I Remember Christmas

I remember a time when Christmas was more of a feeling than a grand-finally of commercialism. A spiritual time of reflection, meditation, prayer, alone or group, no matter what religion you were or if you had any - instead of trying to aggressively get to a particular store before the other person does. The deal, the savings, the sale, the black Friday stampede for price replaced love, respect, moral character, and The Golden Rule. The things Christmas was, and started out to be, made of.

I remember a Christmas that was an abundance of love and affection for family and all of humanity, instead of the abundance of wrapped packages bought at the mall on ‘layaway’ to put under the tree. Giving from the wallet or purse is nothing compared to giving from the heart. Your heart gift won't wear out or won't need new batteries and a movie star has nothing to do with it. The heart gift will last for a lifetime, and then some. And heart gifts have no size or color restrictions, and no, they can’t be returned. They can, however, be replaced with another gift from the heart.

"Behold I do not give lectures or a little charity, When I give I give myself." -Walt Whitman

I remember a Christmas when I didn’t feel half afraid to even say “Merry Christmas” to somebody I see or meet or run into at this time of year. Now I remember to just play it cool and say, “Happy Holidays” instead. But uh, between you and me, I’m sorry, I must admit, not to offend, there are times that I’m just too darn happily stoned with the Christmas spirit that I will let many a “Merry Christmas” fly from my mouth.

I remember a Christmas that was more like a 'Charles Dickens Christmas' instead of a 'Home Alone Christmas' where a family was so caught up in the holiday frenzy they forgot their child. Imagine, if you would, the ironic poetic justice of this: parents being so tied up in the buying of gifts that they misplace the child that they are buying the gifts for. In his book, 'A Christmas Carol' Dickens paints a similar ironic justice with his bewreathed Ghost of Christmas Present, who is the character that comes closest to Santa Clause. When Scrooge opens the door to his living room, he finds those quarters were transformed into a veritable Yule forest bedecked for the holidays with a raging fire in his normally meager hearth and a jolly ghost seated atop a throne-like assemblage of gifts, roasted game and turkeys, geese and sucklings, puddings, pies, and cakes. But underneath his white fur-trimmed green robe the ghost reveals the wretched sight of a shivering boy and girl huddled there "yellow, meager, ragged, scowling wolfish ... Where angels might have sat enthroned, devils lurked, and glared out menacing." In response to Scrooge's stunned wonderment as to where these two have come from, the spirit tells him, "They are Mans .... This boy is Ignorance. This Girl is Want. Beware them both, and all of their degree."

I remember a Christmas when I didn't feel guilty for not buying a gift for somebody. Like there's a 'Big Santa Police' camera lurking somewhere eye-ing to make sure I buy and consume like the rest of the sheeple, I mean people. And not to be responsible for my actions and just be in a spend spend spend mode on a credit card because 'tis the season' to do such crazy things - instead of being more responsible for my actions to myself, our-self, our family, and our beloved planet home.


BLACK FRIDAY VIOLENCE BEGINS: Police are reporting violence from people pushing and shoving their way to what they see as the holiday’s best deals on Black Friday, a retail holiday that’s become synonymous with brawls. A man was shot in Romeoville, Illinois when he dragged an officer with his car after his alleged shoplifting scheme was foiled at a suburban Kohl’s. In Rialto, California, a police officer was injured breaking up one of three fights at a Wal-mart which occurred after a manager decided to open the doors early. Meanwhile in Las Vegas, a thief shot another man in the leg before making off with the victim’s newly purchased big screen T.V.

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