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Archive for the ‘Christmas.’ Category

Wondrous.

Wondrous.

Where is the Answer?

Fantastic.

Fantastic.

If I believed in miracles I would pray, the unanswered prayer, peace on earth and good will to all mankind.

My quiet tranquil hide away.

My quiet tranquil hide away.

If I were a believer in the patriarchal God I would spend Jesus’s birthday in a secluded quiet place, calm and relaxed, paying thanks to my God for the natural wonders surrounding me. No matter what your beliefs are, being thankful, sharing and appreciating nature’s free gifts is a stress free way to spend every day.

There is serenity here also.

There is serenity here also.

From all the accounts I have read Jesus was a kind compassionate pacifist. I really do not think he would appreciate the frantic way many of his followers are celebrating his birthday. He would be appalled at the way our commercial society has capitalised on his birthday.

Love past present and future.

Love past present and future.

Love is not something you can buy and wrap up in coloured paper.

Pretty decorations.

Pretty decorations.

Just because I cannot bring myself to believe in miracles does not stop me from appreciating those that sincerely do believe. I still respect a person that follows an ethical path of loving kindness like Jesus exemplified.

Crucifixion Orchards.

Crucifixion Orchards.

Those that feel the need to visit loved ones during the festive season drive curiously, cautiously and carefully. To those that feel obligated to give gifts, be wise in what you can afford. Those with a weight problem, have the will power to show restraint. All things in moderation, never forget alcohol is a criminal, safe till it escapes from the bottle.

Enjoy the wonder of it all.

Enjoy the wonder of it all.

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The cake a work of joy a pleasure to share.

The cake a work of joy a pleasure to share.

A piece of cake, so easy.

This Christmas tree was like a burning bush.

This Christmas tree was like a burning bush.

It is time to bake a Christmas cake to celebrate Jesus Christ’s birthday. I am pleased that it is not traditional to decorate it with candles, two thousand and fourteen candles would create a fire hazard. As I do not believe in the supernatural I would only put thirty or thirty-three, the date of his crucifixion, still that would be enough to create problems in blowing them out. That would be a minor feat for Jesus and divided by three, The Father the son and the Holy Ghost that is only eleven candles to extinguish.

Santas walking on water.

Santas walking on water.

I am going to respect tradition, no candles, only cake, compassion and kindness. This is what Jesus promoted, not putting on a big show to sell candles. Christmas is a good opportunity to share some of our cake with others. Luke 6:31 Do to others as you would have them do to you. This is true Christmas spirit, not the kind that is bottled and sold. Once the cork is pulled the dangerous intoxicating spirit escapes from the bottle and can turn Christmas into a time of grief. In other words don’t drink and drive or lose your senses and act stupid.

The presintation is inportant.

The presentation is important.

Jesus did not object to a slice of bread and glass of wine. To some Christian denominations this represents Jesus’ flesh and blood. I do not understand or see any value in many Christian observances, rites and rituals. But I do like and respect the sincere loving believers that do kindness where it is needed. I trust these people because they up hold the values Christ advocated. These are same principle other people of different beliefs practice.

The wise follow the star.

The wise follow the star.

Jesus was one role-model to emulate as a path to morality there are other paths to the same destination. Let us not squabble over who we are following. Try to see the good in people and do to them as you would like them to do to you. This quote in some form is in every religion. It is known as the Golden Rule, the rule of reciprocity. It features in Confucianism 551 – 479 BC, also in Hindu and Buddhism. All this is ancient history; let us not get too excited about who did this and who said that, that would spoil the joy of Christmas day.

To the four story heigh top.

To the four-story high top.

Do not get all fired up, hot and excited, that is probably why there are no candles on a Christmas cake. The candles may have been omitted to remind us not to turn this special birth day into a party but keep it a tasteful occasion to spread peace and kindness. To put behind us the petty upsets and use this as a time to show forgiveness. Christmas can be a time for all to show respect.A great opportunity to renew old friendships that have been neglected in the hustle and bustle of modern life. We have an excuse to send a card and get back in touch. Christmas can be a wonderful time for everyone.

Decorations in Sydney are big and beautiful.

Decorations in Sydney are big and beautiful.

You do not need to stress out worrying about buying expensive gifts as commerce encouraged us to do. Our loved ones just want our loving kindness. We cannot smile and be full of love if we are stressed about finance. That is why I am cooking a Christmas cake One of life’s joys is sharing a slice of cake with friends. I can afford a little more than just a cake and it will give me pleasure to do so. As Jesus would agree it is better to give than receive. Real joy is in giving kindness and love it is not measured in dollars.

