REASON

The heart has its reasons
Of which reason knows nothing.
Blaise Pascal

A member of the Taliban scrawled “Throw reason to the dogs” on the walls of the Ministry of Justice in Kabul. I get that.

All too often, reason keeps us from listening to our hearts.  I think the beauty of life lies in the myths we create.  Take Santa Claus.  Everyone KNOWS he is a fictional character we created in the nineteenth century to whip children into shape and convince them that obeying us would give them marvelous rewards.

It doesn’t take huge intelligence to figure out that if Santa were as big, fat and jolly as everyone says he is, he couldn’t possibly fit into a chimney much less a standard front door what with that sleigh he drags behind him and all those reindeer defecating in the snow. (And you KNOW that’s what they must do if they nibble on the cakes and cookies Mrs. Santa gives them)  A child of four could figure out that Santa could not possibly read all the letters children send him and actually decide who gets what on Christmas morning.

And what about all those clones we see on the street, at parties and ringing bells to make us give them money?  How did Santa manage that?  Did he form some kind of club with admission requirements (weight, girth, long white beard; jolly laugh required).

The truth is that reason would erase Santa Claus and I think that would constitute a criminal offense against childhood.  Way back in 1897, Virginia O’Hanlon wrote the editor of the New York Sun because her common sense told her that St Nicholas was a fraud…a tool to force a little girl like her toe the line.  This is what the editor said: “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.”

I don’t know about you, but I would hate to think my world was governed by logic and common sense.  I would not like a reality without the certainty that there is good karma, the power of love and the faith that life has a noble purpose.

Besides, where would I send my Christmas want list?