Monday, December 17, 2012

The Christmas Story

I'm always a little ambivalent about Christmas. I don't have any bad memories of Christmas Past, I think it is just all the commercialization. I recently read the early Roman merchants complained about slow holiday seasons. Seems the bottom line has always relied on good Christmas sales. It always comes to my consciousness that perhaps Christmas was always a way to help the bottom line, rather than to celebrate the birth of Christ. I suppose it really doesn't matter. The story, whether fiction or non-fiction, economic or spiritual, is still a great one. Christmas is the time for giving. Giving. You give in proportion to what you can afford. A rich person giving a million dollars is no more admirable than a poor person giving a dollar. The point is to give with no intention of receiving. And it should be until you can feel it, not just your pocket change. Peace. Peace is another yuletide word thrown around a lot. This year, it will once again be just a wish, as we remain at war. Maybe we need to concentrate on inner peace, or peace with your family, or neighbors. What a Christmas it would be, if all of us made a commitment to remain physically and verbally non-violent. That would set the stage for a more loving world. And Love. Another word frequently used at Christmas. To love and be loved. A hard word to define. Love is a personal word. It derives its meaning from your heart. It is a mystery word. You can feel it, you know when it's around, but you can't box it up and put it under the tree. Christmas gives us opportunities to experience and work at things that we put off during the rest of the year. It prepares us for making meaningful New Year resolutions. Giving, peace, love, community, sharing, compassion.. I guess I'm ambivalent about Christmas because I don't do near enough in any of these areas. I don't think about them enough. Practice them enough. I never feel that I ever quite get to the heart of the Christmas story. I play it way too safe.

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