Is Santa Claus Real?
Every December, I delve into the mind of the wise and noble Linus Van Pelt, as I perform the role in the annual children’s show my drama club performs for the elementary schools in the district. Linus, the beloved “Peanuts” cartoon character who, when asked, tells Charlie Brown the meaning of Christmas by reciting the Bible’s story of the birth of Christ, is tenacious in his conviction that there exists a powerful entity who protects humanity. But Linus’s philosophical understanding of the world goes much deeper than his small frame, and tiny voice would suggest. As a child I wasn’t ever completely convinced in the validity of anything that couldn’t be proven, and as I “became” Linus each year I felt like a fraud. So, what I don’t know is whether or not I will ever allow myself to accept on faith the power of Linus’s “entity”, and as a first lesson I have decided to challenge myself with a simpler problem. Is Santa Claus real?
While all science suggests it is highly improbable that a huge, old man with a long white beard is traipsing down people’s chimneys carrying gifts, I find the goodness this man spreads impossible to be manufactured by a toy company. Sure, no man can live at the North Pole where temperatures range from -45 to -15 degrees Fahrenheit, and it can be argued that Saint Nick would never have enough time to deliver gifts to the near 2.1 billion “Santa believers”. And the chances are indeed slim, that a man would be able to break into every single one of those houses without being attacked by angry dogs, burnt in a fireplace or given away by an intruder alarm. But before the existence of Santa can be completely debunked, there is much more to be considered. After all, isn’t Santa’s legacy about more than waking up and finding presents under the tree? How can all of that emotion you feel inside be “imaginary”? Maybe it’s better to keep believing in the “illusion” as long as it allows me to be optimistic. There are plenty of things that are real, that we can’t see. Do we have to see him to understand his message? Every day I find that there are things I don’t know for sure, but somehow it doesn’t matter. If I strive to keep my head high, I will be excited for what is to come in my life, proactively seek contentment and I will know that each day is what you make of it. Though I still don’t know if Santa Claus is real, like Linus, I will continue to wait for him. And if you know the answer, don’t tell me. I’d rather not know.