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Author Topic: Christmas, pagans and religious divergence
GenYus
Away in a Manager's Special


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My take on businesses being closed on Christmas Eve/Day for all employees even if they do not celebrate Christmas?

It is a practical matter. In the US, so many employees would probably take it off anyway, that it is better to just close the office and let everyone have the day off. It is like Super Bowl Sunday has become an unofficial holiday in the US or Melbourne Cup day for Australia.

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IIRC, it wasn't the shoe bomber's loud prayers that sparked the takedown by the other passengers; it was that he was trying to light his shoe on fire. Very, very different. Canuckistan

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Christie
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by GenYus:
My take on businesses being closed on Christmas Eve/Day for all employees even if they do not celebrate Christmas?

It is a practical matter. In the US, so many employees would probably take it off anyway, that it is better to just close the office and let everyone have the day off. It is like Super Bowl Sunday has become an unofficial holiday in the US or Melbourne Cup day for Australia.

When I worked for an NGO in Ottawa we were always closed from mid afternoon on Dec 24 right through to January 2. It was a great perk as this time off was paid and did not count as part of our vacation days. The idea that people would object to getting paid time off because they do not celebrate the holiday is laughable.

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If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs, it's just possible you haven't grasped the situation. - Jean Kerr

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Jonny T
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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quote:
PeterK:
And isn't that what everyone believs, apart from a couple of posters here who asserted that it's possible for two contradctory beliefs to BOTH be right. Seriously.

ah....and there was me hoping your promise to ignore me was genuine, rather than a pretext for passive-aggressive ****wittery. ho hum.

I never said that two contradictory beliefs are both true, largely because the concept of a single truth to explain the universe and everything in it in ways understandable to the human mind is bizarre in itself. Different people follow different philosophies and I judge them based on their outworkings in the physical world, as it is something I can reason about, analyse and deconstruct in a way that I cannot with the worlds of gods, demigods, angels, demons and spirits.

does anyone else find it odd, by the way, that it is the points of convergence - different religious traditions holding celebrations in a similar manner - which are causing all this conflict?

it is winter and a number of traditions - Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, consumerism - choose to use this time to hold a celebration. how this is a problem baffles me.

--------------------
Hello, I love you - won't you tell me your name?
Hello! I'm good for nothing - will you love me just the same?

Greetings from the dark side...

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Mistletoey Chloe
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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To add to Christie's observation, this is especially true when, if they take a day off on another day to celebrate their own holy day, they are penalized for it financially.

PeterK seems to be suggesting that "nonCs" should get neither their own holiday off nor that of anyone else. Hardly very fair.

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~~Ai am in mai prrrrrraime!~~

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DevilBunny
Deck the Malls


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By the way, it's past sunset here in the UK.

Happy Solstice, everybody!

Blessed be.

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"For God has seven thousand names, and one of them is bastard"

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Cold DecEmbra Brings The Sleet
Angels Wii Have Heard on High


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Have they let you out of work to go and celebrate, DevilBunny?

Enjoy!

On other matters, I am going to start wearing a badge on 5th November that says "Treason is the reason for the season".

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I want you to lay down your life, Perkins. We need a futile gesture at this stage. It will raise the whole tone of the war.

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Jonny T
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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quote:
Thus spake Embra:
On other matters, I am going to start wearing a badge on 5th November that says "Treason is the reason for the season".

[lol] [Big Grin]

--------------------
Hello, I love you - won't you tell me your name?
Hello! I'm good for nothing - will you love me just the same?

Greetings from the dark side...

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DevilBunny
Deck the Malls


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Embra:

After I return from my planned night of meat, wine and girly chat, I want that badge [Wink]

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"For God has seven thousand names, and one of them is bastard"

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PeterK
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by DevilBunny:
No, "the season" is shorthand for "the Christmas season". A liturgical "season" not a meteorological one.

I never claimed it was a meteorological season, so put that straw man back where he belongs.

