Thinkerfromiowa's Blog

Conversation about a variety of subjects

Christmas? Bah! Humbug!

Christmas?  Bah!  Humbug!

Hello, everyone.

Here is my Christmas gift to you – tons of information.

First, this.

Gods born on Dec. 25

God

When?

Religion

Mother

Virgin?

Nimrod Millennia BC AncientBabylon Semiramis Yes
Mithras 600 BC Persia Unknown Yes
Horus 3000 BC AncientEgypt Isis Yes
Attis 1400 BC Phrygia Nana Yes
Dionysus the son of Zeus   Greek Hera Yes
Tammuz 400 BC Babylon Semiramis / Mylitta Yes
Krishna 1400 / 5771 BC Hindu Devaki (Maia) Yes
Zoroaster (Zarathustra) 1000 BC or earlier Persia Dughdhava

 

Yes
Hercules Before 300 BC Greek Alcmene / Hera Yes
Perseus   Greek Danae Yes
Dionysus 186 BC Greek Ceres / Demeter Yes
Helios (the Sun) 10,000 BC Mankind The Queen of Heaven Yes
Bacchus Before 200 BC Roman Semele Yes
Apollo   Greek    
Jupiter   Roman    
Buddha 563 BC Buddhism Maya Yes
Heracles 800 BC Greek Unknown Yes
Adonis 200 BC Greek Myrha Yes
Hermes Before 100 BC Greek Maya Yes
Prometheus Before 100 BC Greek Unknown Yes
Beddou 1027 BC Oriental Unknown Yes
Quetzalcoatl Before 300 BC Mexican Unknown Yes
Jesus Christ 1 AD / CE Judaism / Christianity Mary Yes

Now, this.

There is a website —  CalamitiesofNature.com – which makes statements through comic strips based on the original “Peanuts” strip.  This one is titled “Merry Mithramas!” and appeared onDecember 22, 2010.  Here is the transcript:

[Linus and Charlie Brown conversing on a stage.]

Charlie Brown: “Isn’t there anyone who knows what Christmas is all about?!”

Linus: “Sure I can tell you what Christmas is all about.”

Linus: “December 25th is associated with the birth of many pagan gods, including MithraHorus, Hercules, Zeus, and Sol Invictus. The Roman festival Saturnalia would also end around this time. Christianity imported many of these pagan myths and traditions into its own customs around 400 AD.  Today Christians express outrage that Christmas is losing its Christian roots. This is ironic since it was Christianity that first hijacked the holiday in the first place to make it easier to convert new followers.  Nevertheless, it is a wonderful opportunity to share our love with friends and family and commit acts of goodwill for those that are less fortunate. It is a time for children to revel in their innocence and wonder about the world, and adults to find their inner child.”

Linus: “That’s what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown.”

Indeed THAT is what “Christmas” is all about.

It is painful for me to write this essay, but then, the processes which have brought me to my present philosophy have been painful as well.  There was a time – back when I was a boy – when “Christmas” actually meant something.  As a boy, I learned and recited my parts for the annual Christmas programs.  As a member of the Junior Choir, I sang in two cantatas at the United Brethren Church in my home town.  I also was part of a goodly number of other Christmas programs over the years.  I didn’t fully understand the “Christmas” story, but I also did not have any legitimate reason to not believe it.  So I held my faith.

That all changed when I grew older and sat under the preaching and teaching of pastors who were far more gifted intellectually than were the pastors of my boyhood.  As I sat and listened to this intelligent discourse, I started thinking.  And observing.  And I saw that there was a colossal disconnect between what “Jesus” said in the gospels and the realities of life.  I saw also a huge disconnect between the conduct and behavior of the followers of “Jesus” and what he supposedly taught in the gospels.  And contrary to the blitherings of Billy Graham and others, I could not find even one example of a person whose life had been changed for the better through an encounter with “Jesus.”

So the end result was that I became cynical about the “man from Galilee” and his followers.  I wondered many times, if “Jesus” really did speak truth, then why was the truth that I witnessed and experienced so markedly different from the “truth” he proclaimed?  I also wondered, if “Jesus” was the personification of the highest form of love, then why were so many of his followers unkind to me?  Why did Christian girls want nothing to do with me?  And why did Christian dads not want me around their daughters?  And why did “Jesus” and his followers focus all their love and attention on the beautiful people — those with social position, money, and/or physical attractiveness – at the expense of us ordinary people?

I never did find answers to these questions.  I did, however, have enough bad experiences at the hands of “Jesus” and his followers that I was able to write a book over 600 pages in length on the subject of spiritual abuse.

So , based on my personal experiences and the lack of answers to the questions posed immediately above, I was forced to the logical conclusion that, far from being who and what his followers claimed him to be, “Jesus” was nothing more than a hoax – a cruel joke.  And a bad one at that.

Having arrived at this conclusion, I concluded that everything about “Jesus”, especially his birth, his “death on the cross,” and his “resurrection” were just one huge humbug, as Ebenezer Scrooge would put it, especially in the light of the fact that there was virtually no legitimate mention of “Jesus” and those events involving him in the secular histories that were written during and shortly after his supposed lifetime.

