I understand you guys are upset about this so called war on Christmas but forcing someone to say “Merry Christmas” when they truly don’t care about Christmas or whether you are merry or not makes the saying lose its value and overall lessens Christmas. I will admit, as an atheist, I love saying Merry Christmas because it takes away from the true meaning of the so called brith of Jesus. If I an atheist can say it and Muslims and Jew are being forced to say it to then Christmas becomes synonymous with getting gifts and putting up trees. It has now become a capitalist consumeristic holiday that everyone can partake it. Many get upset when cities call there tree a holiday tree opposed to a Christmas tree, when Christ and tress have no link to each other. I could go on and tell you about the pagan roots Christmas comes from but I’m sure you heard that before. Nonetheless less if on Dec. 25th a couple years in the future we have a nationalized tv show were kids from different areas kill each other for food and only one survives like in The Hunger Games. Would you be upset that we called it the Holiday games instead of the Christmas games? Basically if you are a true Christian, it shouldn’t matter what you call it or how you celebrate it just hold your belief to be true.& Spirituality
Not all Christians are upset with the war on Christmas. Personally, I hope Christmas loses the war and we can call this time of year “Merry consumerist capitalism and corporate greed”, even if that’s not quite as memorable as ‘Christmas.’
But I do think the question of whether it cheapens the meaning of the holiday by having employees forced to say Merry Christmas is interesting. If the employees are Christian, and are equally bound by this requirement, then it might well be a form of religious hypocrisy to be prostrating their faith in return for monetary compensation. If they’re not Christian, then I don’t think them saying the words is the biggest threat to the religious part of the holiday: That they’re being paid to pretend to have a faith/care about the religious holiday is a far more devastating blow to Christ’s birth than simply miming words a corporate shill decided could increase profit. At least the Non-Christian has an excuse, though. Basically, I believe that such things could not possibly cheapen the meaning of Christmas at this point. Too much else already has, like the ‘War on Christmas.’
Thank God I don’t work in retail. I intend to celebrate Christmas in sullen, cynical reflection on what it means to be an American without actually stepping into a store or buying presents… same as every year. Though I’ll also go to church.
The right’s contretemps with Pope Francis has brought out into the open what is rarely mentioned in polite company: most visible and famous Catholics who fight on behalf of Catholic causes in America focus almost exclusively on sexual issues (as Pope Francis himself seemed to be pointing out, and chastising, in his America interview), but have been generally silent regarding a century-old tradition of Catholic social and economic teaching. The meritocracy and economic elite have been a main beneficiary of this silence: those most serious about Catholicism—and thus who could have brought to bear a powerful tradition of thinking about economics that avoids both the radical individualistic presuppositions of capitalism as well as the collectivism of socialism—have spent their energies fighting the sexual/culture wars, even while Republican-Democratic ruling machine has merely changed driver seat in a limousine that delivers them to ever-more exclusive zip codes.
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Anonymous asked: Satanism is an antidote to morality? Why?
It is a religion/philosophy that teaches the pursuit of desire above all else, with little regard to how one’s actions might affect those around them, and even less for how desire may harm oneself. It is appealing for the same reason Ayn Rand’s philosophy was appealing to people: It requires no discipline, no absolute sense of right or wrong, no particular moral reasoning of its adherents, and no concern for the less fortunate. It names man as his own God, and places the individual as superior to all else. Anton LaVey(who was influenced by Objectivism) and his cult was largely atheistic, so the primary intention seems to have been to loudly reject all other beliefs and ideas while naming one’s own as absolute.
Which does describe quite a few internet atheists, but not morality. Desire without self-control is dangerous, and saying that everyone’s view of morality is ‘equally valid’ is identical to saying it doesn’t exist at all. It’s a simplistic ideology that appeals to people who don’t like philosophy or thinking too deeply.
…Hope that answers your question!
The Perennial Tradition, which most world religions have stated in different ways, somehow says that a person’s final end is union with God and all things. This is the simple goal of our existence. If your religion is not helping you to do that, then you’d better get a new religion. Most people, particularly young people, have no knowledge that the purpose of their life is union with Divine Reality. They have been told that the purpose of life is to get a degree and make money and have kids and die. That’s the narrowed-down secular understanding of reality, which is de facto followed by many Christians. Most are no longer connected to the perennial philosophy, and just waste time fighting their own religion. This is not wisdom at all—it is low-level survival. We’re now living in a largely survival mode in most Western cultures. No wonder so many of our kids turn to drugs, drink, and promiscuous sex, because there’s nothing else that’s very exciting or very true.
