The Return of eLf ideas

ideas of an eLven being in Canada

Monday, December 24, 2012

The Real Meaning of Love and Sharing that Christmas Symbolizes

Christmas symbolizes and celebrates loving and sharing. Yes, that seems to be a universally accepted concept of Christmas. However, we should really be able to process that concept to make it more realistic and specific. I mean, let's not be hypocrites; what's wrong with expressing the spirituality of love and sharing through materialism? After all, how else could we express our love to our loved ones? Isn't it with material things also? By providing for them their needs, isn't it a material action? And isn't it an expression of love? By providing them shelter--house with amenities--isn't this an expression of love and concern? When we give them gifts on Christmas, whether simple or expensive gifts--isn't this an expression of love as well? When we spend money to be able to host a gathering at our homes, so we could invite loved ones and friends, isn't this an expression of love and sharing?

I think the problem lies in the notion that anything material is evil--which I clearly disagree with. While I acknowledge and agree that the true spirit of Christmas is loving and sharing, I remain firm in my stance that the best extrinsic application of these virtues remains to be through material things, and there's nothing evil or wrong about it. I think that everything boils down to responsibility, sincerity, and financial wisdom.

I mean, there's nothing wrong with celebrating Christmas with our families and friends through gathering, partaking of foods, exchanging of gifts, and having fun; as long as we are able to do all these within the limits of our financial abilities and resources and being responsible in having fun (especially those who love drinking, and by 'drinking' I mean "drinking alcoholic beverages"). This, I think, is the actual modern meaning of Christmas--in complement with the traditional concept of Christmas as "loving and sharing"--for, to reiterate--there's no other way to express and put into practice the "love and sharing" but by spending money and providing what our loved ones and friends really need.

This concept extends also to the practicality of life itself. Yes, many parents say that the best "gift" that they could present their children with is love, but, come on, realistically, how could parents express this love? By working hard and smart to be able to provide their kids with good education, food, clothes, daily needs, etc. All these are material things, but these are not evil. Some will argue that quality time with our children is also an expression of love; but then again, how do you spend quality time with your children? Watch movies together, eat meals together, watch DVDs at home together, play together? Don't all these activities involve also spending? Of course, they do. So, there is really no excaping materialism when expressing love.

I am simply removing the stigma that many people feel about money and material things. They automatically associate materialism with evil and immorality, and that is what I find unfair and illogical.

We should stop the indoctrination of guilty feelings and hypocritical suggestions that anything material is evil.

A person works hard and smart, she spends wisely, then she deserves to celebrate...responsibly!

Again, while loving and sharing may be the underlying spirit of Christmas, let's not demonize the material things that become indispensable and inevitable to be able to really express the virtues of love and sharing.

What's more important, I think, is the sincerity, frugality, and responsibility that should accompany the idea of loving and sharing that many people are holding in high esteem.

As in the song, "Give love on Christmas day..." But the question remains to be "How can you translate that love to make it realistic? By a kiss, by a hug, by sweet words? Of course, not; these are not enough. We give love to friends and even strangers by sharing portions of the material things that we have, and to our loved ones by providing the things that they need--shelter/house, food/nourishment, school supplies, education / tuition fee and school allowance, little pleasures like TV, cable, computer, Internet, and other gadgets, etc. And there's nothing wrong about all these. The only guide is this--spend within your means and needs.

That, to me, is the real--I mean 'real,' as in reality--meaning of that love and sharing that many people are raving about during occasions like Christmas.

Final Note
And for the sake of exemplification: As told in the Christian story, didn't the three kings express and show their love for the baby Jesus Christ by presenting him three respective gifts--gold, frankincense, and myrhh? Is this not a material expression of the three kings' respect and love for the baby Jesus Christ?


  • At Tuesday, December 25, 2012 6:49:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Love is the true meaning of Christmas. Loving is sharing! :)

  • At Wednesday, December 26, 2012 3:10:00 PM, Blogger eLf ideas said…

    ^ I had to rewrite the article above to clearly explain my ideas.

    Yes, I acknowledge that the true meaning of Christmas is loving and sharing, but the next inevitable issue is, "How then do we express this love and sharing, but by materialism accompanied with a sense of sincerity, thriftiness, responsibility, and financial wisdom.

    Thanks for fluttering by! :-)


  • At Wednesday, December 26, 2012 9:05:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    But the problem lies when you give gifts to a person ,he or she will be obliged to give gifts in return also with the same value..whichever way,sometimes its the kindness that is priceless .

  • At Thursday, December 27, 2012 2:49:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Just want to tell you aLf that the first anonymous (me) is different from the next anonymous. I guess I need to have some kind of identity here. But I like it when people make their comments. You have a lot of readers but they're just scared of arguments, criticisms..I don't know.

  • At Thursday, December 27, 2012 10:33:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hello ,I'm anonymous #2 comment ..well just call me rainbow ...:) ..since alf posted his blog about. LgTB,..:) I'm happy ..well,we all learn from each other opinion.I love intelligent people

  • At Thursday, December 27, 2012 5:40:00 PM, Blogger eLf ideas said…

    I believe too that many (if not most) people love to engage in a discourse or at least learn something new from the exchange of ideas, but many just find getting into the exchange uncomfortable for various reasons.

    To me, I have long learned how to handle criticisims--whether these are positive and patronizing or negative or even ridiculing or condescending.

    After all, everyone of us, as they say, is entitled to her opinion.

    All I need to do is reply to criticisms to the best of my knowledge and composure.

    I welcome any kind of criticism--whether panglalait pa yan--because I learn from others and this help me in modifying and/or becoming firmer with my ideas.

    The comment about kindness is better than anything material. Actually, you have a great point--something that I missed in this article. Of course, if you could express love through kindness and good words then that's not material and that's even better I think--especially when it pertains to friends, acquaintances, or strangers.

    I think the material things are more for loved ones, especially our children. Basically because we are the providers for these children of ours, therefore we should be able to express our love with material needs.

    By the way, I have written several months ago about the "Concept of Gift-Giving," which was published in my lifestyles column in 'Filipino Journal.' I will post it here soon. Your concern about the feeling of obligation to return the favor of receiving gifts by giving also gifts of the same value to the person, I tackled it there.

    I don't mind all your comments. Actually, I enojy knowing that there are people reading my ideas.

    Thanks, everyone, and Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, or whatever form of greetings is appropriate for each one of us.


  • At Thursday, December 27, 2012 7:41:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I enjoy reading blogs in a way I can relate to you as we both living a life here in canada. Since the day one you documented everything.I was just a silent reader.anyway,thanks for sharing your love for music.(new wave batch 88) ,cartimar.books, singing,performing,editorial,healthcare experiences and maybe the winter thing I deeply appreciate is your people like me.that's nice of you.let me share you this joke: ang mga Bading Pag pumanaw na Hindi daw sa langit o impyerno..kundi sa makulay na rainbow ..

  • At Friday, December 28, 2012 12:52:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    ang mga Bading Pag pumanaw na Hindi daw sa langit o impyerno..kundi sa makulay na rainbow ..hahahaha! :D


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