Wednesday, December 10, 2008

While it's on my mind...

I wanted to share what our family's holiday is about.

We don't celebrate Christmas. Not in the Christian or religious sense anyway. As Taoists, we do not believe there is a sentient higher power by any name, let alone "God". So it makes celebrating a Christian holiday designed to convert pagans by scheduling it near a pagan holiday a bit ridiculous.

What we do recognize is the significance of the winter solstice. The DongZhi holiday is similar to Thanksgiving in the fact that it is centered around a special meal and focuses on family.

Our personal holiday is a fusion of our childhood experiences and Taoist traditions that have new meaning to us as a family breaking out on our own and creating our family traditions. This is the first year that we will have our own nuclear family celebration because, in previous years we spent it at my Granny's house. It just feels appropriate that this year, our son's first DongZhi set the standard for many many happy years to come.

Oh, and Santa stays. The belief that there was a magical man who flew all around the world to give all the children presents amazed and excited me and I want my children to get to enjoy that magic too.

So we will hang stockings, read "The Night Before Christmas", gorge ourselves on traditional yumminess, and await Santa on the same schedule as everyone else...


on the solstice, which usually falls on the 21st or 22nd, we will give each other the presents from ourselves and enjoy Tang Yuan (balls of glutenous rice symbolizing reunion) and celebrate the amazingness that is nature's cycles.

I have to say, I would be pretty damn happy as a kid to get two celebrations in one month!