For me, religious festivals and celebrations have become an important way to teach my children about how we can transform living with diversity from the superficial ‘I eat ethnic food’, to something dignified, mutually respectful and worthwhile.
Religious celebrations, and the good will, high spirits and generosity that mark them, are wonderful occasions for understanding the potential of 'everyday multiculturalism', and how people from diverse faiths can connect and show they care, rather than go down parallel, sometimes hostile, roads.
FEAST, n. A festival. A religious celebration usually signalized by gluttony and drunkenness, frequently in honor of some holy person distinguished for abstemiousness. In the Roman Catholic Church feasts are "movable" and "immovable," but the celebrants are uniformly immovable until they are full. In their earliest development these entertainments took the form of feasts for the dead; such were held by the Greeks, under the name _Nemeseia_, by the Aztecs and Peruvians, as in modern times they are popular with the Chinese; though it is believed that the ancient dead, like the modern, were light eaters. Among the many feasts of the Romans was the _Novemdiale_, which was held, according to Livy, whenever stones fell from heaven.