Eternal and Temporal Revisited

We are not human beings having a spiritual experience; we are spiritual beings having a human experience. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Teilhard de Chardin was a French philosopher, paleontologist, and Jesuit priest who thought deeply on the meaning our our existence and relationship with the Divine. What does it mean to be Spiritual Beings having a human experience and how does it relate to our everyday lives?

Love is the core nature of us all. We feel good when we give and receive love because this is the Spiritual thing to do. Read more

If we apply this filter to our contemplation of Jesus and Santa, the commonalities are overwhelming. Better for you to list as part of this contemplation. As referenced yesterday, Love Without End and The Bishop’s Wife can be a treasure trove of valuable and delightful things.

While our eternal being, soul, and spirit are difficult to impossible to intellectualize or articulate, they are not so difficult to experience. It requires our stillness and quiet. Perhaps that is why Jesus retreated to the garden and Santa resides at the North Pole.

How Did Santa Claus Begin? is a children’s sermon.

When did Santa Claus begin? We all know that only God is eternal. So how did this wonderful Christmas character who is so giving begin? We didn’t make him up. Saint Nicholas, whose name was changed over the years to Santa Claus, was a real person, a bishop in the church in the fourth century

Saint Nicholas was born in Patara (Asia Minor) and later moved to Myra (Demre in modern Turkey), where he was elected bishop. He died on Dec. 6 sometime between A. D. 326 and 341. Many stories have been told of his generosity.

. . . The stories of Saint Nicholas came to America through the Dutch settlers in the state of New York. He has changed through the years.

Originally, he was dressed in his traditional Bishop’s robes. It wasn’t until the 20th century that he began to be dressed in the red and white outfit in which he appears to us now in the persons of his many “helpers.” In fact, in 1874, the American cartoonist Thomas Nast drew him in a brown suit with brown fur trim.

Dr. Clement C. Moore, a professor of Greek and Biblical Studies at General Theological Seminary of New York, wrote “A Visit from St. Nicholas” (more commonly know as “Twas the Night Before Christmas”) in 1822. Only eight reindeer pulled Santa’s sleigh until the song “Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer” was written.

Jesus, the Christ (the Messiah) is the most important person in the Advent/Christmas season. However, since Saint Nicholas conveys a spirit of generosity and love, we remember him and we too give gifts. Because Saint Nicholas gave us such a good example of helping the poor, Santa Claus may well be a healthy part of our celebrations. As Allan Hauck wrote in Calendar of Christianity, If Santa Claus has become too commercial, too secularized, perhaps it is “because we have forgotten his historical origin in the beloved Bishop of Myra who obeyed Christ’s command that we help all those who are in need.”

More on the St. Nicholas Center

Advertisements Share this:
  • More
Like this:Like Loading... Related