How badly do you need to chop down forests?

November 22, 2017 by Joshua
in Nature

Last January I took pictures of some of the Christmas trees people threw out in my neighborhood. Why do we chop down so many trees just to put up for a couple weeks?

You might say to celebrate a Christmas tradition.

It only occurred to me later that if Christmas celebrates Jesus’s birth in Bethlehem, then a wintry holiday with a fir tree must have different origins. The more I looked up the origins of a Christmas tree, it seems rooted in pagan holidays and goes back a few centuries, not millennia.

My point is that traditions change with the time, however eternal we consider them. The pine tree tradition came from a colder climate than Bethlehem, Israel.

Well, the climate is changing and chopping down trees is contributing to that change. I wonder if it’s time to change the tradition to decrease climate change.

Do we need to chop down all these trees? If the point is to celebrate Jesus’s birth, how about something relevant to him and his birth rather than an irrelevant pagan ritual from a different part of the world and a different time?

Then we could let the trees grow into forests.

Last year’s trees

Here are pictures of last year’s trees, on their way to landfills after being used only a few weeks. They could have stayed in the ground and people could have celebrated Christianity without the pagan symbolism.

New traditions are waiting for us to create them.

As I remember, I took all these pictures on one block and Manhattan has a lot of blocks. Sanitation picks up the trees weekly and people threw out others for weeks before and after. And there are a lot of Americans beyond Manhattan.

EDIT, December 26, 2017, 11:00am: Christmas was not even 12 hours past, and already I saw trees being disposed of. Here they are:

December 26, 2017 trees out for disposal

December 26, 2017 trees out for disposal


Now back to last season’s trees. Enjoy chopping down forests for your pagan tradition!


Read my weekly newsletter

On initiative, leadership, the environment, and burpees

We won't send you spam. Unsubscribe at any time. Powered by ConvertKit

Leave a Reply

Sign up for my weekly newsletter