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Kids: Santa Is Fake But Christmas Is Real
Charting Course ^ | 12/21/2014 | Steve Berman

Posted on 12/22/2014 4:25:56 AM PST by lifeofgrace


How’s this for an explanation of Santa Claus:

Santa and Mrs. Claus have a twelve-thousand square foot mansion at the North Pole, heated by geothermal power.  The North Pole complex boasts an electrical generation system which directly extracts unlimited electricity from the Earth’s magnetic field for lights and equipment.  Santa’s workshop maintains two million square feet of warehouse space (reaching 30 stories underground with a cubic volume well exceeding’s North American 17 million square foot capacity) and an advanced production facility that combines robotics with elf-based manufacturing.

The entire facility is hidden beneath the Arctic Ocean, under almost 14,000 feet of icy seawater.

Santa’s sleigh has a carbon fiber shell protected by a carbon-carbon heat shield able to withstand over 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit.  Its laminar flow properties allows hypersonic flight to cover massive distances in just one night.  Contrary to popular belief, the reindeer are just there for show.  Nobody but Santa and the elves really know how the sleigh’s engines work, but suffice to say that the Air Force and NASA would love to get their hands on Fat Force One’s engine design.

As for how Santa carries all the toys at once, perhaps he uses a TARDIS.

My oldest son is a bit technical, and asks questions like “how does Santa fit down the chimney?  There’s no way it’s big enough for a fat guy like him and he’d get stuck.”  I don’t have a ready response for that, and trying to explain gallons of Vaseline and a corset to a five year-old is beyond my powers of persuasion.

Or maybe you just have to believe.

What do you tell your kids about Santa?

Me?  I am a hopeless prude who ruins my kids’ innocent childhood.

I tell them there is no Santa.  I tell them at the youngest age they can understand it.

No, Virginia, we don’t believe in Santa.

You can believe in Santa if you want.  Not that there’s anything wrong with that.  If you want to regale your youngsters with stories of Santa sliding down the chimney with a sack of gifts to leave under your tree, before snacking on your milk and cookies, that’s your business.

If you want your kids to believe that is really NORAD tracking the sleigh, go for it.

There is no Santa because to believe in Santa Claus, my kids have to believe in magic.  I don’t want my kids believing in magic, because there is no magic.  Nothing we see in the world is magic.  Magic is nothing but raw superstition and fantasy.  We all live in reality, and my kids need to know the difference between reality and fantasy.

Santa Claus is fantasy.  An invention.  A product.  A character birthed in advertising and sustained by our insatiable addiction to buying stuff.  Santa and his entire universe of Santa-land, populated by Mrs. Claus, elves, Rudolph and the supporting cast of flying reindeer—Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, and Blitzen—they’re all made-up.  Nothing about them is real.

Believing in the “elf on the shelf” is deceiving yourself.  And your kids.

Reality is mom and dad giving presents and stuffing the stockings over the fireplace.  My kids know this.

And guess what?  It hasn’t ruined Christmas.  Not one iota.  My kids look forward to Christmas, sing carols, open Christmas cards, and love their gifts like any other youngsters.  And at five and four years old, they know Santa isn’t real.

To me, it’s really important to tell children the truth.  There’s no substitute for it.  At some point, every parent who tells a child that Santa uses magic to deliver presents (especially parents in apartments or homes with no fireplaces), have to face the questions as the kids get older:  how can Santa be real?  Eventually, every parent has to give a wink and a nod and tell their children that Santa isn’t real, or simply wink and nod and refuse to answer the question.  Every child, growing up, faces the fact that Santa isn’t real.

Childhood innocence has to end, and what kind of a monster would end it sooner than it has to?

I don’t tell my kids there’s no Santa to end their innocence, but to protect it.

Telling children to believe in Santa Claus sets them up to be disappointed later.  It betrays their innocence by feeding them an obvious lie.  Believing in Santa guarantees that one day children will be stripped of that innocent belief and learn that it’s a lie.

Telling my kids that Santa is what he really is—a story—means they’ll never be disappointed by that lie.  Knowing the truth doesn’t strip them of innocence.  It preserves their innocence for the really important things.  Believing in Santa, magic, the Tooth Fairy (and fairies in general), is believing myths and lies.  How can my kids trust me to tell the truth when they’re older if I feed them a pile of lies today?

Yep, I’m an unbearable prig who has robbed my kids of their youthful play.

Or not.

I believe that it’s possible to enjoy the spirit of Christmas, and celebrate it joyfully, without all the myths and magical baggage that goes along with it.  I believe that the knowledge of the true meaning of Christmas isn’t spoiled if you lose the elves and the fat man with the white beard.  Even for little kids.

I’m sure that gives me something in common with the atheists who reject Santa, along with Christmas.  American Atheists has placed billboards in Tennessee, Missouri and Arkansas that read “Dear Santa, All I want for Christmas is to skip church!  I’m too old for fairy tales.”

