Monday, December 28, 2009


sent by Vinod

There is a better thing than the observance of Christmas day and that is

keeping Christmas.

Are you willing

to forget what you have done for other people, and to remember what other

people have done for you;

to ignore what the world owes you, and to think what you owe the world;

to put your rights in the background, and your duties in the middle

distance, and you chances to do a little more than your duty in the


to see that your fellow men are just as real as you are, and try to look

behind their faces to their hearts, hungry for joy;

to own that probably the only good reason for your existence is not what you

are going to get out of life, but what you are going to give;

to close your book of complaints against the management of the universe, and

look around you for a place where you can sow a few seeds of happiness-

are you willing to do these things even for a day?

Then you can keep Christmas.

Are you willing

to stoop down and consider the needs and the desires of little children;

to remember the weakness and loneliness of people who are growing old;

to stop asking how much your friends love you and ask yourself whether you

love them enough;

to bear in mind the things that other people have to bear in their hearts;

to try to understand what those who live in the same home with you really

want, without waiting for them to tell you;

to trim your lamp so that it will give more light and less smoke, and to

carry it in front so that your shadow will fall behind you;

to make a grave for your ugly thoughts, and a garden for your good thoughts,

with the gate open-

are you willing to do these things even for a day?

Then you can keep Christmas.

Are you willing

to believe that love is the strongest thing in the world-

stronger than hate, stronger than evil, stronger than death-

and that the blessed life which began in Bethlehem nineteen hundred years ago is the

image and brightness of the Eternal Love?

Then you can keep Christmas.

And if you keep it for a day, why not always?

But you can never keep it alone.

Henry Van Dyke

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