I always get a little sentimental this time of year. Two years ago, I wrote a post titled “Are we celebrating Christmas or celebrating our humanity?” Frankly, I can’t think of a better expression of my feelings about the holiday season and what it means in American society -- a society without equal in its ability to integrate other cultures and religions. My words then:
The Christian values of tolerance and love for our fellow man are powerfully attractive to Christians and non-Christians alike. People of all faiths can embrace the annual celebration of Christmas. People respond to the sense of charity, love and forgiveness espoused by Jesus Christ because those values and the emotion we attach to them are fundamental to us as human beings.
The angel who announced the birth of Christ to the world said, “I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all people….”
Earlier that year, I passed on a quote sent to me by my brother. It was from Reinhold Niebuhr. It began “nothing worth doing can be achieved in our lifetime; therefore we must be saved by hope…” Concluding that post, I expressed my:
“Hope that civil society will prevail in accordance with humanist tradition. Hope that we will continue to evolve according to the tenets of tolerance and self-rule. Those ideas are part of our DNA. That they have been expressed in so many ways for thousands of years is ample evidence.”
The hope that Americans embrace comes not only from our founding fathers but also from the waves of immigrants whose aspirations drove them to our shores.
And, we will always be saved by hope.
Happy Holidays to all.