The month of December is typically a month of many different celebrations, whether they are representative of the mainstream religious views, or subsets of religions, or simply spiritual, or cultural nature. This time of year has a certain magic to it, and there is something to be said about that magic that creates a month filled with great celebrations that span so many different cultures.
It’s easy to get lost in the significance of the beliefs of each specific sect, denomination, or religion. But let’s take a step back for a second and look at what each of these are dealing with. Unity, salvation, renewal, good tidings, family, showing gratitude, miracles… you get the idea. So if we remove religious views and bias of all kinds, we are left with a month of millions of people doing good things for one another, coming together in unity, putting aside their differences, and focusing on the miraculous events in history and today.
I don’t think there is anything wrong with what this month stands for at its core. Now to go one step further, religious experience is really a melting pot of culture, geographic location, ethnic beliefs, belief in things greater than ourselves, want for something magical or special in our ordinary lives, and the reverence of things we don’t understand. These manifest in many different ways, and take on many, many, many forms of awe and tradition… but at their core, again, they are about coming together to celebrate our similarities as opposed to our differences.
I think it’s those notions which lend to the “spirit” of the season and guide us through this month as we individually celebrate those ideas. We unknowingly, collectively celebrate these greater and noble ideas across religious lines, across cultural divides, spanning the globe with our single consciousness directed towards ideas and notions greater than our individual, singular beliefs. The spirit that moves us this month is the spirit of humanity and grace. We are willing to look past our differences without really knowing it, as we as a people are divided up into our different religions, sects, denominations, and cultures are all simultaneously celebrating the exact same things.
We are doing exactly the same things all over the world, just doing it in ways that make sense to us and how our beliefs are constructed. Our differences are an illusion, they are the blocks we choose to put up in order to ignore the greater similarities that unite us… we are all one people doing the exact same things for nearly the exact same reasons, but we are blind to this. In the spirit of the season try and remove your blinders, lift off the shroud and see we really are united in our beliefs, we just use different words, different symbols, and different motions to express them.