Since time immemorial there have been winter stories. Even before the original Christmas story the winter time has been a time for tales of heart warming sentiment, magic and unbounded imagination.
No doubt the short winter days and long nights for civilisations distant from the equator were conducive to storytelling in days of old. With no light but that of the fire and with weather too severe for outdoor pursuits there would be little else to entertain.
These winter stories (the ones that last anyway) usually have in common the natural movement of mans mind toward higher things. Courage, chivalry, love and self sacrifice. Awakening a sense of higher and better things. In short the winter tales of old – and those of more recent times – are visionary. They inspire the awareness to a higher vision of selfless love, happiness and joy. They take the hearer to a better place of peace and harmony, even though there are usually many trials to face before arrival! These stories give hope, a commodity of no small value.
In the past few millennia the story of the great Christian Master has encircled the globe. His way of love and non-resistance has been an inspiration to millions.
More recently of course the fictional character (isn’t he?) Santa Clause has taken centre stage in the realm of Christmas stories. And of course the story telling media has become more complex – cinema, television, DVD, streaming video.
However every successful Christmas story adheres to the original formula. They always guide the vision of the recipient towards higher things: Love, Peace, Selflessness and the hope of better things. Think of classic movies like Holiday Inn or more recent movies like the Santa Clause. Always there is a hope of something better and the overcoming of obstacles by selfless means to attain it. And it turns out that this way is not a chore but is the natural inclination of man. The only way to obtain lasting satisfaction and that warm snugly feeling in our hearts.
So as you watch all the great Christmas movies this year look out for the ancient formula. Look for the guidance towards the higher things. Even better get out a book sit comfortably and let the words transport you. Let the vision and hope that they bring inspire you to loving action or at least a warmer demeanour. Go on give it a try.
The author is the owner / operator of the merry-christmas-story.com web site which promotes modern day Christmas Story.