Christmas is here—no, it’s not over yet. The season of gift-giving is upon us. Whether you worship as a Christian, Jew, Muslim, Hindu, Goddess follower, or whatever, this season brings with it a time for celebration, contemplation, renewal and appreciation.
It is important to take spiritual breaks in one’s life, to stop and smell the roses, think about how one’s life came to be, share the beauty of good things with others and bring the characteristics and practices of higher beings into one’s own life. That is what spiritual events like Christmas have to offer, as well as a few other things.
It’s interesting how people latch easily onto the idea of Santa Claus, who is a composite of myth and reality, with gift giving and trying to bring out a spirit of generosity and compassion. It seems to happen more easily for some than say, accepting the idea of Jesus, who was not originally the ‘reason for the season’, but has been amalgamated in along with more ancient versions of winter celebration.
But no matter what one practises, the ‘reason for the season’ is one of renewal and appreciation. Just as the Sun—or light, love, warmth and nurturing—leaves for awhile and then returns in all its glory to bring new life and a new day, the inhabitants of the planet have an opportunity to also indulge in renewal and revival. At this time of the year, these ceremonies are usually capped off with a New Year’s celebration, when so-called resolutions are made and then hopefully kept.
The idea of Jesus is as important as the person. The idea of Jesus is about giving, sacrifice for others, nurturing, compassion and remembering the Creator, i.e. the Original Parents, and not just those mortal.
So even though you think this whole thing might be over, it’s time to indulge in a little spiritual renewal this Christmas season. In the Northern Hemisphere, the Yule Sabbath began on December 21st, the shortest day of the year. On December 25th, celebrations are at their highest in a Christian home with the remembrance of the birth of Jesus, the Son of the God and Goddess, sent to liberate mankind from its past transgressions, and restore humankind to ultimate spiritual possibilities. Pancha Ganapati, a Hindu celebration, links these two dates together, beginning on the 21st and ending on the 25th.
So whether you embrace the celebration of Jesus, or Santa Claus, Lord Ganesh, or some other equally valid tradition, take time amidst the hustle and bustle of shopping, cooking, decorating and un-decorating, to remember and appreciate not just your own friends and family, but the original Mother and Father, who started it all, and their Children who have come to love, teach and sometimes trade their own physical lives for yours.
Take time to love, respect and honour Their gifts to you. Celebrate, in the traditions you have been taught, with love and kindness. And then be the gift that keeps on giving.