Monday, November 28, 2011

Advent

Advent and Christmas can be a tricky time for UUs. When you get right down to it, Christmas is about the birth of Christ. Our forebearers didn't have much of an issue with it considering we come out of the Christian tradition. Today, though, many of us are a little uncomfortable with talking about that aspect of the holiday. To me, though, it is very important. There is a real reason Christmas is celebrated and it is not just for the presents. If you do celebrate Christmas, I think you should understand it. I feel it is especially important to teach my children the "reason for the season." I am well aware that many UUs do not define themselves as Christians, but that is not a reason to not understand the tradition. If you do celebrate Christmas, I encourage you to delve deeper. Advent is a time of patience and preparation. Beliefnet has a great online Advent calender that provides a spiritual practice with historical interpretation and modern applications. I encourage you to check it out and hope you all have a reflective, peaceful Advent season.

2 comments:

NFQ said...

I'm curious - do you teach your children the Christmas story in the sense of "here is the background to this holiday and the context in which Christians celebrate it," or do you teach them that the Christmas story is factually true? I totally agree that it would be strange to grow up in the US and have no idea what all these people were doing every December (and late November ... and early November ... and in some places, October), but that's obviously not quite the same as "spiritual practice."

plaidshoes said...

NFQ - It would be the first option. I want them to understand the background of the story in all its diverse tellings. They go to a Lutheran school, so I think it is very important for them to see the story from all sides, but if it speaks to them in some way, I don't want to squash their spirituality. I really believe it is a journey, but it is important for me that they really understand "the meaning of the season" and how it relates (or not) to them.