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Holy Days as Excuses

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posted on Dec, 28 2013 @ 03:00 AM
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Holy Days as Excuse


1.


While walking down the street on a Christmas day one can notice a palpable happiness in the air—smiles on faces, the laughter of children, people greeting strangers, loved ones walking arm in arm, families being families. The evenings are full of good cheer, good drink, good food, song, dance and the sensual rhythm found in all good and cherished company. And in the wake of this merriment is an acceptance of the world and a reminder of what truly matters—not the vain pursuit of happiness, success, peace and blissful states of non-worry and divine reward—but ourselves, our loved ones and the very realities that afford us these feelings. Even when all alone, one can be entranced by this particular vibe, one cannot help but notice it as it saturates the air around him, that he too will long for it, and in turn be reminded of what truly matters.

And the day after?

Like the day before. Back to work; back to forgetting each other; back to striving; back to crawling over each other to reach some non-existent peak; back to multiplying zeros; back to “reality”. Back to what truly doesn’t matter.

2.


It is a strange occurrence that in times of war ceasefires will sometimes occur to allow for the recognition of holy days. In World War 1, there was an unofficial truce enacted between opposing sides to recognize Christmas and holiday celebration that even sworn enemies showed each other good will along some spots of the Western Front. Even in the most horrific conditions of the trenches, soldiers stopped fighting to simply greet each other—not because they had a sudden moment of clarity, not because they stopped to appreciate the inherent value of what life they were trying to destroy—but because the day was sacred, a day became some magical precursor to peace, because they finally had an excuse to allow a little humanity in the most inhumane of places—all to disappear when the clock struck midnight, the moment when this sacred window of time somehow closed.

And the day after?

3.


Why the holy day? Why not the holy year? Why not declare ourselves holy, sacred, of enough value? Why not extend this respect beyond our holy days into our holy life-spans so that we may cease firing altogether? Instead of relegating cheer, merriment, celebration, joy, respect, tolerance, peace to a few days out of the year simply because we deem the day holy, why not perpetuate it beyond these arbitrary boundaries? Why cannot every day, everything and every moment be an excuse?

Some might say that religion affords these periods of happiness, these few days where we are allowed to celebrate life; but even prisoners are let out of their cell for a specific amount of time so that they may taste their humanity. Holy days, days of celebration, festivals, are but remnants of a more sensual past we’ve all but given up. We let ourselves out of our pens so that we may run around a while—and not because it’s the right thing to do, but because we’ve made a day for it. We’ve given ourselves an excuse to.

4.


It is the most insidious insult. Do not harm them, do not steal from them, do not show them ill-will, be tolerant towards them, be good, say hello, be polite, show respect—but only because it’s a holy day. We can offer you no other reason, and no other excuse.




posted on Dec, 28 2013 @ 03:15 AM
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Isn't that why some religions, like the Jehovahs Witnesses do not honor any holidays, birthdays, and such? Because they believe we should live each day like that?
Isn't it true for Budhists too? (I don't know, am just mind wandering here).

Personally, I tend to think that holidays help to remind us of what is truly important, so that when we get back to our daily duties and responsibilities we do them with a slightly different frame of mind... with a bit of emotional distance. Even the soldier can go back to his job, but not with hatred in his heart, but with respect for his opponents. Holidays remind us of why we do what we do. We work our job to provide sustenance and shelter for ourselves and those we love- not to make the neighbor jealous of our power, for example.

Ideally, yes, I think it would be best if we could keep these things in mind always, but the reality is tht sometimes we get deeply engaged in what we are doing and need the pressure of our collective culture to sort of force us to back off a moment and regain perspective.



posted on Dec, 28 2013 @ 03:17 AM
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That's an interesting way of looking at things. I'm not sure why it can't be like that everyday. I guess maybe it requires too much energy for people to sacrifice everything on a daily basics, to not be selfishish, greedy, and everything else in between. You know it, you name it.

Holy days fills us up with a false spirit nowadays, and now it's all about putting up a front and trying to convince yourself you're a good person. Of course not everybody is like that, the sad part is a lot of people are like that. It's good to have a community like ATS that are anything but. We sure have a few bad apples here and there, but it seems that a lot of people on here are intelligent enough to know better.

If only everybody could open their eyes and realize the Truth that we are all one and the same, no better or worse, and realize that Compassion that the likes of Jesus, Buddu, Lao Tzu all tried to teach have an underlying meaning - That Compassion is the answer. Even if that means God does not exist, the greater truth is to be not for yourself, but for Humanity as a whole.
edit on 28-12-2013 by TheProphetMark because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 28 2013 @ 03:32 AM
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Aphorism
Back to what truly doesn’t matter.

What is it that truly doesn't matter to you?


edit on 28-12-2013 by Itisnowagain because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 28 2013 @ 03:41 AM
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reply to post by Aphorism
 


Hello, are you John Lennon's song "Imagine"? I think it's safe to say that holidays serve as a temporary timeout for humanity to take a breath from all the ill stresses of life. One only needs to understand that doing good starts with you! There's a saying and I don't know who said it but it goes something like this - " You're not judged by who you love, but by how many you're loved by" this should be the standard way of living for everyone. What you give is what you get back. The more positive the merrier.



posted on Dec, 28 2013 @ 03:48 AM
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I like holidays, holydays? Yeah I like em for some time off and to reflect.



posted on Dec, 28 2013 @ 04:04 AM
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Aphorism
And in the wake of this merriment is an acceptance of the world and a reminder of what truly matters—not the vain pursuit of happiness, success, peace and blissful states of non-worry and divine reward—but ourselves, our loved ones and the very realities that afford us these feelings. Even when all alone, one can be entranced by this particular vibe, one cannot help but notice it as it saturates the air around him, that he too will long for it, and in turn be reminded of what truly matters.


