Santa Clause and God

It’s hard to even consider the possibility that Santa isn’t real. Everyone seems to believe he is. As a kid, I heard his name in songs and stories and saw him in movies with very high production values. My mom and dad seemed to believe, batted down my doubts, told me he wanted me to be good and that he always knew if I wasn’t. And what wonderful gifts I received! Except when they were crappy, which I always figured was my fault somehow. All in all, despite the multiple incredible improbabilities involved in believing he was real, I believed—until the day I decided I cared enough about the truth to ask serious questions, at which point the whole façade fell to pieces. Fortunately, the good things I had credited him with continued coming, but now I knew they came from the people around me, whom I could now properly thank.

Now go back and read that paragraph again, changing the ninth word from Santa to God. Santa Claus, my secular friends, is the greatest gift a rational worldview ever had. Our culture has constructed a silly and temporary myth parallel to its silly and permanent one. They share a striking number of characteristics, yet the one is cast aside halfway through childhood. And a good thing, too: A middle-aged father looking mournfully up the chimbly along with his sobbing children on yet another giftless Christmas morning would be a sure candidate for a very soft room. This culturally pervasive myth is meant to be figured out, designed with an expiration date, after which consumption is universally frowned upon.


One is a myth meant to expire, the other is a myth meant to last a lifetime.

Folksonomies: parenting atheism god

culturally pervasive myth (0.974109 (negative:-0.408076)), multiple incredible improbabilities (0.960306 (neutral:0.000000)), temporary myth parallel (0.940423 (negative:-0.817104)), high production values (0.928050 (neutral:0.000000)), giftless Christmas morning (0.872443 (positive:0.387652)), Santa Clause (0.690115 (negative:-0.379057)), wonderful gifts (0.661439 (positive:0.801461)), middle-aged father (0.643227 (negative:-0.272445)), expiration date (0.637554 (neutral:0.000000)), rational worldview (0.634677 (positive:0.623608)), sure candidate (0.632566 (positive:0.387652)), striking number (0.622139 (neutral:0.000000)), good things (0.619140 (neutral:0.000000)), secular friends (0.616445 (neutral:0.000000)), Santa Claus (0.615171 (neutral:0.000000)), greatest gift (0.612548 (positive:0.623608)), soft room (0.609398 (positive:0.387651)), good thing (0.606079 (positive:0.410092)), God (0.425502 (negative:-0.379057)), doubts (0.388436 (negative:-0.515443)), dad (0.379158 (neutral:0.000000)), possibility (0.378989 (negative:-0.319988)), fault (0.375753 (negative:-0.576881)), lifetime (0.373456 (negative:-0.536493)), mom (0.372161 (neutral:0.000000)), halfway (0.370860 (negative:-0.530474)), paragraph (0.364093 (neutral:0.000000)), kid (0.363335 (positive:0.390833)), songs (0.361528 (neutral:0.000000)), stories (0.361487 (neutral:0.000000))

Santa:Person (0.861473 (negative:-0.319988)), Santa Claus:FieldTerminology (0.628196 (positive:0.623608))

Santa Claus (0.948194): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc | yago
Gift (0.764994): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
English-language films (0.703073): dbpedia
Mrs. Claus (0.610365): dbpedia | freebase | yago
Father Christmas (0.602591): dbpedia | freebase | yago
Culture (0.586852): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
2005 singles (0.580787): dbpedia
Ded Moroz (0.558777): dbpedia | freebase | yago

 Counterpoint: Santa Claus—the Ultimate Dry Run
Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book Chapter:  McGowan , Dale (2007), Counterpoint: Santa Claus—the Ultimate Dry Run, Retrieved on 2012-03-28
Folksonomies: parenting atheism