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I’d like to go on record as saying that the only time I’m offended on this board is when someone says something hurtful or insulting to or about others. What possible harm can Leslie’s white knot or Sailor’s "pray for our troops", or whomever’s "Jesus is the reason" do to anyone? Life's too short to bicker over trivialities.

‘Tis the season to be jolly.

 

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We have gone through this in my own family which has quite divergent beliefs that run the gamut and has had to find ways to coexist.  It's a learning process and there are invariably some bumps in the road.  I expect that can happen here if we want it to badly enough.  In our family, our respect for each other got us by the facts that we didn't and don't agree with the beliefs.  Hope we can do that here...of course, it helped that we had to have T'giving dinner together every year.

BTW, I'd like to point out that it's perfectly possible to be a Christian and acknowledge that all the points made here are true.  I'd like to introduce you to my sister-in-law Peg, the Presbyterian minister...wait, she's not on Kindleboards...oh, well, trust me, she knows and agrees with just about everything I've read here.

Peace of the season.
;D

Betsy
 

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Thanks I'm a font of trivia.
Actually, Jackylking, I believe you may be a "fount" of trivia.

I am also not offended by signatures or avs, but have found this entire discussion fascinating.

~robin
 

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Betsy the Quilter said:
We have gone through this in my own family which has quite divergent beliefs that run the gamut and has had to find ways to coexist. It's a learning process and there are invariably some bumps in the road. I expect that can happen here if we want it to badly enough. In our family, our respect for each other got us by the facts that we didn't and don't agree with the beliefs. Hope we can do that here...of course, it helped that we had to have T'giving dinner together every year.

BTW, I'd like to point out that it's perfectly possible to be a Christian and acknowledge that all the points made here are true.
Of course. I agree completely that it is possible for people of all faiths to coexist peacefully. I am just saying that it is easier for that to happen if folks with a particular religious belief do not constantly put their beliefs in other peoples faces. I won't belabor this, I really don't want to be seen as a troublemaker. I'm just saying.....

Alternatively, if I start using a pentagram in my signature line I would expect that would be allowed without comment from the mods as well.
 

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I try to respect everyone's uniqueness.  If we all believed the same thing, and all held to the same truths, how we would learn and grow and become better people.  The great thing about living in a free country is having the freedom to celebrate the season in whatever way gives us peace and comfort.  I too come from a family of very diverse beliefs.  But we are all very happy that we have one time of year where the work world semi-stops to give us some time to enjoy one another.  

Leslie, I understand your emotions at this time of year.  I go through the same thing.  This year I found decorations out beginning in September.  That is way too long for a one day event.  Too many years I have made decisions based on outside pressure rather than what I really felt I wanted to do.  

Again, I'm just happy to live where I have the freedom to celebrate this time of year however I feel appropriate.
 

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As a Pagan, the first thing that stuck me was that the board definitely seemed to have a Christian thing going. Immediately I did a double take on posting here due to the discrimination my family and I have deal with in our community due to our religious beliefs. I think on the day I joined there was a lot of talk about Christian books and I did notice some of the signatures. However I reminded myself that about 89% (my guestimate not statistically proven data of course) of Christians are sweet and awesome folk and though we don't agree on the same religious ideology, I think that we can live together (or hang out on a forum) without wanting to throw sticks at each other.

Yes most of the Christian holidays stem from Pagan or Heathen (yes there is a significant difference between the two) holidays. Yes there were holy wars and a whole slew of violence and madness because of Christian belief... well honestly Pagans and Heathens of the time weren't the most peaceful of people either (somehow many fluffy bunny pagans forget that). I have friends and family who are Pagan, Heathen, Christan (mostly Catholic), Agnostic, Jewish, Atheist, Muslim, and even a satanist (by philosophy).

If my mosh-posh group of friends and family can get along and play nice then I think that everyone on this board can do the same. So long as none of you come over and throw bricks and paint at my windows we be all good (yes it has happened before). "Jesus is the reason, for the season" is obviously the reason for that particular individual, some people actually celebrate the coming of Christ on X-mas just as I celebrate the Germanic holiday of Yule and pay homage to my ancestors, the Gods, and sharing in the love of my family. Honestly, there are just as many Pagans confused about historic beginnings of Christmas/Yule just as there are Christians. I am happy that the Heathen symbols of the Yule Tree, the wreaths, and the lights were all kept and merged into the common American christmas.

