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Thread: What does Christmas mean to you?

  1. #21

    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Mostly having a gay time with the boys.
    Optio, Legio I Latina

  2. #22
    MaximiIian's Avatar Comes Limitis
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    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Quote Originally Posted by basics View Post
    I mean does one need to be a Christian to enjoy it?
    Certainly not. While there are religious elements to the traditional celebration of Christmas, the overall festive period surrounding it has many secular elements that can be enjoyed without regard to religion. For an example that has no strong moorings to Western culture, look at Japan: it's a largely Buddhist and Shinto country, yet Christmas is one of the biggest celebrations of the year.

    I'm a Pagan, but I celebrate the Christmastide largely because it's a cultural fixture. I have Saturnalia, Yule, and the nativity of Dionysos for my religious celebrations.

  3. #23

    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Quote Originally Posted by MaximiIian View Post
    Certainly not. While there are religious elements to the traditional celebration of Christmas, the overall festive period surrounding it has many secular elements that can be enjoyed without regard to religion. For an example that has no strong moorings to Western culture, look at Japan: it's a largely Buddhist and Shinto country, yet Christmas is one of the biggest celebrations of the year.

    I'm a Pagan, but I celebrate the Christmastide largely because it's a cultural fixture. I have Saturnalia, Yule, and the nativity of Dionysos for my religious celebrations.
    The thing basics can’t wrap his head around is that his religion will never have a monopoly on the Winter Solstice and celebrations based around it around the world that have nothing to do with his religion.

  4. #24
    basics's Avatar Praeses
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    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gaidin View Post
    The thing basics can’t wrap his head around is that his religion will never have a monopoly on the Winter Solstice and celebrations based around it around the world that have nothing to do with his religion.
    Gaidin,

    I don't have a religion for a start, nor do I care about any winter solstice, why? Because my faith is in Jesus Christ my Creator and yours although you can't seem to get your head around that. So, you wanna worship the created rather than the Creator is your problem, not mine.

  5. #25
    Stario's Avatar Campidoctor
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    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Well unlike some posters here- I will spend xmas with people I like (wouldn't waste my time with the people i don't).
    Not looking forward to the xmas shopping though. ;d .D

  6. #26

    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Tremble, ye sinners! You shall all burn in hell for not believing in my fairy tale of choice!
    Optio, Legio I Latina

  7. #27
    mishkin's Avatar Comes Limitis
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    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Quote Originally Posted by basics View Post
    Gaidin,

    I don't have a religion for a start, nor do I care about any winter solstice, why? Because my faith is in Jesus Christ my Creator and yours although you can't seem to get your head around that. So, you wanna worship the created rather than the Creator is your problem, not mine.
    So you know, this is how your messages sound to atheists.

    I don't have a religion for a start, nor do I care about any winter solstice, why? Because my faith is in Mr. Potato and yours although you can't seem to get your head around that. So, you wanna worship the created rather than Mr. Potato is your problem, not mine.
    I tell you this honestly so that you try to change the way you communicate with them (us).

    Continuing with the proposed topic (What does Christmas mean to you?) I am sure that most people would not give a crap if christmas instead of allegedly being about the birth of jesus was about the assembly of the aforementioned Mr. Potato. Sorry.

  8. #28
    basics's Avatar Praeses
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    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    mishkin,

    Well to put it this way how else can I explain that the Gospel of Jesus Christ other than by repeating what eyewitnesses have said in it? It is an offence to them that don't believe and this is seen in the posts here. By the way I never used the Mr Potato at all anywhere so someone's at the hanky panky there. Xmas whether one likes it or not is a celebration of God coming into this world as a man who would change the world and He did. Now some might not agree with that but is there any reason for some of the remarks being made about Him?

  9. #29
    Basileos Leandros I's Avatar Writing is an art
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    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Family and presents. I loved Christmas as a kid - it was so magical and cute. As I grew up, it only has this special family thing so instead I used to give out to charities (volunteering) during this time to orphaned children.
    Ja mata, TosaInu. Forever remembered.

    Swords Made of Letters - 1938. The war is looming - and Alexandre Reythier does not have much time left to protect his country.

    Visit ROMANIA! A land of beauty and culture!

