Tuesday, December 20, 2011

'Twas the Night Before - Santa is my religion

Some introduction, Ruby is doing a deconstruction of a non-Left Behind book by Jerry Jenkins, called 'Twas the Night Before: what comes after the colon apparently depends on whether you're reading in hardcover or softcover.  Hardcover finishes the title with A Christmas Allegory, while soft cover ends it with A Love Story.  Jenkins describes it as an allegory of faith.  It's about a woman who believes in Santa Clause and a man who doesn't.  This, originally posted at Heathen Critique, is thinking about how the reveal that he, you know, believes in Santa might have been handled better.


You know, it seems to me like this would work a lot better if she explicitly linked this to religion:

Some people believe that aliens were lined up outside volcanoes, some people believe that a guy came back from the dead after being executed Spartacus style, some people believe that human beings were formed from the dust of the earth, some people believe the world will end in 2012, I believe that Santa Claus literally exists. People laugh, people ridicule, but I don’t think my belief is any stranger than theirs.

Something like that. Perhaps coupled with a certain degree of defensiveness:

Which is more plausible, that someone and his flying reindeer make the rounds once a year, or that a french guy from the Black Death era correctly predicted the end of the world with the help of psychic powers and the aliens who built the pyramids while likewise laying the foundation for the prophecies that the wormhole traveling Third Reich would use? Have you turned on The History Channel, Tom? My beliefs aren’t that strange, all things considered.

And some rationalizing might help:

Of course most people don’t get presents from Santa, he’s just one man and he has only a single night, and the reindeer can only fly so fast. Only a lucky few get visited, and it’s really a crapshoot, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t real. Every year some people get presents that no one can account for. Maybe they don’t even realize it. Maybe each family member thinks someone else brought it, but they’re there. Most people don’t get visited, most of those who do probably don’t believe that’s what happened, and the rest are dismissed as young, or crazy, or both.

It’s just one old man and eight transgender reindeer, weighed against every household that celebrates Christmas, no matter how hard he works what he does will never rise to the level of statistical noise, much less surpass it, but for those he visits a difference is made and he his real even if the aggregate isn’t noticeably changed by his actions.

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