For most the dust has settled from the torrent of opening gifts, morning coffee, and some trivial issue with the pet dog or cat. We’re moving on into the Christmas day, finding our favorite programs, the music that brings back those rare special memories of Christmas past, and finding ourselves in the kitchen or on the road to grandma’s house preparing that traditional favorite Christmas dinner. Well, that’s the case for most of us in America.
As Moriah and I began networking the release of our album “D-D-Praz Christmas,” we realized that for many more across the world, Christmas just isn’t like that. There’s no snow in Brazil, or sled rides in Australia. Mistletoe is more of a European thing, and in other areas there are no trees decorated with shimmering lights and colorful orbs. While the majority of the world remains Catholic in religious tradition, those customs vary dramatically when considering the convergence of tradition with religion as we move around the globe. Some parts of the world conduct a processional in tribute to the Virgin Mary, and a symbolic baby Jesus is moved from home to home in the neighborhood. At the dawn of New Age religion and self-awareness, many pagan practices that filtered into the Christmas tradition are finding a New Era of religious significance. As Christian values are replaced with humanist views of the world, the pagan practices become for many the new rally behind this Holiday season. Then there are parts of the world where religious piety renounces anything at all to do with Christmas, and what it may or may not represent on the global scale – whether charity, good will, or aspirations for peace.
Popular commercial artists in the ‘60’s, and again in the 80’s, made their appeals for an awareness of global peace and harmony during the Holiday season – as if Christmas charity and compassion for the common man would rally around the Holiday season and music would unite for some utopia they envisioned. As the state of the American nation is economically depressed and jobless rates have sky-rocketed, the pocketbooks of many will reflect on the scarcity of gift-giving, contributions to charity, and generally impacts well-wishing and cheer around the 2010 Holidays. Statistically, more and more homes are affected by divorce, where the children, “naughty” or “nice” will be split between homes, and a traditional, family-centered Holiday becomes something different.
So what does it really all mean, anymore? What significance does the Holiday season have on your life, on your memories of family and tradition? Where were some of your momentous Christmas experiences – at home or away from home? With family and friends, or somehow estranged from all of that?
Moriah and I ask for each of you to share something about what this Holiday season has meant to you, now; and comment about what are some of your most memorable experiences of Christmas past. Is that experience a gift, or a lover from over-seas, that moment spent with a now deceased friend or relative, or a moment when global peace and harmony was achieved in an instantaneous epiphany brought on by some chemical additive? What is Christmas to you?