Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Seasons Greetings
I called a former colleague this week and wished him Happy Holidays. He corrected me and said Merry Christmas–and that he appreciated that I was trying to be ‘Politically Correct.’ It’s not about political correctness. It’s more than that.
To me it’s about inclusiveness, respecting all traditions and people who celebrate this time of year. I prefer the term Positively Respectful.
Christians do not own this season or the sacredness of it. Long before Christians, pagan nature-based peoples and traditions were honoring and celebrating the Winter Solstice – the darkest day of the year, and rejoicing in the beginnings of new light to brighten the days following. Our Jewish neighbors celebrated Hanukkah long before Christians came along also. Christians honor Christmas as the birthday of a man named Jesus, historically the son of Jewish parents and whose lifestyle Christians try to follow. Having studied religions, I know it is no coincidence that Christmas happens to be celebrated very close to the Winter Solstice. Other people honor this time as sacred also.
All religion aside, many simply celebrate this season because something inside calls them to rekindle a sense of childhood wonder and magic, to remember a time when they believed in a kind-hearted, generous soul called Santa; to be open to the possibility that sometimes miracles happen, and that sometimes we can make them happen for somebody else. For those who catch the spirit, there’s something more playful, fun, and lighter in the world.
So yes, I honor, value, and appreciate all of that–the fun and festivities, the wonderful spirits who celebrate the season, and those who add more joy to the world these days. To each of you, Happy Holidays and blessings to all.