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No Christmas According to Who?

CaptainObvious

Son of Liberty
V.I.P.
I think you're misunderstanding my point. I'm not disputing that the origin of the celebration is no doubt religious (note, I said 'religious' and not specifically Christian; I'll touch on that later in this post) but rather I'm stating that for many people, Christmas has no religious connotations at all. I'm sure there are a lot of people who do celebrate it as Christians, but personally I don't know anyone who celebrates the birth of Christ or refers to the Christian faith at all.

In most Western countries the holiday is a public one; we get time off work and schools are closed. But there isn't any focus on the Christian aspect and for a lot of people it's strictly commercial; you buy presents, you put up some shiny lights, you have fun and you eat food - that's pretty much it.

Again, I'm not denying that the message was perhaps poorly chosen, and I'm not agreeing with how the message was delivered. But those responsible for erecting the billboard have stated that the purpose is not to offend anybody religious but to highlight that it's acceptable not to go to church. The target audience (again, according to those responsible) are the people who have no faith or belief in the Christian religion but still feel obligated to go to Church by societal expectations and pressure. There is a documented and well-known tendency in many American states (notably, the areas in which the billboards have been placed) to assume that the Christian faith is the norm, and those who do not share the same beliefs are questioned and regarded as 'abnormal'. I have had discussions with Americans in place and they have been genuinely surprised when I've told them I'm not religious. The quote from the article reads:

So while the choice of wording is not ideal, some of the best marketing strategies are the ones that have shocked the readers and thus have stood out more.



I suppose that is true, in the same way that you have acknowledged Thor (the Norse god) forty-nine times this year. You also acknowledged Mars for a whole month, and even Julius Ceasar got his moment in the spotlight. Most things are named after something historic; Thursdays are Thor's Day, March is the month of Mars, the Roman god of war, and July is the month named after Julius Ceasar. So yes, in a way, we are acknowledging a lot of historical activities and people, which is pretty interesting.



Yes, the name literally means "Christ's Mass", but the holiday has a basis in a variety of religions. The meaning has been watered down like so many other Christian festivals, because Christianity has had a habit of absorbing the traditions and customs of other religions to make conversion easier and simpler. Christmas is actually adapted from the Winter Solstice - a festival found in many Pagan and even Roman religions - just as Easter was adapted from the Summer Solstice. The Christmas tree is a Pagan tradition, as is the use of wreaths of holly, etc. Therefore while Christmas is well-known for being a Christian holiday, it also has grounds in a lot of other festivals and holy days as well.

However there's a more significant point about the religious connotations of Christmas, and that is choice. I choose not to celebrate Christmas as a Christian holiday, because that has no meaning for me. It doesn't mean that I ignore that many religious folks do, it just means that I treat it the way I perceive it - a public holiday, time off work, and time to spend with my family, giving and receiving gifts and catching up with people I might not ordinarily see very much throughout the year. Those who are religious are absolutely free to celebrate Christmas by observing religious traditions, obviously, or in any way they saw fit - but if I chose to celebrate Ramadan or Eid al-Fitr then I would feel free to celebrate it in the way that I chose, of my own volition, and in a world of freedom of choice I expect to be afforded the right and respect to do as I please so long as my actions are not offensive or illegal.
Absolutely. You have every right to celebrate it the way you want. It is however a religious holiday and as you know and point out it's a celebration of the birth of Christ. To acknowledge that isn't shoving it down anyone's throat. It's Christmas. You are going to be exposed to a lot of people talking about the birth of Christ. You are going to be exposed to Nativity scenes. Many atheists just need to get over it.
 

Dr4gon

Registered Member
V.I.P.
I'm surprised the number of atheists is that low. I have to wonder if when asked people lie about that. Kind of like they lie about how much they drink alcohol or their voting habits.
Yeah I wonder about those polls too. I mean if somebody asked me am I a atheist I would probaly say "No Im a mercenary. Wanna see my kalashnikov?" :cool: Or I could say "Yeah. What are you? A pastaferian?". Or just shoot them with a paintball gun. :D
So why would anyone answer that question?

Or maybe somebody doesnt want anybody to know? I mean maybe sometimes its like that movie "Greedy" and if somebody knows they are atheist then they could loose their inheritance. Or sometimes people just wanna troll.

I totally do trust the "Church attendance" poll more than the other polls. But even then it could still include people that are atheists.
More about western Christmas (Its different in the east but it shares some of the same history).
History of Christmas - Christmas - HISTORY.com

So yeah some atheists have a "War on Christmas" but so did the Christians. lol.
 

ReasontoBelieve

Registered Member
Most seem to agree that the sign was the inappropriate way of dealing with the issue. The problem was not that they wanted to celebrate Christmas their own way. The problem is what this sign says.


As several of us were discussing a topic thread started by Smelnik. The First amendment. Does the first amendment allow anything to be said, or written? We learned there are boundaries even in freedom. If America is to be a free country, there is yet the laws that also protect our freedom and rights.