Reading the above it seems that feelings are important - how life feels.
However, you push the point that 'happiness, peace and blissful states of non worry' are not important.
Surely the Christmas spirit is all these things - no work to worry about and a little peace from the rat race.



posted on Dec, 28 2013 @ 04:59 AM
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reply to post by Aphorism
 



It is the most insidious insult. Do not harm them, do not steal from them, do not show them ill-will, be tolerant towards them, be good, say hello, be polite, show respect—but only because it’s a holy day. We can offer you no other reason, and no other excuse.


I am with you, but I think this notion was more of a reality until just recently. Now, people are just generally insufferable every day of the year. Even Christmas. Scan the net for news stories on Dec 24th/25th. Plenty of idiots acting like it's just any other day, so don't worry! Heck a Santa in Washington DC was shot in public, in the back, with a pellet gun, and you could hear people laughing at his pain on the video.

I believe in Jesus totally, but I know everyone celebrates his 'birthday' in December because one of the early Roman-Catholic emperors decided to adopt the pagan holiday of winter solstice as the day of Jesus' birth. Jesus was born in the autumn.

The whole spirit of Christmas is dead to me, as I think the entire thing is just so far removed from what it's supposed to mean anymore. Now it just means the retail stores are able to show a profit by year's end, and stay afloat, and keep people employed. That's important for us all, of course, but they want to remove Jesus from it all while continuing to count on millions of "CHRISTIANS" who are really sheepish about celebrating the birth of their supposed savior whenever Madison Avenue and the Media tell them to.

Remove Christmas sales from the economy, and you'd see even more sellers going out of business. True Christians should boycott Christmas until the retailers stop wishing me "happy holidays?" What holiday? "Winter Holiday!" Why am I celebrating "Winter Holiday?" I HATE the winter! It's cold/snowy and a pain in the butt. What's to celebrate? The fact that I have another 3 months of freezing to death whenever I leave the inside? What's so figging great about that?

Otherwise, I am with you. Treat people as you would every day of the year, not like it's some special day, as if Jesus only cares that one day, or as if Santa is really coming and he isn't going to bring you anything unless you've been good, but only for that one day! It's like even that has been forgotten. Parents used to bribe the kids all year, talking about if they weren't behaved, they'd get screwed on Christmas by Santa. Now, the brats gets whatever they want if the parents can afford it, even if they are spoiled and incorrigible every day of the year already anyway.

Same as Sundays. Plenty of "christians" go to church every Sunday, then flip off the guy who cuts them off coming out of the church parking lot. It isn't a "christian" condition though, but a human one. Christians are just as prone to failure when it comes to being patient with our fellow humans as anyone else. Even Jesus threw over the tables of the moneychangers when they went too far by moving their business into the temple. He was as human as any of us, and needed to vent sometimes too, when it was appropriate.

For me, sometimes, I think if I don't vent, a vein in my brain will pop. It doesn't really matter what I believe or who I believe in, or what day it is.

The real problem with humanity is that there are just enough humans who go through life at any one time, thinking they are the center of the universe, so as to make co-existence with those who know they aren't the center of the universe, at that time, "uncomfortable," and those two dynamics often clash in real life, regardless of what day it is.



posted on Dec, 28 2013 @ 12:19 PM
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reply to post by Bluesma
 


It just seems all backwards.



posted on Dec, 28 2013 @ 12:29 PM
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reply to post by Itisnowagain
 





Reading the above it seems that feelings are important - how life feels.
However, you push the point that 'happiness, peace and blissful states of non worry' are not important.
Surely the Christmas spirit is all these things - no work to worry about and a little peace from the rat race.


Yes. It is the real things and real moments that afford us these feelings, not peace and happiness themselves. There are real reasons we feel peace and happiness, but peace and happiness are not reasons or causes of peace and happiness.

They are not important. They are not anything but the body feeling a certain way. Addicts chase feelings. Do they ever attain what they're looking for?



posted on Dec, 30 2013 @ 04:05 AM
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Aphorism
reply to post by Itisnowagain
 





Reading the above it seems that feelings are important - how life feels.
However, you push the point that 'happiness, peace and blissful states of non worry' are not important.
Surely the Christmas spirit is all these things - no work to worry about and a little peace from the rat race.


Yes. It is the real things and real moments that afford us these feelings, not peace and happiness themselves. There are real reasons we feel peace and happiness, but peace and happiness are not reasons or causes of peace and happiness.

They are not important. They are not anything but the body feeling a certain way. Addicts chase feelings. Do they ever attain what they're looking for?

Peace and happiness is what is here prior to any thing. If one thinks peace and happiness is contained in things (and events) then one will be chasing after some thing. When peace is found to be the natural underlying state - it does not matter what arises in it - it is all delightful.

edit on 30-12-2013 by Itisnowagain because: (no reason given)



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