I love Christmas. But ask anyone who knows me and they will readily tell you that I hate it. And they're right.




Such a contradiction sounds confusing. But it is no more convoluted than the sacrosanct "holiday season" otherwise known as Christmas.




Consider the "joy" of the season that masks the stress of debt-filled shopping sprees, sharply increased suicide rates, and the mob-induced blind tradition of forcing a false fantasy upon the most vulnerable and innocent in our society.




Consider also the disdain "cheerful" folks have for those who do not indulge in the mythical mirth that passes for harmless fun this time of the year. Homes lacking decorated trees apparently harbor "Christmas Scrooges" who become the target of a mob &

heavily weighed down by the stress of a mountain of cards and gifts &

for daring to casually stroll through Christmas as though it were merely another indiscriminate date on the calendar.




Ah, Christmas. The only holy day that provides its celebrants with an inherent right to ridicule and mock those who do not accept its lies.




And oh, oh, oh there are so many lies.




Forget about the overweight weirdly dressed white guy with a penchant for extreme rural living, slave labor of height-challenged individuals, breaking and entering any home with a chimney and a curious desire for keeping close watch on little kids.




Dismiss the fantasies of flying reindeer, dancing snowmen and the public's preoccupation with green and red colors. Toss out all of the pagan rituals pertaining to the winter solstice, including the tree fetish, and all you have left is one simple saying uttered by the most blind of all Christmas lovers.




"Jesus is the reason for the season."




Nothing could be farther from the truth.




Christmas is a word derived from the Catholic "Christ Mass" &

a bit of knowledge that would, if known, send some ardent Protestants into an epileptic fit to realize they have adopted a long-held Catholic tradition artificially created and forced to coincide with an existing pagan celebration on Dec. 25.




The excuse used by many churches for failing to teach the true history of Christmas celebrations &

which were once banned in this country &

is that the biblical book of Matthew offers an account of visitors traveling from afar to see the newborn King to worship and offer gifts to him.




For that reason, many churches condone the commercially promoted self-centered gift exchanges that are typically preceded by the question, "What do you want for Christmas?"




The truth is there's no biblical justification for the manner in which Christians celebrate Christmas. The history stems from a Catholic tradition borrowed from a pagan ritual that has nothing to do with the Christ child. The early Christians left no record of any such celebrations, nor did Jesus' followers celebrate any birthday, including their own.




Today, many people who don't subscribe to belief in a divine Christ, still regard Jesus as a great teacher. Among His many teachings, Jesus provided some rather stark statements that are hard to ignore. One of which was in answer to His follower Thomas' question, "Lord, we don't know where you are going, so how can we know the way?"




Jesus replied, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (John 14:5-6)




For some, this statement is a bit off-putting. But for Christians, this statement encapsulates much. Yet, it has to be ignored or dismissed altogether in order to accept the traditions of Christmas.




After all, if Christ is "the Truth," and He failed to ordain any celebration remotely resembling what passes for Christmas traditions today, then what has been adopted by the Christian church isn't Truth at all. Rather it is a counterfeit &

offering something that feels good and looks good, but is actually a wolf in sheep's clothing.




So, where does that leave Christians who love Christmas?




After all, it's hard not to love Christmas. People smile. Families get together, share gifts, laughter and joy. Strangers reach out to others to render aid. Children become the focus more than any other time of the year. Communities decorate and the landscape lights up with beauty. Singers serenade, and for a moment, the whole of society pretends all is well.




But, it's all a lie. And while Christmas celebrations encompass so many good things, it wraps them all around an empty gift, decorated beautifully with colorful myths. When opened, there is nothing there.




There is no Christ in Christmas. There never was. So choose Christmas (counterfeit) or Christ, but you can't have both.




is a columnist, author and Content Editor of the Ashland Daily Tidings. He can be reached at .