This sign does not simply suggest that the state is forcing them to go to Church.. But rather calling God a fairytale and this includes Christians, their faith and hope in God. .The sign should have had a message that they were mandated to celebrate Christmas. Because I would have understood the message. The message they present looks like by most onlookers, this is a group of Atheist who hates God and Christians and thinks we believe in fairytales. The sign then however strikes an opposite reaction.


It would be better to have a peaceful protest to tell them to allow them to celebrate Christmas their own way and don't interfere with their own personal lives.


The first amendment allows them to assemble and to choose their beliefs. Christianity should not be forced upon the public as a mandatory way of living. When a person chooses Jesus as a personal Savior, it is a personal choice. But if the state or city says follow Jesus or else face consequences they have also abused their first amendment. America is about freedom and choices. So I don't oppose those to choose to make Christmas a public only observation.


However in respect these people yet not to ridicule God or Christians for what they believe. Let each choose their destination.


I grew up in California. As you know that is a Democratic voting state and is more liberal majority wise. So my experiences is that the majority of people celebrate Christmas as a national Holiday. Most did not celebrate it like Catholics and Christian as of Christmas. .What did I do? I just walked around seeing decorations. Sure as I became a Christian. I appreciate the nativity decorations in preference over snowman and reindeer. .


Now then if Christians and Catholics puts up a sign in the public city community the signs says Santa and Rudolf are false fairytales. Your holiday is a falsehood. That is the wrong way to go about it. If you really want to share Christmas talk to people in person and then they will decide how they want to observe.


Yeah I read once about the winter solstice celebration and some of its origin. It was the Catholic Church that transformed it into Christmas. But we don't recognize its origin. Christmas is a one day yearly event. Christians not need to be over concerned about Christmas. A Christian carries the message year round. A true Christian does not observe God only once a year or once a week. Jesus says who ever wishes to follow me take up your cross daily.


So finally the intention of posting this was was not to take any rights but let those who celebrate Christmas in the Christian aspect without being called a fairytale. If this had been done against Islam they who put up that sign never would have heard the end of it. The sign may have been destroyed or being attacked. What will Christians and Catholics do? They will frown, yet also will dust off their sandals. .What is done is done. Lets keep moving forward.
With 2 words. Merry Christmas.
 

The_Chameleon

Grandmaster
Christmas... A holiday presented as an idea by the devil to the Catholic Church, that they should be able to bring in pagan followers by introducing pagan stories and traditions on the birthday of Horus/Osiris/Dionysis (Best scientific estimates put Jesus' actual birthday in September) and saying it has something to do with Christ. The central character of this new holiday would in fact not be Christ, but a mythical gnome in a red suit who would eventually be adopted and transformed by Coca Cola ltd into the jolly full sized and full figured sleigh riding icon we know today as Satan... er I mean Santa. Every year we celebrate capitalism on the birthday of Horus with the same pagan traditions that it says right within Biblical scripture are not to be practiced (Jer 10:1-5).


It's a good thing that these people are speaking out against this "Christian" holiday. Dear Santa? That's cute. Dear Christ, can we do away with Santa and the commercialization of what is supposedly your birthday? Dear Christ, you're cool and all but if I have to hear those carols one more time I think I'm going to lose it. I mean, if I were an Atheist I think I would be inclined to say "You're not even celebrating the right fairy tale! At least be authentic!". Frankly, I can't blame them for getting tired of the holiday. I know I do.



- Chameleon
 
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CaptainObvious

Son of Liberty
V.I.P.
Christmas... A holiday presented as an idea by the devil to the Catholic Church, that they should be able to bring in pagan followers by introducing pagan stories and traditions on the birthday of Horus/Osiris/Dionysis (Best scientific estimates put Jesus' actual birthday in September) and saying it has something to do with Christ. The central character of this new holiday would in fact not be Christ, but a mythical gnome in a red suit who would eventually be adopted and transformed by Coca Cola ltd into the jolly full sized and full figured sleigh riding icon we know today as Satan... er I mean Santa. Every year we celebrate capitalism on the birthday of Horus with the same pagan traditions that it says right within Biblical scripture are not to be practiced (Jer 10:1-5).


It's a good thing that these people are speaking out against this "Christian" holiday. Dear Santa? That's cute. Dear Christ, can we do away with Santa and the commercialization of what is supposedly your birthday? Dear Christ, you're cool and all but if I have to hear those carols one more time I think I'm going to lose it. I mean, if I were an Atheist I think I would be inclined to say "You're not even celebrating the right fairy tale! At least be authentic!". Frankly, I can't blame them for getting tired of the holiday. I know I do.



- Chameleon
Actually the best evidence is that Jesus was born in late March, early April. And it's just a day that was chosen by the early Catholic Church. Just about every day has a significance to it. Today is celebrated as the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary for example. That doesn't mean it LITERALLY happened today, only that today is the day it is celebrated.
 
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