I’m really not a miser when christmas is concerned, I promise. Christmas is fun and jolly and a great time of the year to spend with your family. Evolutionary speaking festivities at the start of winter make sense. Winter is cold and nasty and humans, like all animals, prepare for it in advance. But humans have learned how to nail winter preparations so effectively that when the icy winds hit we are curled up in front of a crispy fireside drinking hot coco while the stereo plays uplifting songs. Simpler animals fear Father Winter, but us humans have little to fear. This is quite deservingly worth of celebration.
But while the underlying principle of successful winter preparation stays the same, the cultural significance of Christmas has changed. Mainly expressed through religion. Used to be pagan celebrations, now it’s birth of baby Jesus. Except it really isn’t anymore. No one cares about Jesus. People complain it’s all about materialistic stuff but I never find that to be true (except the material necessities for surviving winter which have always been a prerequisite for successful christmas celebrations). No, modernist christmas is all about about our current feelgood religion: progressivism. Christmas tagline: While you are opening presents around the christmas tree, millions of refugee children are starving! Let’s care for them. But people don’t really care about refugees, they care about status signalling. Thus while Christmas as always brings out the happy spiritual feelings in everyone, spirituality is screwed, ergo the image of Christmas as imagining all the people living life in peace is as narcissistic and empty as John Lennon was.
So I guess that puts me in Spandrell’s camp. To fix Christmas we need a new religion. I am not too sure about this Jordan Peterson guy, he uses too much psychological scripture for my taste but perhaps that is a post for a different time. At any rate, merry christmas everyone, may you spend the days in good health and with people you love.