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Is it hypocritical for me, as an atheist, to celebrate religious holidays?

Family is very important to me, so, though I don’t believe in some all-seeing, all-knowing magic being, I still enjoy spending time with family, sharing different food dishes, and exchanging gifts in the case of Christmas. Religious holidays are the perfect time for me to do that as most of my family are religous, to varying degrees, and I have the major holidays off from work. Is it hypocritical for me to celebrate or is it ok to just look at it as a social gathering?

Leeshi 7 Apr 16

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45 comments (26 - 45)

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3

It's fine. When we leave the religion we can also leave the guilt. Atheism for me is a "freeing experience". I'm not going to now feel guilty and restricted for doing what I like, in the name of Atheism. Enjoy the holidays

2

It's a social thing. My mother pulled me up on this. I don't really think we are celebrating the religion when the holiday has lost all of its original meaning. Should we not do Thursday because we don't believe in the God of War? As I said to my Mother about Christmas. Santa was the Patron Saint of Prostitutes so I'm celebrating that!

2

Most if not all current religious holidays are stolen from the pagans and they at least worshiped things that are real. The sun is a great example, actually did create us and everything on earth. Christmas is a great example as well. Take away jesus and you still have presents, family gatherings, feasts and a decorated tree. So go and enjoy guilt free 🙂

2

There's a lot of goodness, warmth and comfort that comes from sharing Religious holidays with family. You don't have to proclaim your stance as Agnostic/atheist to be one; and the traditions of Religion are very friendly, warm, and peace-loving....so by all means....enjoy them, share them. If religious family members challenge you with a debate, keep it friendly - and they might grow out of their religious "dependence" thanks to you! If they challenge you in a hostile way, give your apologies and smile; they aren't at your level - yet.

2

I often think about this.
I have 4 children and do easter and christmas.
oddly I don't involve any abrahamic things at all in regards to jesus.
It really is just Santa and the easter bunny, Its a weird thing to do but its fun and in a total non religious way.
Now when my children ask me about the bible I explain there are many religions and this is just one of them so explore them all and question everything.
I also explain holiday traditions are a mix from many differant cultures.

Parenting done right! Teaching tolerance and acceptance of others

2

Christmas and Easter are borrowed from other religions anyways, so they mean nothing. Enjoy your turkey and your chocolate.

2

I celebrate the companionship of family and loved ones, not any of the stuff about invisible, make-believe friends. Plus the structure of holiday time off from work kind of makes it inevitable. My vote is "no" to your original question.

2

it is not, what is hypocritical is people who pretend to be religious but are not.

2

Less hypocritical of you to celebrate something knowing it is bogus than it is for those who believe to profess devotion and treat people like crap. It is amusing to me how many 'good' Christians only practive a few select hours each year. Those are your hypocrits. Most of us know that Christmas is a marketing holiday more than a religious holiday, so enjoy your presents!

2

Enjoy time with your loved ones and with family. Does not matter dates chosen... have fun. Pagan or christian holiday... make it your own. Enjoy!!!

2

Ask yourself this.... Is it hypocritical of Christianity to stomp out other belief systems then take their celebrations and turn them into Christian Holy days? Can you imagine a pine tree in the Middle East? If one showed up, it would have been burned to cook a rabbit that laid eggs in honor of someone nailed to a tree on apparently adjustable dates.

I agree that there is an inordinately large amount of hypocritical Christians. However, their hypocrisy doesn’t make it ok for me to be a hypocrite. It would just give them more ammo (granted not very effective ammo) for why what they’re doing is ok.

Ignore the hypocrisy and enjoy a day for the reasons that make you feel good. I celebrate certain holidays when I am with family, but when alone, they are just another day.

2

I don't see anything wrong with it. It's your life, so you get to write the rules. In my family we have dinner, and exchange gifts on Christmas, and we usually have dinner, and lots of chocolate and dye eggs in Easter. Of course I grew up doing these things, and there was never a religious connection to them. Of course all of the fun and celebrating is Pagan in origin anyway.

2

Gift giving, caroling, evergreen trees, eggs, rabbits, etc aren't even christian in origin in fact I'd wager most people don't think all too much about the jesus aspect then celebrating. (Look up the pagan festivals of Yule and Saturnalia). It's also not like you're giving praise to pagan gods either.

2

Have to remember that many of those holidays are rooted in much older celebrations and taken over as religious events. Christmas is based on celebrating the winter solstice well before 3 wise guys showed up in a manger.

2

Do not think it is violating lol. It brings people together that you have not seen in a long time. Gives cause to celebrate life.

1

It is Thanksgiving I am ambivalent, or more, conflicted about celebrating. Being with family and eating and drinking to celebrate the mass murder of Native Americans which began white rule in this country

1

We need to review the meaning of “celebrate” . Of course it is not just taking the day off to enjoy what you really like. Celebrate to me is to participate in the meaning, tradition, acts, gatherings of certain event thst happened time ago and we agreed as a “nation” to designate a day of the year. If you are atheist for sure you won’t cekebrate Christmas as it “should be”. Instead you can opt to have a secular event (astronomical, humanitarian etc).

MY definition of celebrate is: acknowledge (a significant or happy day or event) with a social gathering or enjoyable activity. So, as an atheist, I DO celebrate Christmas. Not as the "birth of Christ," but rather a time to be with loved ones and "make merry." Much like birthdays. Or Thanksgiving. Or Earth Day. Religon doesn't have a monopoly on how one decides to celebrate/observe a holiday. Of course, that is just ME. ?

1

I don't think so. Sometimes it's a matter of fitting into the culture at large and respecting their ways. It doesn't mean you have to participate in all the rituals or whatever feels too wrong.

0

No, they stole it first

Source:

Owh, is that a film based on the Neil Gaiman book? Cool.

TV show not a movie but based on Gaiman's graphic novel yes it's pretty good actually ??

0

Wrong or impossible to celebrate the holiday, but not to party on the day.

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