Christmas Consumerism Essay

3055 Words13 Pages
Many religious celebrations, festivities and holidays have long been based on the idea of traditionalism. However, the idea of tradition is becoming replaced by the concept of consumerism. Throughout the history of religion, one can find that tradition has become adjusted or changed to accommodate the changing face of the social time. Bar and Bat Mitzvah’s, the Jewish rite of passage that girls and boys perform when they turn 13, have added new traditions to adapt to social acceptability. It is now more common for a family to focus more on the elaborate party on the Saturday night than on the actual ceremony that takes place in the synagogue. Consumerism has driven us to ambiguously compete with one another during these celebrations, and the Christian holiday of Christmas bears the same resemblance. The practiced traditions of today are not a mirrored reflection of their original practice. The celebration of Christmas has morphed so much that for the average follower its initial origins are difficult to pinpoint. Over the past century in society, a new social climate has made its imprint on religious traditions, ceremonies, and holidays. Through the examination of Christmas, it has become apparent that tradition has taken a back seat to the age of materialism, and that Christmas, which may be based on tradition, is driven by consumerism. The origin of Christmas is an issue that floats around many different answers. According to David C. Pack, president of the Restored Church of God - a church founded in the early 20th century in Tennessee- and writer of the article, The True Origin of Christmas, nearly “all aspects of Christmas observance have their roots in Roman custom and religion”. He goes on to say that the “earliest reference to Christmas being marked as December 25th comes from the 2nd century after Jesus’ birth”. He states that the “first Christmas

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