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(Omaha World Herald)   Only half of Americans think Christmas is a religious holiday, and the number is that high only because half of that number think shopping is a religion   (omaha.com) divider line 49
    More: Sad, Christmas Day, Americans, Maya & Miguel, Kwanzaa, First United Methodist Church, worship service  
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1233 clicks; posted to Main » on 19 Dec 2013 at 7:57 AM (36 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



49 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2013-12-19 08:00:13 AM
storage.canoe.ca
 
2013-12-19 08:02:00 AM
a very small group of people celebrate the birth of christ.  everyone else celebrates christmas.
 
2013-12-19 08:02:11 AM
I don't see how this is sad.
 
2013-12-19 08:02:12 AM
It's been perverted by the capitalists for their own gain.

Don't you know you have to consume, consume consume to be a good and patriotic citizen of the united states.
 
2013-12-19 08:02:27 AM
Obvious tag out buying gifts?
 
2013-12-19 08:04:38 AM
I thought sports was the official 'Murican religion.
 
2013-12-19 08:07:31 AM
Well, in fairness, unlike other Christian holidays nothing happened on that day. Pagans and Romans celebrated winter solstice related festival holidays around the 25th. Christians appropriated the day/holiday.
 
2013-12-19 08:07:48 AM

AuralArgument: It's been perverted by the capitalists for their own gain.

Don't you know you have to consume, consume consume to be a good and patriotic citizen of the united states.


It's been co opted to a season to meet with family and friends for good times, regardless of religious affiliation. You don't HAVE to go the mass consumption route.
 
2013-12-19 08:09:05 AM
Why the sad tag? was the obvious tag naughty this year?
 
2013-12-19 08:09:46 AM
It's an astrological event. Humans always like to celebrate those.
 
2013-12-19 08:11:14 AM
Rats! the refresh button is my friend.
 
2013-12-19 08:11:25 AM
Half of Americans...half of that number...half of half...goddammit subby, it's too early for this math shiat.
 
2013-12-19 08:17:18 AM

thornhill: Well, in fairness, unlike other Christian holidays nothing happened on that day. Pagans and Romans celebrated winter solstice related festival holidays around the 25th. Christians appropriated the day/holiday.


Yeah, I was going to say that I'm pretty sure humans in northern latitudes have liked to throw a party around the winter solstice ever since they figured out what a "solstice" was, and I'm pretty fond of that tradition. Fark, of all places, shouldn't be arguing that people are using the wrong excuse to drink.
 
GBB
2013-12-19 08:18:28 AM

AuralArgument: It's been perverted by the capitalists for their own gain.

Don't you know you have to consume, consume consume to be a good and patriotic citizen of the united states.


And the wheels on the bus go round
 
2013-12-19 08:18:46 AM
I've pretty much decided that anyone who says war on christmas goes on Odin's tree.   Time to bring back the old time religion.

The only trouble is it starts to smell in may.
 
2013-12-19 08:20:54 AM
It's the time of year where I can gorge myself on rich foods and Tom n' Jerrys. Who gives a fark about the consumerism and childish religious BS.
 
2013-12-19 08:21:59 AM
images.topix.com
 
2013-12-19 08:23:20 AM
It isn't a religious holiday.  If Christmas were a religious holiday, then the national designation of it as a holiday would be an unconstitutional and illegal endorsement of religion by the Government.

Just as "In God We Trust" is not an endorsement of religion.  Read the court decisions -- these things are legal because the courts have found as matter of fact that they are devoid of inherent religious meaning.

Peace on Earth and Goodwill towards all and please....

Keep Your Christ out of my Christmas

www.adbranch.com
 
2013-12-19 08:24:33 AM
Very few of the popular traditions have anything to do with Christianity. And it seems to me that none of the most popular ones have any connection, but that may have a lot to do with my personal experiences. I assume even the most zealous faithful understand that the 'season' has no connection to the story of Jesus (the story itself clearly does not take place in December). But I'm an atheist and don't go around stirring up trouble with things like "questions".

My m-i-l is visiting and started it up last night though. She's brought us some objective texts about the dangers of Sharia law among other I'm sure scholarly works. So last night she brings up her outrage that Obamacare will provide free medicine to the poor, but not to her. I guess I gave the discussion a push with "I know - helping the needy - and at Christmastime!", but I can't take credit for her trump card - "Yes, Jesus said, 'You don't work, you don't eat'".

I told my wife she'd get along great with snl's Drunk Uncle, if she could just get over the "devil juice" issue.
 
