the christmas story

Although I tend to think that the reasons for not celebrating Christmas can most dispassionately be discussed around April or May, the start of December is possibly just the right time for a morale-boosting position statement now that it’s descending in earnest.

From the religious point of view, Christmas for me falls into the category of festivals which have no claim to be observed, because they are not explicitly mandated in the bible. Things that are mandated include the sabbath and, er, that’s about it. The bible doctrines which are usually associated with Christmas, such as the incarnation and the virgin birth, are fundamentally important and should be known, understood, and respected by all and sundry, but they don’t require to be celebrated by traditions which aren’t established in the scriptures.

And neither do I really think it deserves to be observed as a secular festival. Opportunities for people to gather together as families are of course something to be valued, and I suppose there’s no reason why they shouldn’t be accompanied with the exchange of gifts and eating lots of food – but in the way that this gets worked out in practice in contemporary society, the whole thing becomes a horrific stressful nightmare with people under obligation to spend huge amounts of money in a pointlessly extravagant way, and generally eat and drink a bit too much.

I’m not really writing this in a bid to convince people to images3.jpgabandon Christmas and its stresses (not really, but please don’t let it stop you), nor to discourage those few people who somehow find a spiritual significance in it, but just to explain why, although I have, on occasion, been known to eat the odd mince pie, in general and all things considered, I just have no interest in participating in Christmas presents, Christmas cards, Christmas trees, office parties, carol services, nativity plays, Christmas lights, or anything else on the endless list of festive paraphernalia.

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7 thoughts on “the christmas story

  1. Oh dear, and only this morning I was playing the Phil Spector Christmas album on my way to work, just because the weather was a bit festively frosty…

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  2. aye and only ten minutes ago I was grinding my teeth in time to the Twelve Days of Christmas on Classic FM. Every year this is what makes my cd expenditure rocket as i just can’t stand the slushy stuff on the radio 8O

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