Saturday, November 25, 2006

Holiday "Culture War" Not Really

"It's a season when my practices as a believer get balanced with preferences of non-religious family members and friends -- and those from different traditions -- for whom the holidays hold deep meaning as well.

"As we try to respect one another's beliefs, noisy people keep intruding. They proclaim a "war on Christmas," force retailers to put "Merry Christmas" in advertising and then proclaim that they've rescued the manger."

My Take: There was a good column in Friday's Seattle Post-Intelligencer on the annual "War on Christmas" or whatever you want to call it. It's when right-wingers come out of the woodwork to whoop up right-leaning Christians and Christians-who-don't-know-any-better into a frenzy of misplaced fear and anxiety over secularization or even *gasp!* religious diversity around the holiday season. The column does a good job of putting things into a humorous perspective, tracing the roots of this culture war not in expanding tolerance but in political ideology.

'Culture war' in season of the Prince of Peace?, by Joel Connely.

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  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger Shannon, at 4:27 PM  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger Shannon, at 4:28 PM  

  • I like the very end of the article where he talks about "examining one's soul". I am more and more convinced all the time that our world, as well as needing us to work very hard for peace and justice, also needs us to spend some serious time in contemplation and reflection. If we have not intently examined ourselves and our motivations we run the risk of ending up drained instead of fed, trying to impose "solutions" that may only make things more difficult.

    Increasingly it seems that the biggest "problem" with Christmas is over extending ourselves and trying to live up to an unreasonable, over-commercialised, consumption-driving expectation of what a "good Christmas" ought to look like. Then we end up drained and tired instead of fed by the abundant blessings of love, hope, peace and joy that this time of year brings.

    For me, the real miracle at this time of year is that over and over I find myself falling into unexpected gifts of blessing: opportunities to share with others, the sparkle in the eyes of a child struck with wonder, the way the city comes alive with lights and life... and all of it happens in spite of the busyness and bustle and nervous energies. It doesn't matter to me what you call it, something beautiful and magical happens at this time of year. Could we imagine coming together in awe of it all?

    By Blogger Shannon, at 4:29 PM  

  • Shannon, thanks for the insightful comment! I traced through your profile back to your cofc blog.... is that still active? And thanks for visiting! (Obviously this is still new, and I'm thrilled someone I didn't know beforehand visited.) :-)

    By Blogger Christian, at 10:49 PM  

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