I don't find the Christian messages on the board offensive, I believe everyone should have basic right to express themselves. But also know they might make some individuals who have been persecuted because of their own beliefs a little wary about joining. But seriously this is a forum about our love of reading, books, and the holy kindle (jk). I don't mind sharing my holiday with Christians, and honestly Jesus was a pretty cool dude with an awesome message (from what little I know of Christianity), unfortunately that message seems muddled by the words and actions of other men. Oh well I hate to say such a cliched phrase but ... Can't we all just get along? :D
 

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(I should point out that my family DOES discuss religion, we just don't get mad at each other.  Like I said, it helps when you have to sit across the table from one another.  Maybe we need to get a REALLY BIG table here.)

;D
 

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Betsy the Quilter said:
BTW, I'd like to point out that it's perfectly possible to be a Christian and acknowledge that all the points made here are true. I'd like to introduce you to my sister-in-law Peg, the Presbyterian minister...wait, she's not on Kindleboards...oh, well, trust me, she knows and agrees with just about everything I've read here.
Me too...I'm a United Methodist minister...and I agree with the historical info Jim brought up. Just about every modern commentary agrees. I am very liberal, very open to people of all faiths or belief choices, and just want everyone to get along. ;) Mostly, we just need to care for one another and respect where each of us comes from and where we are at the moment.
 

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I like Gandi's quote:

I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.
 

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chobitz said:
I like Gandi's quote:
Unfortunately that is too true. Unfortunately there are several "Christians" who believe that being christian means that they are superior to others. They have a tendency to look down on others who are not as "righteous" as they are. They seem to forget that "Church is a hospital for sinners not a sanitarium for saints." I can't remember who originally said that but I've always agreed with it. If you are going to go to church and be a christian then act like one.
 

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Betsy the Quilter said:
Forgive me for going off topic, but Chobitz, congrats on hitting 100 posts! And with a Ghandi quote, too!

Wahoo!



Betsy
LOL I just noticed.
Yep I guess my edamucation paid off :D
 

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Coming in late but, what the heck.

Leslie:  regarding feast of Immaculate Conception.  That has nothing to do with Christmas, really.  Early in Christian history the church decreed that, in order to have given birth to Jesus, both God and man, Mary his mother must have been pure.  There had been a previous doctrine of Original Sin which caused a problem.   So the doctrine of Immaculate Conception was conceived (cough, cough, pardon the pun).  This doctrine holds that God had plans for Mary even as she was born and he caused her to be born without the stain of original sin so she would be a suitable vessel for His Son when the time came.  The Virgin Birth is the doctrine that holds that Mary gave birth without first having sexual relations with a man.  There is also a feast in the church on March 25 (what a coincidence!) known as the Annunciation which is when the angel came to Mary and said, "guess what?".

Also, as regards the calendar.  December was the 10th month.  It was Julius Caesar who added July.  And then Augustus Caesar who added August.  Talk about egos. . . .  At some point in the 1800s various countries were using various counting systems for days as well as hours of the day, but the world was becoming smaller and it was decided to have one calendar for the whole world, as well as set up a standard for time.  Most countries agreed fairly quickly. . .there were problems with leap years and it was causing trouble for trade.  (Though I seem to recall that Russia took until the early 20th century before they switched.)

It is true that the Church built it's worship calendar on, to some extent, pagan feasts already in existence.  It was a gentle proselytizing rather than heavy handed:  "Hey, you have a big party at the solstice?  Cool, let's talk about this Jesus guy who had some good ideas.  When was he born?  Uh, now, yeah, that's it. . .he was born at the solstice so he must be pretty special let me tell you some stories. . . ."  Same sort of thing happened for Easter, taking into consideration that the stories handed down were pretty clear that the events described happened during the feast of Passover.

