Happy Holidays

“If someone says ‘Happy Holidays’ to me, I just say ‘To you as well.’  I’m a Christian, not a jerk.”  This was a FaceBook post I came across this week.  I haven’t heard too much lately about the “Christmas wars.”  But that post struck me as conveying how misguided we are to take offense to a simple greeting.  More broadly, why take any action that creates a sense of hostility where none existed? 

Peace-loving soul that I am, I find it puzzling that people would seek conflict, would cultivate it.   On a site I found called Shift, this enigma is addressed thus:  “As humans, we oversimplify things. We don’t want to waste our mental energy looking at the vast interplay and complexity of every situation and experience. This can be helpful at times, but it can sometimes also leave to us facing more challenges in life. The dualistic black-and-white thinking can lead us to developing an internal belief system where we see certain aspects, powers, and forces as ‘good’ while others are ‘evil’ in our eyes. We view people as either friends or enemies.

This is a mistake. That is, it means we lose out on the incredible opportunities we have for growth that would not come in any other way.”

I just know that the Christmas I was in the Middle East when a clerk at the grocery store, dressed in full abaya and hijab, wished me “Merry Christmas,”  my belief in humankind was affirmed.  She could have chosen to consider me “an infidel,” an “ugly American.”  She saw me as another human being, with no conceivable reason not to be courteous towards me.  And I was very gracious to her.  That’s how this world works best.

So Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Have an amazing Kwanza!  (Or as you may remember from the old 1997 Seinfeld episode “Happy Festivus for the Rest of Us.” 😊)  May this season just inspire us to be good people to one another year round.

May we be bearers of hope, the “wait staff” of Hope’s Café for each other and all those we encounter.  Shalom, Kate

Hope’s Café Bonus: “Blessings to you and yours for peace, love and cherished memories this holiday season and in the coming New Year.”  — from the quotemaster.org

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