2013-12-19 08:24:45 AM
December 25 should be renamed Santa Day.
First, lets ignore the solstice and the pagans and the obvious connection ....
Second lets ignore the doubts that Jesus was a real dude, lets take that as a given...
Third, lets also take as a given that the biblical account of his birth is accurate....
The bible story lays out the settings.... it says what else was happening at the time of the birth...
Based on the description of the crops and tax season it had to be spring or possibly early fall.
According to the bible, it is clear thatJesus was NOT born in December.
So anyway, Christians believe in the bible right?  right?
So why do they pretend December 25th is about Jesus.... it is obviously about Santa.
 
2013-12-19 08:26:36 AM
Christmas sucks, it's a consumerist festival followed by weird social compulsions to visit and talk to and care about people who have some kind of genetic link to yourself.
 
2013-12-19 08:33:07 AM
Put the Saturn back in Saturnalia!
 
2013-12-19 08:33:14 AM
I celebrate Christmas as a secular holiday and the whole winter break as a general festive time.  This is my favorite holiday time, usually because it's associated with the most time off and general relaxing and merriment.

/atheist
 
2013-12-19 08:36:24 AM
It is for some people. It isn't for others. That's not something to be sad about, it's called different people having different beliefs/celebration practices" and it's commonplace.

My family practices it, but not in a religious sense. We have a tree, gift-giving, holiday dinner, lights, 'Nog, all the festivities. Nothing "sad" there.
 
2013-12-19 08:53:05 AM

MemeSlave: Christmas sucks, it's a consumerist festival followed by weird social compulsions to visit and talk to and care about people who have some kind of genetic link to yourself.


It might just be that you suck
 
2013-12-19 08:55:01 AM
www.viralblog.com
 
2013-12-19 09:00:36 AM
Sounds like progress to me.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with celebrating the turn of the season lighted trees, gift giving and general merry making.  Spare me the religious bs and I'll get along just fine.
 
2013-12-19 09:06:47 AM
We participated in a church that follows the liturgical calendar, so this is the season of Advent, and the color associated is usually blue.  We were invited to a party at the church, and the invitation said to dress to celebrate the reason for the season.  My family wore shades of blue, i.e., blue suits, ties, etc. with white and gold accents.  We stuck out like a sore thumb.  Even the pastor was wearing a red and green Santa sweater.  That was when we realized how out of step we were with the mainstream church folk.  We sleep in on Sundays now.
 
2013-12-19 09:07:18 AM
It's run by a big eastern syndicate, you know.
 
2013-12-19 09:17:01 AM

StrangeQ: Spare me the religious bs and I'll get along just fine.


You know, it's not even that it's religious. It's the WAY the religious are that's off-putting.

I feel pretty confident saying that just about everybody would LOVE to live in a world where a benevolent superpower was showering us all with love and protection and could give us eternal peace and life. I'd be okay with "worshiping" then.

The problem becomes that this is not what religion offers. Religion offers all these supernatural benefits... but only to people who accept and espouse specific social and political actions that are only relevant to the goals of mortals. You want me to believe that an all-powerful god that created the universe is going to get all pissy if I touch myself in the shower? Really? The guy that created every photon in the universe is now sitting around in his bath robe deeply concerned about the current status of my dick?

And I think that's where you see the generational divide. No honest and intelligent person can look around at the modern world and say that most of the core tenets of any major religion are remotely valid. For thousands of years we languished in relative misery and technological darkness, then, within three centuries, we went from dying of paper cuts to walking on the moon solely because a couple of people decided it was time to focus on reason and objective reality instead of silly ancient rituals and edicts. They didn't reject religion, though, they rejected the religious.

People want to believe that religion is real and true to some extent, but as progress marches on they're less and less willing to believe the claims of the religious that tell them they have to hate gay people or subjugate women or that only one religious belief is correct and so they move away from this ancient, ritualistic nonsense.

This finding is only sad if you're one of those horrible people that thinks that religion means that everybody should sit around in your tabernacle or church or mosque and do exactly what you say.

For everybody else, the continued rejection of silly rituals is great news.
 
2013-12-19 09:17:56 AM
A bunch of people who say they're Christian will share Facebook memes and might attend Church once this year, and that's about it. There's your "keeping Christ in Christmas."
 
2013-12-19 09:18:11 AM

AuralArgument: It's been perverted by the capitalists for their own gain.

Don't you know you have to consume, consume consume to be a good and patriotic citizen of the united states.


As an atheist that tries to reign in my consumerism the holiday is neither about religion or consumer gluttony, it's about goodwill toward friends, family, and coworkers around shared meals and parties.

While that may not be "the reason for the season" in some people's minds I don't think it's perverse at all.
 
2013-12-19 09:22:27 AM

manimal2878: AuralArgument: It's been perverted by the capitalists for their own gain.

