Archives for December 7, 2016

Holly Jolly Headache

imageI am not the world’s biggest fan of Christmas music. Even when I was a kid it wasn’t the most wonderful time of the year for me. I think a big part of it is that there only about 10 songs that are popular, and those popular songs have been done to death by fifty people. And don’t get me started on the good old date rape Christmas song.

It does seem to be good for one thing, though. I got a hell of an idea while I was standing in the recovery area listening to yet another version of Oh Holy Night.

You may not know this but I’m not a Christian. I’m actually a Buddhist and have been for 16 or  17 years now. What you may not know about Buddhists is that we respect Jesus as a teacher and honor him. My temple in Chicago even celebrated Easter with a dharma talk that focused on his lessons. Our priest discussed how Jesus can be considered a bodhisattva because he became enlightened and then shared his wisdom with others to help them become good people and enlightened as well.

I was, however, raised in a Christian family. My mother took me to a lot of Protestant churches looking for the one that fit her best, but I also joined friends for Catholic mass and attended services at synagogues. I had friends who told me about Hinduism and learned about the Sikh faith from other friends, then went to a Catholic college and had to take religion classes. I turned all this over in my head and chose to become Buddhist.

With this extensive background in what was basically comparative religion, I had Some Questions. My main character also has some questions that he really can’t get answers to because of his church. I’m not writing a religious book but parts of it may end up being seen as somewhat spiritual. I’m okay with that.

And for the record, there are a couple of  Christmas songs that I like. I like Christmas is the Time to Say I Love You, Bruce Springsteen’s version of Santa Clause is Coming to Town, and the Christmas Canon from Trans-Siberian Orchestra.

It is what it is.