The real story comes from a love-source that cannot be understood with the intellect.
~ Mark Nepo
Four years ago, I wrote about my Grand stopping on her way out the door at the newly unwrapped foot-high Santa standing on the chest in the hall. She fingered his beard, his red velvet coat and then took her time to feel all the little presents sticking out his pockets. Gazing for as long as a four-year-old gazes, she finally looked up sideways at me and states, almost solemnly and with considerable passion, "I love that guy." And from her look, I knew she meant it down to her little toes. Her face revealing she had entered that special place of wonder and love.
She has held true to this passion for the "guy". However, now four years later, her father texts me last week saying, "She asked if Santa was real yesterday. We said, yes, he is spirit. She was quick to reply, "Good, he's spirit." Then she tells him she is relieved, as she thought it would be kind of creepy having someone in our house while we were sleeping.
My first thought was, how natural it is for her to accept the invisible and know there is more to life than what we see with our human eyes. Just because Santa is not in the flesh, not visible, does not mean he is not real. This great spirit flys through the sky on a sleigh pulled by eight tiny reindeer (an amazing feat) bringing light, joy, and love to every boy and girl. Yet, unfortunately, he does tend to become more calcified and non-existent for adults.
However, Saint Nickolas (270AD) was always intended to be more spiritual. He was known for his great generosity and gift giving. Miracles happened around him. He became a metaphor and we need to think more metaphorically.
There are many beams from the Star in the East. It just did not happen in Bethlehem. Artists, mystics of the great religions, enlighteners, higher beings in whatever form and the angels among us often were and are moved by the experience beyond bone and flesh. They leave behind their scent -- kindness, compassion, an ocean deep wisdom and most importantly, at center, each is love. The way we identify wind is when the tree bends. The way we see electricity is when we turn on a light. A reality cruises through the invisible. Everything is larger than it looks.
I love such mysteries as they are beyond my wildest understanding. So yes, Granddaughter, there is indeed a Santa Clause as you so wisely observed -- who is a magical spirit, who loves every boy and girl and lands on every rooftop with bags of joy, wonder, fierce anticipation, and heaping generosity.
Indeed, we do need to think more metaphorically as it allows many approaches with many faces. If we see it only as who we are as humans then a greater power is missed. Yet, if we see it larger, the universe is ours, mindfully and spiritually.