If the world were merely seductive, that would be easy. If it were merely challenging, that would be no problem. But I arise in the morning, torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day... EB White
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
Separating religious holidays and business
Today, being winter solstice, marks the the shortest day and the official start of winter. Here in the United States an interesting dance takes place in the holiday season between Christmas, Hanuka, Kwanzaa, winter solstice and New Years Day. Figuring out how to dance to the music of the holiday season is up to each of us.
An editorial written by J.R. Labbe for Texas' StarTelegram made a lot of sense to me. She quoted an artible written by Charles C. Haynes, senior scholar and director of education programs at the First Amendment Center, titled "To save Christmas, separate Christ from commerce." Mr Haynes observed "If the aim is to keep 'Christ' in the shopping-mall Christmas or to ensure that pagan trees and mistletoe don't lose their Christian labels, then it might make sense to attack presidents and business owners who commit the 'happy holiday' sin... "But if the goal is to restore the religious meaning of the Christian holy day, then they are aiming at the wrong target. Once the birth of Jesus was made a 'national holiday,' taking 'Christ out of Christmas' was destined to happen."
J.R|. Labbe concludes her article by suggesting "If you want to put Christ back into Christmas, then instead of battling the mall crowd to spend outrageous amounts of money on presents that will be forgotten by Easter, use that time and money to feed the hungry, clothe the poor and visit the infirm."
Holidays are what we choose to make of them. What's your choice?