Ola! I know I promised to blog regularly (at least 2x a week), but something happened: my MacBook Air has been broken since Sunday last week! Randy brought it to the PowerMac Center in Alabang last Tuesday. On Thursday, we were told that the motherboard needs to be replaced. New parts + labor will cost a whopping P27,000.
Waaaah!!! That’s even more expensive than a brand new laptop of a different brand. My MacBook Air isn’t even 2 years old!!! Kaasar to the highest level! So for the meantime I’m borrowing the laptop of Gymboree. I’m not giving up on my MacBook, though. There’s a repair shop I’ll have my laptop brought, and I’m hopeful it can still be fixed at the fraction of the cost quoted by PowerMac. If it’s gonna be a success, I promise to tell you about it.
Anyway, last Friday I had a reunion with my former Victory groupmates in Los Banos for an early birthday celebration of our beloved Mama Gi. It was madrama at first, but fun for the most part. We’ve all missed each other so much!
One of the things we tackled was Christmas and Santa Claus. One of the ladies expressed her concern because on her son’s Christmas Party at school, the gifts will be delivered by Santa Claus daw.
Some of you may wonder what’s the cause of concern with that. Here’s the thing: several people—most of whom are Christians—believe that Santa Claus has stolen Christmas from Jesus Christ.
It took me a while to answer her question. It is my heart’s desire to keep “Christ” in Christmas, but at the same time I feel like Christmas isn’t complete for a child without Santa Claus. One of my most vivid and treasured Christmas morning memories was when I opened a gift under a Christmas tree, with a dedication from Santa Claus. In it was a gorgeous doll that I proudly told everyone was from Santa Claus. On top of that, I got some coins and treats inside the socks I hung! It was truly a merry Christmas for me, and I don’t like to deprive any kid of that feeling. By thinking that Santa Claus has stolen Christmas from Jesus Christ (and thus removing him from Christmas), I feel like I’ll also be stealing a huge chunk of Christmas from Raviv.
But what I have just confessed can be further evidence used against Santa Claus: I said “Christmas isn’t complete for a child without Santa Claus”. Which might prove that truly, Santa Claus has taken over Christmas, and he is now the central figure of Christmas for kids.
But that’s it: for kids. That’s my operative term.
A year or two after my momentous Christmas morning where I got a doll present from Santa, I learned from my first-grade teacher that Santa Claus was not real, and that the gifts were really from my parents. I remember my jaw dropping and putting pieces together. Was I disappointed? Well, not really. More of happy that: 1) I felt like a “grown-up” because I learned the truth about Santa; and 2) it was actually my parents who gave me my lovely doll.
And that ended my love affair with Santa Claus.
With that, I have concluded that NO, I WILL NOT STEAL SANTA CLAUS AWAY FROM RAVIV.
I am open to being corrected by church leaders and those who might “know better” (this is not sarcastic), but as of now that is my stand. And here’s why.
In my humble opinion, Christmas is associated with so many things aside from Jesus Christ and Santa Claus: Christmas trees, vacations, Noche Buena, exchange gifts, etc. In Western countries, that includes snow, snow angels, snowman and “roasting of chestnut by the fire”. Does that make these other things bad as well? I don’t think so. The fact that toddlers (I limited it to toddlers because I expect that with the kids’ technology literacy, they will learn the truth about Santa at a very young age) seem to love Santa Claus among all of the “others” the most is but expected: Santa gives the kids toys! As much as we want our kids to grasp or appreciate the “deeper” concepts of the importance and meaning of Christmas, come on, they are still just kids!
Like when we celebrate our child’s birthday, do we expect him to be excited about the fact that God gave him another year in his life? Yes that’s ideal, but really? Is our child not excited about his birthday because he’s going to blow his birthday cake, have a party with his friends, and again, receive lots of presents? And as for the kiddie guests—in all honesty, do you think are they are excited that their friend was given another year? They’re in there for the food, the clown (like Santa Claus!) and the lootbags. Still, their presence in the party is appreciated by the hosts.
I do not believe that Raviv will deem that Santa Claus is better than Jesus Christ. Santa could only give him toys that his parents, grandparents and godparents could give. But Raviv knows that it is Jesus who gave him his life, his parents, and everything else (once when Raviv prayed, he even thanked God for the taba and chicken skin he ate for dinner. Hehe). I tell him that often, and even make him watch some scenes from The Passion of the Christ on YouTube to remind him that Jesus Christ has given us the best gift of all.
I’ve heard arguments “exposing” Santa Claus’ real origins, that’s why the fat man in red has to be taken away. If I subscribe to that, then I think I should also remove the Christmas tree, whose origin I heard was from pagan practices. And then I won’t be surprised if I read or hear an exposé about Frosty the Snowman or the symbolism of exchange gifts pretty soon.
This Christmas, I am going to emphasize that we rejoice because we remember how Jesus agreed to come here on earth to save us, and that He is the reason for the season. But all the other festivities—all the other exciting elements that make Christmas a festive occasion will still be there, Santa Claus included.
Again, I am open to other points of view. Actually, that is the goal of this blog post: for others who are more enlightened than I am to hear my thoughts. And then after hearing my thoughts, I’d be most glad to:
a) be presented a different perspective
b) be made feel that I really don’t have to feel guilty about Santa Claus,
c) be reprimanded
A blessed week ahead of us all!
P.S.: To those who are pushing through with “Santa” this Christmas, let’s not make Santa give the most beautiful or most expensive gift. This way, when our child tells his friends what Santa’s gift to him was, the other kids won’t feel that they are loved less by Santa because “Santa” did not give them toys that are as nice or as expensive. Let’s make the most special material gift come from us, the parents.
Tell me what you think!
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