“Rome was a flea market of borrowed gods and conquered peoples, a bargain basement on two floors, earth and heaven, a mass of filth convoluted in a triple knot as in an intestinal obstruction. Dacians, Herulians, Scythians, Sarmatians, Hyperboreans, heavy wheels without spokes, eyes sunk in fat, sodomy, double chins, illiterate emperors, fish fed on the flesh of learned slaves. There were more people in the world than there have ever been since, all crammed into the passages of the Coliseum, and all wretched. And then, into this tasteless heap of gold and marble, He came, light and clothed in an aura, emphatically human, deliberately provincial, Galilean, and at that moment gods and nations ceased to be and man came into being – man the carpenter, man the plowman, man the shepherd with his flock of sheep at sunset, man who does not sound in the least proud, man thankfully celebrated in all the cradle songs of mothers and in all the picture galleries the world over.” – Boris Pasternak
Merry Christmas! Today is a special day: a day where thousands of yards of wrapping paper gives up its life and beauty to the tearing hands of children; a day where unable-to-cope family members lose themselves in their poison of choice; a day when consumerism is celebrated throughout the western world in a gorging upon new gadgets, tools, toys, clothes and other necessities. I am sounding cynical, and I don’t want to sound or to be that. I am only saddened by these facts, because of what Christmas started out as and what it could be again: a deep, human celebration of being human, of our limited lives and of our bodies and of moral courage in the face of oppression. Christmas was the story of liberation, and I want it to be again.