published: Friday, November 30, 2012
This season is for sharing
The long winter holiday season officially ends less than a month from now -- on Christmas Day. That'll send us into the cold month of January -- at least Florida's version of cold. Low temperatures may drop near freezing during the first month of 2013.
In the meantime, we move quickly through these winter days. The atmosphere begins to change -- in an ethereal, esoteric sense.
The phrases "Merry Christmas" or "Happy Holidays" begin circulating with increasing frequency. As a community, we begin drawing closer together -- even as anxiety levels begin to rise.
Shopping centers and roads are busier; tensions run high. A frenzy begins to settle in. The loping spoiler "commercialism" attempts to disrupt the pace.
It is the holidays; and no matter what your religious inclinations, one definition of the word is "holy days." These are days we set apart for special observance. They are significant and demand our greater attention. And they deserve a part of us that we don't normally give to the other days of the year.
The New Year symbolizes a new beginning, a new start. These next 31 days can be almost redemptive, cathartic. We have an opportunity to tune ourselves into the deep harmonies of this holiday season. We can rise to the occasions the holiday affords us -- by giving and by reflecting more clearly the better angels of our human nature.
In the spirit of Christmas, we can abandon who we've become for the prospect of stepping into who we can be. We are given one more opportunity to reach above ourselves, to connect with the whole family of our human brethren.
That's what this holiday season should mean. That's why we celebrate the period of time connecting this unique trio of days -- Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's.
It isn't really about the food, the gifts or the celebrations. It's about each other.