A PAGAN CHRISTMAS
Nowadays, more and more families are becoming both blended in marriage and blended in religious outlooks. Years ago, most men and women wed within their respective faiths. While that may still hold true for some, it isn't seen as 'taboo' to marry outside of one's own faith. So celebrating the holidays usually wasn't a problem because your spouse would be of the same faith.
Which do you celebrate? Which is more important or more widely accepted? What won't offend parents and siblings? What about children? Do you teach them one or both religions? All these questions have merit and can be the basis for 'heated' discussions.
Being in a blended religion family can be tough if you are the only one that is different. My family is Catholic, my husband's family is 'Anglican' and I'm personally Pagan (Dianic Wicca to be exact). My problems started early on when it came time for 'church'.
Growing up my brother and I both went to Catholic school but I always had questions regarding my faith and Catholicism in general. I never fully digested the 'food' I was being fed by my teachers and clergy. As a result, my path wandered into several different religions before landing on where my feet stand now. Of course, some of it could have been rebelling against parental guidance etc., but as I got older, it became clear that my beliefs were not Monotheistic in nature.
I still celebrated the Christian holidays with my family and would have my own little 'ritual' celebrations for whatever holiday I was celebrating at that time. I spent many years 'hiding' my true beliefs and thus hiding my true self as well.
Now, at 44, I'm firmly entrenched in my beliefs and have a firm grip on religion and theology as a whole. I became an Ordained Minister, a High Priestess and an Educator in Pagan Religions. I've studied everything from Ancient Egyptian Mythology to Buddhism and everything in between. What I have found, is that Pagan religions are more tolerant of other religions. We like to share 'our' gods with everyone else. I've also found that it is easy to celebrate Pagan holidays alongside Christian ones without too much difficulty.
In our home, we have the traditional Christmas tree and assorted decorations. We also have a Yule Altar. It sits prominently in the house for all to see and blends with the rest of the holiday decor. I conduct my rituals as needed and celebrate with my family on their holidays.
It isn't always easy to blend religions but it is possible. No one said life would be easy and if they did, I highly doubt that included religion. More wars have been fought over religion than any other reason. If we stopped looking at 'labels' and 'colors' and only looking at humanity; perhaps we would be a much nicer earth.
In the end, we all die. So it doesn't matter what you believe in when you are alive. It's what you do with your life that really matters, not who you do or do not worship.
Plain, simple, easy. Right?