The Santa Analogy
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17-06-2012, 07:34 PM
RE: The Santa Analogy
Hey, Buddy.

Quote:But honestly, there is no other figure who more accurately represents our view on God than Santa.

You're an Atheist, you have no view. Atheism makes no positive claims. Or are you suggesting otherwise?

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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17-06-2012, 07:39 PM
RE: The Santa Analogy
(17-06-2012 07:34 PM)Ghost Wrote:  Hey, Buddy.

Quote:But honestly, there is no other figure who more accurately represents our view on God than Santa.

You're an Atheist, you have no view. Atheism makes no positive claims. Or are you suggesting otherwise?

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
As an atheist, my views on Santa are isomorphic to my views on God.

Of course I have views.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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17-06-2012, 08:09 PM
RE: The Santa Analogy
Where I grew up Santa came on the 5th of december (I think, saint Nicklaus' day) and he had a shady fellow with him. They would come into your house and Santa had a big golden book. He'd open it and read all your bad deeds and all your good deeds to you. If you were good, you'd get a bundle of switches with sweets hanging off the branches. If you were bad, the shady guy would take out a bundle of switches and beat you with it, or worse, stuff you in a sack and take you out into the woods and leave you there. (None of that ever happened as far as I know).

Christmas the christchild came. It is sort of an angelic figure and flies. On xmas eve it would come after you were asleep and decorate the tree and put the presents under it. The next morning the door to the living room was locked (no open concept houses there then lol) and you'd be fidgeting around all day waiting for an early dinner. Dinner was at 5pm and then you were sent to your room and told to listen for the christchild - you would hear a bell. Sure enough, there was a bell and you ran out and the door to the livingroom was open. Then the family went in and stood in front of the lit xmas tree and sang carols. All the time you were trying to peek at the presents... When the caroling was done presents were opened and you got to stay up late and play with your new stuff.

It was all very suspenseful and I had a ball.

Oh, and it was all about the presents since my parents were atheists. Although mom went to midnight mass a few times because she loved the choir singing xmas songs.

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17-06-2012, 08:39 PM
RE: The Santa Analogy
Hey, Chas.

You can't have your cake and eat it too.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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17-06-2012, 09:25 PM (This post was last modified: 17-06-2012 09:39 PM by Scarlet Pimpernel.)
RE: The Santa Analogy
(17-06-2012 02:20 AM)Buddy Christ Wrote:  Theists often complain that atheists have the "Santa Syndrome" because we constantly bring up Santa in comparison to their god. But honestly, there is no other figure who more accurately represents our view on God than Santa.

And here's why.



-No one has ever seen God, yet we are constantly asked to consider the "works of God" and observe all that "God has given us." Likewise, you may not have actually witnessed Santa, but miraculously the cookies and milk are gone and there are gifts under the tree. It is nothing short of a miracle.

-God promises you rewards if you behave in a goodly manner and threatens fire if you don't. Santa rewards you with presents in the same manner and threatens you with coals (a subtle implication of fire).

-By using a reward/punishment system, governments/parents utilize God/Santa as a means to control the masses/children. It is a mode of passive discipline. A perpetual guillotine threatening to drop at anytime.

-Santa apparently has magic powers. You might even say he is omnipotent. After all he can visit every house on the majority of the planet in the span of one night. He can also make reindeer fly and can fit down chimneys on houses that don't even have chimneys. He also never sets of any security alarms or makes any noise.

-Santa lives in a place where we know where it is... we just can't get to it. He just lives somewhere up north, and God just lives somewhere up there.

-Most of the civilized world knows Santa. They know his mannerisms, his history, his likes and dislikes (we offer plates of cookies like an animal sacrifice to God because we are aware of his preferences), and until a certain age, they attempt to communicate with him via telepathy in hopes to gain his favor (he also knows what you want for Christmas even though you never wrote to him). Like God, Santa has different names in different cultures ("Sinterklaas," "Zwarte Piet," even "Christkindl" (Christ Child)). Saint is even rooted in religion, as he is essentially a child-friendly, glorified Saint Nicholas.

-A child KNOWS that Santa exists. He just feels that he exists. How else would those presents get there? It's only after an adult tells the child the truth that his reality crumbles around him and he is forced to face the actual truth. In this case, we atheists are the adults trying to explain that there is no Santa. But these children have believed in Santa for several decades now, and have even built friends and lifestyles around that belief system. So naturally it's going to be much harder to show them the truth. But we must not stop trying.



