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Switch to Forum Live View What to do with Santa
6 years ago  ::  Dec 19, 2008 - 2:47PM #1
Riesl1
Posts: 270
My wife and I have recently been talking about having kids, and the question of Santa came up. She was raised believing that Santa wasn't real and the idea was a tool Satan used to distract us from the meaning of Christmas. I was raised receiving presents from Santa and underpants from my parents. While I don't think Santa is evil, I DO think that, when you boil it down, Santa is a lie that we tell our children, and my concern is that when they grow up and find out that mommy and daddy were just kidding about Santa, that they will wonder if maybe Jesus is a nice story as well.

What does everyone here think?
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6 years ago  ::  Dec 19, 2008 - 3:02PM #2
TemplarS
Posts: 6,693
Well, Reisl, I was raised believing in Santa, so were my kids, and so far as I can tell it hasn't done any harm.

No offense, but your wife wasn't raised as a fundamentalist Protestant, was she?  Those are the only people whom I'd ordinarily expect to label Santa Claus as a tool of Satan.

Look, the idea which worked for us was to incorporate the idea of Santa into the Christian notion of Christmas.  My kids went to Catholic school, and that's what they did: they worked in Santa's origins as St. Nicholas.  So you focus on Christmas as a time of loving and giving, and you point to Santa as an instance not simply of getting toys, but (from Santa's viewpoint) of giving and spreading love and joy.

In any case,  Merry Christmas to you!
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6 years ago  ::  Dec 19, 2008 - 3:15PM #3
Anbiv
Posts: 35
I don't think that believing in Santa Claus and not knowing the 'real' meaning of Christmas are mutually exclusive. 

You can teach your children what "Christmas" means to you and your faith, and still let them believe for a while longer that Santa Claus is the one that brings them the gifts under the tree.  I personally think that having Santa co-exist with Christmas in the right way, can add a wonderful dimension of hope, dreams and expectations into the lives of children.  We have so much negative things going on, that like a good fairy tale...makes you happy and gives you a sense of hope and wonder that's tough to re-create once you're grown up. :)

Merry Christmas!
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6 years ago  ::  Dec 19, 2008 - 3:48PM #4
Riesl1
Posts: 270
[QUOTE=noseington;967354]Santa myth-Christian myth what's the difference?

Jesus was not born on December 25 as most believe. December 25th was decreed by  Constantine to coincide with a Roman Sun god holiday.

The exact day or year of Christ's birth is unknown.[/QUOTE]

Are you catholic, noseington? Because I find it hard to believe that a Catholic would compare the story of Santa to the story of the Christ. Yes, the day is probably not actually Christ's birthday, but to be fair, does anyone know what is? Should we as Christians not celebrate the beginning of our salvation story simply because we do not know the date?
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6 years ago  ::  Dec 19, 2008 - 3:58PM #5
Riesl1
Posts: 270
[QUOTE=TemplarS;967319]Well, Reisl, I was raised believing in Santa, so were my kids, and so far as I can tell it hasn't done any harm.

No offense, but your wife wasn't raised as a fundamentalist Protestant, was she?  Those are the only people whom I'd ordinarily expect to label Santa Claus as a tool of Satan.

Look, the idea which worked for us was to incorporate the idea of Santa into the Christian notion of Christmas.  My kids went to Catholic school, and that's what they did: they worked in Santa's origins as St. Nicholas.  So you focus on Christmas as a time of loving and giving, and you point to Santa as an instance not simply of getting toys, but (from Santa's viewpoint) of giving and spreading love and joy.

In any case,  Merry Christmas to you![/QUOTE]

No offense taken, Templar. My wife was raised in a fundementalist non-denominational bible church. She because catholic 5 years ago. She doesn't currently think Santa is evil, but feels like it would be lying to our future children. I was at a loss when I was trying to explain to her a benefit Santa has to the Christmas season. She would rather we gave gifts from Santa, but that the chuldren knew they came from us.

I guess a better way to word her questions is "How does the benefit of Santa outweigh the tendency to focus on a secular Christmas story, rather than a religious one? And why is it ok to lie to children about it?" I have no answer for this right now, but I did love having Santa bring me presents!
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6 years ago  ::  Dec 19, 2008 - 4:02PM #6
Riesl1
Posts: 270
[QUOTE=Anbiv;967342]I don't think that believing in Santa Claus and not knowing the 'real' meaning of Christmas are mutually exclusive. 