  10. #30

    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    I work in retail, pity me, the next two weeks will be..... interesting

  11. #31
    Himster's Avatar Praeses
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    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    It's a hodge podge of global cultural festivals. We have been giving gifts in this manner for millennia, (for a lot of that time) in the name of Saturn and his generosity. We burn Yule logs in lieu of a human sacrifice, we eat gingerbread men to remember Saturn eating his own children lest we forget that what can be given can be taken away. We honour the Asian monotheistic religions with its nomenclature and nativity decorations. The longest lasting tradition has been to get extremely drunk and partying hard, as it is around this time of year that the fermentation process has produced its first decent alcohol from the autumnal harvest, which can be traced back to before the birth of civilisation. The spirit of generosity and the softening of social strictures can be traced back to Ancient Roman Saturnalia. Decorating evergreens during winter festivals has been a transcultural tradition in Europe even before the Romans.

    Rather than there being a question about whether or not non-Christians can celebrate Christmas, the real question should be can Christians celebrate Christmas? Given the strictures against Christians honouring false idols or indulging in non-Christian practices, literally every significant aspect of Christmas is forbidden in scripture, as evidenced by the historical fact that the only group in western history to repeatedly make celebrating Christmas a criminal offence has been Puritanical Christians. Essentially, they are correct: it should be illegal for Christians to celebrate Christmas both ethically (They claim it to be theirs when in fact they have stolen it) and also by the rules they claim to follow.
    The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are so certain of themselves, but wiser people are full of doubts.
    -Betrand Russell

  12. #32
    basics's Avatar Praeses
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    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    It's called Xmas because it's to do with the birth of Jesus Christ but if one doesn't believe on Him one can call it anything other than Xmas Day.

  13. #33
    Himster's Avatar Praeses
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    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Quote Originally Posted by basics View Post
    It's called Xmas because it's to do with the birth of Jesus Christ but if one doesn't believe on Him one can call it anything other than Xmas Day.
    Monday is the day for honouring the moon. If you don't believe in the Old Germanic Moon Goddess, you can call it anything else, except Monday. Tuesday is the day of the war god Tew, if you don't believe in him, you can't use that name for that day. Wednesday is Wodan's day, the Allfather, only followers of the One eyed-god may use that hallowed name. Thursday is the day of the Storm god, Thurs etc.

    January is the month of the Roman God Janus, the two faced god of New beginnings, for that most revered name to pass the lips of a non-believer is a great blasphemy. March is the month of Mars, God of war, the beginning of the war season. Anyone who does not honour war must use a different name for that month and so on.

    The reality of the situation is: The English language is infested with polytheistic and monotheistic jargon that is no longer connected to its original meaning. We won't find a new word for months, holidays, days of the week or planets, they are embedded in our language now.
    The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are so certain of themselves, but wiser people are full of doubts.
    -Betrand Russell

  14. #34
    Protector Domesticus
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    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Quote Originally Posted by Himster View Post
    Rather than there being a question about whether or not non-Christians can celebrate Christmas, the real question should be can Christians celebrate Christmas? Given the strictures against Christians honouring false idols or indulging in non-Christian practices, literally every significant aspect of Christmas is forbidden in scripture, as evidenced by the historical fact that the only group in western history to repeatedly make celebrating Christmas a criminal offence has been Puritanical Christians. Essentially, they are correct: it should be illegal for Christians to celebrate Christmas both ethically (They claim it to be theirs when in fact they have stolen it) and also by the rules they claim to follow.
    Please don't atheistsplain Christianity to Christians, it's plain annoying. We have enough trouble with certain churches claiming a monopoly on interpreting Scripture, last thing we need is unbelievers doing the same.
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  15. #35
    Himster's Avatar Praeses
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    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Quote Originally Posted by Prodromos View Post
    Please don't atheistsplain Christianity to Christians, it's plain annoying. We have enough trouble with certain churches claiming a monopoly on interpreting Scripture, last thing we need is unbelievers doing the same.
    I'm quite sure everyone here understands that it was merely hyperbole used as device to mirror the absurdity of the OP.
    Well, ok, I do have a reputation of being an overbearing, facetious and condescending pedant, so I'm stating now: It was hyperbole.
    The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are so certain of themselves, but wiser people are full of doubts.
    -Betrand Russell

  16. #36
    Protector Domesticus
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    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Oh, okay, cool.
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  17. #37
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    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Well to me Christmas is a lot of weird and wonderful things.