No, trollface did and that comment was clearly marked as a specific reply to his assertion. Not everything is about you.
quote:
I claimed that the festive season (y'know, the one for which people wish each other 'Happy Holidays!' incorporates a number of different celebrations, many of which have nothing to do with Christ, and some of which pre-date him. You cannot argue that that's untrue.
It's fascinating/amusingly ironic from our POV how it is becoming increasingly de rigeur in the US (and now apparently in the UK) to substitute "Happy Holidays" for "Happy Christmas", when the vast majority of people in those countries are NOT going on holidays, unlike most of us Aussies, who do, and to whom "Happy Holidays" is such a cringeworthy and obnoxious Americanism. In fact sometimes in Oz it goes the opposite way. If an Aussie asks in February, "Watcha do over Chrissie?" he probably means what did you do in the entire five weeks between the Xmas weekend and the Australia Day weekend.
quote:

Of course, I don't have your amazing psychic powers of knowing the bits that the badge-writer didn't write...

No such powers required, you just need to know it comes from the popular Victorian circumlocution "Wishing you the compliments of the Christmas Season". Which in turn came from the centuries-old use of "season" to mean a liturgical period (Advent, Christmas, Epiphany, Lent, Easter etc.) It plainly does not mean "have a happy solstice".
quote:

Six years of Catholic secondary school says I'm not ignorant of Christianity.

What you have posted here says that you are. Unfortunately this is not uncommon among those with such an education, in my experience.


Is this, perhaps, because the thorough education we get in Christianity doesn't churn out people who follow your specific beliefs? That is the criterion you're judging this by, isn't it?

Certainly not. Many of the people I'm talking about are quite willing and happy to follow Christian beliefs. But unfortunately everything they know about the objective (i.e. not relying on a particular person's beliefs or lack thereof) facts of what the Church teaches and its history etc, could be written on the back of a stamp.

quote:

Clean bowled again. "Mithras' birthday" was 6th January

And what does that have to do with the price of fish? It's within the 'season' all right. The date of Epiphany, in fact, is it not?

You really need to read what other posters are saying and not just read mine to try to pick imagined faults with them. I was replying to trollface's assertion that it was on 25th December. And no actually 6th January is not within the Christmas season, it is the start of the separate season of Epiphany.
quote:

So insisting that 'the reason for the season' is NOT Jesus' birth is a bit, far-fetched, really.

Actually, it's fetched from very close to home. The reason for the festive season for a number of people on this message board is not Jesus's birth. Next.

NO, as I explained, it ultimately is the reason why they are having a "festive season", even though some prefer to celebrate it in a totally non-Christian way.
quote:

I think your "best" could be better than that. What about doing some voluntary work on Xmas Day and Boxing Day?

According to that logic, if I wanted to go visit my parents in Australia and there were no flights, I should fly to India instead, because at least I get to fly, and that's what I wanted, right?

I don't want to do some random variety of work on Christmas day. I want to go to the office, do my 9-5.30, and get paid accordingly. I want Christmas day to be no different from any other day for me. I don't want to be forced out of my routine by a festival I don't celebrate. What are you finding so hard to comprehend about this?

It was just a suggestion, not for "some random variety of work" but for some work which would be of benefit to those less fortunate than yourself.
quote:

Btw I find your tagline extremely and deliberately offensive, though I try to ignore it and maintain my politeness to you. But it does indicate exactly where you're coming from.

Yup. I don't like the Christian god, and I do like Mike Carey's graphic novels. Pretty accurate.

Whatever I may think of your god, however, I've never questioned your faith in him. What makes you think that Pagans don't have real faith?

What makes you think they do? The only evidence I've seen here either way is that a poster here (apparently a "pagan") took grievous offence at my suggestion that "pagans" might actually believe seriously in their professed pagan beliefs.
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Salamander
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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PeterK, mind if I go around calling you a "Christian"?

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"victory thru self-deception"

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PeterK
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by trollface:
quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
Not at all. There is nothing intrinsically "pagan" about the fact that the angle of incidence of the sun's rays reaches a low point in the northern hemisphere at a certain time each year.