Yes, I’m too old for fairy tales, even my preschoolers are too old to believe that.

I’d like to thank the atheists for making my point:  when we tell our kids that Santa is real, and that he exemplifies the spirit of Christmas, we are practicing atheism.  Practical atheism.  We are taking a day dedicated to celebrating a uniquely Christian event and making it a fairy tale.

If you’re going to tell your kids that Santa is real, when they find out he’s not, what stops them from believing that church isn’t real?  That God isn’t real?

Of course, you tell them that those fairy tales are just for kids, like the Tooth Fairy and the Easter Bunny.  They’re cute little stories that make grown-up holidays more fun for the little ones.  They’re harmless.  I suppose they could be, but they’re also false.  To me, I’m responsible for anything I tell my kids, or not tell them.  There’s plenty of truths in the world that my kids aren’t ready to hear.  But there’s no reason to feed them made-up stories and tell them they’re true.

One day, the made-up and the true have to part ways, and I want to take no chances with the truth.

Unlike the atheists, I believe in the truth of Christmas.  I believe that God sent his son, born of a virgin, to this world in the most humble circumstances.  I believe that God inspired men to write about this event hundreds of years before it happened, so we would know it’s the truth.  I believe God wants us to teach this to our children.

There’s no magic in the world like Santa uses, but there is a reality beyond the physical world.  There’s a reality deeper than fantasy, more powerful than flying reindeer, richer than Santa’s toy sack, more industrious than elves, and warmer than the firelight flickering in the windows at Santa’s house.  There’s a love deeper than gift giving, and gifts beyond simple toys.  There’s a connection among humans stronger than the bond of myth, and a joy that transcends holidays.  There’s a real peace on earth and goodwill to mankind that’s not fantasy, but fact.

I want my children to know the real power and majesty in the universe.  I don’t want them confused by myth and magic.

The real spirit of Christmas doesn’t wear a red suit.  He doesn’t ride in a sleigh or carry toys to children.  The real spirit of Christmas is the baby in swaddling clothes.  The real spirit of Christmas is a hundred million angels singing in the firmament of the heavens “Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!”

My billboard would be a bit different than the atheists.  It would say “Dear Jesus, All I want for Christmas is to skip Santa.  You’re too important for fairy tales.”


You can have your Santa Claus and sleigh.  You can have your elves at the North Pole.  You can have your flying reindeer and sacks full of toys.  You can have your naughty and nice lists.  I’ll take the Silent Night, the baby who was born into the world to die for our sins.  I’ll take the King who conquered death.  I’ll take the God who sacrificed His son for me, and I’ll take the resurrected Christ who is coming back.

Merry Christmas!

(top image credit: Shutterstock; bottom image: American Atheists billboard, with my modification)

TOPICS: Religion; Society
KEYWORDS: atheists; children; christmas; santaclaus

1 posted on 12/22/2014 4:25:56 AM PST by lifeofgrace
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To: lifeofgrace

The sleigh was all packed,
The reindeer were fed,
But Santa still knelt
By the side of the bed.

“Dear Father,” he prayed,
“Be with me tonight,
There’s much work to do,
And my schedule is tight.”

“I must jump in my sleigh
And streak through the sky,
Knowing full well
That a reindeer can’t fly.”

Santa Prays On Christmas Eve

“I will visit each household,
Before the first light,
I’ll cover the world,
And all in one night.”

“With sleigh bells a-ringing,
I’ll land on each roof,
Amid the soft clatter
Of each little hoof.”

“To get in the house
Is the difficult part,
So I’ll slide down the chimney
Of each child’s heart.”

Santa Prays On Christmas Eve

“My sack will hold toys
To grant all their wishes,
The supply will be endless,
Like the loaves and the fishes.”

“I will fill all the stockings
And not leave a track,
I’ll eat every cookie
That is left for my snack.”

“I can do all these things Lord,
Only through You,
I just need your blessing,
Then it’s easy to do.”

Santa Prays On Christmas Eve

“All this is to honor
The birth of the One,
That was sent to redeem us ...
Your most Holy Son.”

“So to all of my friends,
Least Your glory I rob,
Please Lord, remind them
Who gave me this job.”

~ Warren D. Jennings ~

2 posted on 12/22/2014 4:33:25 AM PST by Peter W. Kessler
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To: lifeofgrace

it is sad you don’t believe in the legend that is Santa Claus.

3 posted on 12/22/2014 4:35:49 AM PST by screaming eagle2 (no matter what you call it,a pre-owned vehicle,IS STILL A USED CAR!)
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To: screaming eagle2

.....based btw on St Nicholas of Mira....who it is said gave three sisters their dowerys so they could get married

4 posted on 12/22/2014 4:37:31 AM PST by screaming eagle2 (no matter what you call it,a pre-owned vehicle,IS STILL A USED CAR!)
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To: screaming eagle2

Thank you, and threw it into their stockings which were drying by the fire, btw.

