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Thread: I don't hate christmas anymore

  1. #1

    I don't hate christmas anymore

    I just thought you folks should know.

    When I was a kid (pre-Santa) I loved Christmas for all the mystery and toys. As an adolescent (after-Santa) I learned to really love Christmas for the religion behind it. I remember staring out the window at the moon and thinking of it as a star guiding Wise Men to Christ in His Manger before going to church where the most moving part of the service was a candle-light version of Silent Night. That song and it's a capella singing moved me more than I can describe. My love of Christ and what it promised was so very strong then.

    But then I started to grow up and life got tougher, and the long story short here is that all that promise I thought was coming did not happen. The details do not matter so I will skip them, but the basics are that love and joy in the forms expected were absent. I was single with no prospects, and that to me was the definition of love and joy. I wanted the whole stereotypical experience of love followed by marriage and kids, etc., but this does not happen so often for people with disabilities, and so it did not happen for me.

    Isolated, I began to resent Christmas, that resentment grew to the point of art. I collaborated with a friend of mine for a few years to create anti-christmas cards. They were quite funny yet extremely pointed - the f-word was used. This would be the time when I really did hate christmas. It got so bad that I actually sent out these anti-christmas cards to select friends and they were so very well received that I very seriously began to consider my own line of such cards as a way of making money and finding joy and happiness, etc. But i didn't. Something stopped me, and I just suffered in this state of dis-equlibrium for a few years. The only thing worse than hating christmas is being in a position to express that hate but not quite being able to do so. Talk about dukka!

    Hate wore me out, eventually; it is relentless. There is just so much damn christmas cheer you can not tolerate before it wears you down. Somewhere in this point of my life I picked up Buddhism and things began to turn around. Most of the rest of this story is here in this forum in the history of my posts, though not about christmas explicitly. What happened is I discovered and grew on the Path. Somewhere early on in that journey, a very critical moment, I finally realized I was no longer a Christian - a big step - but that was the beginning of my freedom from christmas.

    These days I feel I am pretty equanimous about christmas. I am not fully there; there are still tickles of resentment, but that's about all. I am fairly content to let them have their fun. I have a gift exchange with my family, but that's about all, and I am quite satisfied with that.
    AL (Jigen) in:

    I sat today

  2. #2
    Al, I wish a very Peaceful and Joyous Christmas to you and everyone.

    Gassho, Jundo

  3. #3
    Al, Merry Christmas!
    無 (MU, Emptiness) and 氷 (HYO, Ice) ... Emptiness Ice ...

    I may be wrong and not knowing is acceptable

  4. #4
    Merry Christmas, Al. ..and a big unconditional embrace, by any name.


  5. #5
    Hi Al,

    When I was young I used to hate Christmas because I was a fundamentalist atheist and got offended by people believes. So full of myself.

    Now I enjoy Christmas because it's a celebration of life and humanity. And in Mexico, a perfect excuse to give and receive lots of hugs.

    Oh and the food... yum

    Merry Christmas!
    Hondō Kyōnin
    奔道 協忍

  6. #6
    I love the idea, have a strong distaste for the commercial aspect of the season...yet I was out looking too. I like finding something for some one that you know they will enjoy, i just do not want to buy my way into anything... seems to defeat the purpose

    I actually (shhhh don't tell my wife) enjoy going to visit her folks and my own because its the best gift to have, for the time being, friends and family too are subject to impermanence, a precious gift that will some day not be there!!

    Merry thismas to you all and to all ... better stop there lest i get sued for some kinda intellectual property infringement :P


  7. #7
    Merry thismas
    Love it!!!

    Ho (Dharma)
    Yu (Hot Water)

  8. #8
    Merry Christmas Al.

    倫道 真現

  9. #9
    Christmas greetings Al.



  10. #10
    Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, one and all!



  11. #11
    Happy Christmas.
    Heisoku 平 息
    Every day is a journey, and the journey itself is home. (Basho)

  12. #12
    Al, I will sing Silent Night for you tonight

  13. #13
    Thank you for sharing, Al. I went through very similar emotions for a long time until I just accepted them. Like you the background that I had with the Christian church was very comforting to me in my youth. All those experiences buried within the mind could really play havoc at times.

    Happy Holidays to all!

  14. #14
    What is with all these christmas wishes? Is this some sort of devious test of my equanimity? "Bah, humbug," I say!

    Just kidding... but just barely. I actually did manage to say that two word christmas greeting (the one starting with "merry") twice this year, spontaneously! Well, the first one was mumbled and I am not sure I actually finished all the syllables of the second one. I said it a third time quite clearly to my family this morning on Skype, but only after some champaign. Like I said up top, I am a work in progress on this christmas (thismas!) thing.
    AL (Jigen) in:

    I sat today

  15. #15
    In all fairness we do call Christmas the 'C' word until the last week of term! Now all that is done for another year and yet the peaceful silence in this morning's sunrise was palpable. Pity this is not the way everyday!

    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
    Heisoku 平 息
    Every day is a journey, and the journey itself is home. (Basho)

  16. #16
    Al, Let's just ignore the Christian side of it and pretend that people are celebrating the anniversary or Sir Isaac Newton's birth instead.

    Happy Newton-mas!


  17. #17
    Al - I hope you made it through the day without feeling too bad.

    Truth is - Christmas is a difficult time for a whole raft of people.

    But ... you're right - resentment and anger is toxic. I'm happy for others who enjoy this time of year - breath a sigh of relief when its over - and look forward to New Years day which always feels like a clean page.



  18. #18
    Thank you , Willow. Well said. I am no longer on the raft, but I can still see it from where I float, though with much less desire to get back to it:

    For me and my grinch years, the best holiday has been the 26th when it was all over, at last! And that is still fairly true.
    AL (Jigen) in:

    I sat today

  19. #19

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by George View Post
    Happy Newton-mas!

    Ah Newton-mas! Once came up in this old thread...
    Worth a revisit because there are great discussions in it which relate. Personally, I love Jundo's perspective on celebrating them all!

    Ho (Dharma)
    Yu (Hot Water)

  21. #21
    Christmas has always been more like a family reunion for me. One of those occasions when we all get together and talk, laugh and have fun. It was like that when I was a kid and now it is similar being a father. No religious meaning involved.
    Several friends of mine and I have made some pretty bad experiences with regards to overly eager Christians and Christian belief per se, so I am glad that I associate Christmas with family and not with the Christian belief system. (I am sorry that I can't be too cheery when it comes to the topic of Christianity.)

    Anyway, I hope you've had a wonderful time with your families and friends!
    no thing needs to be added

  22. #22
    I feel almost the same way, LimoLama.
    求道芸化 Kyudo Geika
    I am just a priest-in-training, please do not take anything I say as a teaching.

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