With the holiday season right around the corner, if we’re already breaking out the hot chocolate and the candy canes we may as well bring up the man of the hour: Santa Claus! The idea of Santa has been around for as long as most of us can remember. That warm smile, that jolly laugh – we all have our own ideas about what the “big red man” looks and acts like. Even though we all have different perspectives, the one thing that continually seems to unite our visions of him is the kindness and willingness to give that embodies the idea of “Santa.” This selfless giving nature, that kids are taught from a young age, plants that seed of giving in their minds and influences them to give throughout their lives in the same way that “Santa” did to them. The thought of Santa leaves a warm glow in the minds of children who remember how they felt each year when they received selfless gifts of love from someone who they’d never met, and positively influences them to be givers as well.
Almost every kid remembers waking up and running as fast as they can down the stairs and to the tree, where there are sure to be magical gifts from the man called “Santa.” The feeling of joy that erupts in their hearts when they excitedly burst downstairs to find these loving gifts stays with them forever. Each time children feel this happiness, it plants the idea that the spirit of the holidays are for giving and love and though that idea can still be taught without the help of a magical man from the north, his essence makes the theme a little clearer to children.
When I asked some of my friends what their thoughts were about Santa, they responded pretty similarly, saying that the idea of him fosters the spirit of giving. One of my friends made a comment on how when Santa gave her presents, she realized how happy she was when she received those gifts and figured that other people would feel the same happiness if she gave them things as well. Kids aren’t dumb – most of them can figure things like that out pretty quickly. If parents are trying to teach their kids to be giving, I think its working pretty well.
Even if it’s not the express goal of our parents to teach us to be giving and they just want to put a little magic into our lives, in most circumstances I believe Santa really does help children to be more giving and kind. The spirit of giving surrounds the holiday season, but for children who can’t yet see that, Santa is one of the best ways to show them. Just remember this holiday season; be as giving as your own Santa wants you to be.