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Coconutz
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I have been seeing a fair amount on this site lately about how people really don't like Christmas now that they have begun questioning, or become agnostic or atheist. I'm just wondering if it's some kind of unwritten prerequisite to "unlike" Christmas once you deconvert?

 

I am essentially an agnostic now, though I'm still calling myself an agnostic Christian (some lingering fear issues that keep me hanging on) and I still absolutely LOVE Christmas. In fact, all our decorations are up and even our Christmas lights are up outside! I still love singing Christmas carols (yes, even the religious ones), and I don't even mind the prospect of going to my husband's mom's church on Christmas Eve for the service there. Christmas just reminds me of good times and I love getting together with my family, and seeing the look on people's faces when they open up a gift (and of course receiving gifts is nice too - who are we kidding smile.png ) And I love going to malls and stores and seeing all the Christmas decorations.

 

So what are everyone's thoughts on this? Anyone else out there still love Christmas just as much as before you deconverted?

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I was never a big fan of Christmas, but I don't mind it. More parties, more food and drink, how can that be bad? Kids seem to enjoy the whole Santa thing.

 

Christmas has become much bigger than Christianity. Sure, some want us to put Christ back in Christmas, but it is really just a big secular holiday. I view it as cultural more than religious, since several religious traditions celebrate the season. Christmas is just one name and style of celebration of the winter solstice, so there is a real reason to celebrate - the weather will be getting better!

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It's alright.

 

Kinda always been *meh* about it. Nothing to do with Cheesus. I'm just not a social person so I don't like having to be civil around people I don't want to see or exchanging gifts where I have to feign a big surpy smile and try to pretend that I'm way more outgoing than I ever could be.

 

Of course, the people I do want to see over a ham dinner with gold silverware and a few things on tv kind of make up for it.

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I have been seeing a fair amount on this site lately about how people really don't like Christmas now that they have begun questioning, or become agnostic or atheist. I'm just wondering if it's some kind of unwritten prerequisite to "unlike" Christmas once you deconvert?

 

I am essentially an agnostic now, though I'm still calling myself an agnostic Christian (some lingering fear issues that keep me hanging on) and I still absolutely LOVE Christmas. In fact, all our decorations are up and even our Christmas lights are up outside! I still love singing Christmas carols (yes, even the religious ones), and I don't even mind the prospect of going to my husband's mom's church on Christmas Eve for the service there. Christmas just reminds me of good times and I love getting together with my family, and seeing the look on people's faces when they open up a gift (and of course receiving gifts is nice too - who are we kidding smile.png ) And I love going to malls and stores and seeing all the Christmas decorations.

 

So what are everyone's thoughts on this? Anyone else out there still love Christmas just as much as before you deconverted?

 

Growing up, I loved Christmas. None of us were Christian either. It was just a time for opening presents and being together. Then it was my turn to be an adult and with 2 kids to buy for we always spent too much and it just seemed like a season of too much stress with an artificial deadline. Even when I was a fundy Christian, the holiday was by and large just a present opening affair. I suppose Christmas day itself was great but the days leading up to it sucked. Now that one child has grown up and the other is almost there, Christmas may be somewhat easier and I may enjoy it more. As far as Jesus goes, the whole reason for the season before, during and after Christianity still was overshadowed by gift giving.

 

There is no requirement that you have to be a Christmas hater once you leave the belief system. It's all about family and gift giving. From what I understand Dec 25th isn't really Jesus' birthday anyway, and Christians push the notion of Jesus everyday anyway so they can keep their rhetoric about 'the reason for the season.' I'd like to know how many of these Christmas purists DON'T exchange presents. Probably very few.

 

I can see the prayer of the Christmas purist: Lord, today on December 25th, the day that Jesus wasn't really born I'd like to celebrate his real birthday whatever it is and Lord, please dont let anyone give me presents. ok?

 

I'm sure there are people like this, but I havent met them yet.

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I have never liked Christmas, but not because of religion. I love good food, good wine, great parties, great friends, and good music. This is how I endure Christmas. Since I've gotten off the holiness horse I've actually enjoyed Christmas a lot more!

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I personally have always enjoyed the feeling of the season. My wife ADORES Christmas. So I just sit back and enjoy it. My daughter is to young to understand right now and my son is just old enough to remember things about Christmas.

