I have some stuff going on of a non-bookish nature, and I’m really busy right now, so today I’m going to just throw up a bunch of links and my newspaper bit and let you have at it. This very well might be my last post until after Christmas Day. The weekend up through the day itself are all going to be pretty packed for me. Plus, the world still might end (har har).
Second, Just for the hell of it, I’ve posted some water photography and some Utah landscape photography, which you can ooh and ahhh over here and here. (The ooohing and ahhhing helps my fragile ego… ;))
And, for a really random addition to this post, I was interviewed by a newspaper recently. Instead of posting the link to the interview here, I’m going to retype it a bit to preserve (hopefully) some of my anonymity, which is pretty much history at this point, I realize. Anyway, I was interviewed about being an atheist during the holiday season – my perspective and all that. I think it turned out pretty well, despite some details the reporter got wrong. (For example, we bought tickets to Ireland on Christmas Day and traveled there in March. We also saved all year and used the money we would have used buying crap for each other to buy important things, like furniture and making memories… but we never went into debt over it, like most people seem to. We also NEVER decorated for it, until this year. For us, the holiday is all about remembering important moments and the people who matter most to us. It’s never been about gifts or decorations, but always about memories so we try to keep things rather humble, or I think the whole shebang loses its importance. We’d always feel so relaxed and stress free during the holiday season and watch all the masses of stressed out people with some sort of amusement.)
This snippet was part of a larger piece about alternative viewpoints regarding the holidays. He also interviewed two pagans, which took up the majority of the article.
Anyway, here it is…
Into the holiday, hesitantly > Sarah, a 29-year-old freelance editor who lives in (city) said that as atheists, she and her husband rarely celebrated Christmas, if at all.
“I always had trouble rationalizing the celebration of a humble person, who also healed the poor, by filling up my shopping cart and going into debt,” Sarah said.
So during the first years of their marriage, she and her husband used holiday money to buy furniture. Two Christmasses ago, they spent Christmas week traveling in Ireland.
Then everything changed, including their Christmas celebrations, when the couple had a baby girl.
Even if Christmas had lost its religious meaning for them long ago, Sarah and her husband dedecided the sight of lights and other decorations would would be a treasure for their 16-month-old daughter. Sarah cast back to her own childhood and her Mormon upbringing. Once you’re a parent, she reasoned, why not get sucked up into it?
“I had memories of Christmas lights on the tree, so I wanted my daughter to have the same,’ Sarah said. “I’ve never met an atheist who says you can’t celebrate in some way simply because you’re an atheist. They probably exist somewhere out there, but I’ve never met them. For us, now, the holiday is about pulling together as a family to recall everything that happened during the year.”
While skeptical toward religions in general, Sarah bristles slightly at the suggestion that she somehow might be missing the “true meaning” of the holiday simply by celebrating it as she and her husband see fit.
“It’s a holiday that means something different to everyone,” she said. “I don’t think that’s a ‘war on Christmas.’ I think that’s diversity, and that’s wonderful.”
So there you have it. Happy Holidays, all… no matter how you celebrate (or not) it/them.