I had an interesting encounter with an acquaintance last week and I'm still not entirely sure what to think about it. This gal and I have known each other for awhile, but I wouldn't say we're close friends. We have a few mutual friends and we see each other on occasion, but only in group type settings. I was having a conversation with her at a holiday function and we got to talking about our plans for Christmas. She was surprised that I even had plans for Christmas and asked me "With your beliefs, why do you even celebrate Christmas?"
I suppose it's a valid question. I'm an atheist. I don't believe in god and I certainly don't believe that Jesus Christ was born of a virgin to save us from our sins. I mean, WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN? Anyway, I do realize that Christmas is supposed to be about celebrating the birth of this Jesus guy, but does that mean that I shouldn't participate in holiday festivities? Even as a church-going gal until my early 20s, that's never what Christmas was about for me or for my family. It was about being together, the joy of giving, being thankful, enjoying time with family and friends, WATCHING HOME ALONE A HUNDRED TIMES...you get the idea.
I know plenty of non-Christians who celebrate Christmas. I know Jewish people who put up a Christmas tree every year. I have some Hindu friends who love singing Christmas carols and throw an annual Christmas bash. For us "non-believers" (I despise that term, by the way) we still find plenty of joy in the holiday season.
I don't think this person meant to offend me, and I'm not even entirely sure if I am offended. I was just sort of taken aback by the question.
What do you think? What are your beliefs? What is YOUR reason for the season?