A closer look.

A closer look.

I remember my childhood Christmases not the material gifts but those wonderful Christmas dinners. Sharing food cooked with love by my mother. The Christmas pudding had silver three penny pieces in it. We had to eat carefully and the whole family enjoyed sharing the fun. If I missed getting a coin, Mum would say “here have another small slice” and her magic ensured I got a coin. A trick my Dad played was to slip a half-crown, like fifty cents today, disregarding the effects of inflation, into his pudding and pretended to almost choke retrieving it. It did not fool anyone but did create a laugh still echoing today. I played this game with my sons and the laughter was worth more than the money.

Christmas is a pleasure to the eye.

Christmas is a pleasure to the eye.

As well as a cake I am going to cook a pudding and get some old silver coins and ply the old joke with my five grand children. Christmas lunch with the family and especially the young children is a special time for love to flourish. Those that cannot be there we visit when we can and keep them informed through modern technology. I am thankful for Christmas and what it means compassion and peace on earth.

Window shopping is also fun.

Window shopping is also fun.

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A step in the right direction.

A step in the right direction.

Visit to Santa.

“What would you like for Christmas?”

“Bring me what Jesus wanted.”

“What was that?”

“Peace on Earth.”

“Be reasonable that is not what I am here for, there is no profit in peace.”

“It does not cost the Earth.”

“You are a problem child; ask for something expensive that will help the economy.”

“I would like good-will to everyone.”

“Look kid, stop being difficult, you must have seen something you want advertised on TV.”

“I have all I need; there are people in the world that need the necessities of life.”

“If you don’t want anything, why are you taking up my time?”

“Respect for my Grandfather he is going senile, like second childhood, he believes in Santa Clause, I  believe in God, Jesus and the holy spirit but not in Santa Clause.”

“You are not a child, but you are still not an adult.”

“Why not?”

“Because you still believe in myths, so don’t waste my time.”

St Maries Cathedral Sydney.

St Mary’s Cathedral Sydney.

I made up this story between a shopping complex Santa and a sincere Christian upholding the true values of Christmas. I do not believe any myths, the point of my story is we do not have to believe to have respect. Nor should we disregard the positive things found in other people’s beliefs. The peace and compassion Jesus taught is the same ethical values Jews and Muslims revere. Hindus and Buddhists also promote love and kindness. The conversation shows how the kindness of giving at Christmas has been over commercialized. Read carefully and you will note kindness does not cost the earth, but buying unnecessary luxuries does cost the environment. Giving to those in need will promote peace on earth and reduce hate.

Sydney Town Hall and Christmas lights.

Sydney Town Hall and Christmas lights.

We must grow up, in the past ignorance, fear, hatred and greed have caused conflict and wars. Calling other people’s beliefs myths is not nice, we have a right to our opinion but we must be reciprocal. If we cannot accept some ones opinion we should still respect their feelings. Wars have been caused because of dogmatic people who ironically disregard their own moral values and kill. Greedy people exploit the situation promoting distrust, fear and hate giving religion a bad name. Religion was invented to promote law and order and it has caused chaos.

sydney Town Hall celabrates Christmas.

Sydney Town Hall Christmas lights.

Christmas is a holy day for Christians, for others it is just a holiday and is a wonderful concept if we are sensible and show respect. If we are foolish Christmas can be a disaster. Please be mindful of your action, balance your behavior. Too much Christmas spirit could be your undoing. Be thoughtful in your giving, it need not be expensive, it is the thought you put into picking an appropriate present that counts. We should remember it is not our birthday, so we should not expect gifts. The joy is in giving and the importance of a gift is to expect nothing in return, otherwise it is a deal, a transaction and business as usual.

Chinese Santa at sydney China town.

Chinese Santa at Sydney China town.

Being respectful for others promotes goodwill, if we show respect we will be respected. We do not need to accept everything if it conflicts with our view. Still we can use what is beneficial wherever it is found and accept the gift graciously. Christmas is a holiday I look on as a Christian gift of kindness, opening our hearts to everyone. The best of the Christmas spirit should be practiced on everyone’s birthday. Then there would be peace on earth. Imagine how wonderful it would be if we emulated those admirable qualities attributed to Jesus.

Christmas department stor window display.

Christmas department store window display.

