It is late autumn and not even Winter in the Northern Hemisphere as of yet.
This will be a somewhat subjective and speculative written philosophical post, but I reason here in Metropolitan Vancouver and the Fraser Valley, Christmas season begins sooner than when I was a child in Elementary School and when I attended Secondary School.
As I remember back in the 1980s and 1990s, the cultural and commercial Christmas season began in Canada at approximately December 1 and went until after January 1, when the next regular work and school days occurred.
Christmas lights, which I have always liked as far back as I can remember, along with Christmas art, as I appreciate the bright, brilliant colours, visual contrast and positive, hopeful message, appeared on the scene, approximately between December 1 and December 15. These lights stayed up until in many cases after January 1, when the next regular work and school days began.
The last few years I observe that from November 1 to November 15, Christmas lights are beginning to be displayed publicly.
Although the number of lights overall in this metropolitan area still increase in December.
I am not certain if the Canadian Christmas advertisements begin earlier than they did in the 1980s and 1990s, as that would take in-depth knowledge of advertising, but I know that when November 1 arrives, so does Christmas as a commercial venture.
And it appears it begins culturally as well.
I discussed this issue with a local friend and he agrees that Christmas season is beginning earlier than in the 1980s and 1990s. He reasons it is mainly because of greater commercialism.
I think that commercialization is an aspect of the reason, and as well greater public saturation with the season through the media, but I wonder if greater spiritual hunger by many is a larger part of the reason.
Specifically in regard to public Christmas lights being displayed earlier and longer.
Even since the 1980s and 1990s this area of Canada, the rest of Canada and the Western World, in general has become even less Christian and more secular, based on cultural and societal attitudes. Perhaps with for example, less marriages, divorce and the decline of the family unit, there is more individual isolation than there was even just a few decades ago.
By celebrating Christmas longer, for some over two months, if from November 1 to past January 1, at the extreme, some persons locally and perhaps throughout the Western World are trying to for the most part sub-consciously create a spiritual connection with others in humanity which does not exist most of the time, most of the year.
The Christmas spirit.
The more society declines, the greater the spiritual need for some type of positive opposition to the decline.
On the positive side, it is good that such a Christmas spirit exists in a primarily secular Western World.
I certainly favour good will toward humanity over bad will toward humanity.
Christmas also has its Christian background, obviously celebrating the birth of Christ at this traditionally chosen season.
Christmas is a very good Christian celebration and witnessing opportunity.
On the negative side, it is sad that many persons sub-consciously have the desire and need to extend the Christmas season because perhaps in the other ten to eleven months, life is not significantly spiritual.
From a Biblical Christian perspective, a Christian is regenerated (John 3, Titus 3: 5-7). There is a renewed spiritual connection to other persons, primarily to those in the Church, but also to those outside in witness, both in love, although in a fallen world this does not take place near perfectly.
More importantly there is a spiritual connection to the triune God of the New Testament based on the atoning and resurrection work of Christ applied to those God chooses and therefore believe. Regeneration takes place which is a powerful change in the human being via the Holy Spirit, which transforms one corrupt and in sin in opposition to God, to one pleasing to God and trusting in God. It is a new ‘vital principle, a new habit, the law of God, and a divine nature’ are framed in a human heart. Murray (1937-1966)(1977: 167-172).
This is a divinely inspired spiritual life that is year round in comparison to seasonal Christmas spirit a type of Christian spirit.
Christmas spirit or a Christian spirit has its divine connection but can also be largely secular.
A New Testament model spiritual life is far superior to Christmas spirit. It has greater value.
MURRAY, JOHN (1937-1966)(1977) Collected Writings of John Murray, Vol. 2: Select Lectures in Systematic Theology, Edinburgh, The Banner of Truth Trust.
Christmas Spirit relates to a recent article and post: