Monday, December 13, 2010
I Just Don't Get It
Which brings me to my point: I just don't get it.
Welcome to the Church of the Wayward Gypsy. Settle in, quiet down. We're going to revisit one of my favorite topics - third year in a row now.
How is it that a tired ol' Atheist like me can have more Christmas cheer and spirit than the Christians who claim the holiday as their very own? Seriously. I've been spreading peace on earth and good will and best wishes and smiles like crab dip on a cracker. I do it because I like the good feeling that comes from it, not because I believe in the birth of a savior. I do it because, sadly, it's the one time of year that I can get away with smiling at anyone and everyone, and give them a hearty heartfelt greeting without them giving me the oh-how-nice-that-they've-let-you-out-of-the-asylum-for-the-day look. I do it because... kindness and a smile is just how I roll.
Yet, I've seen people who claim to be Christians treating people, especially loved ones, in a deplorable manner. The only spirit present in them seems to be loathing for the holiday they claim and anyone who expects them to be the slightest bit involved in it. The other day at the grocery store, I saw a woman who was sporting a button that, in big bold lettering, read, "Jesus is the Reason for the Season!" Evidently the button had lost its super power because two aisles later I saw her smack her child upside the head and snap at him, "Shut up!" The child's offense was asking if they could get cookies. I just don't get it.
I have a facebook friend who, at least once a week, posts as his status, "Put Christ back in CHRISTmas!" Evidently he's still trying to figure out how to do that himself, since these posts are typically followed by some tasteless holiday-themed picture such as topless slutty Santa girls and/or raunchy holiday-themed jokes. I just don't get it.
Still others who purport the same ideals (and yes, I'm calling them ideals, because I'm not seeing any real faith), talk about "getting shit-faced" at the next indicated holiday party, and doing unspeakable things to elves under the mistletoe. I just don't get it.
I've seen people with "Christ in CHRISTmas" style bumper stickers driving like maniacs and flipping people off - probably because they're in a hurry to get to the church for choir practice. I just don't get it.
I could go on. There are more examples. Many more. I just don't get it.
And I end up feeling like a world class asshole because every time I see or hear something like this, I (The Atheist, mind you) want to holler (or type in all caps as the case may be), "Are you kidding me?! What would Jesus say?!" But, really, I'm not looking for explanation. I'm looking for change. Trust me, I don't expect perfection. As if. What I'm asking is really quite simple: don't claim it if you're not willing to live it. Stop shoving your beliefs down my throat when clearly they mean nothing at all to you. Because, I'm all for anyone believing whatever they want to believe, but y'all are acting like the man who claims to love his wife just before he lowers a fist into her eye. What would Jesus say.
Thing is, I do believe that historically, as a man, Jesus existed. I believe that he was a kind man who had a lot of good things to say (and do). That's where my belief ends - I just don't see him (or anyone else for that matter) as a deity - but I can't help but think that he'd be all kinds of pissed if he saw how the world was (mis)using his "birthday."
To paraphrase the line from My Fair Lady, don't talk of God, show me. 'Cause as it stands now? I just don't get it.
Posted by Barb Black at 9:21:00 AM