By The Christmas Fire – S. McChord Crothers
Four essays packed full of common sense which here as elsewhere is really very uncommon sense. Mr. Crothers thrusts his gentle spear down to the deepest reaches of many sham philosophies without appearing to be a philosopher at all. His fashion of making figures or metaphors do his work, and the witty way in which he turns them over or dresses them up result in a style that is charming. For wholesome and elevating views carried home in a most alluring rhetoric these essays are incomparable. “The Bayonet Poker” hinges on an old bayonet converted into a fire-poker as a lesson that evil of the universe and its regeneration are not all in things as apparently intended, but in men and their ways of using things. “On Being a Doctrinaire” is a fine distinction between the doctrinaire and the idealist; and a plea for “things as they are” plus a motive to do the best we can with them instead of posing and scolding at imperfections. “The Ignominy of Being Grown-up” is a slap at the false education that most of us get as a consequence of losing the child’s idealism. In “The Spirit of Democracy” Mr. Crothers punctures some older ideas and commends the new spirit of charity that has become personal and sympathetic.
By The Christmas Fire.
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Christmas customs and traditions (from Wikipedia):
The celebratory customs associated in various countries with Christmas have a mix of pre-Christian, Christian, and secular themes and origins. Popular modern customs of the holiday include gift giving, completing an Advent calendar or Advent wreath, Christmas music and caroling, lighting a Christingle, viewing a Nativity play, an exchange of Christmas cards, church services, a special meal, and the display of various Christmas decorations, including Christmas trees, Christmas lights, nativity scenes, garlands, wreaths, mistletoe, and holly. In addition, several closely related and often interchangeable figures, known as Santa Claus, Father Christmas, Saint Nicholas, and Christkind, are associated with bringing gifts to children during the Christmas season and have their own body of traditions and lore. Because gift-giving and many other aspects of the Christmas festival involve heightened economic activity, the holiday has become a significant event and a key sales period for retailers and businesses. The economic impact of Christmas has grown steadily over the past few centuries in many regions of the world.
(The text of the last section was taken from a Wikipedia entry and is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.)
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