[Image: santa-jesus.jpg] [Image: jesus-santa-church-ad.jpg]

TBS, Santa Claus was the 'invention' of Coca Cola's advertising agency in 1932, modeled after Saint Nicholas, (Catholic...) bishop of Myra (SW Turkey) in the 4th century. The advertising people took the beard, the colors red and white, and the magnanimous character, but ditched the religious garb and paraphernalia to deliberately stay away from religion.

Nicholas of Myra was sainted because he was a great philanthropist who shared his wealth with the poor and the children. 'Saint Nicholas' is an annually returning children's feast/ritual in north-western Europe, and has been for centuries. So Santa is neither 'old' nor original...
Santa is not a medieval religious tradition but a 20th century commercial invention. Just like Mother's Day, Father's Day, Valentine's Day, and a bunch of others. All commercial traps. 'Invented' mere decades ago by marketeers.

So if you compare God with Santa, you might as well compare Him to Spiderman, or The Hulk... Big Grin
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17-06-2012, 09:31 PM
RE: The Santa Analogy
(17-06-2012 08:39 PM)Ghost Wrote:  Hey, Chas.

You can't have your cake and eat it too.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt

So if someone asks me if I think Harry Potter is a coward or a hero, I'm bound by my Aharry-istic beliefs to respond, "I can have no opinion of the nature of Harry Potter because he is a fictional character" ?

Or like Chas said, you could offer the same statement towards my views on Santa. Either way, your claim is flawed.

"Ain't got no last words to say, yellow streak right up my spine. The gun in my mouth was real and the taste blew my mind."

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18-06-2012, 03:13 AM
RE: The Santa Analogy
(17-06-2012 08:09 PM)Dom Wrote:  Where I grew up Santa came on the 5th of december (I think, saint Nicklaus' day) and he had a shady fellow with him. They would come into your house and Santa had a big golden book. He'd open it and read all your bad deeds and all your good deeds to you. If you were good, you'd get a bundle of switches with sweets hanging off the branches. If you were bad, the shady guy would take out a bundle of switches and beat you with it, or worse, stuff you in a sack and take you out into the woods and leave you there. (None of that ever happened as far as I know).

Christmas the christchild came. It is sort of an angelic figure and flies. On xmas eve it would come after you were asleep and decorate the tree and put the presents under it. The next morning the door to the living room was locked (no open concept houses there then lol) and you'd be fidgeting around all day waiting for an early dinner. Dinner was at 5pm and then you were sent to your room and told to listen for the christchild - you would hear a bell. Sure enough, there was a bell and you ran out and the door to the livingroom was open. Then the family went in and stood in front of the lit xmas tree and sang carols. All the time you were trying to peek at the presents... When the caroling was done presents were opened and you got to stay up late and play with your new stuff.

It was all very suspenseful and I had a ball.

Oh, and it was all about the presents since my parents were atheists. Although mom went to midnight mass a few times because she loved the choir singing xmas songs.

you from bavaria/austria? This is very much exactly my christmas as I know it.
St Nickolaus would come on 5th/6th.
We always visited my grandparents on that day. And it always knocked really loud, I was kept near the front door and sent to open. Normally I would never open the door, but on "Nickolausabend" (Nickolaus evening) I was. I always got a big plate with sweets and nuts and fruits.
At some point I figured out that it was my Grandfather knocking at the door and leaving the plate there because I figured that he is always in the livingroom and I was not to go there. He would just walk around the house, knock real hard and then run back through the house and into the living room.
Anyway, the other dangerous guy, I heard a lot of horror stories about him. His name in Bavaria is Krampus.
There was one thing dangerous in the place where I lived around the time. No going outside after 6pm for kids because the sadistic part of the youth in my place used that evening to wear Krampus costumes and they would indeed do something bad. In other places they would just give you a mark with coal on the cheek or something like that, but there they actually did hit you or make you do ugly things. So I didn't go out.

Christmas evening was always so that during the day we would clean up and bake and so on. The tree would be in the livingroom. In the evening we would have dinner, and then I would be sent to have a nice long bath and play in my room with my siblings. At some point we would here a noise or my mother would come and tell us that she saw something that looks like the Christkindl (christ child) flying out the window. Christkindl is always displayed like an angel.
One day I "saw" the Christkindle flying out the window because I was looking through the living door key hole and the window to the balcony was open. I saw the drapes in the wind and thought it was the Christkindl.

