Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Christians and the Pagans

My family is one of the most diverse that I know. We have creationists and Darwinists. We have devout Christians, and tattooed Pagans, bikers and Baptists. We have Democrats, Republicans and Libertarians. We literally have one of nearly any path you could choose.

Every year I feel bombarded by the "Merry Christmas vs. Happy Holiday's" debate and news articles about stolen nativity sets. The holidays seem to bring bigger and bigger conflict with each passing season. People debate whether or not it is "politically correct" to wish someone a Merry Christmas. I live in an area with an extremely large Muslim community, and conflicts are never ending anyway, but they seem worse around the holidays.

Every Christmas morning my family has a big breakfast. We have done this for as long as I can remember. Someone says a Christian prayer and those of us who aren't Christian bow our heads respectfully and acknowledge our own dieties during that time. We have never had a Christmas morning conflict. No one ends up screaming their religious beliefs. We don't discuss politics. We all just join together and find common ground around a breakfast table. We serve two different kinds of bacon because some members of the family don't eat pork. We serve coffee, tea, juice, water, soda, milk... am I missing anything there? We accomodate everyone as much as possible. We compromise. We are a family.

My family may have conflicting religious beliefs, and we may have differing world views but we share the same morals and we all have the ability to respect others. Every Christmas morning Christians and Pagans sit together and find common ground at my parent's house. My sister's golden cross glistens right beside my brother's silver pentacle as we all laugh together at the breakfast table.

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