holiday greetings, and the backlash from people who don't like it. We hear at International Day have looked into the matter and are comfortable declaring both sides ninnies.

First, to the people who are trying to take every last vestige of Christmas out of culture, get a life. People will always "decorate" their world with what's important to them, whether that means rock and roll bumper stickers, tean-beat posters, or, yes, Christmas decorations. Do they go too far? Sometimes, but only because of the tacky-factor. I concede you don't want government promoting religion, but a Nativity is hardly proselytizing at sword point. Rather, it is a reflection of that community, and as long as equal time was made for other traditions of community members (like Jews and Muslims), well, it seems like that would be a happy compromise.

More important that inane court fights, when someone wishes you a Merry Christmas, they are virtually never trying to
A) make you be a Christian
B) Put down your religion

Christmas in America rarely has much to do with God anyway. Yes, they share a name, but it has become a hybrid affair, full of a melange of traditions. Ask any 1st grader what Christmas celebrates and they're likely to tell you it's the birth of Santa. When someone wishes you a "Merry Christmas," they are usually only trying to be nice. Try to take it in that spirit.

And now, to the other side: to you who celebrate Christmas....

Pull your heads out of your....stockings, and try to realize that the world is bigger than your tiny limited experience. Some people don't celebrate Christmas. Why would they do that? Well, they could be Jewish or Muslim or any of a host of other religions. They could have had bad experiences growing up, or nor tradition whatsoever, and just aren't into it. They could have had a family member die close to Christmas, and for them the time is now a painful experience.

The point: there are a thousand valid reasons why someone would not celebrate Christmas. Don't let that stop you, but try to realize that not everyone is into it like you are, and your own exuberance can come across as obnoxious. Try to be respectful of other cultures, maybe even learn something about their traditions. If someone doesn't celebrate Christmas because of bad experiences, count yourself lucky you didn't go through that and try to be extra loving to the person. Let me tell you something, and if you learn nothing else in your life, learn this: a little extra compassion and understanding promotes your "Christmas Spirit" far more than forcing someone to wear a Santa hat, accept a gift or eat your kids' awful cookies.

Good one, Hyperion. Good one.

We here at International Day celebrate all forms of Winter Holidays, both out of compassion and as a opportunity for you to give me presents! (Giving helps you!!)

We celebrate the following (and would love to add more if you know of any)....

Winter Solstice
Dinosaur Present Day (Featuring T-Rex)
Ramadan (I know it's already happened, but if you want to send me presents....)

May whatever holiday you subscribe to be all the awesome you can handle


Bogart said...

Ninnies! Excellent descriptor... and how about those who wish you "Merry Kwaastmasukkah!" Why can't people simply rejoice in others' happiness?! For Jebus' sake, by the time they were three, my sons learned to be happy (and not jealous) about their sibling's birthday, etc.

Kaida said...

Good one, Hyperion. Good one.