I remember when I was 4 or 5 and my brothers 2 years younger. I had figured out that the whole thing is a lie and, in the presence of my brothers, I said "There is not Santa". And my mother was like "shhhh, they still believe in it!"
I felt like I am betraying them by not sharing this piece of knowledge.

"Freedom is the freedom to say that 2+2=4" - George Orwell (in 1984)
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18-06-2012, 06:17 AM
RE: The Santa Analogy
(18-06-2012 03:13 AM)Leela Wrote:  
(17-06-2012 08:09 PM)Dom Wrote:  Where I grew up Santa came on the 5th of december (I think, saint Nicklaus' day) and he had a shady fellow with him. They would come into your house and Santa had a big golden book. He'd open it and read all your bad deeds and all your good deeds to you. If you were good, you'd get a bundle of switches with sweets hanging off the branches. If you were bad, the shady guy would take out a bundle of switches and beat you with it, or worse, stuff you in a sack and take you out into the woods and leave you there. (None of that ever happened as far as I know).

Christmas the christchild came. It is sort of an angelic figure and flies. On xmas eve it would come after you were asleep and decorate the tree and put the presents under it. The next morning the door to the living room was locked (no open concept houses there then lol) and you'd be fidgeting around all day waiting for an early dinner. Dinner was at 5pm and then you were sent to your room and told to listen for the christchild - you would hear a bell. Sure enough, there was a bell and you ran out and the door to the livingroom was open. Then the family went in and stood in front of the lit xmas tree and sang carols. All the time you were trying to peek at the presents... When the caroling was done presents were opened and you got to stay up late and play with your new stuff.

It was all very suspenseful and I had a ball.

Oh, and it was all about the presents since my parents were atheists. Although mom went to midnight mass a few times because she loved the choir singing xmas songs.


you from bavaria/austria? This is very much exactly my christmas as I know it.
St Nickolaus would come on 5th/6th.
We always visited my grandparents on that day. And it always knocked really loud, I was kept near the front door and sent to open. Normally I would never open the door, but on "Nickolausabend" (Nickolaus evening) I was. I always got a big plate with sweets and nuts and fruits.
At some point I figured out that it was my Grandfather knocking at the door and leaving the plate there because I figured that he is always in the livingroom and I was not to go there. He would just walk around the house, knock real hard and then run back through the house and into the living room.
Anyway, the other dangerous guy, I heard a lot of horror stories about him. His name in Bavaria is Krampus.
There was one thing dangerous in the place where I lived around the time. No going outside after 6pm for kids because the sadistic part of the youth in my place used that evening to wear Krampus costumes and they would indeed do something bad. In other places they would just give you a mark with coal on the cheek or something like that, but there they actually did hit you or make you do ugly things. So I didn't go out.

Christmas evening was always so that during the day we would clean up and bake and so on. The tree would be in the livingroom. In the evening we would have dinner, and then I would be sent to have a nice long bath and play in my room with my siblings. At some point we would here a noise or my mother would come and tell us that she saw something that looks like the Christkindl (christ child) flying out the window. Christkindl is always displayed like an angel.
One day I "saw" the Christkindle flying out the window because I was looking through the living door key hole and the window to the balcony was open. I saw the drapes in the wind and thought it was the Christkindl.

I remember when I was 4 or 5 and my brothers 2 years younger. I had figured out that the whole thing is a lie and, in the presence of my brothers, I said "There is not Santa". And my mother was like "shhhh, they still believe in it!"
I felt like I am betraying them by not sharing this piece of knowledge.


I saw one of our neighbors dressed as Santa and figured it out when I was 6. My parents used to hire students to play Santa and Krampus. I am from Munich, and we also had a vacation house near Salzburg, and a cottage in the Austrian Alps.

In my day Krampus only showed up together with Santa. He would wear loose black clothes and rattle a chain, and you heard the chain rattle before the doorbell rang. He was scary, and while I believed I wasn't allowed to go out so I wouldn't see any additional Santas. Once I quit believing mom and I would go for walks on the 5th and count Santas. There were no loose Krampuses about back then, but friends told me about it being that way now.

I, too, saw the christchild. Goes to show ya how the mind plays tricks on you when you believe something...

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