I didn't say there was. I said there was something intrinsically Pagan about there being a celebration at this time of year. You, yourself, have noted that Constantine I moved the date of the celebration of Christmas to fit in to existing festivities.
No, I said quite the opposite: The Council of Nicea (i.e. the Bishops, not Constantine, although he was emperor at the time) moved Christmas AWAY from the solstice.

quote:
let me break it down, and show you where you're being unclear...

quote:
I guess it's purely an amazing coincidence[...]
Obviously you're being sarcastic and are saying that it's not a coincidence.
Well done, good on you mate.
quote:

quote:
[...] that the supposed "pagans celebrating the solstice"[...]
Here you seem to be denying the existence of Pagans, or at least heavily implying that they're all just pretending. Is this sarcasm? And in which way? Are you saying that Pagans don't exist? Or are you saying that their faith is a strong and as valid as Christians?
If by "valid" you mean "they've got a right to believe it", no problem. As for "strong", well only they know that for certain but as I said I haven't seen any evidence for it, in fact only for the contrary.
quote:

quote:
[...] are far more common in majority-Christian countries[...]
"More" common compared to what? Are you saying that they're more common than Christians? Is this bit sarcastic? Are you saying that Christians have stamped out Paganism? Or are you sarcastically saying that they haven't?
I'm saying it's a remarkable coincidence that the neo-"pagans" have only spring up in countries with centuries of Christian heritage. Maybe you could produce some evidence of significant communities of this type of "paganism" in majority non-Christian countries if you think I'm wrong.
quote:

quote:
[...] despite 20 centuries of those nasty Christians doing their best to stamp them out?!
Again, is this bit supposed to be sarcastic? Are you saying that Paganism has survived despite Christianity's best attempts to stamp it out for the last 2,000 years, or are you saying that Paganism hasn't survived because Christianity hasn't tried to stamp it out at any point in time?
Sorry, none of the above. Just repeating the allegation I've seen made (including here) by some neo-"pagans" that Christians have and do ruthlessly "persecute" them in an attempt to annihilate them.
quote:

quote:
No, not offensive at all, just slightly inaccurate. Good Friday is when we commemorate in particular that Jesus died for our sins, although it's true to say that Christmas commemorates the fact that He was "born to save us" from our sins.
I didn't say anything about Christmas being concerned with the death of Jesus.
Er...right. OK, I'm trying to construct some other possible meaning out of "if they didn't "celebrate Christmas" each year we'd forget that Jesus died for our sins." but I'm afraid I can't. And you accuse ME of being "unclear"?? [Confused]
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vanilla
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
[QUOTE]It's fascinating/amusingly ironic from our POV how it is becoming increasingly de rigeur in the US (and now apparently in the UK) to substitute "Happy Holidays" for "Happy Christmas", when the vast majority of people in those countries are NOT going on holidays, unlike most of us Aussies, who do, and to whom "Happy Holidays" is such a cringeworthy and obnoxious Americanism. In fact sometimes in Oz it goes the opposite way. If an Aussie asks in February, "Watcha do over Chrissie?" he probably means what did you do in the entire five weeks between the Xmas weekend and the Australia Day weekend.

Hmmm. That sounds more like an Aussiism as we in the US do not "go on holiday," but rather "go on vacation." The word Holiday here is used more to reference government sanctioned days off and days that different religions view as holy. Using the former definition, "Happy Holidays" in the US would include Thanksgiving, Christmas, and for many, New Years. Using the latter definition, a person could include any religious holiday that begins after Thanksgiving and extends till mid-January. So Happy Holidays is not quite a substitution for "Happy Christmas," but rather a more inclusive greeting that recognizes the fact that there are other religions that exist and celebrate their holidays than christianity during the month of December.

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I swear, it was funnier in my head.
Yeah, I used to be pink. vanilla_pink.

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
It's fascinating/amusingly ironic from our POV


Who is included in this "our?"

quote:
how it is becoming increasingly de rigeur in the US (and now apparently in the UK) to substitute "Happy Holidays" for "Happy Christmas",

"Happy Christmas" is not a phrase Americans use. "Merry Christmas," OTOH, is one that is.

quote:
when the vast majority of people in those countries are NOT going on holidays, unlike most of us Aussies, who do, and to whom "Happy Holidays" is such a cringeworthy and obnoxious Americanism.

Well, "holidays" as used as a synonym for "vacation" isn't an Americanism, either.

So, you know, good thing you don't have to listen to we "cringeworthy" Americans.

quote:
In fact sometimes in Oz it goes the opposite way. If an Aussie asks in February, "Watcha do over Chrissie?" he probably means what did you do in the entire five weeks between the Xmas weekend and the Australia Day weekend.

