Festivals and national holidays are perhaps the most eagerly anticipated occasions of the year. The best thing about public celebrations is that they bring people together and stay connected with their culture and values. Christmas and the associated holiday shopping season bring cheer to the US and several other economies.
Xmas celebrations are almost over and huge spendings exhausting the credit limits of credit cards signal an end to the most awaited holdaying period of the year. Grocery shops, super markets, Malls and all small/big shops had a huge number of visitors for buying the gifts and groceries for the week.
A large number of families proceed on holiday trips overseas and may be returning home exhausted both physically as well as financially.
With due regards to all concerned, are we not becoming more and more materialistic by scheduling our family holidaying season with the religious festivals . We celebrate these occasions as a mark of respect to these great pious souls who suffered for the welfare of humanity . Jesus suffered and was reborn as a son of God and there comes the reason for celebrations for all .
Like on Xmas, expenditure on all these festivals including Diwali in India is enormous in the name of God without knowing the fact that He or She never lived their life in comforts.
Most of the families shop for meat and alcohal all these days to enjoy the festival mood without ever praying for those underprivilleged brethern who cant afford even two time meals for their families. Do the rich who decorate their houses and buy gifts worth thousands of dollars get more favor from the Lord.
I remember a short poem included in the syllabus curriculam of class VI standard in my school which goes as under:
“One night Abou finds an angel, in his room writing names of those who loved Lord in a golden book lit with a divine light . When Abou hears he is not on the list, he prays that the angel add his name to the list of people who love their fellow men. The following night the angel returns and tells Abou that not only has he made the list of those loved by the Lord but his name appears on top of the list”
The theme of this poem has left an indelible mark on my mind since my childhood making me a critique of those spending lavishly on these festivals. Tons of leftover meals are thrown in the garbage every day by the people without understanding the fact that its not their loss, its the loss of the community as a whole.
Why cant we celebrate these festivals with humility by praying and providing for those who can’t afford to arrange for their families.
will caring for the needy not be a service to the God???