Magazine article Tikkun

Stop the Holiday Buying Frenzy

Magazine article Tikkun

Stop the Holiday Buying Frenzy

Article excerpt

LET'S ACKNOWLEDGE THAT this is impossible for most people in regard to their children at this moment in American culture. The indoctrination just seems too overwhelming to be able to explain to kids under the age of 14 or 15 that not buying them a gift for Christmas or Chanukah is not a reflection of lack of love, but rather a commitment to love the planet and preserve it from destruction.

But what about adults? Your friends, people at work, adult members of your family? They are old enough and sophisticated enough to understand if you explain that the planet earth is dying in part because of unnecessary production of goods that are really not needed and which deplete our natural resources. Moreover, the shopping frenzy causes a great deal of pain because so many people feel that they haven't given "the right" gift, or that they can't afford the gifts that would make others feel special, or they feel badly that they didn't get the gifts that would make them feel really loved and understood.

Gift giving is wonderful, and we don't want to negate its value, but this year, why not give a gift of time, rather than a "thing"? For example, send people a gift of three hours to help them with some household chores of their choice or specify some talent that you might have: house painting or small repairs, mowing the lawn, shoveling the snow, taking their children to a movie, sports event, cultural activity, religious service, or something else geared for children, or helping their children with homework. Or you could invite a friend to dinner, concert, religious service, political gathering, or discussion group that opens that friend to an aspect of your life that you haven't fully shared previously. Or you can make a "thing" that doesn't involve conspicuous consumption, for example: a poem, short story, something knitted, a song, a piece of pottery, a painting, or an evening in which you introduce your friends to Tikkun or the Network of Spiritual Progressives (NSP) or to some other aspect of your life or your childhood. Or offer an evening of just listening to the music that is special to you.

If the commercialism can be overcome, it may then be possible to return to the central spiritual message that this season has offered to all peoples throughout recorded history: a time to affirm the possibility of a return of the light and the nourishment of the earth from the sun that is done when the days have become short and the winter prevails. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.