Holiday or Just Another Reason to Spend Money?

I don't know about you, but as the years go on I feel less and less inclined to celebrate any sort of semi-religious holiday.

We have become so detached from the true meaning of any of the holidays and what they truly represent-Christian holidays especially. Easter, Christmas, St. Valentine's, St. Patrick's: they all have been gutted, OVER-commercialized, and in some cases morphed into some disgusting shell of its former self.

Our children and our culture have been trained not to celebrate these holidays in their true form, but to expect gifts instead.

They kids cry, "Me! Me! ME! Where's mine? Why don't I get any?", when they should be asking, "Who's hurting? Who's in need? Who can I comfort and make smile today?"

What motivated me to write this story was something that happened back in March. A neighbors kid dropped by our house and told my kids that some damn leprechaun and come by in the night and left goodies for Saint Patrick's Day. I had never even heard of that. Apparently this is the norm now as I had seen from multiple friends and family members on Facebook - almost as bad as the damn 'Elf of the Shelf' during Christmas. My kids looked at me with disappointment and my 6-year-old especially wanted to know why the leprechaun didn't come to our house.

Yes, I get it. It's supposed to be fun and magical time for the kids'. But at what expense? What is this teaching them? Only that mysterious, mythical creatures or people (that have nothing to do with our religious beliefs and contradict them) exist to load them up with candy and toys throughout the year. And don't even get me started on Christmas.

As Christians, we are taught that gluttony, greed, and lust are sins, are they not? Yet, we say nothing, turn the other cheek: blindly following the masses. Pouring hundreds, if not thousands of dollars, down the drain as we look to increase our stock. We pine for that new TV. We want what we can't have; what we don't even really need. We have a lot of these things, but we want more. It's disgusting. Don't get me wrong here, I am not free of guilt either. I am just as in the wrong as the rest of America, but I am finally starting to pull my head out of the sand. Now we just need to do it collectively.

My kids have in fact confronted me about our lack of celebrations these last couple of years, which they always chalked up to lack of money (which is partially true) and I took it as great opportunity to teach them a few things. I asked about each one of the major holidays and why we celebrate them and not one could answer correctly. Failure on my part? Yes. And also a failure of our society to let these get bastardized to the point of non-recognition. I ended up telling them the brief history of each holiday, why they're celebrated on a particular day, the overlapping of religious traditions,  and some of the symbolisms behind them.

I hate taking the magic away, but you know what? I hate ignorance just as much, if not more.

Let us teach our children the true meaning of these holidays and teach them how to celebrate them correctly, or not to if it's not in line with your religious beliefs.


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