Traveling to different places and experiencing the cheery atmosphere of Christmas always seems to put me in a grand mood, whether it be in the middle of the no where or Chicago. However, it seems to be that we can get lost in the spirit of the holidays, suffocated by the advertising and marketing of various innovations.
Recently, I traveled to Chicago with my family and a friend. In a little car with three people seated in the backseat, were crammed shoulder to shoulder and bound to babble the entire trip (while my mother’s Christmas music played in the background, of course). A valid point was brought up in a conversation we all were having, exploring the question of why there are many songs about Christmas and yet none about Easter. It seems like such an odd topic, as the weekend of Easter is typically somber as we remember Christ who died on the cross for us. It just would not be respectful to play cheerful Easter tunes during Good Friday.
Recalling various Christmas ads, it then came to my attention that our nation seems to emphasize the importance of receiving every year. From Coke, to Nissan, to flat screen televisions: advertising will only keep being exaggerated the more materialistic we grow as a society. It may be hard to remember when there was a time that advertising wasn’t the culprit of Christmas, but here’s the thing: it has always been a part of Christmas.
The transformation of the holiday dates back to the Middle Ages. Martin Luther (Protestant) had supported the exchange of presents to engage young children in Christianity. Of course, a seven year old’s recognition of many ideas are far more concrete than a fully developed adult. But even still, we crave that smell of a new car, the touch of a Smartphone, and the sight of an LCD flat screen. Perhaps we should swap the smell of a new car to the smell of turkey; the touch of a phone to the touch of a giving hand, and the sight of a tv to the sight of a family around you.