When our commune was first established the founding elders agreed that there would be no recognition or celebration of holidays based in Pagan tradition. That included Christmas.
My father referred to Christmas as a “filthy Pagan ritual” and refused to expose his children to its customs. As a child I was far too young to understand the true meaning of either the holiday or my father’s opinion of its formation. Growing up I knew the birth of Jesus was in April and we celebrated his birth each year with great enthusiasm. Aside from a small gift provided by my grandparents, Christmas went by each year with no fan fare or acknowledgement.
As I became an adult and enjoyed the fruits of the real world I fell in love with Christmas. I fell in love with the lights, the music, the food and the energy. But I still had no connection with it in regards to Jesus. It was a Pagan celebration of joy and giving and I was perfectly accepting of that. I was anti-religion and wanted nothing to do with any religious aspect of the holidays. Then I matured and discovered the truth of Spirituality. I rediscovered Christ and his teachings of light. I am not a Christian and have no attachments to the birth of Christ. Although I do celebrate his life and his messages along with the other celebrations during this time of year. I have finally come to understand the true meaning of Christmas and the joyous celebration this season represents.
My father was right about the Pagan foundation of Christmas, although I completely disagree about it being based in evil practices. Religious scholars all agree that Jesus was not born in December, so why did the Catholic Church choose December 25th? It is really quite simple. December 21st is the winter solstice, the day that the promise of light returns each year to our planet. The weeks surrounding the winter solstice have been celebrated for thousands of years, long before the birth of Christ, by cultures all over the world. Regardless of religious, pagan or traditional beliefs this time of year has always been filled with gratitude, joy and celebration. It is a time that celebrates abundance and promises hope for the future. It is a celebration of light.
The Christmas season is not just for Christians but for people of all races, creeds and beliefs to celebrate the harvest, celebrate life’s bounty, celebrate love and yes, celebrate the return of light and hope that accompanies it. The return of light is recognized with many names and rituals, all of which are beautiful and inspiring. Regardless of the tradition they all deserve recognition and celebration. Happy Holidays!
For more information about the true history of Christmas visit the History Channel at http://www.history.com/topics/christmas