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Which religions don't celebrate birthdays? - Page 2

post #21 of 28
It certainly is an interesting topic. I didn't realize that there were so many religions that don't not celebrate birthdays.

Ruthla - I think you made a good point - the issue of the celebration of the anniversaries of the birth.
post #22 of 28
Originally Posted by Tuesday View Post
I somewhat understand the rationale behind not celebrating birthdays. I've seen the scriptural quotes people use to support this belief. And I understand, "celebrating birthdays is a glorification of self, which is a form of pride. which is, of course, a sin."

I just don't understand the difference between celebrating a birthday and an anniversary or wedding? What's the difference?

I know a Jehovah's Witness woman who thinks it is abolutely horrific to recognize a child's birthday. But then she and her daughter splashed out about $50,000 on the daughter's wedding. I don't see the difference. Wedding may be considered a sacrament but how is spending $50K on a big white wedding not a "glorification of self"?

I just find this discrepancy a little hypocritcal. My son turns 6 and I make him a cake, give him two gifts and wish him Happy Birthday. That's it. How is that more sinful than a $50,000 wedding where the entire focus is on the couple all day, particularly the bride in white?

I'm not saying weddings are sinful. I just don't understand how someone can say a birthday celebration is scripturally wrong but an over-the-top wedding is not.
Yep I agree with that being hypcritical. Not having a wedding feast but having an extravagant affair where focus is on the bride is out of tune with the principal of not glorifying self.

JWs often, you can read in a brochure they have intended as material for teachers of JW children, about how the only Bdays celebrated in the bible are of evildoers... That never made sense to me either
Originally Posted by Ruthla View Post
My understanding is that it's fine to celebrate a wedding or a birth. What they don't celebrate is the ANNIVERSARIES of those events. The events themselves are worth celebrating- things that pretty much happen only once in a lifetime. I don't know how they'd respond to an invitation for a Bar or Bat Mitzvah- if they'd see that as a "coming of age celebration" and appropriate to attend, or as a "glorified birthday party" that isnt' appropriate to attend.

When my friends were over the day after my birthday, DD2 lost a baby tooth. She's 13 and it was her last baby tooth (as confirmed by the dentist at her last checkup.) My friend (the one who doesn't celebrate birthdays) was SO excited about that tooth! More so than I was even! So I think that maybe, by not celebrating "artificial" celebrations, they're more in tune with "natural" events that occur during your lifetime.
Its been 10 years and things with JWs change in terms of "lifestyle" doctrine so this may be wrong. But back in my day you could not attend any sort of celebration that was part of a pagan (non-JW) religion. So the Bar Mitzvah's out. I remember sneaking out to go to a friends funeral in a Catholic church in my 7th grade year. Got in trouble for it too.
post #23 of 28
My experience with JWs is that they do not attend other people's houses of worship. They will send a gift or attend a party afterwards to mark the event.
post #24 of 28
Wow, this thread is old....
post #25 of 28
BUT, it's so interesting and I didn't know that some religion didn't celebrate birthdays! I'm glad that this thread surfaced again.
post #26 of 28
I agree, it's interesting to see the different reason(ing)s for not celebrating birthdays.

Still, in the context of Christianity I'd consider it "going over the top". As opposed to "celebrating self" you could also focus on "being thankful for your life, family, friends, ...".

I can't really speak for other faiths, of course, but I'm friends with a "cultural Muslim" family in Germany (mom grew up Catholic) and they did celebrate birthdays.

More and more I get the impression that being "fundamentalist" (of whatever religion or conviction) seems to foster the attitude that anything with a chance of "being fun" is either "immoral", "sinful", "unhealthy", "wasteful", or "..." (fill with negative adjective of your choice) and therefore undesirable.

(Sorry for the snarkiness - but only a little. )
post #27 of 28
Yep. Old thread. Just wanted to say, though, that we have some friends who don't celebrate birthdays. They don't belong to a group that doesn't celebrate, though. In fact, they used to be part of our church, before they moved, and EVERYONE but them "did" birthdays.

So, maybe it's just their family, and not because of their religion...
post #28 of 28
I've recently become aware of JW's beliefs, as my ds plays with a little girl whose family is JW. They are very sweet, very aware of their dd's upbringing, and generally very conscious. As customary with their faith, they don't do bdays. They do have a big party for their anniversary, and shower their dd with gifts, and each other then, a lot like our xmas.
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