In Communist China, "Merry Christmas!" banners are conspicuously displayed along the shopping streets.
This year will be no exception: in major cities, shops and shopping streets are decked out in Christmas colors. Effigies of Santa Claus, Christmas trees and Christmas carols are everywhere. Some say that it is purely a commercial approach, others say that it is the cultural appeal of modernity associated with the West.
"The Christmas frenzy"
Among the intellectual entities close to power, this fascination for Christmas is observed with caution, if not outright hostility. It is contrary to the spirit of patriotism advocated by Chinese leaders. Last May, the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences published a Blue Book detailing the "most serious challenges" arising in the country. Four of them were listed, namely: democratic ideals exported by Western nations, Western cultural hegemony, dissemination of information via the internet. and religious infiltration.
In an article published by Churches of Asia, one can read the analysis made by a group of ten PhD students of what they denounce as "the Christmas frenzy" and their appeal to the Chinese people to distance themselves from it. According to them, the craze for Christmas in China shows a loss of primacy of the "Chinese cultural soul" and a collapse of Chinese cultural subjectivity; they invite their countrymen to exercise great caution against what they perceive as "a new advance of ‘Christianization’ " in their country.
"Feast of the Holy Nativity" in schools
"The worst is that in kindergartens, primary and secondary schools, teachers share with children the " feast of the Holy Nativity," set up stands for "Jesus’ birth trees," distribute "gifts for the birth of Jesus," make "birth of Jesus greeting cards," and thus imperceptibly sow in the child’s soul seeds of a culture imported from outside and a foreign religion."
"The total absence of values"
Following is a short analysis of the causes to which one can only subscribe without changing one iota:
"… The loss of any ethical model, plummeting morality, insincerity, and an insufficient level of culture push the Chinese to seek a safe haven for their body and soul; mental disturbance caused by a modernity that "disenchants," to which is added the total absence of values, has encouraged people to rediscover the meaning of a religious life; and moreover, the Christmas Feast is orchestrated and used by manufacturers and retailers as a major commercial event for profit. "
Translated from the French byLiliane Stevenson.
Source:CHURCHES OF ASIA