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Christmas: just a superficial holiday symbol
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16:35, December 25, 2008

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According to Xinhuanet.com, entering the month of December, Christmas shopping, in the eyes of various types of businesses, has already become a "grand feast." Santa Clauses, Christmas decorations, and accessories such as Christmas trees and sleighs can be seen everywhere- in super markets, shopping malls, restaurants and hotels. In China, the Christmas craze is more like a carnival for businesses.

However, reporters leaned that most young people in China are just following the Christmas fad promoted by businesses, or are just using Christmas as an excuse to get together with friends for a feast and to bond with one another and so on. To them, Christmas in China is merely a superficial holiday symbol.

"It turns out that several colleagues of mine are all free today, so we can use this occasion as a reason to have dinner together." Mr. Wang, who lives near Lugu in Beijing, told reporters, "After dinner we are also going to take a stroll in the newly opened Wanda Plaza."

We learned, most college student organizations, on Christmas Eve, will host Christmas balls and parties or organize collective activities in groups of classes. "On Christmas Eve, the class leader will buy apples and hand them out to each class member, who will then place the apple by their pillows before going to bed, hoping for a safe and sound new year," said a student of Huazhong University of Science and Technology.

Due to different cultural backgrounds, at present, Christmas in China is not as popular and well received as traditional Chinese holidays. However, it has quietly changed the lives of some people. During Christmas, Christmas gifts are exchanged between family members, friends and lovers to show their affection and love toward family, friends and loved ones.

Mr. Liu, a media professional from Beijing, received Christmas greeting text messages from his friends. He said that, "In the cold of winter, receiving greetings from friends makes me feel warm."

Li Hao, an expert with the Folklore Research Institute of the Institute of Literature, History and Philosophy of Shandong University pointed out, "Our states of mind would be more at ease if we can treat Christmas as a new phenomenon of cultural integration in the context of globalization."

"Just like China's Spring Festival and Peking Opera that are both admired and appreciated overseas, typical symbols of western culture such as Christmas and Halloween are quietly making their way over here."He added.

By People's Daily Online

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