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Do you celebrate Christmas?

Apologies for my extended absence.  Life has a nasty habit of keeping me very busy – and 2009 has been an ordeal.

In the interests of easing myself back into things?  How do those of us who have taken the time to understand the realities of the pagan celebration co-opted by the christians – celebrate it?  Personally, I have three young children and enjoy every minute of it whilst making a point of spelling about the actual origins of the season.

Do my fellow freethinkers celebrate – do any of us go to mass on Christmas day?  In previous years i have gone to mass Christmas morning – purely as a cultural compromise, but we will not be going this year.  I don’t need to document the disgust we all feel for the catholic church this year – but one good thing to come from all the revelations is my wife is finally breaking free of her childhood indoctrination.   Rage can be useful.

Any suggestions for reality-based presents?

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas (or Squidmas, Newtonmas, etc.) to you all, I just came across these alternative lyrics for my favourite carol. Hope you like them. Maybe I can talk dj357 into recording a version for next year?

The World of Richard Dawkins

(Sung to the tune of: “God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen”)

The World of Richard Dawkins
Is a place where you will find
A scientific plethora
To stimulate your mind.
Expand your intellectual side;
Leave ignorance behind.
O, tidings of knowledge and truth,
Knowledge and truth.
O, tidings of knowledge and truth.

He came from out of Africa,
As did we all, it seems.
His work has made the world aware
That we have selfish genes;
And thoughts that we hold sacred
May turn out to be just memes.
O, tidings of knowledge and truth,
Knowledge and truth.
O, tidings of knowledge and truth.

A meme by definition
Is a virus of the mind.
The Bible is a favorite source
For stories of this kind,
Which glorify a watchmaker who
Turns out to be blind.
O, tidings of knowledge and truth,
Knowledge and truth.
O, tidings of knowledge and truth.

The phenotype extended
Is a novel point of view.
It shows us what our genes affect
Beyond just me and you.
The world at large responds
To what our DNA can do.
O, tidings of knowledge and truth,
Knowledge and truth.
O, tidings of knowledge and truth.

The river out of Eden
Flows along the banks of time.
It carries information
Down a long, unbroken line.
It’s possible your DNA
May someday mix with mine.
O, tidings of knowledge and truth,
Knowledge and truth.
O, tidings of knowledge and truth.

In climbing Mt. Improbable
Your chances may look bleak.
Perhaps around the backside
Is the very thing you seek —
A gradual slope that leads you
Ever onward to the peak.
O, tidings of knowledge and truth,
Knowledge and truth.
O, tidings of knowledge and truth.

From Freethinkers of Ventura County

via Jaakko Wallenius’s Notes

Irony alert…

You’d better watch out…

Do these idiots even recognise the mere possibility that not everybody shares an unshakable faith in their fairy-tales?

Only a member of a religious group, having never entertained the idea of an original-thought, could feel (without a trace of irony), that…

it was his duty to distinguish the reality of Jesus from the story of Father Christmas which was a fable just like Cinderella or Snow White

If I was in the mood for laughing, I would.

Merry Christmas to all.

Nothing Says Christmas Like an Internet Poll

It seems to be traditional in the USA that this time of year leads to lots of “War on Christmas” headlines in the media. The UK also suffers from this though it’s usually limited to readers of the Daily Torygraph. Here in Ireland I think we’ve largely managed to avoid this sort of silliness, and it seems to me most people enjoy Christmas free of any connection to Middle Eastern myths.

This months poll question is about how you feel about Christmas. Personally it seems to me Europeans have been marking the Winter Solstice (or warding off inner and outer darkness) long before Christianity and we shouldn’t accept the Christian attempt to claim this as their holiday. If there was an historical Jesus there is nothing to suggest he was born on the 25th of December.