Don't you know you have to consume, consume consume to be a good and patriotic citizen of the united states.

As an atheist that tries to reign in my consumerism the holiday is neither about religion or consumer gluttony, it's about goodwill toward friends, family, and coworkers around shared meals and parties.

While that may not be "the reason for the season" in some people's minds I don't think it's perverse at all.


As an atheist who just wants to enjoy a day off in peace and quiet, I am routinely foiled by having to attend loud and uncomfortable family functions at Christmas.

/Going to Seattle for Xmas this year.
//With family.
///Gonna need a lot of that famous PNW beer to get through this.
 
2013-12-19 09:45:07 AM

verbaltoxin: manimal2878: AuralArgument: It's been perverted by the capitalists for their own gain.

Don't you know you have to consume, consume consume to be a good and patriotic citizen of the united states.

As an atheist that tries to reign in my consumerism the holiday is neither about religion or consumer gluttony, it's about goodwill toward friends, family, and coworkers around shared meals and parties.

While that may not be "the reason for the season" in some people's minds I don't think it's perverse at all.

As an atheist who just wants to enjoy a day off in peace and quiet, I am routinely foiled by having to attend loud and uncomfortable family functions at Christmas.

/Going to Seattle for Xmas this year.
//With family.
///Gonna need a lot of that famous PNW beer to get through this.


Elysian FTW (especially the porter and stout).  Browers is worth a visit too; possibly the best NW selection in a single place, though the entire city is flooded with microbrew these last few years.

/I miss the beer, food, and friends, but not the weather or hipsters
 
2013-12-19 09:51:16 AM

aprentic: I don't see how this is sad.


Agreed, nothing sad about it.  The cultural/commercial holiday should in no way detract from any religious observance anyone might plan.

I wonder if anyone out there still exists who goes to Christmas Mass as their only celebration of the day?
 
2013-12-19 09:56:38 AM

Carn: I celebrate Christmas as a secular holiday and the whole winter break as a general festive time.  This is my favorite holiday time, usually because it's associated with the most time off and general relaxing and merriment.

/atheist


That's what makes the War on Christmas people so mean spirited -- they're pissed off that other people are trying to make Christmas a more inclusive holiday by detaching the religious aspects (which were pretty loose to start with) and now trying to change the image of Santa being a white guy.
 
2013-12-19 10:02:52 AM

Ker_Thwap: aprentic: I don't see how this is sad.

Agreed, nothing sad about it.  The cultural/commercial holiday should in no way detract from any religious observance anyone might plan.

I wonder if anyone out there still exists who goes to Christmas Mass as their only celebration of the day?


That would merit the Sad tag; all the best parts of the holiday are pagan.
 
2013-12-19 10:03:55 AM
For me Christmas is not a religious holiday at all.

I know it is originally a religious holiday.  And I know it is significant to Christianity.

But for me it is simply a time to gather and celebrate family.  It is not religious at all, but still a time for celebration.
 
2013-12-19 10:11:19 AM
upload.wikimedia.org

It is a religious holiday and this is its god.

upload.wikimedia.org

The tradition goes way back to biblical times
 
2013-12-19 11:08:57 AM
For the last several decades, several Christian groups have tried and tried to introduce several aspects of their faith into the public arena (making use of public lands, schools and spaces) under the guise that they were not specific to their religion.  Example:  Arguing that displays of the 10 Commandments in a public space was simply about a "moral" code that had a perfectly valid secular purpose as well.

The end result is that they themselves have "dumbed down" their own religious practices.  Much of what was once considered by many to be "sacred" now no longer is even considered exclusively Christian.

Bottom line, a bunch of you Christians got together in an effort to try and force your beliefs and views on us secular heathens (thinking it would surely win us over and get an even greater majority to worship and practice a religions consistent with your worldview) and you never anticipated the blow back.

I think Hank Hill captured this phenomenon perfectly (Speaking to a "Christian Rock" band):  "Can't you see you're not making Christianity better? You're just making rock n' roll worse!"
 
2013-12-19 11:12:07 AM

viciousbackyardkiller: I thought sports was the official 'Murican religion.


No, sports is an allegory for 'merrican politics.
 
2013-12-19 11:16:18 AM

aprentic: I don't see how this is sad.


Exactly, this seems like good news to me
 
2013-12-19 11:59:44 AM
Way back when I was too young to not go to church, our pastor gave a sermon xmas eve about "Christmas and Easter" christians. Most amusing, since neither of those holidays originated with christians.
 
2013-12-19 01:46:19 PM
Gotta say it's more about Famiily and Friends for me. I'm an Atheist but I certainly won't condemn people who wanna hit church...
 
