December 25, 2003

Santa Claus

I'm a firm believer in Santa Claus. I love the tradition and all he stands for. I love seeing Santa at the mall or in the park or wherever you run across him. I think Santa is great.

The other night we were sitting around talking about Santa Claus. The city of Torrance has a very cool tradition where Santa gets together with the police department. They set up a sleigh on a flatbed trailer, and Santa drives from neighborhood to neighborhood, stopping in front of houses for all of the children on the block to come and visit. Santa had come by the night before we arrived.

We got to talking about different Santa traditions and the famous "Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus" letter came up. This brilliant letter written so many years ago holds true even today. It encapsulates my belief in Santa and Christmas and all of the good things of the season. Click below to read the text of the original letter.

Virginia, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the scepticism of a sceptical age. They do not believe except they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's, are little. In this great universe of ours, man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus! It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginias. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The external light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies. You might get your papa to have men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if you did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive of imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.

You tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest mean, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived could tear apart. Only faith, poetry, love romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, Virginia, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.

No Santa Claus! Thank God! he lives and lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay 10 times 10,000 years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

[from here]

Posted by Shelby at December 25, 2003 10:31 PM