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My gripe about Christmas.

TressetTresset Member, Moderator Posts: 7,916
Having kept quiet about this for the three years I have been on the forum, I feel now that I can hold it in no longer.

In my religion, Christmas does not begin until the evening of the 24th of December and it does not end until approximately 3 weeks after that. The time we are in now is what I call Advent, and it starts about 4 weeks before Christmas day. Advent is a season of preparation for the upcoming Christmas season. During this time I am not really supposed to celebrate Christmas at all. Once Christmas finally comes on the 24th of December, I celebrate it for the full approximately 3 weeks that it lasts. From my perspective it is rather strange that most of the rest of the world celebrates Christmas starting on Black Friday and stops all celebrations immediately upon the arrival of the 26th of December.

Now, I am not saying that anyone should do anything differently. I am just sharing how jarring this season can be for me because of these facts. I guarantee you, however, that you won't see a Santa hat on my avatar until the 4th week of Advent at the earliest, and that when I do decide to put it on, it will stay on until the season is officially over! Just wanted to say that.

Also, given that religion can be a heated topic, remember to be respectful to everyone if you choose to reply in this thread.

NonnahswriterJuliusBorisovloliendunbarAnduinFlashburnVallmyrwojtekSionIV
«134

Comments

  • TressetTresset Member, Moderator Posts: 7,916
    edited December 2015
    That is one of the worst things for me about this: By the time I feel like celebrating Christmas, the radio has taken all the Christmas music off the air!

    elminsterlolienAnduin
  • jjstraka34jjstraka34 Member Posts: 8,732
    The only gripe I have about Christmas is the straw-man the political right in the US has made out of the so-called "war" being waged on it, in which someone saying "Happy Holidays" is akin to slapping a grandmother in a wheelchair across the face. Our country is somewhere around 80-90% Christian, you couldn't escape the Christmas holiday even if you were in a coma. The perceived aggrievement of some who are in fact a OVERWHELMING majority is maddening. It apparently never occurs to people that "Happy Holidays" is used because there are something like 4 or 5 MAJOR holidays packed into a 2 month span, and people say it because they have other things to do in their lives besides list them off one by one.

    Nonnahswriter
  • NonnahswriterNonnahswriter Member Posts: 2,520

    you couldn't escape the Christmas holiday even if you were in a coma.

    And suddenly, "sugar plums dancing in their heads" takes on a whole new meaning. D:

    lolienAnduinSmilingSwordEmpyrial
  • JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 20,804
    Maybe it happens because people like holidays and now they feel they have an excuse of celebrating X-mas "because it's December". Like feeling "it's the last month of the year, and the year was not simple, so we deserve to have fun". I also think it is due to not having enough patience, of course, and maybe the fact that Christmas today is not only a holiday for religious people.

    New Year's Day doesn't help either, because it comes shortly after Christmas - so that many people turn their attention to another holiday as soon as the 26th of December arrives.

    Personally, I very much divide Christmas - one is the holiday I celebrate with all other people (including this forum). But there's another Christmas for me - the one that happens precisely on time and involves only me and my family.

    lolien
  • YamchaYamcha Member Posts: 481
    Why do you celebrate for weeks after the 24th, what sect does that?

  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    @Yamcha I would guess some protestant church.

  • joluvjoluv Member Posts: 2,136
    But three weeks? I thought Christmastide was only 12 days.

    Anduin
  • brusbrus Member Posts: 944
    @joluv ,if only could Christmas spirit last whole year.

    joluvsemiticgod
  • TressetTresset Member, Moderator Posts: 7,916
    edited December 2015
    @joluv Well, the Christmas season officially ends in my faith with the feast of the Baptism of the Lord. The Baptism of the Lord feast day happens on the first Sunday after January 6th. This means that the Christmas season can end on one of 7 dates in January, so it can last for anywhere from 2-3 weeks. A bit confusing, I know...

    joluvNonnahswriter
  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    @Tresset The tone of your first post a is a bit weird if you're catholic, since it suggests you're in some sort of minority...

  • YamchaYamcha Member Posts: 481
    Any Jewish around that can explain their take on Christmas. I know Jesus isn't their messiah, but he must have some meaning for them too ? (and for Muslims too ?)

    It's funny that in Germany the meaning of Christmas is mostly non-religious nowadays.
    The older generation(grand- and great-grandparents, 50+) still partake in church rituals, from there on the religious factor gets less important to not important at all.

    ButtercheeseSmilingSword
  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
    I'm not jewish but from what I remember they don't celebrate christmas, but rather the release of the jewish people from slavery, Hanukkah.

    Overall, it's great how all over the world religion is finally losing its hold over the common people.

    ButtercheeseSethDavisSkatanYamcha
  • joluvjoluv Member Posts: 2,136
    Jesus is not an important figure in Judaism. There have been many people throughout history who have claimed to be the Messiah, with varying degrees of success in building a following. All of these claims are considered false in Judaism, and Jesus is just seen as a particularly successful false claimant. This means that views on him mostly range from apathetic to very negative. The stereotypical American Jewish "celebration" of Christmas is to get Chinese food and go to a movie, because most other businesses are closed.