2013-12-19 02:04:35 PM

natazha: Way back when I was too young to not go to church, our pastor gave a sermon xmas eve about "Christmas and Easter" christians. Most amusing, since neither of those holidays originated with christians.


Virtually no holidays originated with Christians.

That'll tend to happen when you're a 2000 year old offshoot of a 4000 year old religion and spent most of your early years subsuming the traditions and myths of other 4000 year old pagan systems of worship...

/ Christianity is the leftover meat loaf of religions
 
2013-12-19 02:12:26 PM
I've said it before and I'll say it again: most Americans don't celebrate Christ's Nativity Mass they celebrate Yule, they just call it "Christmas." We, as a species, at least those in the Northern Hemisphere, has pretty uniformly agreed for tens of  thousands of years that this is a great time to party, so what you call it doesn't really matter, it's still a great time to party, so get your happy on and ignore all the bullshiat!
 
2013-12-19 05:15:24 PM
Holiday shopping here in Cincinnati was neatly summed up by a store fight witness: "Black Friday isn't worth the bail money." My GF wisely insisted we end all non-food shopping 'til year's end; the last of the gifts have been shipped. Somehow, I'm missing the "religion" component of all this... and the "holiday" part as well.

/celebrating Yule @ 1711 UTC
//Festivus is still an option
 
2013-12-19 05:43:22 PM
I both love and hate Christmas.  I love the lights, the tree, the music, the decorations, the parties, the food/drinks, etc.  However, I hate that I have to toil over what to buy everyone.  I hate that I have to determine if this year person x will give me a gift because if they do, then I have to toil over what to get them and get it to them in time.  I hate feeling guilty that I couldn't find my family members the perfect gift for each of them and instead settled on a gift card yet again because I know no matter what I pick out, it will be exchanged for something they really wanted so what's even the point?  It has become a game of shuffle the gift cards around.  I hate that it has become a holiday where every year I have to travel to two states to make everyone happy so I feel like I spend the holiday sitting on airplanes/in airports, sleeping in unfamiliar beds.  I would be super happy to just be at home with my husband enjoying the day, exchanging gifts, and cooking good food.

/Yah this has nothing to do with the religious argument as I don't feel like Christmas has anything to do with religion.
 
2013-12-19 08:17:34 PM

PillsHere:I hate that I have to determine if this year person x will give me a gift because if they do, then I have to toil over what to get them and get it to them in time.  I hate feeling guilty that I couldn't find my family members the perfect gift for each of them and instead settled on a gift card yet again because I know no matter what I pick out, it will be exchanged for something they really wanted so what's even the point?  It has become a game of shuffle the gift cards around.      "...every year I have to ... to make everyone happy"

The above sentiments were my primary reason for abandoning gift-giving and gift-receiving in my life.  When it all boils down to giving someone [gift with ~x value] in exchange for an expected thank you note and a reciprocating receipt of [gift with ~x value] in exchange for a thank you note, the meaning of it is lost.  I saw the commercialism and capitalist drive of the holiday decades ago.  (Yes, it's good for the economy but, not necessarily ours.  China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan make most of the plastics POSs that we throw at the children from Santa.)  Added to the self-inflicted stresses people gain from worrying about what to buy and what others are buying for you, it does no one any good trying to please people who aren't expecting anything special and turning yourself in knots when everything doesn't go perfectly.  I always hated seeing people stressed out over what was supposed to be a happy time of year to gather together as extended family.  It always ended up being more trouble than it was worth:  Hissy fits over a burned muffin tray, conniption fits over a forgotten-at-home cole slaw, meltdowns regarding a missing candelabra/centerpiece/ornament/ham glaze/etc....

Queensowntalia: It is for some people. It isn't for others. That's not something to be sad about, it's called different people having different beliefs/celebration practices" and it's commonplace.

My family practices it, but not in a religious sense. We have a tree, gift-giving, holiday dinner, lights, 'Nog, all the festivities. Nothing "sad" there.


I come at it from the opposite end.  Why pretend to fit in by following the crowd?  There are things that are better left to the past than the present and the Pagan-sourced rituals kept alive by Christians co-opting them thru ignorance should be among them.  I don't want to see another christmas tree in my lifetime.  I don't want to hear another ignorant bible-pusher selling me a holiday that he doesn't understand himself.  I don't want to witness another child being deluded by the false promises of Santa or the xtian narrative.


skozlaw: That'll tend to happen when you're a 2000 year old offshoot of a 4000 year old religion and spent most of your early years subsuming the traditions and myths of other 4000 year old pagan systems of worship...

/ Christianity is the leftover meat loaf of religions


I dig that line like I dig leftover meat loaf.  Now if a few people can start worrying about how this figurative diet is affecting their lives...
 
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