You can teach your children what "Christmas" means to you and your faith, and still let them believe for a while longer that Santa Claus is the one that brings them the gifts under the tree.  I personally think that having Santa co-exist with Christmas in the right way, can add a wonderful dimension of hope, dreams and expectations into the lives of children.  We have so much negative things going on, that like a good fairy tale...makes you happy and gives you a sense of hope and wonder that's tough to re-create once you're grown up. :)

Merry Christmas![/QUOTE]

Anbiv,

You make great points. However, we don't believe in most fairy tales we are told. They are simply an aid to imagination. Should Santa be different, or can the positive effects be achieved with the knowledge that it is a story?
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6 years ago  ::  Dec 19, 2008 - 5:18PM #7
Tamayo
Posts: 236
Hahaha, well, my parents carried on the Santa story for a while - but right around the time I was 7 or 8 started to notice that the present from Santa every year (and it was only one - typically the biggest, bestest one) was always written in my dad's distinctive handwriting! Then once my mom tried doing it, and she tried to mess up her own handwriting to make it not look so obvious, but to my 8 year old self, I wasn't buying it - and neither did my younger brother soon after.

I laugh about that - I think it was the perfect way to show us there was no Santa... even if it was unintentional. Even though both my brother and I were sure there was no Santa and told our parents that, my dad still insisted there was, and that we leave cookies out for him - how convenient! XD

Anyway, I hope this post wasn't brought on by this sad excuse for fundamentalist Christianity's take on Santa: http://www.chick.com/reading/tracts/1033/1033_01.asp

Happy Holidays, Riesl!
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6 years ago  ::  Dec 19, 2008 - 8:21PM #8
TemplarS
Posts: 6,693
Even in the religious Christmas traditions there are things we take for granted which are not fact. 

For example: there is no mention in the Gospels that there were three wise men; and in any case, despite the nativity scenes we all put up in our homes, the wise men were certainly not at the manger at the same time as the shepherds.  Christmas carols sing of cattle lowing, and stables, and oxen, none of which are mentioned in scripture.  One song mentions the heartfelt personal gift of a drum solo, which anyone who has been through the experience will tell you is not going to be well received by either a newborn or his mother, no matter how well intentioned.

These are not really lies, they are not meant to deceive, but they are stories told to illustrate and elaborate on the bare facts we might know.  There are those who think that much of what is described in scripture is not fact either, though whether it is or is not is beside the point I am trying to make. 

The point to Christmas is the incarnation; we can add trappings as we like so long as we keep that firmly in mind.
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6 years ago  ::  Dec 20, 2008 - 12:39PM #9
Mistah
Posts: 55

TemplarS wrote:

Even in the religious Christmas traditions there are things we take for granted which are not fact.

For example: there is no mention in the Gospels that there were three wise men; and in any case, despite the nativity scenes we all put up in our homes, the wise men were certainly not at the manger at the same time as the shepherds. Christmas carols sing of cattle lowing, and stables, and oxen, none of which are mentioned in scripture. One song mentions the heartfelt personal gift of a drum solo, which anyone who has been through the experience will tell you is not going to be well received by either a newborn or his mother, no matter how well intentioned.

These are not really lies, they are not meant to deceive, but they are stories told to illustrate and elaborate on the bare facts we might know. There are those who think that much of what is described in scripture is not fact either, though whether it is or is not is beside the point I am trying to make.

The point to Christmas is the incarnation; we can add trappings as we like so long as we keep that firmly in mind.




(john 4:23)But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.

....that includes stories,songs and anything else that you try to do as a christian...Christ doesnt let white lies slide...and to deceive is another word for lie to...satan is described as the great deceiver...think about it

(revelation 21:8) "all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death."

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6 years ago  ::  Dec 23, 2008 - 7:53PM #10
TemplarS
Posts: 6,693
Yeah, Im from the CHURCH OF CHRIST.
....Does that scare you??? :rolleyes:



Well, no, actually, it does not scare me...

But I was curious, and tried to look you up...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Church_of_Christ

Can you enlighten me as to exactly which "Church of Christ" you refer to?
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