Christmas Morning Service

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Dec 26, 2011 05:05
On Christmas eve night, my colleague sent me a mail and said "You said that you wanted to have an experience of traditional British Christmas. If you want, I will take you Church tomorrow." It seemed interesting. We Japanese enjoy Christmas in Japan, but it is token one. We don't know the true meaning of it. I always ashamed that we enjoy it without deference and understanding their culture. I'm basically Buddhist, but not so developed likes most Japanese. So it is impossible to understand true meaning of Christmas and I don't want to be a Christian. However "not knowing" is not equal to "not understanding completely". I wanted to know their culture even only the surface to get along with them and to show deference them.
This morning, I went to the Church which was located near from his flat. I heard the sound of a pipe organ in front of the entrance. Although I love the sound, I don't have many opportunities to hear it. So I was excited. The Christmas morning service was started. At first, we sang a hymn with a pipe organ accompaniment. It was so sublime. I founded that this might be a main usage of pipe organ. I should not say "I love pipe organs" before visiting this situation. Then, we listened Father's talk. It was casual and sometimes elicited laughs. It was interesting and my prejudice of it was broken. I thought that the Christmas might be consistent with our Obon (御盆) or Ohigan(御彼岸) festival in Japan. Although they are not same, the concept is not so different. If my analogy is correct, the meaning of "God" might be slightly different each other. We do not take care "God" so much in Obon or Ohigan, but take care ancestors. In addition, Father often used the words "God", "Gift", and "Love". I thought that their meanings might be slightly different of our concepts, although I cannot explain in words. I'm a scientist. Modern science have been developed in western countries and historically most of scientists were Christians. Modern science is based on their culture. I thought that I should take care that there might be a discrepancy in the basic concept of words between western countries and not western countries.
Finally, we sang a few hymn and the service finished. I had an good opportunity to feel their culture.