War On Christmas: The Flip Side.

There is a flip side to this issue and it is one that is going on at the moment.

Up in Olympia, Washington, at the State Capitol, a battle between Christianity and Aethiesm is ensuing. A Nativity Scene was first put in place. Recently, a sign stating things such as "There is no god. There is no devil. There is no heaven. There is no hell. There is only the natural world" was erected. As you may already have heard, this story spread like wildfire. Even Bill O'Reilly jumped on the band wagon with his usual over-reactionary commentary.

As a result, the Governor's office reportedly began receiving upwards of 200 calls per hour, most wanting the sign removed.

This is no different than those wanting to see the quieting of the religious aspects of Christmas.

However, what I have not yet seen discussed is the obvious: I thought we had a Separation of Church and State in this country. Therefore, a Nativity Scene does not belong in a State building. And as such, neither does this sign.

That being said, if we were truly enlightened, if we were truly able to stand side by side as Jews, Christian's, Muslims, Hindu's, Buddhist, Athiest's, Wiccan, Agnostics and the thousands of other religious philosophies and labels we embrace while ceasing to impose our belief and our will on those wearing different labels, we wouldn't NEED the Separation of Church and State to begin with. We would truly honor the diversity and be open to seeing and celebrating the likeness. We would be able to see symbols and statues and signs and statements all over the planet, each proclaiming "This is what I believe" and not take offense.

But we are not yet there. Therefore, we are not as enlightened as we could be. And we are not yet free.

So what say you. Could you allow yourself to become comfortable with the side-by-side display of different religious philosophies? Maybe that question could be worked into our focus and explored, thoughtfully, this time of year.


Pugs in Space said...

Excellent writing here Nina. I have always been bothered by the presence of soley the Christian faith's talismans present in State buildings during the holiday season.

If we truly embraced everyone and their faith then they would have an "around the world display" in order to express non- denominational Spirit towards mankind if they absolutely had to have a display on State premises . Otherwise, there needs to be a distinct separation of Choich and State and therefore no exhibits either way.

I once made the suggestion (suggestion not demand) that we put a Buddha and other various representations of other religions along with the Christmas tree at The Oregon State Police-Astoria Patrol Office where I worked.

I was labeled a blasphemer, a witch and a Christian killer and was treated as such.

Spiritbear said...

Yeah this is big news up in Washington where I now live. Some act as if the world is going to end over it

Nina said...

Christian killer--now that's a new one. What a horrible experience for you!

Hey Spiritbear--yeah that must be all over the news up there. I read on your blog where you had moved up north. Thank goodness you found a job. Good luck up there. I remember one of the meteorologists on the weather channel back in the early 90's used to pronounce Puyallup "pool ee up". He would rarely say "Seattle" or "Tacoma" or the other large cities in the area, but rather "pool ee up". Always cracked me up. He obviously enjoyed saying the name, even though he massacred it every time.