Tuesday, December 02, 2008

So This Is Christmas?

Several years ago my Mister bought Sarah Mclachlan's christmas album for me from itunes, I start listening to it the day after thanksgiving, and keep it in until spring. She sings John Lennon's Happy Xmas, and it's one of my favorite songs on the album, and I think despite the "secular" nature of the song, it really makes you think about what christmas is supposed to be about.
Today I read a good post atPoliticaLDS about how we have become so materialistic, and greedy. We've taken something that is supposed to be a time where we think about the birth of our savior and what that has meant in our lives and turned it into a shopping frenzy. I've cut back a little this year, but I still fall into the trap of, "oh, I just need to buy this one more thing". Christmas becomes a time where I buy the things I've been wanting all year long (for myself or other people) instead of a time to be grateful and content with the blessings that I have. Even in the do-gooding, we end up buying more stuff. It's a dilemma. It seems sad that a child would go without a new toy christmas morning, but there are children all over the world who go without food every morning.

Another interesting post I read on One Utah where in the comments they were discussing the ridiculousness of "Winter Oreos" when they should stop trying to be politically correct, and just call them Christmas Oreos (since I'm sure Jesus really appreciates specially colored oreos in his honor).


derekstaff said...

I can't believe anyone would care what they call the holiday Oreos (the only reason I think "Christmas Oreos" would be better is because of the temptation to contract "Winter Oreos" into "W'Oreos." Just doesn't sound right.

I'm sure Buttars is already adding that into his bill...

"So This is Christmas" is definitely my favorite secular Christmas song, hands down.

Allie said...

I realized I didn't finish my thought on the song- that's what happens when I add things in at the last minute (and also when I ought to be giving my kids more attention).

I haven't heard a lot about Buttars' "resolution", just briefly on ksl radio tonight- but things like that really irk me. Why in the world do we spend time discussing pointless resolutions when we have some major issues that need to be addressed?

On the Nightside project they were talking about Buttars saying that this is a christian nation and we ought to all say Merry Christmas, well excuse me, it's not a christian nation. It may have been founded on christian principles, but moreso, it was founded on a belief that all men ought to be able to practice whatever religion they want.

(this is where I walk away muttering "stupid, stupid, stupid")

Salt H2O said...

My biggest problem at Christmas time is finding avenues to help. I'd love to spend Christmas day serving others but it's hard to find an opportunity in Utah because they have SO many volunteers (which isn't a bad thing)

I think it's easier to appreciate Christmas when you're financially strapped.

derekstaff said...

Allie, I checked out McLachlan's album and ended up buying a couple of the songs ("Happy Xmas" and "Song for a Winter's Evening"). Thanks for the recommendations. BTW, you might enjoy a few of Sarah Brightman's songs from A Winter Symphony. Beautiful stuff.

Salt, I can't say whether or not it is easier to appreciate Christmas when financially strapped—maybe someday I won't be strapped and can verify...

In any case, I can say that there is no shortage of avenues for service. Call your bishop and see if he needs help. Look in the Newspaper; most have a volunteers section somewhere (help wanted). Call the local United Way, YW/MCA, March of Dimes, nursing home, etc. I bet you won't have to make too many calls before someone eagerly takes you up on your offer.

Kevin said...

I just think it's silly that the company would go out of their way to have red- and green-packaged Oreos around Chrismas-time and call them "Winter Oreos". I think if they want to make them Christmas themed, they ought to just do so.

Christmas is about much more than just Jesus. Yes, it's too materialistic. It's not just a religious holiday and it never was. (At least, it wasn't always a Christian holiday.) It's a cultural tradition which goes beyond religion.

Our society would be well-served to have a diverse patch-work of religions, languages, foods, ideas, and traditions. I don't think it's desirable to water down our traditions in the name of tolerance. Our focus ought to be on celebrating our differences, and appreciating people who are different; it should not be about trying to make everyone the same.

Allie said...

I think you're missing the point Kevin. Red and green are colors that represent this time of year, and there are people who don't celebrate christmas but who do eat oreos. Why would nabisco (is that who makes oreos) limit their customer base by picking one of the holidays that people celebrate this time of year. "Winter" is safe, and doesn't exclude any potential consumers.

I agree that we should not have to water down our beliefs in the name of tolerance, but I also think we need to be secure enough in our beliefs to allow others their own beliefs as well.

Kevin said...

OK, it's not a big deal that they call them "Winter Cookies," and they have a strategic interest in doing so.

I still think it's silly (in a "why would they even bother" way, not a "they are waging a war on Christians" way.)