St. Nicholas is in the historical record, Santa Claus was a real person. OK, so the story changed a wee bit on the way, but I don’t know why people agonize over this.

There are real problems in the world to worry about.

5 posted on 12/22/2014 5:01:12 AM PST by jocon307
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To: lifeofgrace

Next ‘you’ will be saying that the earth is round!
What a killjoy that author is!

6 posted on 12/22/2014 5:17:00 AM PST by moose07 ( Santa's a Scotsman! Too many Pies ,not enough exercise ,of course he's one of us!)
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To: jocon307

Yes, Saint Nicholas was a real person.

This author is an idiot.

7 posted on 12/22/2014 5:23:29 AM PST by Reddy (B.O. stinks)
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To: lifeofgrace

Ugh! I work with a woman who prides herself in the fact that all she raised all five of her kids without allowing them to believe in Santa. All five of her kids now have kids of their own, and this woman’s grandchildren believe in Santa.

8 posted on 12/22/2014 5:24:20 AM PST by goodwithagun (My gun has killed fewer people than Ted Kennedy's car.)
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To: Reddy

I am inclined to agree, however in a weird way, I think the author does have a point to be made to Christian parents . Telling children this fantastic tale only to have it outed as a myth later on, can that hurt a child’s belief in God?

I would probably just want to venerate the real Saint Nicholas story, which is far more humble, and of course the Son of God, for whom the day is actually named.

9 posted on 12/22/2014 5:31:36 AM PST by Viennacon
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To: lifeofgrace

My 4 year old knows it is a story and we have read about the historical St Nick. She still enjoys reading The Night Before Christmas and Rudolf the Red Nose Reindeer, but she knows they are fiction just like lots of other books and movies. She is still a happy and content little girl that gets excited at Christmas.

10 posted on 12/22/2014 5:40:59 AM PST by she geek
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To: Viennacon

I personally can’t stand the modern santa and I do know that my mother’s collection of them that were all over the house does have a bit to do with it, but Santa gives us nothing. Everything we have, to the breath we take, is a gift from God alone. Is santa a false idol? If Jesus were to return today and ask a three or four year old child He loves why Christmas is so much fun, how does He view the probable answer?

How can you teach that Jesus gave His life by using things as gifts? When a child sees the baby in the manger and sees the crucifix, that life story is etched into their minds. Which lesson should we be ingraining into their memories? Giving should be sacrificial to the child as it is for us. As it was for the best example of human giving in the New Testament, the old woman who gave all her coins to God.

When God judged Israel, He judged every individual. The child for gathering the wood, the father for making the fire, and the mother for making the cakes cooked for the false gods. Just saying.

As for Saint Nicholas, he was a good man and his story should be told as SAINT Nicholas. What is wrong with the word saint? It is a holy gift, a name written in the book of life and hated by Satan.

Stop letting the world dictate how we celebrate a holiday, a holy day, especially in a time when our babies are growing up and will indeed need to know in truth that the promise of “Peace On Earth” will actually be fulfilled when the baby in the manger returns to rule the world in righteousness and justice as the Great King. No santa can come close to that hope.

11 posted on 12/22/2014 6:29:09 AM PST by huldah1776
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To: she geek

That’s what we did. I told my daughter Santa was just a story, but one based in history as there was a real St. Nicholas who lived many years ago an gave gifts to needy children. She enjoyed playing pretend, just like any child would, and we would read stories about Santa and his elves and reindeer, and even leave cookies out for him, but she always knew it was a make believe game like the Easter bunny. I guess it also helped that her birthday fell on Christmas because her main focus of the day was a celebration of a child’s birth, which is much easier to tie into the birth of the Christ child.

Santa was part of the childish fun of Christmas and it did not ruin her psyche knowing he wasn’t real. Many parents berated us for not letting her think he was real, but I prefer to be as honest as possible with my daughter. Imagination is a strong force in kids and we didn’t have to lie to her to make Christmas fun or magical.

12 posted on 12/22/2014 7:06:50 AM PST by two134711
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To: lifeofgrace; GeronL
Telling children to believe in Santa Claus sets them up to be disappointed later. It betrays their innocence by feeding them an obvious lie. Believing in Santa guarantees that one day children will be stripped of that innocent belief and learn that it’s a lie.

If it's all about telling truths and exposing them to reality at a young age, tell them every month just how much money THEY owe the national government to pay of THEIR share of the debt. Tell them that the adults of today WON'T be paying their own share of the debt and that the kids' share will actually be much higher than the "equal amount for all" figure.

13 posted on 12/22/2014 7:57:49 AM PST by a fool in paradise (Shickl-Gruber's Big Lie gave us Hussein's Un-Affordable Care act (HUAC).)
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