A time to celebrate memories, not material goods

Grant Rayfield

While many people claim that Christmas (or other forms of December celebration) is the most joyful time of the year, I find this statistic a slight bit depressing.  Don’t get me wrong, the spirit of giving to others is a perfectly respectable and commendable practice, but I have found that people often enjoy it the most not for its moral significance to us as people, but its significance as a source of many desired items.  We covet these items to the extent that we elevate this annual exchange of desired goods to the level that it is respected beyond any national or religious tradition.  It is holidays like Thanksgiving, which give us a better chance to truly express our gratitude and loving nostalgia for the people and memories of our past, that I believe we should value most as opportunities to reflect and reform our own lives in the best ways possible.

Though Thanksgiving may be a strange tradition of awkward family gatherings based around a historically inaccurate feast, it is the obligation to our family and friends that brings us together at this annual ritual, and allows us all, to one extent or another, to establish some form of respect and homage to the good deeds of others in our past.  Through our responsibility to be together as a group we are inadvertently also exposed to the perspectives and the generally good nature of even those who we would not generally consider associating ourselves with.  For life is not solely how we choose to act ourselves, but also how we influence others and how they choose to influence us.