Friday, December 23, 2016

Hitler and Christmas.

This is the reason that it is really hard to believe Richard Carrier's argument that "Hitler was a Christian."

Hitler and the Nazis hated Christmas.

//One of the most striking features of private celebration in the Nazi period was the redefinition of Christmas as a neo-pagan, Nordic celebration. Rather on focus on the holiday’s religious origins, the Nazi version celebrated the supposed heritage of the Aryan race, the label Nazis gave to “racially acceptable” members of the German racial state.

According to Nazi intellectuals, cherished holiday traditions drew on winter solstice rituals practiced by “Germanic” tribes before the arrival of Christianity. Lighting candles on the Christmas tree, for example, recalled pagan desires for the “return of light” after the shortest day of the year.

Scholars have called attention to the manipulative function of these and other invented traditions. But that’s no reason to assume they were unpopular. Since the 1860s, German historians, theologians and popular writers had argued that German holiday observances were holdovers from pre-Christian pagan rituals and popular folk superstitions.

So because these ideas and traditions had a lengthy history, Nazi propagandists were able to easily cast Christmas as a celebration of pagan German nationalism. A vast state apparatus (centered in the Nazi Ministry for Propaganda and Enlightenment) ensured that a Nazified holiday dominated public space and celebration in the Third Reich.//

This didn't happen without Hitler's approval.

Hitler hated Christmas. According to his press secretary, Otto Dietrich:

"Here in Munich he lived the life of a bachelor who did not care for any sort of family life. For example, on Christmas Eve he would give all of his followers leave to visit their families; then he and his adjutant Bruckner would go to motoring through the countryside because he wished to escape the Christmas atmosphere, which he thoroughly disliked. No amount of talk could change his attitude in this matter.” (p. 150.)

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