And that explains the title of this essay – “Christmas?  Bah!  Humbug!”  I am fully aware that there are people who, for intellectual or emotional reasons, require that the focus be on “Jesus” for this season.  They are incapable of comprehending, for whatever reason, that there are other religions besides Christianity or other “gods” besides “Jesus.”  I am willing to grant them their wish.  However, reciprocity demands that they recognize the rights of followers of other paths to practice THEIR faiths and to worship their gods.  Failure to do this can result in our denying the worthiness of Evangelical Christianity to exercise any constraints against us and our belief systems.

In a mail run today (12/23/11), I found the following letter in one of the Asperger’s Syndrome groups that I read and participate in:

“Because of my autism, I was never able to find a partner or establish a family of my own.  My Mom looked so young, I thought she would live into her nineties, but she didn’t. She died of lung cancer at 74 and my Dad died a couple years later.  I do have a brother, but he lives in another state and we’re not close.  He’s also on the spectrum. I have a plethora of cousins, but they are either far away or want nothing to do with me.  I will be seeing a couple friends this weekend, but its not the same without a family. Christmas is just a very sad time for me when I really miss Mom and Dad and everyone else that I lost.. I wish there was an organization for people who are without family on the holidays. Like “Parents without Partners,” but “Christmas without Kinfolk.” I’m sure that somewhere there are other aspies in midlife or beyond who have found themselves in this kind of situation and wish there was a way we could find each other.”

“Christmas without Kinfolk.”  What a wonderful idea!  What people wrapped up in their “Jesus” cannot – or will not – understand is that there are indeed people who, out of necessity, celebrate “Christmas” without kinfolk.  But then there are non-church groups – and Mainline churches – that DO provide some means for those of us who are alone to spend the holiday with others.  Here, the local United Methodist Church– why am I not surprised? – is providing a community “Christmas” dinner this Sunday, where “whosoever will may come.”  It wouldn’t surprise me in the least if some United Methodist – or other Mainline church – is doing a kind of “Christmas Without Kinfolk” affair this Xmas.  Indeed, that could be what the local UM Church is doing.  Hooray for them!!  They are doing a colossal service.

From December 26 until January 1, the Black community celebrates Kwanzaa.  In 2002, George W. Bush issued this proclamation about the holiday:

I send greetings to those celebrating Kwanzaa.

Kwanzaa celebrates the traditional African values of unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity, and faith. From December 26th to January 1st, people of African descent gather to renew their commitment to these seven principles, known as Nguzo Saba, and give thanks for the blessings of family, community, and culture. Kwanzaa is also a time for Africans and African-Americans to honor their common heritage by participating in events based on early harvest gatherings called matunda ya kwanza, or first fruits.

As individuals and families join together during Kwanzaa, their joy enriches communities in the United States and across the globe. By uniting people of diverse backgrounds and beliefs, this holiday promotes mutual understanding and respect. These universal principles inspire us as we work together for a future of freedom, hope, and opportunity for all.

Laura joins me in sending our best wishes for a memorable Kwanzaa, and for peace, happiness, and success in the coming year.

GEORGE W. BUSH

And here is this year’s proclamation from Barak Obama dated12/26/11:

 Statement by the President and First Lady on Kwanzaa

Michelle and I send our warmest wishes to all those celebrating Kwanzaa this holiday season. Today marks the beginning of the week-long celebration honoring African American heritage and culture through the seven principles of Kwanzaa — unity, self determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity, and faith.

We celebrate Kwanzaa at a time when many African Americans and all Americans reflect on our many blessings and memories over the past year and our aspirations for the year to come. And even as there is much to be thankful for, we know that there are still too many Americans going through enormous challenges and trying to make ends meet. But we also know that in the spirit of unity, or Umoja, we can overcome those challenges together.

 As families across America and around the world light the red, black, and green candles of the Kinara this week, our family sends our well wishes and blessings for a happy and healthy new year.

Now who in his right mind would get his knickers in knots over these two Kwanzaa proclamations?  The Evangelicals, of course.  But why”  For three basic reasons.  First, Kwanzaa is primarily a celebration for African-Americans.  It is a known fact that a large segment of the Evangelical world does not like African-Americans.  Don’t forget that a large segment of the Evangelical element in this country did not give up its ownership of Negro slaves without a violent Civil War.  To this day, there is a huge element of Evangelicals who dislike – even hate – Barak Obama merely because he is black.

Second, Evangelicals hate the concept of Kwanzaa because of its focus on its seven pillars:  unity, self determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity, and faith.  To discuss the Evangelical hostility to these principles would require a book.  But one can look at these principles and easily see how they run contrary to what “Jesus” and his followers teach and believe.

Third, Evangelicals hate Kwanzaa because the focus is on the principles instead of the birth of a baby.  Evangelicals are the ones who are out to demolish Kwanzaa and demand that “Christmas” and Hanukkah be the only holidays practiced during this time of year.  In other words, for non Jews the ONLY option for a celebration is The Baby – and nothing else.

That is another reason I believe Christmas is a Humbug.  What’s the matter?  Can’t Christmas stand on its own merits against Kwanzaa?  If not, why not?

Since I am not Black, I do not celebrate Kwanzaa.  But I definite DO embrace its principles.  They are noble and upright, and thus worthy of my embracing them.

Just as I wished everyone a Happy Winter Solstice, I now wish everyone – especially my Black brothers and sisters – a Happy Kwanzaa.  And as Tiny Tim states it in “A Christmas Carol,”  God bless us every one.

Bill

 

Advertisements

December 28, 2011 - Posted by | Politics, Religion

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: