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Gentleman's Philosophy

The Joy of the Holidays

Merry Christmas gents! It’s Max from The Young  Gentleman’s Guide here. So, I just watched a video this morning by a YouTube channel known as The Warp Zone, which I’ll include a link to here. https://youtu.be/Ruyomacc_5 

It’s pretty funny, and it actually shines a bit of light on where many of the traditions of Christmas come from. I’m sure it’s a bit more complicated than what the video will have you believe, but it seems that they get their point across. But today, I’m going to talk about all the holidays that are celebrated around this time; Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Boxing Day, and  the like. While the aforementioned video makes it seem that the Christians essentially stole many Pagan winter traditions as a ploy to subjugate the Roman people into the Christian faith, I’m willing to bet that that was only part of the Christians’ plan (I could be completely wrong about that, but I’m an optimist, cut me some slack). Now, it’s worth mentioning that I am a devout Catholic who spends this time celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ the savior. And while this is how I choose to celebrate during the winter season, there are many other nations or religions that celebrate it in different ways. Now I’m not going to act like I know every single tradition that goes with every single winter holiday, because I don’t. However there is one common theme I’ve seen throughout these various holidays which is what I want to focus on today: the feeling of peace, love, and joy.

Whether you’re celebrating Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or any other holiday in December, I think we can all agree that around this general time of year, most people set aside said time to be a bit nicer to people, enjoy time with their families, or simply have some fun with people out in the snow (if you even have snow where you live). There are even some symbols and traditions that are more synonymous with the winter season, not specifically Christmas, like snowmen, snowball fights, gift giving, sledding down the hills, and decorating our homes. The winter season is a time of happiness, generosity, peace, and forgiveness. Of course, there are always those people who argue that this time of year is just a huge commercial riot facilitated by big corporations, and while that is true to a certain extent, that’s not to say it’s all bad. To a point, it’s that sense of commercialism that can facilitate the good feelings that are associated with the season, whether it be a gift for a family member, a card to send to an old friend, or even a pair of gloves so you can spend more time out on the snow. Obviously, there should be a line drawn, so as not to let that commercialism take over, but now we’re starting to get off-topic. What’s important is that this time of the year is a time set aside for family, friends, and colleagues to settle their differences, share a drink, or be a little bit nicer to people. So whether you’re celebrating Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Festivus, or simply enjoying the falling snow, take a minute to call someone. It could be a family member, a friend, an old roommate, an old army buddy, or even a loose acquaintance, and just tell them “Hey, you’re awesome, I’m blessed to have in my life!” Just that one little gesture will light up someone’s holiday, and it will only make your holiday that much better. In any case, gents, I wish you all a merry Christmas, and a happy New Year!

Categories
Gentleman's Philosophy

Why Art is Important to a Young Gentleman

Morning gents! To start this post, I need to ask this question. What is art? If you ask that question to a hundred different people, you’ll likely get a hundred different answers. The way I define art, however, is as follows: any medium that allows someone to express emotion outside of natural human expression, like speech and natural movement. This is a large umbrella of media, including visual art, music, dance, theater, photography, even film, architecture and cooking. Art is arguably the biggest defining feature of any nation’s culture, and the United States is no different. Our nation’s culture has been defined by great musicians like Louis Armstrong and John Williams, film directors like Stanley Kubrick, George Lucas, and Steven Spielberg, and overall creative icons like Walt Disney. However, in today’s society, U.S. culture is also being defined by something else; it has practically become taboo for men past a certain age to express any sort of emotion other than stoicism and bravery. Any man who shows any kind of fear, sadness, or any other natural human emotion is seen as weak, or the beta male (which likely will deserves a post in its own right explaining the absurdity of that idea). So in a culture where men are seen as weak and “not real men” for naturally expressing emotion, studying art is starting to become more and more important to a young man. While a man will be harshly criticized for expressing emotion the way any human would naturally, he will be substantially less criticized for using art to express said emotion (though he may be seriously judged for practicing certain kinds of music or dance, which is just as ridiculous). So while any of you young men reading this may be made fun of or criticized for actually speaking your emotions, consider pursuing art. I’ve found my outlet in music. I have friends who are musicians, some are very skilled chefs, and other men I know are even extremely talented actors! In a society that won’t accept you if you show emotion regularly,  hopefully you can find another way to express yourself that you enjoy.

I know this post was much less formulaic than my last few posts, but I hope any of you young men reading this are able to take it to heart and find a constructive outlet to express yourself. Be sure to follow the blog and check out any of The Young Gentleman’s Guide’s’ posts. Also make sure to check out all our social media pages, send TYGG an email at younggentlemansguide@gmail.com, and let me know how any of your artistic endeavors go! Until next time, gents, this is Max from The Young Gentleman’s Guide, and I’ll see you next time!