Thursday, December 22, 2011

C h r i s t m a s

With Christmas just around the corner, I thought it only fitting to reflect on this special day. Christmas is the most widely celebrated day in the world.  Christians of many cultures mark this day as the birth of Jesus Christ to honour his life and the extraordinary things he did.  It is a most blessed celebration (as well as Easter) to Christians like Diwali is to Hindus & Sikhs, Hannukah to the Jewish people, Ramadan to Islamic people, Vesak to the Buddhists, and many other religious holidays. The point is that Christmas is what it is; not a 'holiday' or 'season.'  Aside from the most obvious (Jesus' birthday) it is also a day to reflect (which we should do all year long) on the message that was delivered.  The message of hope, peace, kindness and love.  So when someone says Merry Christmas, it is not meant as 'Merry the birth of Christ and you better believe what I believe,' it is 'Merry peace, joy, love, happiness.'  Not such a bad message eh?  Personally, if someone came to me and said Happy Hannukah, Happy Ramadan, Happy Vesak or Happy Diwali, I would smile and be grateful that someone wants to wish me all the great things in this world.  No doubt we are now a global community and we must be aware more today then ever to respect all our differences, beliefs and ways of life.  What we shouldn't do is take away what is a universal message, just stated in unique ways.  On another note, all the frills that come with these special days (trees, decorations, abundance of food & treats, presents and traditions) although excessive at times are just symbols of those celebrations.  Yes commercialism has managed to saddle everyone with guilt that they 'have' to do all these things, but then again, we have the ability to choose and make the day what it is to each of us.  If it works, great, if it doesn't change it.

So the next time someone wishes you a Merry Christmas, embrace the gifts they just gave you, then if you like, pass it on.  Everything starts with ONE...person, word, hug, smile, idea.  Maybe, just maybe, if there is enough ONE's we will change the world to be a more peaceful, loving and sharing place.

God Bless and Merry Christmas.

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