We also don't celebrate Australia Day. How's that for cringeworthy?

You're a most interesting fellow PeterK. I am sorry I really don't have the time to engage you properly in conversation. I imagine it would be oh so entertaining.

Happy Holidays!

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"When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty."--George Bernard Shaw

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BluesScale
Deck the Malls


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Believe as you will. I wish you a joyous Yule all the same.

Right, back to the bonfire and my Wassail!

Blues

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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Wassail sounds delicious! But, alas, it is pouring down rain here, so no bonfire for me.

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"When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty."--George Bernard Shaw

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vanilla
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
I was replying to trollface's assertion that it was on 25th December. And no actually 6th January is not within the Christmas season, it is the start of the separate season of Epiphany.

Actually, the 12 Days of Christmas (Christmas season) begin December 25 and end January 6.

ETA: Or, if I could count, January 5. According to my cite though, the day the 12 days begins can be either December 25 or December 26 (therefore would end January 6).

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I swear, it was funnier in my head.
Yeah, I used to be pink. vanilla_pink.

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Errata
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
It's fascinating/amusingly ironic from our POV how it is becoming increasingly de rigeur in the US (and now apparently in the UK) to substitute "Happy Holidays" for "Happy Christmas", when the vast majority of people in those countries are NOT going on holidays, unlike most of us Aussies, who do, and to whom "Happy Holidays" is such a cringeworthy and obnoxious Americanism.

The etymology of "holiday" is "holy day", meaning individual religious festivals or celebrations. The use of that term to mean taking off time for reacreation and travel is nothing but a cringeworthy and obnoxious Australianism. Using the term holidays to refer to a period of the year in which several significant festivals occur one after the other is the appropriate use of the original word. Your neologisms don't override it.
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PeterK
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by Lainie:
quote:
PeterK said:
Certainly it's about faith. But faith which is contrary to reason is not religion but superstition.

Personally, I find much of the Xtian faith to be contrary to reason.

Then logically you should regard those parts of the Xtian faith as superstition. And I would defend to the death your right to do so.
quote:

quote:
Some Jews in recent years in the US especially (without authority from their religious leaders) have tried to play up its importance in order to "give our kids something to do" when the majority are making a big deal of celebrating Xmas. Now it seems some neo-"pagans" want to get in on the act too.
From what "relgious leaders" are you suggesting that Jews failed to get their "authority"? It's not a hierarchical faith.
Not insofar as "hierarchy" is a Greek word which Jews don't use. But the concept was borrowed from the Jews. It's absurd to suggest that Judaism is anarchic.
quote:

And who made you, or Xtianity in general, the supreme arbiter of who gets to celebrate what and when?

And what makes you think I or "Xtianity in general" wants to arbitrate this? [Confused] Let alone be the "supreme arbiter"? It seems here we go again with the attitude that if a Christian knows and dares to state forthrightly exactly what it is he believes, without apologising for the fact that he believes it, he is ipso facto guilty of "sitting in judgment on others", "dogmatism", "smugness", "persecution" etc. You can celebrate whatever you like whenever you like as far as I or AFAIK any Christian cares. Some (minority) of Christians are concerned about non-Christians (and some Christians) perverting Christmas and other Christian practices to non-Christian or even anti-Christian ones. As I said it is not something that particularly concerns me. But it seems that the ferocity of those who protest that it's not happening seems way out of proportion to the original concerns expressed.
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Ganzfeld
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
[...] Many of the people I'm talking about are quite willing and happy to follow Christian beliefs. But unfortunately everything they know about the objective (i.e. not relying on a particular person's beliefs or lack thereof) facts of what the Church teaches and its history etc, could be written on the back of a stamp. [...]

That didn't seem to stop the twelve dudes who hung out with JC.
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Lainie
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
quote:
Some Jews in recent years in the US especially (without authority from their religious leaders) have tried to play up its importance in order to "give our kids something to do" when the majority are making a big deal of celebrating Xmas. Now it seems some neo-"pagans" want to get in on the act too.
From what "relgious leaders" are you suggesting that Jews failed to get their "authority"? It's not a hierarchical faith.
Not insofar as "hierarchy" is a Greek word which Jews don't use. But the concept was borrowed from the Jews. It's absurd to suggest that Judaism is anarchic. [/QUOTE]

I believe Jews who speak English do, in fact, use the word "hierarchy." [Roll Eyes] And I never suggested that Judaism was anarchic.

