Why I Celebrate Christmas

Parts have been edited due to change in lifestyle

As a pagan, I get the most criticisms for celebrating Christmas. How can you celebrate a Christian holiday? They say. I guess it is a matter of how I grew up. Unlike most pagans of this era, I did not reject my families’ religion in order to find my own path. Holidays mean certain things for me and always will. They are a time for gathering and news sharing. A time when people can get together and just be.

Though I did Christian things growing up, I was never Christian. I learned Christian songs, every once in a great while attended Christian “Sunday” school, but I was never part of that religion. My family did not go to church, the only religious thing my mother ever uttered to me was when I was in high school, and it was just old school bigotry. This did not take meaning away from the holidays, however.

Let us start with Yule. I celebrate Christmas. My family gets together and we exchange gifts, talk, prattle, argue, eat and just have fun. In my youth, we celebrated Christmas twice a year, once at thanksgiving with my east coast relatives and once at Christmas with those in Colorado. This changed as people grew and moved farther apart, though my Colorado family still gets together every year.

Imbolc is not celebrated in my house unless you count the intense cleaning frenzy I go through every month.

I do not celebrate Ostara either. I celebrate spring and Easter as one again with my family if possible.

Beltane is usually a quiet time. I do some rituals to focus on this day but not much else. Mother’s day is more prominent as it is another family gathering time.

Midsummer is celebrated as summer an end to my year cycle and a time for rest. In my family father’s day is usually celebrated as a family day, but it doesn’t happen every year.

Lughnassadh is not celebrated. Never had much a reason to. My grandparents keep gardens but there has never been much of a harvest in my family.

Samhain used to be a party with friends. Now it is purely ritual with a little trick or treating with my daughter.

Thanksgiving is another time spent with family; it is my (and now my daughter’s as well) birthday time.

If you have not guessed it by now my holidays are celebrated with family and friends. This is the central part of a holiday for me. Without it holidays mean very little to me. I celebrate when my family and friends can, so I can be with them. There is no Yule on my calendar, but there is a Christmas. No messiah or Yule log needed just a good friend and ear to listen.

Holidays do not have to be a religous occasion. It does not make me less of a pagan to celebrate them as a time for family and friends without worship or service. I enjoy holidays, I do not need any gods to tell me how I should celebrate.

© Michelle Norton

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One response to “Why I Celebrate Christmas”

  1. igohigh Avatar
    igohigh

    Is Christmas not just a holiday on a calandar? I mean like they say it is a day to celebrate the birth of this Christ guy but they seem to celebrate it around this jolly dude all decked in red and white and some animated snowman. Actually I have read that the exchanging of gifts date back much further then the Christian holiday of Christmas as does the decorating of trees, the druids did that long before.
    As for ‘celebrating’ a holiday, hay, if it’s fun the Go For It! I was born Catholic and baptized and all that and my mother was Christian, I too went to Sunday school but one thing that I have learned is that a lot of wars have been fought over religions and a lot of people have been killed or who’s is right and who’s is wrong. Myself, I don’t know if Pagan is right or Christian is right or Catholic or Prodisant or even Johova(sp?); but what I do know is that any one that condems another or wants to pick a fight over it…well, then their way must not be the right way.

    So Comon Let’s Celebrate!!


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