When you ask people of diverse religions the question “why do people celebrate Christmas?” what do you think their answers are?
If the question “why do people celebrate Christmas?” is posed to Christians, their answer will be about Jesus Christ. They traditionally celebrate Christmas because it represents his birthday. Although the actual date of the birth of Jesus is unknown, December 25 is the chosen date to commemorate this occasion. This date was selected by the Romans to match with the winter solstice and some winter festivals as an indirect way to convert the Romans to Christianity without the need to force them to give up their pagan feasts.
Another answer to “Why do people celebrate Christmas” is gift-giving. People consider Christmas as a time to give gifts to the people they love and to the less fortunate. Even non-Christians participate in the season of sharing. When people exchange presents, it somehow creates an environment that is filled with love and positivity. Some people may find gift-giving unnecessary due to financial commitments, but this does not wipe away the simple fact that sharing and caring create a meaningful difference in the lives of a lot of people. For Christians, the practice of gift-giving during Christmas goes back to the time the three Magi presented gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh to the Christ child. The Magi were wise kings from the East, who traveled far and followed a star to find Christ to bring him gifts.
Because gift-giving and other aspects of the Christmas festival engage heightened economic activities among Christians and non-Christians, the holiday has grown to be a major event and an important sales period for many businesses. The economic influence of Christmas is an aspect that has grown progressively over the past few centuries in many parts of the world.
There are some people who don’t know the answer to the question “Why do people celebrate Christmas?” There are those who don’t really care about the essence of the holiday. They are only observing it because they are influenced by the media or they are feeling the holiday hype. Countries like Japan and Korea, where Christmas is accepted even though there is only a small number of Christians, have adopted many of the worldly aspects of Christmas, such as decorations, gift-giving and symbols (Christmas tree, star, Santa Clause, etc). Others celebrate Christmas because of their love for organizing parties, where they get to decorate their homes, cook sumptuous meals and invite guests.