Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Maybe Santa is Religious

Ok, let's not storm the castle.  Call off the dogs, I am not as bad as you might think.  I have gotten a lot of feed back about my last post.  Which was the point of it.  I am thrilled that the conversation is open about the topic, people are discussing it.  Not the people I wanted to engage with me about it, but hey, it still has been a good conversation.  Just so we are all on the same page, my point in my prior post was that if you want to say that Santa is totally secular, then you have accept that he discriminates.

I don't actually accept that premise.  Santa is not a secular being.  He lives in a gray area between religious figure and secular figure.  Bottom line here is that other cultures and religions have not adopted Santa, as they have say St. Patrick or St. Valentine, who were both also religious figures.  Santa hasn't had his prior brush with sainthood erased from the public mind.

Really, I think it has to do with his relationship to Christmas. Christmas is the big boy holiday in Christianity.  That and Easter.  Clearly the Easter Bunny needs better marketing.  Seriously, Easter isn't quite as festive as Christmas.  I think that is what puts the damper on the good old Easter Bunny.  But he too straddles that line.

So, when were are participating in events supported by non-religious groups, it is not ok include Santa.  It is one of those situations where saying, fine we will do Hanukah too, doesn't really solve the problem.  Throw a menorah in the corner and you are good to go.  If it is a non-religious event, then NO religion is the way to go.  Don't add more traditions, because we can not get them all.  Besides, Hanukah is not the same type of event as Christmas.  It isn't Jewish Christmas.  It is a minor festival about some oil that lasted for 8 days.  It isn't the big boy holiday of the Jewish tradition, the High Holidays are.  You don't see these same organizations making a big deal about that.

I would like to go on record, saying I do not really believe that Santa is a bigot.  I believe that he is a Christian figure.  I believe that he has religious under tones.  But, if you want to argue that premise with me, I will refer you to my earlier post.

At the end of the day, I stand by Linus, he was on to something with the Great Pumpkin!

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