XVIII: modern

The modern world wrecks it all again.

And today too we can feel that the emblems of Christmas around us are reminiscent of past forms in which the Eternal, manifesting in the outer world, was wont to be symbolised. Certain it is that in the second half of December at the present time, when we go out into the streets of a great city and look at the lights that are intended to be invitations into the houses to celebrate the Christmas Festival, our aesthetic sense must be pained by displays of so-called Christmas goods, while inventions out of keeping with Christmas trees and Christmas symbols whiz past — motor cars, electric tramcars and the like. These phenomena, as experienced today, are utterly at variance with each other. We feel this still more deeply when we realise what the Christmas Festival has become for many of those who want to be regarded in the great cities as the representatives of modern culture. It has become a festival of presents, a festival in which little remains of the warmth and profound depth of feeling which in a past by no means far distant surrounded this most significant season. [Source.]

And these days, all the children’ wish-lists are filled with ahrimanic gadgets (or so I’ve read, I don’t actually know). Tramcars? He should have seen the LED-lights everywhere. — LED raindeers? I ask him. He shakes his head in disbelief. — It’s almost too much even for me. But, then, I like the darkness interspersed only with occasional, more subtle lights.