It’s December 25th, a few minutes after midnight and not really the solstice at all. The longest night of the year has past and they’re gradually getting shorter again. But tonight is magical. Not because a couple thousand years ago some guy was born. Or because tomorrow I’m going to get a lot of presents. It’s might have something to do with the human instinct to escape the winter darkness and celebrate the fact that we’ve made it half way.
I’d be willing to bet that primitive peoples celebrated the winter solstice. Maybe they didn’t feel the need to set up inflatebl plastic nativity scenes or santas in their front yards. Maybe they just sat around a fire and ate meat, but they marked it. The thing about Christmas, about any holiday really, what makes it special, is people. People turn a day into a celebration.
It takes something human to invent a christmas tree. It’s a dead tree that is paid dearly for. Brought inside to dry out, strung with electric lights and decorated. With popcorn or popsicles sticks glued together to make reindeer or snowmen, or with glass balls.
It’s a human thing. Humans make things special. They take ideas and they make them important. It’s what being human means. In an infinite universe, Ideas are what make life bearable.
Christmas is an idea of hope. Of love and generousity. And maybe that makes some people sad on Christmas, Maybe it makes losses harder to take. Maybe its hard to face hope and love when you’re hurting, but maybe that’s what you need most.
There’s a whole bunch of quotes all about how Christmas spirit is something you have, not something you make. And it’s true. All Christmas spirit is, is another kind of faith. Belief without proof. Belief that you’ll make it til spring. Belief that you’re loved. Belief that there is something in you wirht loving. Belief that there are things to hope for. That dreams can come true. That wishing isn’t useless. That life is worth all the pain.
I can’t offer you proof that any of those things are true. I can’t even give you facts or statistics. But i believe all those things. Without proof.
I have faith in hope, in life, in people.
I believe in you.