 

Having spent a few alone in an apartment really makes me appreciate the being around family.

 

Funny story I was dating a Vietnamese Buddhist and she was talking about putting out decorations and getting presents. In a moment of compelete stupidity, I said "but your Buddhist". She looked at me appropriately (i.e. like I was a moron) and said "So we like presents and pretty lights too!" :banghead:

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I was into Christmas as a child, presents had a major part. Even when I was religious I understood that Christmas was basically a recycled pagan holiday with Jesus slapped on the package so I was never all that in to it for woo woo reasons. Now being an Ex-C I do enjoy the time of year, winter, and the food/drink. I do, however, get annoyed with all the retail advertisements, constant "War on Christmas" BS, and the fake holiday cheer people adopt at this time.

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I have been seeing a fair amount on this site lately about how people really don't like Christmas now that they have begun questioning, or become agnostic or atheist. I'm just wondering if it's some kind of unwritten prerequisite to "unlike" Christmas once you deconvert?

 

I am essentially an agnostic now, though I'm still calling myself an agnostic Christian (some lingering fear issues that keep me hanging on) and I still absolutely LOVE Christmas. In fact, all our decorations are up and even our Christmas lights are up outside! I still love singing Christmas carols (yes, even the religious ones), and I don't even mind the prospect of going to my husband's mom's church on Christmas Eve for the service there. Christmas just reminds me of good times and I love getting together with my family, and seeing the look on people's faces when they open up a gift (and of course receiving gifts is nice too - who are we kidding smile.png ) And I love going to malls and stores and seeing all the Christmas decorations.

 

So what are everyone's thoughts on this? Anyone else out there still love Christmas just as much as before you deconverted?

 

 

If you like Christmas, that's great. There's so much of it around this time of year, it's a big advantage if you can enjoy it.

 

I don't enjoy Christmas, but for different reasons than being an ex-Christian. It's a place in life/stage of life kind of thing. I do get miffed at the in your face-ness of many Chistians who have to emphasize the "Jesus is the reason for the season" in an annoying way. But it's an irritant more than anything.

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I love Christmas.

 

It's a pain in the ass, but I love the lights and the decorations and trees and the food and the spirit of good will (however fake that may be).

 

The Jesus stuff was always sort of in the background, even when I was a Christian. You kind of knew it was there, but other than manger scenes and Christmas services Jesus wasn't really in the spotlight too much.

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I'm just wondering if it's some kind of unwritten prerequisite to "unlike" Christmas once you deconvert?

 

As far as atheism goes, I'm as mean as they come biggrin.png and I haven't been an xian for 20 odd years, but I love xmas.

 

I think it depends on your experiences growing up. Xmas in my family was always a wonderful time and in my mind it's only very loosely tied to xianity. Primarily, in my experience, it has always been about warmth, fun, tradition, great food and love.

 

Now, here in Russia, people don't really celebrate xmas, though they do have a small holiday in January (Russian calendar for xmas). Instead, New Years is the big holiday, which is very similar to the American version of xmas. They even have a santa figure called Father Frost, who has a cute little blonde niece called Snow girl.

 

On NY eve, they have a big family dinner, with the xmas tree and other decorations in their houses and then at midnight, they all watch the president on TV give an uplifting speech and everyone does the 'cheers' thing as they pop the champagne corks. After, everyone goes outside and lights fireworks or they go to the center and watch the city fireworks. They give small gifts, but it hasn't turned into a nightmare of consumerism like it has in the US and no one feels pressured or obligated to give gifts.

 

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I lost it for x-mas 15 years ago when my sister died. My sister was my everything. We used to have so much fun at

x-mas. Also, my mom died 1,1/2 years (before my sister) - Dec 21st and we buried her on Dec 24th . They closed her casket and sang 'Silent night'......sleep in heavenly peace.......sad.png

 

I used to love x-mas. I still go through all the effort, put up the big beautiful tree, cook all the food, buy the presents.... but it's all a burden in my heart. I really hate it. I try so hard not to let 'them' know how I really feel. I really do try, but my heart is not in it anymore at all.

 

One thing I still enjoy, is taking an evening and driving around to see all the lights. I do like that.

