Hi, my name’s Mark and I’m and Atheist who celebrates Christmas. (Hi, Mark!) There is a lot of talking going on about how an Atheist should treat the holidays, it has been brought up on our group forum and in the headlines even "Christmas Season Sees US Atheists' Billboard Claiming Nativity A Myth"
The group claims the $20,000 billboard is “to raise awareness for the movement” and “designed to discourage existing vulnerable atheists, of going against their reason, to celebrate Christmas” They seriously spent the equivalent of one thousand Snuggies, in hopes of Atheists not celebrating Christmas? Good Luck. It’s going to take a lot more than a billboard to bring down the giant that is Christmas.
I know, I know. You don’t need to remind me that they are after the idea of celebrating Christ’s birth, but only a few real die hard Christians really revolve their holiday around the nativity scene anymore. Unless you‘re Ricky Bobby and baby Jesus is your favorite Jesus. People are more interested in giving and receiving this years hottest fad gifts. Case in point, I worked with a guy who would argue with me till he was blue in the face about my not believing in a God, when Christmas came around he mysteriously got a “cold” so he didn’t have to be in the live nativity scene his church hosted. He seemed just fine at work that day and I'm sure he was healthy on Christmas day, when it came time to open gifts and eat.
A few Excerpts of the discussion thread on our group forum.
“I have no problems celebrating Christmas at all. The whole holiday is just a complete fabrication anyhow and I always liked Christmas so I'm not stopping celebrating it just because Christians assign imaginary significance to it.“My point is that people for the most part just don’t care about Christ’s birth Atheist or Christian. Christmas is really about gifts, childhood memories, food & family. Usually in that order. I for one never once celebrated a Christmas in a church service. December came around and I knew time to shape up cause Santa was going to bring me free stuff. I never have and never will associate Christmas with religion. I was thirteen when I finally asked what the baby was doing at the petting zoo under grandma’s Christmas tree. I celebrate Christmas this year in hopes of eating my families favorite foods, spending what time I have left with my family happy together, and pray that Justin Bieber’s book is waiting for me under the Christmas tree.
“Christmas at this point has become so commercialized and almost secularized that it's not even about Jesus being born (which isn't historically accurate anyway). So I don't worry about it. These things are more like cultural norms than they are Christian events for the vast majority of the population.”
“We have holidays in our house because we're a family. Until there are more secular holidays to take their places, we'll celebrate the ones that are there in our own secular way. With our work and school schedules, we don't often get the chance to spend an entire day together.”
“I celebrate both Thanksgiving and Christmas and I see no hypocrisy in doing so. I consider it a shared cultural experience. We all know the stories associated with those holidays and like it or not, they are significant within the culture. Enjoying the traditions that were spurred by those stories doesn't mean we have to accept those stories as true (the original T-day is mythological too). I can enjoy Christmas - complete with manger scenes and traditional music (much better than those shitty pop Christmas songs) without believing the Christmas story in the same way I can enjoy great Cathedral architecture without buying into what's preached there. Indeed, I'm happy to participate in the shared cultural experience.”
Thank you Mark. I couldn't have said it better myself.