Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Celebrating a Western holiday season with Eastern Beliefs

I have long struggled with this time of year. I have so many problems with Christmas, starting with the fact that I am not a Christian, but also encompassing issues such as: I don't do turkey dinner as a vegetarian, I try to live my life simplisticly, avoiding excessive materialism, etc. Trying to get loved ones to understand this is rather difficult, particulary with my family who find comfort in the traditions of the holiday. The end result of this struggle is general angst and grumpiness during the season. However, I've had a change of heart this year, and am totally excited about the holiday. I've chosen to concentrate on the aspects that I love: the overwhelming joy of my mother, the lights shining throughout the city, people who normally don't giving to charity giving what they can. I still struggle a bit, mostly with the fact that we as westerners overeat, overdrink, and overindulge for a full month, when most of the human population lives in poverty. In any case, I just read an article that nicely explained how one woman finds a way to make her western upbringing co-exist with her eastern beliefs. It's called Om for the Holidays and you can find it here:


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