 

I'm always glad when the whole thing is over .Maybe, I'll try something different this year........

What a 'downer' I am.........Sorry 'bout that........don't mean to be......

 

I want Santa back! woohoo.gif

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I have been out of Christianity a long time and so it doesn't figure into my feelings about this holiday. Christmas is nice in Florida because the weather is reasonably cool. Also, I like to look at the lights.

 

I have nothing against it and try to enjoy it. People overall seem to act more cordial for a little while.

 

Watching kids open presents at Christmas is great, but other than that, as an adult the whole gift giving thing is a downer - I could do without it. I don't want anything and I don't want obligations that are fake - like gift giving at the office to people you don't really like but tolerate because you have to work with them. I hate shopping in general, and I really dislike the whole commercial thing that goes on. Folks, you really don't need all that stuff.

 

Office parties are not good, in my experience.

 

Also, please do not invite me as the "token person who lives alone" to your neighborhood Christmas dinner, while not even saying "hello" to me the rest of the year. I won't go. Been there, done that.

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I love Christmas.

 

It's a pain in the ass, but I love the lights and the decorations and trees and the food and the spirit of good will (however fake that may be).

 

The Jesus stuff was always sort of in the background, even when I was a Christian. You kind of knew it was there, but other than manger scenes and Christmas services Jesus wasn't really in the spotlight too much.

 

 

I was going to respond until I read your comment. It pretty much says what I was going to say.

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Oh I've hated Christmas since I was 14. With every year, I hate it more. This year has just added a whole new element to hate: my fiancee's nan. I don't hate her. I just can't handle her constant talking any old day, let alone on the day I struggle the most with. On my mother in law's birthday, she talked non-stop for 6 FUCKING HOURS! By the time I got home, I was so stressed out by her constant yabbering and frenetic energy I wanted to cry. What's worse, is that because we live in town, and she lives in town, any family event held at my in-laws, who are an hour out of town, we get the honour of picking her up, driving her out there, and taking her home again. it's no wonder my fiancee is so quiet- between his nan and his mother, I'm amazed he even got to practice speaking! So every year, christmas seems to give me another reason to hate it, and it has nothing to do with christianity, trust me!

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Almost forgot: I have a cute little relevant anecdote.

 

My younger daughter and I like Christmas decorations, so sometimes I drive her around town to look at the lawn of decoration fanatics, lights, Rudolph, Santa, etc. She's thirteen now, and she still loves it. But once when she was little, we drove slowly past a yard with a glowing Nativity scene. She did not recognize those characters, so I had to explain it to her. Apparently I didn't finish the job, because she asked me impatiently, "What does the birth of Jesus have to do with Christmas?"

 

Glad I wasn't drinking egg nog at the time.GONZ9729CustomImage1539775.gif

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Wow, these are all very interesting replies. I guess I just didn't really think when I was writing that... I now realize that how a person feels about Christmas is a very personal thing definitely WAY more tied to memories and feelings than it is to Christianity.

 

Margee, I'm so sorry for your loss, what a horrible thing to have happened all those years ago, and worse...at Christmas time.

 

And I totally agree about office gift giving and the things like that - I don't like the forced "fake" gift giving either. But I must say I do enjoy giving gifts to my family that I try to think through and figure out what each person would really like.

 

Thanks for your replies and for enlightening me on this topic. You guys are great! biggrin.png

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I don't pay much attention to the holiday anymore. Neither does my fiancee. When our kids were younger we used to do more with it for their benefit.

 

These days I mostly mail order gifts for my two grandkids out east, and we usually travel somewhere over the holidays to visit family. Last year we managed to gather both of our extended families in Arizona but other than an informal exchange of small gifts there was nothing "Christmasy" about it. Fortunately the whole lot of us are atheists or agnostics.

 

Back home we usually have a poinsettia on the coffee table and put some gifts around it for each other, that's about it.

 

This suits me fine. I tended to find the more involved traditional Christmas celebration something of a downer as well as a pain in the touche. I'm happier with things as they are now.

