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  1. #21
    Senior Member AzulEyes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Herring View Post
    Well, as I said, it never had anything to do with christianity for me. I would never fake believing something I don't. It is a beautiful childhood memory (that is about blinkering lights and a cosy atmosphere and special food, etc.) that I am grateful for and want to keep alive and pass on to the next generation. I honestly have a hard time even understanding why this should be an ethical problem towards myself. I basically celebrate it for the same reason I celebrate birthdays: it's fun and makes everybody involved happy. That is enough of a rational reason.
    okay. I never asked any of my atheist friends in real life. So thanks for letting me ask here.
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  2. #22
    Senior Member tinker683's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AzulEyes View Post
    lol

    I get the bigger picture motivation to keep Christmas going- and commercialized.

    I guess as an ENFP who is fascinated by what makes people tick and how they tick etc.- I'm trying to reconcile this idea that someone is "going with the crowd" and celebrating a Christian holiday (regardless of the origins of the specific rituals) when they outwardly deny Christianity.

    I'm wondering how an individual feels "okay" with this. If you are firm in your atheist beliefs, why not forgo any Christmas celebration? I can see going along with it for friends that are Christian. But putting up a tree, buying presents. I dunno. I've always been bewildered by people that celebrate to the hilt but do not respect the reason behind it.
    I actually have a similar thought toward the Christians who buy in (no pun) into all the Christmas stuff. I would say YOU GUYS are the ones who have helped the degeneration of the holiday into something it isn't. Us baby-barbequeing types have always been the minority, you guys have always been the majority so you guys are most certainly the trend setters here. If Modern Christians want to ponder why Christmas today is what it is today, I'd recommend they look at themselves first before they ruin my next tailgate party in front of an nursery.

    As for my atheism...it has nothing to do with Christmas and Christmas doesn't bother me one bit. I grew up a Christian and while church and all the Christmas Carols were all a part of the shindig...it very much took a backseat to all the presents, to the Thanksgiving-like meal on Christmas Day, and everyone just having a good time. My parents are still Christians as are my brothers but nothing has really changed saved for the dollar amount we've spent in the past. Everything is very much as it was. I'm sure to my parents it's about the celebration of of the birth of their savior but for me it's time off work, good food, and time that I can spend with my family. Always has been and always will be
    "The man who is swimming against the stream knows the strength of it."
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  3. #23
    Senior Member prplchknz's Avatar
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    the religious aspects of.Christmas growing up were fasting during advent st.nicholas day (dec 6th) going to church Christmas eve and breaking fast everything else had nothing to do with Christianity except my mom's nativity scene but I don't see why you couldn't pick and choose.traditions

  4. #24
    78% me Eruca's Avatar
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    You know, I think we can even go beyond the simple argument that states our winter festivals are as much pagan (and therefore open to all) as christian (and therefore exclusively connected to christians).

    Even if, let's imagine, the Christmas celebrations were conceived by European Christians in the middle ages, as well as the time of these celebrations. Modern day atheist Europeans (to take the obvious example) would still have a perfectly respectable claim to these traditions. For such traditions can be identified not just with christian tradition, but also European tradition (or now western tradition for the anglosphere countries etc). It might be said; well, the rational basis, the metaphorical valuation that gives meaning to said traditions, are christian first and foremost and to that I'd say to some degree, yes. While, on the other hand, this valuation is irrelevant for tradition supplies its own valuation in both cases. So often tradition withstands elimination even while its original meaning has been long ago lost; only the fact it is traditional provides it value. We accept this in most cases. Humans will defend tradition just for being traditional. This is the case for all cases of christmas observance; atheistic or christian.
    I hope I'm wrong, but I believe that he is a fraud, and I think despite all of his rhetoric about being a champion of the working class, it will turn out to be hollow -- Bernie Sanders on Trump

  5. #25
    Senior Member AzulEyes's Avatar
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    I agree that Christmas celebrations generally have gotten largely out of control, are larger than life and have taken on a life of their own. Meaning something different to different people. I feel the Christian reason for the season has been watered down. There is something to be said about less is more. It's out of control.
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  6. #26
    Superwoman Red Herring's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AzulEyes View Post
    I agree that Christmas celebrations generally have gotten largely out of control, are larger than life and have taken on a life of their own. Meaning something different to different people. I feel the Christian reason for the season has been watered down. There is something to be said about less is more. It's out of control.
    I'd agree that in many respects it has become excessively commercial. However, I agree with what @Eruca said about it being a tradition that goes beyond christianity. As a non-christian, I do not consider that watering down but rather detachment.
    The good life is one inspired by love and guided by knowledge. Neither love without knowledge, nor knowledge without love can produce a good life. - Bertrand Russell
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  7. #27
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    I am Christian and barely celebrate it as a religious holiday. We read the account of baby Jesus in the manger before we open gifts. That's it. It's really an excuse to buy extra stuff for the kids, watch Christmas movies, and eat candy for us. I don't in any way begrudge non-Christians getting in on the fun. I don't think Jesus would mind at all, so it would be silly for me to, IMO.
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
    ~ John Rogers

  8. #28
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    Isn't Christmas a pagan holiday anyway?

  9. #29
    Senior Member Nicodemus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AzulEyes View Post
    I'm wondering how an individual feels "okay" with this. If you are firm in your atheist beliefs, why not forgo any Christmas celebration? I can see going along with it for friends that are Christian. But putting up a tree, buying presents. I dunno. I've always been bewildered by people that celebrate to the hilt but do not respect the reason behind it.
    You are tricked by Ne, which likes to put meaning into worldly matters. However, a tree, gifts, candles, family, even singing are just that. They stand for whatever people want them to stand for, devoid of inherent meaning or message.

    Growing up, the only Christmas carol we had to sing each year was 'O Tannenbaum', which makes no mention of god or Jesus. I guess it is telling that 'Tannenbaum' is usually translated as 'Christmas tree', although it actually means 'fir tree'. For me, Christmas never had a lot to do with Christianity. It has always been about family, gifts, no school, no work, good times.

  10. #30
    Superwoman Red Herring's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicodemus View Post
    You are tricked by Ne, which likes to put meaning into worldly matters. However, a tree, gifts, candles, family, even singing are just that. They stand for whatever people want them to stand for, devoid of inherent meaning or message.

    Growing up, the only Christmas carol we had to sing each year was 'O Tannenbaum', which makes no mention of god or Jesus. I guess it is telling that 'Tannenbaum' is usually translated as 'Christmas tree', although it actually means 'fir tree'. For me, Christmas never had a lot to do with Christianity. It has always been about family, gifts, no school, no work, good times.
    Ladies and gentlemen, I give you a typical German christmas
    The good life is one inspired by love and guided by knowledge. Neither love without knowledge, nor knowledge without love can produce a good life. - Bertrand Russell
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