This afternoon as I was driving around running some errands I was listening to a story on NPR about a Muslim women living here in the United States wondering if she should put up a Christmas tree. It was a very interesting perspective piece that really got me thinking about the ideas of right and wrong.
You see, so many of the comments of the woman who was trying to figure out if she should put up a tree ended with her wanting to do no wrong. She wanted the tree for the cultural fun of it all as she has been living in the States for over a decade now but she didn't want to offend anyone who might misconstrue her efforts. Was it wrong to put up a tree if the tree is a religious symbol?
I sincerely appreciate the effort this woman was putting in to her decision. What kept me upset, though, was the fear that she kept expressing. The fear of being wrong.
Look, the holidays can be an extremely emotional time for so many people, and for so many reasons. I can appreciate the sincere struggle to do the right thing. Since I'm active on social media I see the unbelievable claim that there is a war on Christmas. Now, correct me if I am wrong, but is there not Christmas all over the place right now? From the trees to the stars to the nativity scenes to the Christian charities ringing the bells to the reason for the season signs all over the houses in my neighborhood to, well, EVERYTHING all over the place. War in Christmas indeed.
Anyway, about the tree. The woman on the NPR show talked with several of her States-living Muslim friends about their plans for a tree in their homes. Some were relaxed AF about the tree and others were against the tree. She talked with some religious studies scholars about the religiosity of the tree. But not one single person said, Hey, relax! There is no wrong! That tree is a very, very old tradition at this time of the year, it is a tradition that predates all of the religions that you are attempting to respect. Put a tree up if you enjoy it. 😊 Instead the "experts" told her that the Christmas tree is a Christian symbol. Ugh.
Unfortunately I didn't get to hear the end of that particular story, but I say to you, regarding any and all celebrations in the world:
Hey, relax! There is no wrong! If you enjoy it, do it.