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We have a tree, lights, stockings hung by the chimney with care--the whole package. We watch all the specials with Frosty and Rudolph and the Peanuts gang. We play lots of Christmas music, something fun like Leon Redbone or something old-fashioned like instrumental acoustic Christmas songs. We skip the Jesus-y stuff like DrummerBoy and Silent Night and Bethlehem and all that crap. We don't want Jesus horning in on our holiday action.GONZ9729CustomImage1539775.gif

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Well, I think the most Christmassy thing we are going to do is Advent calendars with genuine Cadburys chocolate. Family doesn't know it yet, but I have bought everyone an advent calendar - including the daughters boyfriends.

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Nah, I love Christmas myself. I've had my ups and downs with it over the years. I grew up in an atheist/agnostic family, so our celebrations were secular. We had Christmas Eve dinner, opened toys on Christmas morning, and decorated and maybe baked cookies. We usually spent Christmas as just hanging around for a lazy day off with the family. Mom and Dad would lounge around drinking coffee and reading the newspaper. We kids would lay around on the floor playing with our new toys. We didn't have any family in the area so we didn't go anywhere else.

 

I did go through a period of time REALLY hating the holidays. I had a rough family life and after my parents divorced, it was all up to me to keep holidays together. I did ALL the cooking, cleaning, shopping, and decorating. My mother was going slowly insane and growing abusive, and my brother was just an asshole.

 

Eventually though, I couldn't take it any longer and put my foot down. I refused to spend one more Christmas going through the rote motions anymore and being around toxic people and just brought me down and ruined everything I worked so hard to prepare. Oh, I was unpopular and there was drama, to be sure...but damn, if it wasn't the best move I EVER made.

 

I have a reason to LOVE Christmas now. Depending on my mood from year to year, I'm either decking the halls to the nines or I'm just putting up a couple decorations and nothing else. I get together with friends for a potluck Christmas dinner. I do all my shopping online. I do charity work for the less fortunate who need help this time of year by gathering food and warm clothing for the poor and taking pet supplies to animal shelters.

 

It's not stressful anymore. It's just nice and I really think I've finally captured the sentiments of peace, joy, comfort, and kindness.

 

I recommend to people who struggle with the holidays to put their foots down. DON'T go through the rote motions. Face the drama and DON'T go hang out with the family you don't like. People around WILL get over it. If you don't want to do any holiday stuff, then DON'T. Spend the time off doing what you WANT to do.

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I LOVE CHRISTMAS!!! The whole month of December has always felt very magical and cozy for me and that only changed some as I got older, not as I deconverted. My feelings towards the spiritual carols has definitely changed, but they've always been my favorite and so I still sing them anyway. I'll be looking for good instrumental versions to listen to, which should solve that pretty nicely, I think.

 

The actual celebrations are ok, but I mostly like the feeling in the air. For me it's the culmination of my happiest season (fall) and the last big hurrah before the blahness and misery of Winter Proper. Sitting with the lights on and some mulled wine, it's just a great time to take time out to notice that I am happy.

 

On a related note, I am having a harder and harder time keeping my atheism private and feel like I'm going to HAVE to go public in person and on facebook...can you say, bad timing? I mean a lot of people know/suspect but I haven't said anything to their face, mostly because it's not worth it to burn so many bridges. Ahhhhhhh--must--keep it--together--grrrr!

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So.... Christmas is a pagan holiday. Christians put Christ into Yule/Winter Solstice, so I've not really seen it as a Christian Holiday for a number of years.

 

That being said, this is the first year I'm struggling with it. I LOVE the holiday. I love spoiling my husband, I love the twinkling lights, the decorations, and the traditions we've made.

 

The part I'm struggling with is the carols and the supposed history of the holiday. The nativity scenes, the carols, etc. The tree, presents, lights, decorations, parties, drink, food... EVERYTHING IS PAGAN... except for the Christian things that have been injected into it.

 

I don't have a nativity, personally... but I know lots of people that do. And what happens when our children (right now we just have a foster baby, so it's not such a worry this year) asks about the nativity, or the carols?

 

I believe in angels - in a vague sense, the beautiful perfect spark within all of us and Jesus is great and all if he was real, but um... well, people make an awful fuss about him this time of year. ;)

 

Maybe treat it like the nutcracker, it's just a fun story? Hmm.

 

Enjoy Christmas if you do, I'll be enjoying right along with you.

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