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Buy Nothing Christmas

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My family will not be buying any presents this Christmas - spending the money on doing things together instead which is not quite the same as what is advocated here, I know.

Many people do not realise that until Dickens' 'A Christmas Carol' Christmas was an entirely religious affair - the day was to be spent reading the bible or else in religious contemplation. Decorations were often frowned on as pagan and not truly in the spirit of Christmas.

Dickens' novel about the old skinflint Ebenezer Scrooge changed attitudes towards this winter holiday beyond all recognition. Few people these days realise that the inspiration for the modern Christmas takes more from 'A Christmas Carol' than it does The Bible.

The reason why Dickens' vision of Christmas was incredibly popular is obvious - taking a day off work in Victorian times to go to church and study the bible was fast becoming so unpopular that the majority of British families didn't bother to 'celebrate' Christmas at all. Dickens vision of a time to be spent eating drinking and making merry with friends and family was much more popular. Indeed Dickens' description of the Ghost of Christmas Present sounds more like the Greek God Bacchus than any Christian God.

Er.. my point.. because I could go on for some time...is that Scrooge could be seen to represent those who save money and live within their means but after the visits by the four ghosts he pays a boy to rush out and buy the prize goose (still in the window presumably because no one can afford it) - thus now representing people who live life to the full regardless of the cost. This has now become the true message of Christmas and consequently I don't think there will be too many takers for this 'Buy Nothing Christmas'.

Oh well. God bless us...every one.

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