Once again, ‘tis the season for the beloved tradition of “The War on Christmas” – the bizarre media extravaganza of hysterically criticizing any organization that omits the word “Christmas” from official seasonal greetings or descriptions of decorated evergreen trees.
What makes this tradition so entertaining is its sheer irony. Never mind the fact that the only thing that set early Christianity apart from all other religions was that it was the only one that DIDN’T celebrate anything this time of year. Never mind the fact that Christmas is never mentioned in any of the Christian scriptures. Never mind that if Jesus even existed, he was most likely born sometime in the spring. Never mind that some of the first Christians to colonize North America – the lovely Puritans – flat out forbade the celebrating of Christmas; to the point of even forbidding people from saying “merry Christmas” and proclaiming the whole thing to be a devilish pagan tradition. Never mind that modern day Christmas customs were plagiarized from the pagan Norse celebration of Yule – equipped with everything from decorating an evergreen tree in the house, mistletoes, wreaths, Yule logs, gift giving, and cooking a big meal. Even the later invention of Santa Claus is probably based on the Norse deity Odin who, as legend would have it, had a long beard and would ride the sky on his flying horse, visiting the houses where children lived. The old tradition of leaving carrots, straw, or sugar in boots next to the fireplace for Odin’s horse to eat, and for Odin to then return the favor by replacing the food with gifts or candy, was probably the root of the modern tradition of hanging up stockings next to the fireplace.
But never mind all that. I would sooner argue over the nomenclature of Zeus Vs Jupiter than fight over the wording of some ubiquitous winter solstice celebration that has been hijacked by a cult that believes an ancient tribal Middle Eastern deity called Yahweh sent his son to be executed by the Romans. No – the most ridiculous part of the whole “War on Christmas” charade is the desire for official greetings and blessings to the general public to be Christian ones. One should always keep in mind that a greeting is meant for the person who is being addressed, not the party doing the addressing. Christians would easily understand the problem here if they were greeted more often with a “Happy Hanukkah” or a “Happy Ramadan” blessing when walking into large retail stores or while being addressed by elected officials.
It might, therefore, be concluded that “Christmas defenders” are either confused about who is being addressed, or only mean to address fellow Christians. And while the “Happy holidays” blessing is an inclusive one – meant for everyone and conveying a sincere attitude of ‘brotherly love’, the exclusive “merry Christmas” blessing is reserved for Christians only.
I would therefore like to wish everyone – religious or not; no matter which deity, prophecy, revelation, or any other tribal campfire legend that might have you enthralled, a very happy holiday season.