But please, since you're so familiar with the topic, explain to me which Jewish religious authority you think Jews should appeal to for "authority" to celebrate Hanukkah they way they choose.

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How homophobic do you have to be to have penguin gaydar? - Lewis Black

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PeterK
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by Cold DecEmbra Brings The Sleet:
I don't really have a problem with accepting that the position of Christmas as a public holiday in this country has something to do with the country's Christian heritage. But the position of the holiday timewise has a lot to do with people's past tendency to celebrate light in the ddarkness from a non-Christian perspective as well. As a religious festival in Scotland, for example, Christmas used to be a stereotypically dour affair (or so I am told by older relatives [Wink] ). Hogmanay was the occasion for really having fun - note that Boxing Day is not a public holiday in Scotland, but 2 January is.

The main reason for that is that for centuries the would-be independent Scots have clebrated New year on 1st January, whilst England didn't change from the old New Year of 25th March until it finally adopted the Gregorian calendar in 1752. Patriotic Scotsmen played up Hogmanay as a way of differentiating their culture from that of their English overlords.
quote:

PeterK, I don't understand this insistence that the only reason there is a holiday at this time of year is the baby Jesus. I think it would be more accurate for you to say that "Jesus is the reason that some of us go to church on 25th December, but don't let me impose on the rest of you who may want to have fun for other reasons at this time of year." Not as snappy, I grant you...

My "insistence" is merely stating a historical fact that some are uncomfortable with facing up to. The reason it was originally made a public holiday was to enablepeople to go to church, and it is in Christian countries where it remains a holiday today. A few countries with only a minority of Christians (eg Singapore) have adopted it as a public holiday in modern times, as a result of the recent spread there of Western customs such as celebrating Christmas. Leading us back again to....
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PeterK
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by GenYus:
My take on businesses being closed on Christmas Eve/Day for all employees even if they do not celebrate Christmas?

It is a practical matter. In the US, so many employees would probably take it off anyway, that it is better to just close the office and let everyone have the day off. It is like Super Bowl Sunday has become an unofficial holiday in the US or Melbourne Cup day for Australia.

Melbourne Cup day is an official holiday in Melbourne. In the rest of Australia (& NZ)most bosses tolerate people stopping work for a few minutes (usually during smoko anyway) to watch the actual race, but if they took the whole day off they would be docked.
And isn't EVERY Sunday an official holiday in the US? Or has that also been sacrificed to the altar of "separation of church and state"?

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Cactus Wren
Jingle Bell Hock


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No Holy Night

quote:
With Democrats about to assume control of both houses of Congress, we liberals will have an unprecedented opportunity to vanquish Christmas once and for all.

For the past twelve years, the Republicans have successfully shelved our anti-Christmas agenda, forcing us to wage a covert insurgency against the sacred holiday through lawsuits and Internet postings. Essentially, our approach has been to sue anyone who says “Merry Christmas” and then make fun of them with our vicious left-wing smear blogs. As FOX News pundit and Christmas Warrior Bill O’Reilly put it, “The ACLU goes around the country suing everybody and intimidating people... and in tandem, you use your left-wing smear websites to go after anyone who stands up for Christmas.”

quote:
Remember, we liberals have managed this much influence in opposition to the country’s most popular holiday while being completely shut out of power in Washington. Imagine what we can do now that Democrats own the whole legislative branch.

Though an outright ban of Christmas would likely run afoul of the First Amendment’s guarantee of freedom of religion, there are several laws Democrats could enact to make celebrating Christmas more difficult, if not altogether impossible. Here are some modest proposals: 1.) A 1,000 percent sales tax on wrapping paper and mistletoe, revenues from which will fund a commune of gay Wiccan avant garde cellists. 2.) We ban the sale of all Christmas records except for Terry Bradshaw Sings Christmas Songs for the Whole Family and the non-religious holiday music composed by the gay Wiccan cellists. We also ban television networks from showing such beloved classics as It’s a Wonderful Life and The Christmas Story. The only holiday movies allowed on the air will be The Santa Clause 3 and Jingle All the Way. 3.) To get some bipartisan support from Republicans (in addition to the support of the Governator for suggestion number 2), we pass a bill allowing the timber industry cut down every evergreen tree in the country. We can also placate energy lobbyists by purchasing lumps of coal in bulk to give as presents to underprivileged children.

