As you probably know I'm an atheist. I don't believe in God. I believe a cosmic fluke explains the presence of humans on this beautiful blue planet. And that it's up to those humans to determine whether it will be their heaven or their HELL.
But I still love Christmas.
I know it can be a sad time for the sick, the poor, and the lonely. Just like it can be a hard time for many gays and lesbians driven from their homes, or alienated from their families, by the hatred created and stoked by evil religion.
But still I love the bright coloured lights, the parties, the food, the excitement in the eyes of the kids, and of course the movies.
All the usual suspects, A Christmas Carol, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Miracle on 34th Street, and It's a Wonderful Life...with the sign on the wall of Pa Bailey's place: "All you can take with you is that which you have given away." Try taking that one to the bank these days.
But also since I was about five years old, The Small One, a story about a boy who is forced to sell his best friend...a little old donkey who had been abused by others all his life. But the only one who wants to buy him is a tanner, for his HIDE.
Until the magic moment arrives...
I don't know why I like that story so much. I've got a scientific mind. I don't believe in manger myths. But it's probably got something to do with hope, and my belief that we should respect and celebrate the humble creatures who share this planet with us.
And then there's the music. Not just the Christmas carols I've been known to sing in the street when I'm.....um....a little TOO merry. But the songs I used to sing in churches when I was a boy...
The words meant nothing to me then, and they don't mean anything to me now. But isn't the sound of human voices HEAVENLY ?
Imagine how great we could be if we could all work together to make a world as beautiful as that sound. A world where peace replaced war, and love replaced hate. And gay people could live in peace and dignity instead of being insulted, attacked, and killed just for who they are.
So that's what Christmas really means to me. Coloured lights, sweet movies and music, good times with the ones I love, and the hope and promise of a better tomorrow....of a heaven for everyone right here on planet Earth.
From me, my shining star Sébastien, and my little
Merry Christmas, Joyeux Noël, Happy Holidays everyone !!!!