Saturday, December 6, 2014

A Quote about Ralphie

Something to remember: 

"... And remember that the Three Wise Men giving gifts to Jesus when he was dead broke is not a precedent for us to give expensive gifts to each other. If we are actually going to follow the scriptures, we will give gifts to the impoverished rather than continue an anti-Christian tradition of transforming our kids into frothing Ralphies who long for a Red Rider BB gun far more than they long for the love of Christ."  


  1. Replies
    1. This one is Rocky Cordray, from I asked if he could be quoted and he said he didn't care, but preferred the thought stand on its own. He says a lot of profound things, I'm finding.

  2. A friend said "Christmas is about family, doing acts of kindness for others and being our best selves. I can't think of a better way to celebrate Christ's birth. What do you think he would rather we do?"

    If that's all it was, then I would have no reservation with it. Those are things we each should do every day.

    However training generations of children to associate Christ's birth with the powerful thrill of getting gifts, contemplating what gifts they want and hope for and reinforcing this behavior with candy, cookies, cakes, brilliant colorful lights, and sparkling ornaments, the smell of pine etc. Afterwards the meaning of Christmas is reinforced by using/playing with the gifts received.

    There are the pagan symbols of the tree and Santa Claus which I don't want to go into.

    Children don't think of Christ's birth when they think of Christmas except as an afterthought. We shoehorn Luke 2 where we can so we feel there is some legitimacy about this. On the one hand we're singing songs of Santa, sleigh bells, figgy pudding and then we have to stop and sing Silent Night so we can actually contemplate the Savior. Leslie said we try to fit Christ into our lives and worship Him the way we want, and not the way He has asked us.

    I really think it's a dichotomy that we force together. We've proven that we are pretty good at holding two opposing thoughts simultaneously.

    One night of family scripture reading where the Holy Ghost is present may be a more effective way to celebrate. Taking the sacrament might be better. One day of serving the poor without any thought of this being associated with receiving presents might. Taking the money and feeding LDS children that are starving to death might.

    On top of this, all of the gifts we give are made as affordable as they are by the slave labor economy of China and all the horrors that go along with that.

    I think there must be better ways.

    We are all fallen, cast out of God's presence. We substitute the absence of God's direct involvement in our life with elaborate and emotionally stimulating rituals that don't impart greater understanding in God's plan for us. I was glad for the opportunity to suprise and delight my kids, but remembering Christ came the next night as we read D&C 76:1.

    1. I agree. I have an increasingly difficult time with celebrating. I used to really enjoy it, and I don't know if it's having my eyes opened about the tradition, or discovering the pagan elements. I haven't figured out which truth is best to agree with, but either way it bothers me greatly that we don't hold to our truth. If we believe Christ was born in the spring, particularly April 6, it seems contrary to truth to follow tradition just to follow tradition.

      One of my goals this year is to drop the pagan-based holidays, and honor the ones the Christ himself would have celebrated. But that means I have a ton to learn, as I know little to nothing about these things. At very least, I don't know that I can do Christmas in the traditional sense again. It held very little joy this year, especially adding in the poor and the Chinese elements you mentioned. I wish I could find a way around it, but just couldn't. It reminded me of the example of a dog or pig (?) returning to its vomit. I can't pretend to hold something sacred that is not accurate anymore. It is out of alignment with truth.

      That said, I hope to have a big celebration of sorts on April 6th.


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