My blog contains a large number of posts. A few are included in various other publications, or as attached stories and chronicles in my emails; many more are found on loose leaves, while some are written carelessly in margins and blank spaces of my notebooks. Of the last sort most are nonsense, now often unintelligible even when legible, or half-remembered fragments. Enjoy responsibly.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Jesus Claus

Both come from a mystical land that many talk about, but no one has ever seen.

Both promise gifts and treasure for good behavior.

Both keep a record of your lifetime of conduct.

Both can always see what you are doing, at any time, anywhere.

Both magically ascend into the sky when the job is done.

What is amazing is that every single child in the world is naturally compelled to ask enough provoking question to dispel the Santa myth before even reaching intellectual maturity. Whereas most adults refuse to ask any questions that undermine their belief in whether or not Jesus is real. For a long time I thought that children were just naturally smarter to ask for their gifts upfront, but in time I’ve realized that children inherently know that not receiving gifts from an imaginary person is not a fair trade for the truth.

It is with that in mind that my wife and I decided, post-theological as we are, to celebrate the myth of Santa with our son Sebastian. We see it as a trial run, practice, for the gauntlet of mythical propaganda to follow. If he can let go of a jolly man giving out candy and toys, then seeing through a world filled with talking snakes, the dead rising like zombies, and the beliefs that the creator of the universe has nothing better to do then worry whether or not people like him, then he should be able easily dispensed with that as fiction too.

In time we hope that our son realizes that the true meaning of this season predates religion, civilization, and humanity itself. It is a celebration of the dark, cold, and slumbering. It is the understanding that everything needs rest, the world will renew, and that life will continue. And in some small part, if we support each other with cooperation and love when times are dark, we will be stronger when the light comes. So maybe, just maybe, if we are good, will get to see our gift in the smile of every independent thinker who has just figured out that Santa Claus is just Jesus for adults.

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