Thank you to all of those who attended our HumanLight Celebration. Brian Dalton (Mr. Deity) was fantastic. Also congratulation to Jennifer Brauer for being our 2009 Humanist of the Year. The Food ?(Shrimp, Rotisserie Chicken, Eve's famous Green Salad, Mike's delightful vegetarian pasta, and vegan curried rice) was to die for and we got a great write up from Citybeat's Enrique Limon.?(http://www.sdcitybeat.com/cms/story/detail/reports_from_the_scene/8816/
) just scroll down to "The Enrique Experience.
Tonight is Christmas Eve, many of us are celebrating, many of us pass it off for personal aversions to religious holidays. As a Humanist Celebrant and national organizer with the AHA, HumanLight, and locally in Southern California; I have been asked an average of 15 times a day for the past week if it is alright to celebrate this holiday. In my opinion we should celebrate any day that we find meaning in. As Humanists we do not guide our lives by superstition and religious dogma, we find our meaning not from the god(s), but from each other. If Christmas is a day in which you wish to celebrate, do so with fervor. Enjoy the food, enjoy each other and the good-will tidings elicited by the season. If you find no need to don ye now your gay apparel, then don't.?
Solstice celebrations have long been our companions.
Humanist Robert G Ingersoll summed up the 'meaning' of the season in his 1891 Christmas Sermon
A CHRISTMAS SERMON. 1891
The good part of Christmas is not always Christian -- it is generally Pagan; that is to say, human, natural.
Christianity did not come with tidings of great joy, but with a message of eternal grief. It came with the threat of everlasting torture on its lips. It meant war on earth and perdition hereafter.
It taught some good things -- the beauty of love and kindness in man. But as a torch-bearer, as a bringer of joy, it has been a failure. It has given infinite consequences to the acts of finite beings, crushing the soul with a responsibility too great for mortals to bear. It has filled the future with fear and flame, and made God the keeper of an eternal penitentiary, destined to be the home of nearly all the sons of men. Not satisfied with that, it has deprived God of the pardoning power.
And yet it may have done some good by borrowing from the Pagan world the old festival called Christmas.
Long before Christ was born the Sun-God triumphed over the powers of Darkness. About the time that we call Christmas the days begin perceptibly to lengthen. Our barbarian ancestors were worshipers of the sun, and they celebrated his victory over the hosts of night. Such a festival was natural and beautiful. The most natural of all religions is the worship of the sun. Christianity adopted this festival. It borrowed from the Pagans the best it has.
I believe in Christmas and in every day that has been set apart for joy. We in America have too much work and not enough play. We are too much like the English.
I think it was Heinrich Heine who said that he thought a blaspheming Frenchman was a more pleasing object to God than a praying Englishman. We take our joys too sadly. I am in favor of all the good free days -- the more the better.
Christmas is a good day to forgive and forget -- a good day to throw away prejudices and hatreds -- a good day to fill your heart and your house, and the hearts and houses of others, with sunshine.
Robert G. Ingersoll.
This weekend we have our final Coffee & Conversation of 2009. I still can't believe that what originally thought couldn't have been a weekly event has lasted for over a year and a half! This weekend is going to be spectacular.
We are talking about the latest news and views of the free thought community of the last week, plus holding a sort of memorial to the last year and first decade of the 21st Century. We are compiling the biggest stories of the last 10 years in the subjects of Religion, Politics, Civil Rights, Technology, Science, Art, Culture, and Humor. We invite you to ?submit (before 3 pm Saturday), and come and share. This will be at 6:30) at the Joyce Beers Center (http://joycebeers.com/Directions.htm
). As always this event is potluck and open to everyone!
See you Saturday
wishing you a wonderful and safe holiday,
Humanist Association of San Diego
P.O. Box 3653
San Diego, CA 92163