Happy Holidays

It was very hard for me to write today’s blog. I want to convey some wonderful sentiments and good wishes, but first I feel I need to address something that’s come up this year, that’s bothered me a lot.

There have been dozens of angry posts from my Facebook acquaintances lately spouting how upset they are that people use the phrase “Happy Holidays” around this time of year.  It’s the exact same wording in each post, so it’s obvious that they’re simply re-posting something they’ve seen another person post, but the effects are still hurtful and potentially damaging to people who might not celebrate Christmas.

Not only does this re-post belittle any celebration that’s not Christmas, but it perpetuates a belief that Christ is the main reason behind this holiday season.  As someone who doesn’t follow the Christian religion, I find that sentiment offensive and closed-minded about the other festivities that happen during the winter months.  So, I felt the need to put some other thoughts out there.

There is much evidence out that proves our current Christmas celebrations have origins in ancient Pagan traditions.  Different aspects of the holiday come from a variety of ancient religions.  For example, the feast of the son of Isis – who is considered the Goddess of nature – was celebrated on December 25 in ancient Babylon. The celebration included eating, drinking, and gift-giving.  From decorating a tree, to kissing under the mistletoe, nearly every aspect of our current traditions can be traced back to some celebration that existed long before the birth of Christ.

There is also no evidence that proves Christ was born on December 25th.  Up until 350 a.d., his birth was thought to be in a variety of months ranging from May to September, based on deductions from the bible records depicting shepherds tending their sheep in the fields on that night, which probably wouldn’t have happened during the cold Judean winter.  The religious leaders at the time thought that adopting the pagan observances would make it easier to convert people over to Christianity, which is why Pope Julius I decided to celebrate Christ’s birth on that day.

I prefer to celebrate Christmas as a non-religious holiday.  To me, it’s all about spending time with my friends and family, enjoying a good meal, an exchange of gifts, and wonderful laughter and merriment.  That’s what I believe is at the base of each celebration that happens this time of year.   To that end, I personally think that “Happy Holidays” is the perfect way to express felicitations at this time of year.  Christmas isn’t the only holiday that is celebrated in December, so to say “Merry Christmas” to someone who celebrates Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, or any other lesser-known holiday, is rude and unfeeling, which I’m sure isn’t the attitude people want to convey at this time of year.  It’s easier than trying to guess what holiday each person you encounter celebrates, and much easier to say than Happy Chrismahanukwanzadan.  Plus, it encompasses New Year’s.

So, Happy Holidays to you & your loved ones.  Whether you celebrate Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Ramadaan, Yule, Festivus, or some holiday I don’t yet know about, I hope you truly enjoy your time this holiday season, and I hope the following year will bring you much joy and prosperity.

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9 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Kathy
    Dec 23, 2011 @ 14:15:30

    People have been saying, and Christmas cards have been reading, “Happy Holiday” and “Seasons Greetings” since 1955, which is about the time I learned to read, and probably before that as well. The anger is a distraction, replacing the peace and good will that the preferred “Merry Christmas” should communicate, Another instance of choosing to spread anger rather than cheer.

    Well. I wish you a happy holiday season.

    Reply

    • Alyx Morgan
      Dec 23, 2011 @ 14:38:24

      Very aptly put, Kathy. Which is one of the reasons it was difficult for me to write this post, because I felt it necessary to address the negativity before posting the positivity.

      Thank you for visiting today, & Happy Holidays to you, too! 🙂

      Reply

  2. Terry Shames
    Dec 23, 2011 @ 15:13:59

    I agree, Alyx, and thank you for posting this. Seems so selfish and mean-spirited to bitch about being wished happiness just because it isn’t worded the way you want it to be!

    Reply

  3. Dolly Chamberlin
    Dec 24, 2011 @ 11:23:11

    I wish to add my echo to this blog & the responses!! I generally say “Happiest of Holidays to you & yours”. One time I encountered someone who’s religion does not celebrate anything this time of year, so for her I said “Well then, I hope you can just enjoy any extra time you might find for yourself.” She accepted that with a smile & a thank you. Thank you for planting the seeds. LOVES 😉

    Reply

  4. Kaye George
    Dec 27, 2011 @ 11:03:33

    I do think the *Merry Christmas or else* movement is belligerent and wins no friends! Happy Holidays is a perfectly fine way to wish everyone well this time of year. Which is what Christians should really concentrate on, not some stupid rigid words. I’m a Christian, BTW, at least partly, but all in favor of Happy Holidays!

    Reply

    • Alyx Morgan
      Dec 27, 2011 @ 11:10:14

      I have no problem with people being Christian, or whatever religion they are, but yes, it’s the belligerence that irks me. I do know quite a few Christians who have no problem with the wording of the well-wishes, which I’m very grateful for…& thank you for being one of them. 🙂

      I hope you had a wonderful Christmas & that your New Year will be spectacular as well.

      Reply

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