Merry Christmas!

If you live in a developed nation, there’s a good chance you have Christmas Day off from work. In any nation with a Christian heritage, it’s the legacy of a religious holiday. In Japan, the day before is a holiday, simply because it happens to be the Emperor’s birthday. In China, it’s a major shopping day.

In years past I’ve gone into the pagan roots of this holiday, and how it’s hardly Christian at all. I’ve speculated about why Christianity took the various turns it did, and discussed the times when Christmas, the drinking holiday was banned.

None of this has anything to do with our present reality, however.

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The Meaning of Christmas?

it’s a time for reflection, a time for remembering. it’s a time for sleeping and wondering.

No matter what you might think of this time of the year, there is one constant around the world. Winter is a time of renewal for earth and body, in spirit and mind. The utter destruction and chaos as the news relates the daily collapse of the Trump world feels like an end, which it very much is. But in that ending there is the potential and maybe even promise of a better new world.

That is the real story of Christmas – no matter how you want to read it.

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A Charlie Brown Christmas

Christmas is a time for remembering everything that has come before us. It’s not a kind of memorial day when we remember what we lost, but instead a day to remember the great gifts that have come to us over the many years. The circle of gratitude is widened every year as the holiday expands with new love and new memories.

It may be more important this year than ever.

One tradition for many people about my age is “A Charlie Brown Christmas”. In many ways this defines the tension of Christmas itself, even though very little in popular culture has been willing to decry the commercialism that is the true “War on Christmas”. And in the process it gave us a new definition of holiday cheer, bringing Vince Guaraldi’s cool jazz into the warm holiday like a sprig of winter itself.

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When It All Stops

A quiet grey day in Saint Paul rustles slowly as the kids and animals laze deep into the morning.  There’s no reason to get up early – no obligations, nowhere to be, no sun calling.  The holiday has started on its own time, creeping into our lives without much fuss and fanfare because that’s how it comes.  The holiday starts when everything else stops.

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Charlie Brown Christmas

Christmas is a time for remembering everything that has come before us. It’s not a kind of memorial day when we remember what we lost, but instead a day to remember the great gifts that have come to us over the many years. The circle of gratitude is widened every year as the holiday expands with new love and new memories.

It may be more important this year than ever.

One tradition for many people about my age is “A Charlie Brown Christmas”. In many ways this defines the tension of Christmas itself, even though very little in popular culture has been willing to decry the commercialism that is the true “War on Christmas”. And in the process it gave us a new definition of holiday cheer, bringing Vince Guaraldi’s cool jazz into the warm holiday like a sprig of winter itself.

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The Sensible Assupmption

There is still far too much on my plate these daze.  A repeat from 2007, when Barataria started, is a good lead-in to the upcoming tenth anniversary.  This basic philosophy still stands – the world is either magical or terrifying, depending on how you let your imagination run.  Whichever you pick is up to you.  But the systems which run the world are based on a very different assumption all around.

This time of the year, the holidays bring back memories that allow us to see the world, once again, through the eyes of a child. This is not some sentimental side effect of the rituals we go through, but is in many ways the reason they are important. A few moments spent contemplating this over a swirling mug of cocoa can show that seeing the world through the eyes of a child is actually a vital lesson.

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