As to when Christmas is celebrated and how:  hey, I go to Mass every week, play in the choir, my husband works for the parish.  But to each, his own.  I don't defend everything every Catholic does, or even completely agree with everything the Church teaches, but I get something out of it and I've made peace with myself regarding the things with which I disagree.  The church has done some really bad stuff in it's history and totally lost the message of Jesus at times.  In my opinion,  that message was be good to people, take care of each other, protect those who need it and be tolerant of those with whom you disagree.  This is not just a Christian teaching. . .ever read the teachings of the Buddha?  At core, most 'religions' have this at their root.  But somewhere in 'getting organized' things get codified and then twisted and then Muslims fight Jews and Catholics fight Protestants.  When, if you look at the beginning. . . .we all believed the same thing!

I guess what I'm saying is that I don't see a big conspiracy in when Christmas is celebrated.  And I don't have any problem with how people choose to celebrate it . . .or choose not to.  (I do have a problem with people who try to tell others that their way is wrong.)  Anyway, Happy Festivus, Happy Solstice, Happy Hannukah, Merry Christmas, Blessed Kwanzaa, and Happy New Year.  In short, Happy Everything.  

Ann
 

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I would first like to say that Jim’s statements about the origins of Christmas and the fact that Jesus wasn’t born on December 25th are most accurate and I have been taught this from a very early age. For a Christian, celebrating the birth of Christ on December 25th is tradition.

Next... I never intended my signature bar to offend anyone. I chose it for the season and added it after Thanksgiving and the Kindle Birthday celebration as a representation of the upcoming holiday season, much the same as others did with their blinking lights and holly. I chose that particular one for 2 reasons… 1) it made me feel good. I too have a problem with depression in the winter months and I liked it because it gives me a sense of well-being and peace, 2) it was purple and it was easy to see when I return to a thread to give me a visual that I had already replied to a post (I really love the color purple).

I am not here on this board to push my beliefs on anyone. I am here for the same reason most of you are. I love to read, I purchased a Kindle and wanted to hang out with others that I had something in common with, and I wanted to learn more about the Kindle. Added benefits that I did not expect were the wonderful recommendations for books in genres and by authors I never would have given a second glance to otherwise.

Other than my signature bar, I have kept my beliefs pretty low key. I even asked permission before starting the Christian Fiction Fan thread, and started it so that that genre could be discussed openly and that people could choose whether or not they wanted to participate. When the discussion got off topic on the CF thread, I requested that Devotional books, etc be moved to another thread for the same reason so that we could keep CF as a genre thread and not a religious discussion.

Last night when I saw this thread had been started, I read what Jim wrote and decided not to respond right away. I knew right away that he was referring to me. I have had a suspicion that he has been *gunning* for me for weeks. He has on more than one occasion posted a reply after mine that has been done in a way to be *joking* yet *stabbing* and I have let them slide because I did not want to end up saying something I would regret later. I just wish he had come to me weeks ago and let me know that he found my signature offensive.

My original plan had been to switch back to my purple butterfly on December 26th, but so that Harvey and the mods (who are a very diverse group within themselves) are not accused of being biased, and in respect for those of you who have posted replies to this thread, I will change my signature back early. I do apologize to any individuals that I have offended, but I will never apologize for my beliefs or my faith. Yes, I am a Christian and Jesus is MY reason for the season, but that in no way makes me perfect or superior to anyone, anywhere. I am a very imperfect being living in an imperfect world and I do not/have not and will never look down upon or speak unkindly about another person just because they do not believe the same way I do. For those who do not share my beliefs, but have accepted me anyway, I thank you and value your friendship and opinions.

I have enjoyed my time here on the boards and hope to spend many fun-filled hours to come in the future. I love the diversity of the people that are here and I am looking forward to getting to know all of you more.

Angela
 

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Angela said:
My original plan had been to switch back to my purple butterfly on December 26th, but so that Harvey and the mods (who are a very diverse group within themselves) are not accused of being biased, and in respect for those of you who have posted replies to this thread, I will change my signature back early.
Oh, Angela, I hate that. You have every right to put anything you want on your signature. Please change it back if it gives you comfort.
 
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