We Need A Little Christmas

55069-christmas-spiritIn recent years I haven’t been very “big” on Christmas. The conflicted messages that emanate at this time of the year have become too much for this aging soul.  I recall being so fervent as a child, anticipating the birth of baby Jesus, marveling at the tale of the three wise men and, of course, anticipating Santa’s visit. Even in to middle age there was still a lot enjoyment centered around the holiday. But over-commercialization coupled with learning the truth about how our religious documents were not the contemporary reportage that we might have thought, have made this writer cynical about it all.  As the media focuses on the “new phenomena” of  “fake news” let’s not lose sight of the fact that religions have practiced fake news for years.

This year things seem especially grim.  Many are choosing to “drop out” because, honestly, it has become impossible to know what is real and what is not. On Facebook this morning I saw a Canadian journalist who claims that the U.S.A. is fabricating stories about Syria, that the “White Helmets” are not a humanitarian group but a well-funded paramilitary organization, and that we don’t have a clue as to what is happening in Aleppo because there are no reporters in the city.  She noted that one prominent source on conditions in Aleppo lives in Coventry, England!  She seemed incredibly well versed and was particularly articulate about the dreadful war in Syria but who is to say that she is reporting the truth?

Ironically it is this unsettled state of mind that turns many people to religion but it seems our various cultures have plenty of faith in various gods…we simply have no faith in each other.

And so I found myself humming, “We Need a Little Christmas,” from the musical “Mame.”  It’s a cheerful ditty and I hadn’t heard it in a while so, as is my wont, I was inspired to have a listen on Spotify.  I wonder if these lyrics resonate with any of you, dear readers?

For I’ve grown a little leaner,
Grown a little colder,
Grown a little sadder,
Grown a little older,
And I need a little angel
Sitting on my shoulder,
Need a little Christmas now.

Angels, alas, are in short supply but in the Christmas tradition I can send you a star, a Florida star.

christmas-star

A Florida Star

This photograph is one of our lovely Florida grasses with a crown of morning dew.  Nature always soothes me and brings things into perspective. And today that perspective is right in-line with Mame’s:

For we need a little music,
Need a little laughter,
Need a little singing
Ringing through the rafter,
And we need a little snappy
“Happy ever after,”

Need a little Christmas now.

Trump Election – A Suggested Coping Mechanism

The wonderful Tina Turner

Simply the Best

So, we are more than a month removed from the national election.  Donald Trump is president-elect. For some it was a victory. For others, this writer included, it was a profoundly sorrowful moment.  The scenes from Clinton’s post-election “party” definitely told the tale. Seldom have I seen such sad faces. The sad truth is that this sorrow we feel will not easily go away because there are four years ahead of us.  A coping mechanism is so necessary.  For some it is as simple as no longer watching the news.  Others are actually emigrating to Canada and other countries.  My own method of coping is wrapped up in the divine Tina Turner.

Several days after the election, while watching one of the several Obama slideshow collections that are making the rounds on Facebook,  I started humming the Tina Turner song “Simply the Best” and did a quick search on Spotify for the song. There I  found a wonderful, previously unheard, recording of a live Tina concert in Arnhem, Holland.  I cranked it up and Donald Trump faded away.  Soon Tina was filling the house with music on a regular basis.  I would sing along, get up and dance, play a little air guitar and, generally, feel good.  I recommend it to everyone.

But Tina, as we know, is hardly a one-facet lady.  So, after listening to the rock-and-roll Tina for several days I then turned to a recording entitled “Beyond”. This particular Tina Turner album is not as well known as her rockers but it has transported me to other dimensions on many occasions.  It is a collection of Buddhist and Christian Prayers sung by Tina, Dechen Shak Dagsay and Regula Curti.  There is also commentary by Tina, complete with her Southern dialect, in which she talks about the ability of singing to “take us beyond.”  It’s a beautifully soothing recording and Turner’s urging to “Start every day singing like the birds/Singing takes you beyond” is advice that I try to take to heart.  Music connects us to a higher level of consciousness and puts our life in perspective.

So, if The Donald is still getting you down, crank up some music that you love and just let it go, my friends.  Bobby Kennedy once said, “Like it or not, we live in interesting times.”  Such is our fate. ❧