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Anonymous asked: I was curious if you have book/site recommendations concerning history of Christmas with its Christian and Pagan roots, or really just Christianity in general concerning its relationship with Paganism. Thank you!
Hmm… no books, but I do like this site: http://www.tektonics.org even I don’t always agree with it on some issues. They’re pretty good for research.
In my ideal world, the misogynists would be ultra-detectable, with facial pocks and sulfury odors and grunt “wiggle your glazed donut ass for me.” I would even take the world as I thought it a few years ago, where misogynists talk like Tucker Max and live in Greek houses and call women “biddies.” But confusingly, misogynists are sometimes men who speak softly and eat vegan and say “a woman’s sexual freedom is an essential component to her liberation. So come here.” It’s a tricky world out there. And while I’d prefer a critical approach to gender from men I elect, read, and even bed, in my experience, the so-called feminist men I’ve met deep down have not been less antagonistic or bigoted toward women. What I see over and over again is misogyny in sheep’s clothing, and at this point, I would rather see wolves as wolves.
(Read the whole essay. I just got my life this Tuesday.)
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Anonymous asked: How do you feel about people using Satanism as an "ironic" example of a nicer religion than Christianity? Such as claiming "Satan accepts everyone while God punishes!!!" or that Satanism has laws against rape when the religion is pretty young and created by those sick of organized religion as well as focusing on Satan from works like Paradise Lost than scripture. It just seems like a rather inappropriate comparison outside pissing off fundies.
If it is actually ironic, I don’t particularly care. Most “satanists” are young, privileged, and completely ignorant of what Satanism(or Christianity) actually teaches: Claims like “Satan accepts everyone while God punishes” only prove that, since “actual” Satanism doesn’t worship/necessarily believe in Satan. They’re little more than atheists who thought atheism wasn’t making enough people angry… and it’s highly unlikely to be a lifetime commitment. So I suspect that ‘pissing off fundies’ is exactly what’s intended by it.
The only thing that concerns me is when people get the message that Satan(or the concept of him) or Satanism is genuinely more compassionate than God/Christianity. That’s theologically ignorant, as well as a misinterpretation of Satanism. “Accepting everyone” doesn’t mean anything- would they also accept murderers, rapists, etc?
There’s a lot that could be said about the founder(s) of Satanism and why the “religion” is not an antidote to organized religion so much as an antidote to morality(even without the actual satan-worship). I’m just not sure it’s worthwhile to argue the point.
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Anonymous asked: Hey :) I really like your blog, and was wondering if you could recommend any other good blogs about Christianity.
Thank you! I wish I had suggestions for you, but I’ve only recently returned to tumblr, and I’m not sure at this time.
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Anonymous asked: Hello, I recently had a discussion w/ a friend concerning Christmas concerning how the commonly seen Christmas w/ Santa Claus is not so much a Christian holiday as it's been commercialized and secularized over the years that the Pagan&Christian aspects can be glossed over/included depending on who's celebrating. I perfectly understand why some NonChristians wouldn't want to celebrate it but it also seems silly how Atheist&Christian groups get so adamant over this holiday given how its evolved.
I know that in some parts of the world, Christmas is celebrated without any religious association to it at all. The parts of it that actually ARE Christian(which doesn’t include Santa, presents, trees, or shopping) I would think somewhat tacky if non-Christians included them in celebrations… but I’m not sure why they’d do so when all the commercialization and secularization is taken out of it. Celebration of the winter solstice might be pagan, but little else of the holiday really seems to be, even the Christmas tree(even if it’s not Christian either).
Given the way Christmas is currently celebrated, I’m not sure which group, Atheists/Christians, would seem more foolish by caring so much about who celebrates it and who doesn’t. The aspects of the holiday that make it so appealing to non-Christians are also what strip it of any intended religious meaning. I believe that anyone, of any faith, should enjoy the celebration if they choose. Just… don’t confuse it with Christianity.
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