At the end of the year, do you celebrate anything with your family? The reason I ask is because I want to introduce my kid to the idea of giving and all that jazz, but without the religion, and I'm not quite sure how to go about it.
The short answer: We celebrate Christmas.
The long answer: Last year was the first year we struggled. Our son has just turned three years old and definitely understood more. Santa, gifts, holiday. I had heard Penn Jillette speak about how he and his wife spent Christmas with their two children. He questioned if it was right or not. To take something from someone. We don’t celebrate Ramadan so why Christmas…
He spoke of a song by Tim Minchin. “White wine in the sun.”
I really like Christmas
It’s sentimental, I know, but I just really like it
I am hardly religious
I’d rather break bread with Dawkins than Desmond Tutu, to be honest
And yes, I have all of the usual objections
To consumerism, the commercialisation of an ancient religion
To the westernisation of a dead Palestinian
Press-ganged into selling Playstations and beer
But I still really like it
I’m looking forward to Christmas
Though I’m not expecting a visit from Jesus
I’ll be seeing my dad
My brother and sisters, my gran and my mum
They’ll be drinking white wine in the sun
More lyrics: http://www.lyricsmode.com/lyrics/t/tim_minchin/#share
I, too, really like Christmas. As a child it was blissful. Not the gifts, but the warmth. The family. The togetherness. The random stranger finally stopping to say hello just because. I wrote about my dilemma last year here.
This year though, I think a little differnently. I mean we all grow and our thoughts and ideas evolve. This year, I feel less guilt about celebrating Christmas. I don’t feel like I’m taking it from anyone. I feel it is another rewashed, reused pagan holiday that the media has already secularized for me. I don’t care that the word christ happens to appear in Christmas.
For our family, it is not about the birth of Dionysus or Horus or Jesus. We will not sing carols that praise anyone. We just really like it. It’s sentimental, I know.