I heard this Peter Tosh song on Reggae Vibrations, another favorite WTJU show, while I was loading presents under the Christmas Tree (I was streaming the show from the archives as I'd missed its actual air time). It brought an introspective atmosphere to the culmination of consumerism and stress that surrounds Christmas, inviting reflection and prayer in my moment of privilege as I distributed our gifts. This holiday plays an unsteady rhythm across a variety of families and individuals, christian and not, and has deeply harmful and meaningful affects, alike. I've centered myself on the idea of Solstice––the growth of the light in the darkest season––and a time to refill the coffers, if possible. But I always feel conflicted about perpetuating the materialism and am keenly aware of the impact: the bar set too high for so many by the privilege of a few, the back breaking grind on workers, the heart breaking reality for those who can barely manage the day to day, let alone some big cultural spending event, the anxiety for those who are trying to maintain family tradition but not go overboard or off balance. The aesthetic of Christmas is everywhere, flashing in the faces of a huge percentage of people who have no cultural or religious or personal or familial connection to the tradition. The season can bring people together yet finds people at their loneliest. This song, the cadence of it, the commitment to an enlightened spiritualism, ripped me open a little. I'm grateful. This day is a heart beat that we all share, regardless of what we might have or have not, do or do not. May we bonded in one love.
Creation by Peter Tosh