Taken together, these proposals could sound Christmas’s death knell. The only question is whether the newly-elected Democratic majority has the political will to enact them....



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“Just because your voice reaches halfway around the world doesn't mean you are wiser than when it reached only to the end of the bar.” -- Edward R. Murrow

IOToriSparrowANK!

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Salamander
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
It seems here we go again with the attitude that if a Christian knows and dares to state forthrightly exactly what it is he believes, without apologising for the fact that he believes it, he is ipso facto guilty of "sitting in judgment on others", "dogmatism", "smugness", "persecution" etc.

Oh no Peter, it isn't Christians in general. I think you'll find that few here have any issue with AdmiralDinty's faith or callee's faith. I don't recall anyone accusing AnglRdr of any of those things (except perhaps smugness, but that wasn't based on her religion).

It is your knack for writing hyperbole that sets me off. I also believe (although I could be wrong) that I'm not alone in picking up a certain arrogance and abrasiveness in your writing style and a dismissiveness of other posters. I have no means to determine if you do that on purpose or if it is unintended, whatever the case I could almost guarantee that it is not your Christianity that is the issue.

I'm almost positive you won't see it that way and will continue doing what you do and wondering why everyone seems to gang up on you. There isn't much I can do about that.

The shame is that when you manage not to write in hyperbolic phrases or in your abrasive and/or dismissive manner you can actually have some fairly worthwhile things to say.

--------------------
"victory thru self-deception"

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PeterK
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by Jonny T:
quote:
PeterK:
And isn't that what everyone believs, apart from a couple of posters here who asserted that it's possible for two contradctory beliefs to BOTH be right. Seriously.

ah....and there was me hoping your promise to ignore me was genuine, rather than a pretext for passive-aggressive ****wittery. ho hum.

I never said that two contradictory beliefs are both true, largely because the concept of a single truth to explain the universe and everything in it in ways understandable to the human mind is bizarre in itself. Different people follow different philosophies and I judge them based on their outworkings in the physical world, as it is something I can reason about, analyse and deconstruct in a way that I cannot with the worlds of gods, demigods, angels, demons and spirits.

Fair enough. I was talking about people who strenuously object to me saying perfectly logical things such as "if A says Jesus is God and B says Jesus is not God, then either A or B must be wrong"; and accusing me of dogmatism, smugness, judgmentalism etc when I protest that they are being illogical.
quote:

does anyone else find it odd, by the way, that it is the points of convergence - different religious traditions holding celebrations in a similar manner - which are causing all this conflict?

it is winter and a number of traditions - Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, consumerism - choose to use this time to hold a celebration. how this is a problem baffles me.

Actually I have never observed any conflict between religions on this matter. I work and socialise with people of various religions and we all are happy to wish each other well on our various festivals. The person at my work who celebratesthe most enthusiastically "Christian" Christmas, is a practising Hindu. The conflict seems to come from people who have contempt for all religion, and to justify this manufacture a supposed "conflict between religions" to portray generic "religion" as a force for division and violence.

And (I recall this was mentioned last year but people keep including "Islam" in such statements) Islamic holidays have no connection to winter, December or any other Christian calendar date. They are based on a lunar calendar which totally ignores the solar year, and so the dates of each Islamic festival change every year. An Islamic festival which is in winter now will be in summer in 30 years' time.

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PeterK
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by Mistletoey Chloe:
PeterK seems to be suggesting that "nonCs" should get neither their own holiday off nor that of anyone else. Hardly very fair.

[Eek!] [Confused]
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PeterK
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by Errata:
quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
It's fascinating/amusingly ironic from our POV how it is becoming increasingly de rigeur in the US (and now apparently in the UK) to substitute "Happy Holidays" for "Happy Christmas", when the vast majority of people in those countries are NOT going on holidays, unlike most of us Aussies, who do, and to whom "Happy Holidays" is such a cringeworthy and obnoxious Americanism.

