It’s Christmas of 2006 and I kind of like this festival a lot. And I am quite sure a lot of other people do so too. It’s a chilled out no fuss festival, where even though the build might be a bit frenetic with the shopping and all that, but when it is actually here, the people celebrating it do it in a very calm and chilled out manner. Unlike many other festivals.
But there is something about this festival that you might have noticed quite a lot but rarely think of it. If you pay attention, any organization, brand, person, community or anyone, addressing to the society as a whole, never wishes or says ‘Merry Christmas’; yes you are right, they say ‘Happy Holidays’.
This might seem to be just a way to wish people one might say, but this is done only in the ‘West’. If you think deeper, the reason for this is not too far away. In the West, there are a lot of people, who don’t like the idea or the festival of Christmas. For these people it’s just like any other holiday. I guess it’s fair enough, I mean every one has the freedom to think what they want to. And you can’t exactly blame the people addressing them for being diplomatic.
But let’s compare this to our own country or the Indian society. Here, almost the entire nation more than celebrates much more than their share of festivals. And not only is this done to oblige, but in a manner which cannot be dramatized but only felt. You feel the equal amount of happiness when a friend invites you to his home for Biryani, or another one to light a few crackers or someone else to a langar and all of these people at the end of the year coming together to eat a cake. We don’t shy away from what the others feel about a festival.
Again, I am not saying the West should not think like this, it’s all a matter of your opinion and choice. But having experienced the Indianised version of all the festivals, don’t you think they would be better off learning from us.