Sunday, December 16, 2018

Christmas and the Lost Time

Christmas celebration
by PJ Mann

We all love the Christmas holidays, regardless the belief, it is a time when we look around and feel inspired with the meaning of being together, at peace, and understand what is really important in life.
Christmas celebration has a very long tradition, it falls far before Christianity, but the meaning has never changed, and it is an invitation to open your heart to the others, like a memento of what life should be really about.

One example is the celebration for the Saturnalia from the 17th to the 23rd of December during the Roman Empire, a holiday dedicated to Saturnus.
During this period there were sacrifices made in the temples dedicated to Saturn, public banquets and carnival-like celebrations on the streets of Rome.

The masters prepared a banquet for their slaves, as a token of appreciation for their loyalty, and those were free to speak their mind about their masters without fearing any punishment.
They exchanged gifts and tried to give and receive happiness.

That sounds much like what we are doing today doesn't it?
Regardless of the history and the practices, beliefs or non-beliefs, this is a period to share good feelings, to promise a better future, to ask forgiveness for the times we have not been so kind to our neighbors and give forgiveness.

Nowadays, Christmas still keeps its meaning, but it has become a sort of obsessive run against the time to get the perfect gift for our dear ones and prepare the menu for the dinners/lunches. The peace of the period is spoiled by the contrasting hurry at our working place because December is the month that closes the fiscal year, so all the projects have to be concluded, sent and archived.
This means that before leaving for the Christmas holidays, we need to push our working schedule like crazy. Of course, this also means that our free time is drastically reduced to a few hours where we are supposed to take care of the ordinary chores at home, and the extra preparation for the incoming holidays.

Let's then not talk about the case when children are involved. Families with small children in this period are subjected to an extra amount of stress, and then the holidays resemble more a curse than a blessing.

So long peace!

This means that Christmas has slowly transformed into a run against the time, but where are we supposed to get some extra time to fulfill all our schedules?
Whoever has an answer, is kindly requested to share it with the whole world, so that we can award him/her with the Nobel prize for peace next year.

Nevertheless, there is a reward in all this stress. That is when finally we seat at the dinner table, and finally, we can enjoy the company of our dear ones.
We can take off our shoes, and with a content smile, we look around at the happy faces of the people that make all this run worth.

Now we can finally enjoy it!
Have a Merry Christmas or peaceful holidays, whatever your beliefs are!