The etymology of "holiday" is "holy day", meaning individual religious festivals or celebrations. The use of that term to mean taking off time for reacreation and travel is nothing but a cringeworthy and obnoxious Australianism. Using the term holidays to refer to a period of the year in which several significant festivals occur one after the other is the appropriate use of the original word. Your neologisms don't override it.
You and AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr seem to have missed the point that I was speaking as an Aussie. I have no problem with Americans using American idioms, only with faux-American Aussies who ape them.

It may be new to your knowledge but that doesn't make it a "neologism". You have the history back to front. Originally there was NO annual leave etc. and the ONLY time people had off work was on Sundays and the other days which the Church had declared "Holy" (i.e. days equivalent to Sunday on which they had to attend Mass). Indeed that was a major part of the reason they did so, to reduce exploitation of workers and enable them time with their families.

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Ganzfeld
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
Fair enough. I was talking about people who strenuously object to me saying perfectly logical things such as "if A says Jesus is God and B says Jesus is not God, then either A or B must be wrong"; and accusing me of dogmatism, smugness, judgmentalism etc when I protest that they are being illogical.

I disagree that such statements can be said to be illogical, considering that the concepts of "God" or "Jesus" are not inherently logical to begin with. Just as Christians who believe in the trinity are not polytheists, "Jesus is God" and "Jesus is not God" may refer to completely different concepts and therefore not be contradictory.

A little understanding goes a long way. I do not insist that Christians are polytheists because they do not claim to be. To accuse them of being polytheists on the grounds that three cannot be equal to one could easily be perceived as be dogmatic, smug, and judgemental. As well, I do not question the logic of those who would say that it is possible for other facts about supernatural beings to be both true and untrue. I simply don't expect their logic to be the same as my own.

[Edited: spelling, etc.]

ETA
quote:
You and AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr seem to have missed the point that I was speaking as an Aussie. I have no problem with Americans using American idioms, only with faux-American Aussies who ape them.
[lol] That's so funny coming from you! Are you not aware of the many American idioms you use? Sometimes I think you're just teasing us, PeterK.
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PeterK
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by Ganzfeld:
quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
[...] Many of the people I'm talking about are quite willing and happy to follow Christian beliefs. But unfortunately everything they know about the objective (i.e. not relying on a particular person's beliefs or lack thereof) facts of what the Church teaches and its history etc, could be written on the back of a stamp. [...]

That didn't seem to stop the twelve dudes who hung out with JC.
Hopefully like those dudes the Holy Spirit will give them wisdom and enlightenment.
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Errata
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
It may be new to your knowledge but that doesn't make it a "neologism". You have the history back to front. Originally there was NO annual leave etc. and the ONLY time people had off work was on Sundays and the other days which the Church had declared "Holy" (i.e. days equivalent to Sunday on which they had to attend Mass). Indeed that was a major part of the reason they did so, to reduce exploitation of workers and enable them time with their families.

Thank you for explaining exactly why you're wrong about this. Holiday originally refered to specific individual holy days. It is an Australian (and UK) neologism to use it to refer to recreational travel over a period of many days when most of those individual days have no religious significance.
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PeterK
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by Lainie:
quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
quote:
Some Jews in recent years in the US especially (without authority from their religious leaders) have tried to play up its importance in order to "give our kids something to do" when the majority are making a big deal of celebrating Xmas. Now it seems some neo-"pagans" want to get in on the act too.
From what "relgious leaders" are you suggesting that Jews failed to get their "authority"? It's not a hierarchical faith.
Not insofar as "hierarchy" is a Greek word which Jews don't use. But the concept was borrowed from the Jews. It's absurd to suggest that Judaism is anarchic.
I believe Jews who speak English do, in fact, use the word "hierarchy." [Roll Eyes] And I never suggested that Judaism was anarchic.

But please, since you're so familiar with the topic, explain to me which Jewish religious authority you think Jews should appeal to for "authority" to celebrate Hanukkah they way they choose. [/QUOTE]You seem confused. "Anarchy" means "the state of having no recognised leader or authority". And are you saying that the Jews refer to their religious authorities as a "hierarchy"? Or are you merely saying "Jews know how to look up "hierarchy" in a dictionary"?

