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Atheists/ Pagans do you celebrate a secular Christmas?

Not a debatable question- just curious. If you do celebrate it, how do you explain it to your children? Do you do a make believe Santa? Feel free to share any family traditons, etc.

Thanks for sharing!

Answer Question
 
ave.maria.

Asked by ave.maria. at 12:15 PM on Oct. 24, 2009 in Religion & Beliefs

Level 4 (29 Credits)
Answers (26)
  • We celebrate a secular Christmas with our extended family by attending a party on Christmas Eve at my grandmother's house. We give gifts to the children, eat a big meal & enjoy time together. We do not celebrate Christmas Day at all, or Christmas in general at our house. We celebrate the Winter Solstice.

    nysa00

    Answer by nysa00 at 12:20 PM on Oct. 24, 2009

  • We celebrate a secular Christmas, and so far I haven't had to explain anything to my kids. They know Christmas is a winter celebration, and we give gifts to show the people around us how much we love and appreciate them. We do a Santa in our house, although I have never told my kids that he is real, nor have I ever told him he's not. I simply let them decide what they want to believe. None of the presents under our tree are labeled from santa, but they just assume all the presents are from him, since they can't really read the tags yet.

    Christmas is actually my favorite time of year. I love the baking, decorations, songs, the whole atmosphere of Christmas. I just leave out all the religious stuff.
    my2.5boys

    Answer by my2.5boys at 12:22 PM on Oct. 24, 2009

  • Yeah, we don't go out of the way to make it "secular" though. Our daughter will be 1 on December 26th, so Christmastime means birthday time as well. This will be our first real family Christmas. While I raised as a Christian, we didn't do anything terribly religious around the holidays. I remember one year (I was maybe seven or eight), my mom took me to the Christmas Eve service at church. I remember being TERRIFIED that we'd miss Santa and that he'd skip over our house because we weren't there. Hehehehe. I think we'll "do" Santa when our daughter is old enough, but we won't go out of our way to keep it a secret that we're the ones supplying presents.
    caitxrawks

    Answer by caitxrawks at 12:25 PM on Oct. 24, 2009

  • nysa00- how do you celebrate the Winter Solstice?
    ave.maria.

    Answer by ave.maria. at 12:25 PM on Oct. 24, 2009

  • We do, although if I didn't have kids and family who celebrated, I wouldn't bother. I don't enjoy Xmas, mostly because it's shoved at you from August to the end of the year. Also, holidays bring out the worst in people. Anyway, we celebrate it as a family gathering with presents. We put up a tree for no more than a week, and it comes down the day after Xmas. When we used to go out of town for Xmas, we would take the tree down on the 23rd, so we would come home to a clean, holiday-free house. By then I'm just so sick of seeing all the tacky glittery junk everywhere.
    JulieJacobKyle

    Answer by JulieJacobKyle at 12:28 PM on Oct. 24, 2009

  • I love Christmas, too. It is always interesting to see the different celebrations. caitxrawks- how exciting- I love baby's first Christmas- you only get it once. Do you plan on starting any family traditions or anything?
    ave.maria.

    Answer by ave.maria. at 12:29 PM on Oct. 24, 2009

  • Yes. My daughter is only two, we do Santa for fun but my kids will know its not real. We will also take the holiday season as a chance to teach my daughter about other people's beliefs. We will celebrate Hanukkah, the christian meaning for Christmas, pagan traditions and other holidays that take place around this time of year. Im curious as to why this question is directed at Atheists/pagans.. not picking just curious as Pagans have their own beliefs and holiday celebrations.
    Ziggy-Stardust

    Answer by Ziggy-Stardust at 12:29 PM on Oct. 24, 2009

  • Oh, and although our holidays are completely secular, we're the only atheists in our family. Even though I don't want religious stuff in our house, I usually end up getting something religious for my Catholic grandmother. This year I already ordered her a glass angel music box.
    JulieJacobKyle

    Answer by JulieJacobKyle at 12:30 PM on Oct. 24, 2009

  • We celebrate a secular Christmas/Winter Solstice. We have a tree and presents and Santa Claus. Take the kids to have their pictures taken with him and send out cards. We also go to the movies on Christmas too, that's our family tradition. We celebrate it as a season to be with family and friends. =D
    alexsmomaubrys2

    Answer by alexsmomaubrys2 at 12:31 PM on Oct. 24, 2009

  • Basically I just wanted to include non believers- and I was especially curious about the pagan celebrations.
    "We also will also take the holiday season as a chance to teach my daughter about other people's beliefs."
    I think I am going to start doing this, too.
    ave.maria.

    Answer by ave.maria. at 12:32 PM on Oct. 24, 2009

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