This Little Light of Mine
Winter is in. If I didn’t know it by the dropping temperatures and holiday trappings everywhere, I was sure of it when I checked email the other day and found this: What Holiday Is That? T’was the month before Christmas, when all through our land, Not a Christian was praying nor taking a stand. See the PC Police had taken away The reason for Christmas - no one could say. The children were told by their schools not to sing About Shepherds and Wise Men and Angels and things. It might hurt people's feelings, the teachers would say December 25th is just a ' Holiday'. Yet the shoppers were ready with cash, checks and credit Pushing folks down to the floor just to get it! CDs from Madonna, an X BOX, an I-Pod Something was changing, something quite odd! Retailers promoted Ramadan and Kwanzaa In hopes to sell books by Franken & Fonda. As Targets were hanging their trees upside down At Lowe's the word Christmas - was no where to be found. At K-Mart and Staples and Penny's and Sears You won't hear the word Christmas; it won't touch your ears. Inclusive, sensitive, Di-ver-si-ty Are words that were used to intimidate me. Now Daschle, Now Darden, Now Sharpton, Wolf Blitzen On Boxer, on Rather, on Kerry, on Clinton! At the top of the Senate, there arose such a clatter To eliminate Jesus, in all public matter. And we spoke not a word, as they took away our faith Forbidden to speak of salvation and grace The true Gift of Christmas was exchanged and discarded The reason for the season, stopped before it started. So as you celebrate 'Winter Break' under your 'Dream Tree' Sipping your Starbucks, listen to me. Choose your words carefully, choose what you say Shout MERRY CHRISTMAS, not Happy Holiday! Please, all Christians join together and wish everyone you meet MERRY CHRISTMAS Christ is The Reason' for the Christ-mas Season! Wow. I am not a Christian, so the call to action at the end of this poorly written rhyme is not intended for me. But in addition to making the mental correction that Mother Nature is the reason for the season, it made me wonder. Is our faith really taken away if we don’t hear it spoken about or exalted in public? Is our spirit so uneasy that it must trump all others in order to feel secure? I thought faith resides in our hearts and souls. And why does being inclusive and sensitive and honoring diversity intimidating? Lest we forget, “Yule” means Wheel, and refers to the Wheel of the Year, a Pagan model for the passing of time. That tree hanging upside down at Target derives from an old Pagan practice of associative magick: the evergreen brought into the home at midwinter is a metaphor for life surviving through the fallow season. Amulets for protection to ward off illness and hunger were hung on this tree, much later becoming Christmas ornaments. The trees' branches would be used to keep the home fires burning through the long, dark coldness, its trunk becoming the Yule Log to start next year's midwinter fire. Why, even the wreath on the door was a representation of the Wheel of the Year, the portal through which all life enters into the world. In my faith, the story goes that at the Solstice, the Great Cosmic Mother gives birth to the sun. We can easily see how that story morphed into Mother Mary giving birth to Her son. But I don’t expect that school children everywhere, no matter what faith they were raised in, to sing about it. And it doesn’t take one tiny bit away from my faith that everyone doesn’t walk the same path as I do. I love that the Solstice and Christmas and Hanukah and Kwanzaa are all celebrated close to one another in time (by the way, Ramadan is observed in the Summer!) because at the foundation of all of them is the celebration of the returning light! Perhaps allowing this little light of mine to shine is the best way to observe Christmas. Correct me if I am wrong, but wasn’t it Jesus who said love thy enemies as thyself?