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Ganzfeld
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
My "insistence" is merely stating a historical fact that some are uncomfortable with facing up to. The reason it was originally made a public holiday was to enablepeople to go to church [...]

Cite, please?
quote:
A few countries with only a minority of Christians (eg Singapore) have adopted it as a public holiday in modern times, as a result of the recent spread there of Western customs such as celebrating Christmas. Leading us back again to....
Leading us back to where? Christmas in non-Christian countries has about as much to do with Christianity as the month of January honors Janus: zero.
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Salamander
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
You and AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr seem to have missed the point that I was speaking as an Aussie.

You are obviously Australian, therefore when speaking as an Australian... use the term "my POV". You do certainly not speak for all Australians, therefore your use of "our POV" is, again, a case of hyperbole.

--------------------
"victory thru self-deception"

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PeterK
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by Ganzfeld:
quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
Fair enough. I was talking about people who strenuously object to me saying perfectly logical things such as "if A says Jesus is God and B says Jesus is not God, then either A or B must be wrong"; and accusing me of dogmatism, smugness, judgmentalism etc when I protest that they are being illogical.

I disagree that such statements can be said to be illogical, considering that the concepts of "God" or "Jesus" are not inherently logical to begin with. Just as Christians who believe in the trinity are not polytheists, "Jesus is God" and "Jesus is not God" may refer to completely different concepts and therefore not be contradictory.
In any discussion of logic of course it is assumed that the two parties have first defined their terms. If A and B are say, a Christian and a Jew (or Moslem etc), then they agree on who "God" is and that "Jesus" was a "dude" who lived in the Holy Land 2000 years ago. Having different concepts of who "God" or "Jesus" is, is not the issue here.
quote:

A little understanding goes a long way. I do not insist that Christians are polytheists because they do not claim to be. To accuse them of being polytheists on the grounds that three cannot be equal to one could easily be perceived as be dogmatic, smug, and judgemental.

You seem to lack the basic understanding that Christians do not say that there are three "Gods".
quote:
As well, I do not question the logic of those who would say that it is possible for other facts about supernatural beings to be both true and untrue. I simply don't expect their logic to be the same as my own.
I wouldn't question the "logic" of anyone who made such a statement either. But I wouldn't waste my time trying to have a rational conversation with them.
quote:

quote:
You and AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr seem to have missed the point that I was speaking as an Aussie. I have no problem with Americans using American idioms, only with faux-American Aussies who ape them.
[lol] That's so funny coming from you! Are you not aware of the many American idioms you use? Sometimes I think you're just teasing us, PeterK.
The feeling is mutual, believe me. You may not be aware that many, but certainly not all, Americanisms have been widely adopted in Australia and so I tend to use them too. Also I tend to "Americanise" my language a bit when I'm on the net, to help the majority of readers understand me, and to avoid giving offence (which an American once took just because I called him "mate").
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Hero_Mike
Happy Holly Days


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PeterK, I'm afraid that I'll ask you to provide a cite about Christmas being declared a public holiday to facilitate churchgoing. I remember specifically that it was, at many times in history, exactly the opposite. The Cromwell years in England were an example of this.

I dare say that it was also only in "civilized" areas that churchgoing was ever mandatory for every Sunday, though a pilgrimage to travel for a more important church occasion (or "holy day") would be the precursor to the modern "holiday". Both involve travel and a break from normal duties. I dare say that I've been in predominantly Christian and even Catholic countries, with a local church but no local priest. In such areas, there was no practical way to satisfy the Sunday obligation.

Furthermore, the transliteration of what passes for "Merry Christmas" in some European languages is best described as someone saying "Happy Holidays", or more precisely, "Happy Holy Days". The typical Christmas greeting in these languages - in overwhelmingly Christian countries, has no mention of "Christ" or "birth" (as a short-form for "birth of Christ") whatsoever. "Happy Holidays" is not necessarily a generic term of the political correctness era, but has basis in these literal translations.

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"The fate of *billions* depends on you! Hahahahaha....sorry." Lord Raiden - Mortal Kombat

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