    As Conon says its the old Northern Hemisphere Winter Solstice festivals rolled together and its a sticky mess with bits of everything adhering.

    We get trees (a bit phallic if you ask me) with decorations (OMG idolatry) and heaps of gifts (Bronze Age status goods exchange ftw) feasting (love me some feasting) and drinking. People tend to sort themselves into odd configurations, seeking out family (usually) but also partying with their peer and work groups.

    There was a silly BlackAdder-style show about Shakespeare called Upstart Crow and the old dad was whining about how Christians had ruined Yule with their hymns and trying to ban presents.

    Its fun on a history forum to peel back some of the layers on a festival, Northern Europeans make a fuss about Christmas that wasn;t really an issue for Paul and his followers.

    The apostles never really wrote down the date of Jesus' birth or even the facts (there are three different versions in the Gospels and one is ominously silent). It became later when the followers of Jesus had changed from being a small mostly Jewish group to Hellenic and Latin speaking Romans (they start speculating a century after Jesus' death bu as usual there seems to be local variants all over the shop). We have the first recorded Christmas celebrated on 25th December in the time of Constantine (a great sun worshipper) and the feast of Sol Invictus is a century older, so there's plenty of conflation with pagan rituals from the first centuries of the church.

    There's so many twists and turns in the tale. Easter was always (and still remains) more important in the East, whereas the west loves its snowy feasting time: Big Karl was crowned Emperor on Christmas Day 800 AD, reinforcing and reflecting the date's importance.

    Another twist is celebrating a largely pagan-styled post Jesus feast in the Southern hemisphere. Fake snow, pine trees, arctic ruminants and fur trim in the Australian summer is truly bizarre, as odd as Eostre's pagan fertility fest (eggs and bunnies as sexual motifs) in Autumn.

    Christmas is a human festival: not once does Jesus say "put up a tree". Paul does not say "remember his birth": for a Great Feast of the Church it has no theological message and the scriptural basis makes the Resurrection look like a coherent narrative. We tell ourselves lies ("Jesus is real" "Jesus is fake" someone is wrong) stress ourselves and behave differently for the sake of...what? Tradition? Yep. A good man was born? Probably and even for an agnostic its worth celebrating a teacher who said love your enemies. God came to earth in human form? Knock yourselves out Christians, we'll celebrate all three versions. Secret Pagan Penis time? Mkay, just not in front of the kids. Leave you alone and stop playing Mariah Carey? Not possible.

    My son (whose knowledge of Jesus is that he is stronger than electricity thanks to the neighbour's kid) has acquired a strong working knowledge of the Santa myth. I'm not buying into it, I claim complete ignorance of North Pole sweatshops, reindeer and the Coca Cola themed crap. However I won't ban it (I can't ban it) and the horrible corporate capitalist that infects so much of Christmas is part of our society too. Oh and Cyclops Jnr likes the nativity figures and nudges Mary on the donkey closer to clay Bethlehem each day. Its brings "Present Time" closer.

    Fortunately the plurality of Christmas means all the various Christianities, Other Abrahamisms, Paganisms, Capitalisms and Humanisms can claim sole ownership. Those who venerate Christ can do so alongside (and along with) those who respect Jesus, Isa, Buddha, Doubt, shopping, or food.
    Jatte lambastes Calico Rat

  18. #38
    Abdülmecid I's Avatar ¡Ay Carmela!
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    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Call me old school or whatever, but, in my humble opinion, if you can not preserve the daily chocolate bits for four weeks, without putting the calendar inside your family fridge, you should be barred from celebrating Christmas, stars or any Germanic deity. Simple as that.

  19. #39
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    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abdülmecid I View Post
    Call me old school or whatever, but, in my humble opinion, if you can not preserve the daily chocolate bits for four weeks, without putting the calendar inside your family fridge, you should be barred from celebrating Christmas, stars or any Germanic deity. Simple as that.
    OK pretty hemispherist but whatever...

    Jatte lambastes Calico Rat

  20. #40
    Diamat's Avatar VELUTI SI DEUS DARETUR
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    Default Re: What does Christmas mean to you?

    This thread is thoroughly protestant, lol. Even the atheists are now doing sola scriptura stuff.

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