    In Islam, Jesus is considered a prophet and the Messiah, but not the son of God. Christmas is not celebrated by Muslims. Here's a more complete answer:
    https://www.quora.com/How-do-Muslims-celebrate-Christmas

    Yamcha
  • joluvjoluv Member Posts: 2,136
    @FinneousPJ: Passover is the commemoration of the Jews' release from slavery in Egypt, and it is a very important holiday. Hannukah is less religiously significant but has been elevated in American culture because it happens during the "holiday season." It commemorates the reclaiming of the temple in Jerusalem by the Jews after successfully revolting against the Seleucid Empire. (I'm leaning on Wikipedia here.)

    Overall, it's great how all over the world religion is finally losing its hold over the common people.

    Maybe not *all* over the world.

    SethDavisYamcha
  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456
  • TressetTresset Member, Moderator Posts: 7,916
    edited December 2015

    Overall, it's great how all over the world religion is finally losing its hold over the common people.

    I wouldn't call that "great", but whatever; I would rather not get into that here...

    QbertNimranmeagloth
  • FinneousPJFinneousPJ Member Posts: 6,456

    Around here, Christmas starts as early as the Big Corporations feel they can 'Reasonably' (this is a HIGHLY subjective term) start showing sale commercials. There are even several memes surrounding "Hey, we haven't even killed the Turkey yet."

    @the_spyder image

    In deference to everyone everywhere, celebrate the holidays as you see fit and let everyone else do the same. If someone greets you with the holiday greetings specific to their religion/belief system (or quite simply don't acknowledge anything at all and merely say "hi"), They aren't intending to offend you nor in any way indoctrinate you into their beliefs. Probably in most cases they haven't thought beyond all of the family and friends madness and mayhem that they are dealing with within their own lives. So don't take it as anything other than they are wishing you happiness and well being.

    Truth. Sometimes you can get confused by strange wishes, but it's all fine.

    the_spyderMathsorcereriKrivetkoNimran
  • joluvjoluv Member Posts: 2,136

    If someone greets you with the holiday greetings specific to their religion/belief system (or quite simply don't acknowledge anything at all and merely say "hi"), They aren't intending to offend you nor in any way indoctrinate you into their beliefs. Probably in most cases they haven't thought beyond all of the family and friends madness and mayhem that they are dealing with within their own lives. So don't take it as anything other than they are wishing you happiness and well being.

    Constantly questioning motives is exhausting, so I mostly give individuals the benefit of the doubt on this. I'm not sure it's generally true, though. As of 2012, 47% of Americans believed there was a "war on Christmas" (http://www.publicpolicypolling.com/pdf/2011/HolidayPollResults121012.pdf). Sadly, I think some of those people try to "fight back" by using holiday greetings to reinforce the dominance of Christianity in American culture. If someone got mad about Starbucks' red cups, that seems like a clue.

  • SquireSquire Member Posts: 512

    The only gripe I have about Christmas is the straw-man the political right in the US has made out of the so-called "war" being waged on it, in which someone saying "Happy Holidays" is akin to slapping a grandmother in a wheelchair across the face.

    I think the reason for that is a lot of people think of it as "pandering to the muslims". I can kind of see where they're coming from, tbh, whether I agree or not...to them, the people behind this (most of whom are white middle class types who have never met a muslim in their lives, let alone found out how they feel about Christmas) have decided that muslims might get offended by something we've done for hundreds of years, so they do something that will offend lots of other people, but as they're white christians, their feelings don't matter. Not saying this is true, or that I believe it, but that's how those particular christians see it.

    However, people forget that Christmas wasn't originally a christian festival. It was a Pagan winter festival which the Catholic church decided to let them continue celebrating name to avoid a rebellion, so by total coincidence, Jesus was born on the exact same day as Saturnalia...how lucky was that?? ;)

    semiticgodSon_of_ImoenYamcha
  • the_spyderthe_spyder Member Posts: 5,018
    edited December 2015
    joluv said:

    Constantly questioning motives is exhausting, so I mostly give individuals the benefit of the doubt on this. I'm not sure it's generally true, though. As of 2012, 47% of Americans believed there was a "war on Christmas" (http://www.publicpolicypolling.com/pdf/2011/HolidayPollResults121012.pdf). Sadly, I think some of those people try to "fight back" by using holiday greetings to reinforce the dominance of Christianity in American culture. If someone got mad about Starbucks' red cups, that seems like a clue.

    Maybe.

    From my personal experience (and speaking only for myself), I am so busy/stressed about family and friends and celebrations and year end at work and the dozens of other factors that hit during that time of year, I am lucky to be able to remember my own name, let alone how I am supposed to greet Sally but not Fred.

    While I am sure there are people with an agenda out there, even if they have one it doesn't mean that you have to let it effect you. So what, the WHY they say whatever? Or at least that is the way I look at it.

    As for the Starbucks thing, I wish my life were together enough that I could worry about something so inconsequential.

    joluvNimran
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