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  1. #41
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AzulEyes View Post
    I know a lot of atheists- or people who do not believe in God- or the miracle birth of Jesus, who celebrate Christmas.

    Trees, lights, presents- the whole nine yards.

    This is strange to me.

    What gives?
    It's not that confusing. Christmas is such a blend of traditions and ideas that different people use the holiday to celebrate different things.

    It's like trying to say that being Jewish is either being part of an ethnic group OR a faith. The reality is that people can be both, or one, or the other.
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  2. #42
    Senior Member SensEye'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 just aren't connecting the dots here. The Dec 25 holiday was based on a pagan festival, and so when Christianity became popular, it was good marketing on the Christians part to co-opt the celebration as "Jesus birthday".

    If they had just picked some other date as a "holy day" based on when they though Jesus birthday really was, it may never have caught on. And the proof is in the pudding, some 2000 years later, look how many folks think Dec 25 is all about Jesus being born?

    So it's just tradition on the part of Christians and non-believers alike. Everybody likes a good celebration.

  3. #43
    Senior Member Hypatia's Avatar
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    What have you got against party crashers?

  4. #44
    Don't pet me. JAVO's Avatar
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    God doesn't believe in atheists. Problem solved.

    There's nothing to see here people. Move along to the next thread.

  5. #45
    Senior Member AzulEyes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by palm View Post
    What have you got against party crashers?
    LOL nothing actually
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  6. #46
    Senior Member AzulEyes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SensEye View Post
    You just aren't connecting the dots here. The Dec 25 holiday was based on a pagan festival, and so when Christianity became popular, it was good marketing on the Christians part to co-opt the celebration as "Jesus birthday".

    If they had just picked some other date as a "holy day" based on when they though Jesus birthday really was, it may never have caught on. And the proof is in the pudding, some 2000 years later, look how many folks think Dec 25 is all about Jesus being born?

    So it's just tradition on the part of Christians and non-believers alike. Everybody likes a good celebration.
    Sorry- I just don't buy that people of TODAY that are atheists celebrate Christmas because of these other non-Christian historical reasons.
    I don't buy it.
    You do it for the presents and the fun and the food.
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  7. #47
    Gotta catch you all! Blackmail!'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Herring View Post
    I thought the consensus among most historians is that there probably was a reform rabbi Jehoshua ben Joseph.
    No there isn't.

    And while you speak of Socrates, he's an historical figure because many people who knew him testified about his life. Not only Plato, but also Xenophon and Aristophane.
    There are too much direct testimonies to deny his existence.

    While for Jesus... we have absolutely NOTHING.

    NOTHING AT ALL!!

    Even Roman registers in Judea never mention he existed, or that somebody like him could have existed. Yet we have almost all the names of the criminals who have been crucified, under which pretense and offense, and when. Roman bureaucrats were very meticulous. But for Jesus or even a Yehoshua... nothing. No letters, no testimonies, no written documents... with the exception of crude fakes written centuries after his presumed death.
    So the consensus amongst historians, as far as I heard the debate, was that Jesus was only a mythical figure, a collection of previous mythos. Hence Mithra. But of course, for true believers, it's blasphemy. Hence the precautions of many contemporary "agnostic" historians. But these precautions aren't scientific per se, it's just political correctness..
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  8. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackmail! View Post
    No there isn't.

    Do you have any sources? I'm asking because I have read and heard (from historians) the opposite many times but have always been interested in this.
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  9. #49
    Gotta catch you all! Blackmail!'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Herring View Post
    Do you have any sources? I'm asking because I have read and heard (from historians) the opposite many times but have always been interested in this.
    Classic dilemma.

    Trying to prove that something doesn't exist is impossible. But we can be reasonable and infer the real possibility, just like in the celestial teapot's analogy.

    The fact remains that we have absolutely NO CONTEMPORARY SOURCE about a person called Yehoshua or that could fit into the events described by the Bible during that time.
    All the authentic documents referring to Jesus or to "Christos" were written decades or centuries after his presumed death.
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  10. #50
    Senior Member SensEye's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AzulEyes View Post
    Sorry- I just don't buy that people of TODAY that are atheists celebrate Christmas because of these other non-Christian historical reasons.
    I don't buy it.
    You do it for the presents and the fun and the food.
    True. But we did it in the first place for the presents the fun and the food. It's just for a while we forgot that was the main reason (on account of most of our ancestors became Christians), and we thought is was a holy dudes birthday. So reverting back to the days when it was only about fun/presents/food is not inconsistent.

    Likewise Christians, who may have started celebrating Christs birthday on Dec 25 (when it would seem that date is almost certainly incorrect) can carry on doing so, since they have been doing that for centuries (and since the exact date is unknown anyhow, might as well stick with tradition). It's about the fun/presents/food for Christians too. And they can celebrate their religion on top of that.

    I actually used to really like Christmas services back in my psuedo-believer days. That whole fellowship vibe is a legitimate phenomena. Everybody is in such a good mood you can't help but feel the same way.

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