Thursday, December 17, 2020

Birth, solstice, sol invictus, new light in December

In today's Wake Up Call blog post, "That light in the darkenss? It's Christmas", Tom Rapsas quotes Thomas Moore's 2016 classic, The Soul of Christmas:
"In The Soul of Christmas, Thomas Moore talks about the darkness of the season and how Christmas represents a turning toward the light. His words are especially poignant this year as we deal not just with the debilitating effects the lack of light can have on our moods, but the social isolation of the pandemic which has left many of us feeling disconnected from the real world."
He quotes Moore directly:
"Christmas makes sense only if you know the experience of darkness — the experience of not knowing what is going on, not knowing your way, not seeing life for what it is, failing, losing and suffering. Then the turn toward light has a real impact. The more you know the dark, the more you will appreciate the light."
"I now see how Christmas and Jesus’s vision line up, and I see that the enchantment of Christmas is a taste of what would be possible if human beings could really love each other … the infant in the manger symbolizes the new life in me, the potential I have to be a new kind of being dedicated to agape, to a love of the other whoever he or she is."
Moore ends his book by writing: " will rediscover yourself every year. It will be a celebration of both the birth of Jesus and the birth of your own soul."

Saturday, December 05, 2020

Moore's The Soul of Christmas offers Jesus' way

This week The Carroll County Times publishes "Can Christmas be celebrated without Jesus?" by Rev. Dr. W. M. Louis "Lou" Piel. Piel quotes Thomas Moore's classic book The Soul of Christmas while answering this question:
"Thomas Moore in his book The Soul of Christmas wrote “My sense of Christmas is also different now that I understand better that Jesus was addressing all people on the planet, not wanting them to join his organization but to adopt his vision for a better human race.”"
Piel refers to additional authors before returning to Moore:
"Thomas Moore adds “now I see the enchantment of Christmas is a taste of what would be possible if human beings really could love each other.”"
Piel asks more questions at the end of his commentary: "Jesus believed in his vision and message so deeply that he was willing to put his life on the line for his beliefs. Is it possible that we execute him all over again by claiming we love Jesus and his vision for world of love and peace and then turning our back on his message? What do we do with Jesus at Christmas? We could leave him out completely. We could put him back in the manger. Or we could follow him and his vision for a new world."