Sunday, December 11, 2011
Putting the HA HA HA back in Hanukkah
Everybody on Facebook, it seems, has hopped on the "put the Christ back in Christmas" bandwagon, which amuses me to no end. They criticize the "politically correct" "Happy Holidays." Well, I don't know about you, but it makes ZERO sense to me to wish, say, a Jewish friend "Merry Christmas" (even if Christmas is what I celebrate), or to wish an atheist, Muslim, or pagan friend the same. I know I would think it was awfully weird if, on December 5th, a Muslim wished me a "Merry Day of Ashura."
Sorry, but Christians don't OWN the month of December. See?
Dec 5: Ashura * ** - Islam
Dec 8: Bodhi Day (Rohatsu) ** - Buddhism
Dec 21-28: Hanukkah * - Jewish
Dec 22: Solstice/Yule * - Wicca/Pagan Northern Hemisphere
Dec 22: Solstice/Litha * - Wicca/Pagan Southern Hemisphere
Dec 26: Zarathosht Diso (Death of Prophet Zarathushtra) ** - Zoroastrian
Besides all that, Dec. 25th is just a random date chosen in early Christianity for celebrating the birth of Jesus: nobody knows when Jesus' birthday actually is. Christians can't even agree on the YEAR of his birth. Some think it was the year 0, others the year 3 BCE, and Biblical scholars argue for 4 BCE. The 25th of December was landed on most likely because so many pagans already celebrated on that date. It's easier to bring someone into the fold if you adapt their rituals to yours. A good history of how Dec 25th was chosen is right here.
And Christmas was not always celebrated right here in the good ole US of A. Nope. The early Puritans didn't like the Roman influence on the holiday, nor the Catholic influence in celebrating a "Mass" of Christ. Some Christians think celebrating Christmas is actually sinful. Read about that here.
So, instead of taking potshots at people who say "Happy Holidays" because they rightfully don't care to assume everybody they know is a Christian, stop and remember: being polite and not judging others are Christian values. If you want to personally put the "Christ" back in Christmas, the best way to do so is to act like a Christian, not like an intolerant jerk.
ps: I'm not Jewish, but I do so get a kick out of this song by Adam Sandler.