There are things prevalent at Christmas not advantageous to our wellbeing but these negative practices are not only exhibited at Christmas. Over indulgence, wild extravagance and stupidity, no need to rave on, all these cravings are spoiling our wonderful world. In Australia whatever you hold as sacred virtues can be practiced at Christmas, as we are a multicultural country. The mistakes of the past are many, hopefully they can be laid to rest and as a democracy we can be tolerant, for regardless of one’s ideology we are all from the same source, we are one, we all bleed the same colour.

"Look Mummy."

“Look Mummy.”

Tell Santa I would like a small piece of Christmas pudding and want a big piece of peace to share with everyone.

Children enjoy window shopping.

Children enjoy window shopping.

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Busy time.

Busy time.

Christmas.

Santa living dangourisly.

Santa living dangourisly.

Christmas is a time to be mindful; it is a special time and viewed in many different ways. The one thing most people do generally find is that Christmas is a busy time. You may assume because it is a holiday time people will be laidback and relaxed. If you are observant and aware of what is going on around you, you will see lots of people busily intent on their own special interest. Some are hyped up, happy and carefree. Others will be intent in meeting obligations actively engaged and maybe stressed-out.

Decorations.

Decorations.

All the celebrations, decorations and excitement at Christmas are wonderful for everyone to enjoy. As long as we can stay mindful that Christmas is celebrating Christ’s birthday. Regardless of religious ideas, it is irrelevant, whether Jesus is the son of God or not. What is relevant and really matters is respect, to show respect and enjoy Christmas in a sensible way. If you want respect you must show respect. Christmas can be a looked upon as an opportunity to spread peace in a troubled world.

No monkey buisness.

No monkey business.

Be mindful of others as well yourself. Getting carried away in joyous Christmas party celebration then drive on the busy roads, could also get you carried away in an ambulance. Stay mindful, it is so easy to become absorbed in all the excitement at Christmas. Everyone can enjoy this special time of year if they stay aware and celebrate in a mindful, moderate, manner, making Christmas a joyous time for everyone.

Jesus and Mary.

Jesus and Mary.

This is a time to renew old friendships, forget old disputes and remember it is the thought that counts, if a smile is all you have to give don’t let your ego hold you back, give that smile and it will be appreciated by all those that matter. Children are wonderful; all they want at Christmas is love and attention. Time spent playing with children is a win, win situation.

Joseph .Mary and baby Jesus.

Joseph .Mary and baby Jesus.

Be mindful of others show respect, peace, caring and compassionate love that is really what Christmas is all about. If we can do this on Jesus’ birthday we can then do it on everyone’s birthday.

Celibrations.

Celebrations.

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Still Christmas is a wonderous time.

Long John Silverclaws

Long John Silverclaws.

Christians celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, a time when his kindness is traditionally remembered.Saint Nicolas is the patron saint of children. Cleverly disguised as Father Christmas, on Christmas Eve Santa Claws brings presents to all children. We may not believe all the Christmas stories we have heard but we should respect those that do and all the kindness and the goodness Jesus taught. A birthday in his honor should up hold these Christian values.

Colourful and tempting.

Unfortunately many people only think about what they are getting for Christmas as if it was their birthday. Others worry how they can afford to give to everyone and are too stressed out to give a kind word or a friendly smile to the passerby. Others are too busy capitalizing on the commercial opportunity available at Christmas to give good will a second thought.

It is the thought that counts.

I have heard the wondrous story of the birth of Christ and many Christmas stories. I also read the classic story Treasure Island, By Robert Louis Stevenson. There is no Christmas spirit in this story, Long John Silver is an unstable, one-legged, uncharitable greedy pirate and gave young Jimmy Hawkins nothing but a hard time. Nothing in his makeup fits in with the Christmas spirit. Rum was the traditional spirit of pirates.

Businesslike Santas.

I made a pottery figure I call Long John Silverclaws he represents modern day commercialized Christmas. He is clothed like Santa Claus but is a greedy rascal using Christmas an excuse to plunder, drink, eat and indulge to excess. The parrot on his shoulder repeatedly calling out “Pieces of eight ” or “ Polly wants a cracker.” That bird will never be satisfied always wanting.

A live Santa will be here Saturday.

Christmas celebrates Jesus Christ’s birthday he stood for goodness, peace love and charity. We should stay mindful of this and not let advertising and rampant commercialism turn this sacred day into a stressful greedy business. Thoughtful kindness, peace and charity should be celebrated at Christmas and extended throughout the year on every ones birthday

Look up to things serene.

Who forgot it was your birthday?

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