I don’t get it. I see so many people aka Christians getting upset with the phrase “Happy Holidays” . Do they not realize that not everyone in this world or country are Christian.  In this country alone, we have so many people with so many beliefs and our Constitution allows us to have our own beliefs,  be it Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, Muslim, or, oh no, ATHIEST!  Everyone had their own holidays and beliefs. One person not believing in Christmas being the birthday of Jesus should not diminish Christmas for those that do.

 In December alone, there are four holidays for 4 different groups of people.  Hanukkah started last night for the Jewish people. This is a very important holiday for them but you do not see them expecting everyone to say Happy Hanukkah. I even know a few Jewish people who incorporate a bit of Christmas into their lives due to being married to Christians and they want their children to learn about both. I see nothing wrong with that. 

As everyone knows, the most common celebrated holiday in America in December is Christmas. There is no need to explain what it is as even if you have no  interest, you find out from the music that is everywhere, the nativity scenes, the cards, etc. Christmas is a wonderful holiday, don’t get me wrong and I love the holiday, even though I so not believe it is what people celebrate. I love so much about the season but am not Christian.  What I don’t get is why so many people think it is only their holiday. If you look at the history of December Holidays you find that many Christmas traditions come from Pagan celebrations.

That brings us to the celebration that comes on Dec 21st this year- Winter Solstice- aka Yule. This is celebrated by the “pagans” of the world. Some people use the term Wiccan. So many people completely misunderstand that term and think of black magic. Wiccan’s celebrate the earth and basically mother nature, to put it in terms for all to understand. They do not do voodoo and other things to harm people. I have a few friends that are wiccan and others that call themselves Pagan. I wish people weren’t so scared of the unknown.

The last holiday that I know of in December is an African one called Kwanzaa. I admit, I know little to nothing about this holiday. When I first started hearing about it in the US, I was confused as I was well into adulthood but with our cultural diversity in our country, we need to accept the holidays of everyone that lives here.  Very few Americans are not descended from someone who came to this country.

As for me, I am a former (recovering) Catholic that still loves Christmas. I love the lights, music, tree, gifts, Santa, everything about it but the religious stuff. I do not believe in it. I believe that Jesus was a good man and we can all learn some great lessons from him but we can also learn from Buddha. They both spoke of love and giving and treating others with respect. Peace was also big for both of them.  As one of my heroes, Gandhi,  said    “I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.” Being Christian does not give you the right to judge the rest of us that are not.

 So next time, someone says Happy Holidays, take it in the way they probably meant it and have a happy holiday season. They may not know what your beliefs are or maybe, they aren’t Christian but are acknowledging  your beliefs.

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa,  Happy Solstice (the days are getting longer again), and most of all HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

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