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Christmas has a special place in the western and the holiday reigns in considerable economic activity in many countries. It is a major festival of the Christian faith and is generally celebrated by people all around the world. The Christmas Eve brings an unmistakable sense of warmth and festivity in the air. Be it through children singing carols, Christmas trees adorned with glittery ornaments, the familiar Santa Claus making frequent appearances, you feel it in the air. We all have the memory of how we celebrate Christmas as kids, eagerly waiting for presents, hogging on plum cakes and visiting out Christian friends to help them with the decorations.
Not many know that many Christmas traditions have roots from local traditions as well. The Christmas tree, for example, was introduced by Germanic culture as a Fir tree represented the hope that spring would return after the cold winter. Saint Nicholas a.k.a Santa Claus was a Dutch saint who was popularized by the American salesmanship. India has its own versions of Christmas developed by the Christian communities that thrive in different regions of the country. Keralites welcome Christmas by hanging stars in their home, while others in the south light oil lamps to signify the birth of Jesus. Catholic communities attend the midnight mass and ring bells to announce the birth of the savior. Indians substitute the Fir tree with others trees, subject to their availability. Carols are sung in the local language and the choirs are composed of children and the elderly alike. Even the corporate crowd enjoys a fun round of ‘Secret Santa’.
For Christians, Christmas symbolized the day god was born as a mortal so that he could lead them into a righteous path. Jesus Christ was born in a humble manger, without any pomp or fanfare, accompanied by ordinary farm animals, although he was destined for many great deeds. Christmas reminds us of this simple truth that many special things originate from ordinary beginnings. Often, we look for things in the wrong place and ignore things that really matter. Only when it’s too late, do we realize what we ignored?
It is easy to get lost in the shimmering lights of Christmas and forget what the festival is about kindness. Kindness to a stranger, kindness to people whom we owe nothing, kindness to people who have nothing. To let go of one’s own comfort for the happiness of the deserving is the true spirit of Christmas.
Yet how many of us truly have done something like that today?
India is a country of contrasts; when we have the well to do populace celebrate and attend Christmas parties, there is another extreme of the society that struggles to eat every day. It is time for us to realize that the joy in seeing the face of a poor child light up dwarfs the happiness of decorating a Christmas tree. The tree would end up in the dump and rice lights would occupy the dark most corner of your shelf. The child, however, would grow up, determined to work hard, to make a difference; ever thankful for your kindness.
Even world-war ceased for a day to celebrate Christmas and let peace prevail in the entire world.
But if we honestly intend to celebrate Christmas with all our heart, then we need to look beyond the beautification, parties, gifts, into a world without prejudices, resentment and hatred.
Let our thoughts, and deeds bring solace to others. For my fellow bloggers, let’s drive away ignorance and spread hope through our words.
So this Christmas, spread joy to the world; just as Jesus Christ intended. Merry Christmas! The Blog is contributed by Rohit Vijay from BIMTECH and through this article, he just wants to bring the true meaning of Christmas which is "Kindness" to a stranger.
Roy L. Smith rightly quoted " He who has not Christmas in his heart will never find it under a tree".
Thanks to Rohit Vijay to get time and spread the joy using his thoughts on a paper!