I think one of the most difficult things an atheist has to overcome is creating new traditions and meaningful perspectives during holidays such as Christmas. I enjoy the spirit of giving to family members as well as those less fortunate, but there is always that nagging feeling of being on the sidelines as everyone else in my immediate community and family is focusing on Jesus’ birth as the centerpiece of the season – and I look at it as ridiculous and can’t believe how many intelligent people buy into the whole thing. It’s like I am living in some dream world and I am the only one who knows it’s a dream – and everyone looks at me like I am the one with the problem. I can’t even enjoy Christmas carols anymore because the lyrics are so inane and absurd.
The tension can be especially thick with Christian parents. I have a feeling of disconnect from my parents and my own past because I am not participating in the same family traditions of going to church and family devotions from the gospels etc. around Christmas-time.
I am happy with the new traditions my wife and I have been making with our children, and I hope our kids have strong and meaningful memories about the holidays. I don’t let this get in the way of enjoying the holidays, but the elephant is still in the room.
Not sure where I am going with this one – I guess I haven’t really nailed it down yet as far as what the issue is for me around the holidays. Anyone have any analogous feelings/stories to illustrate feeling outcast around Christmas?