Celebrating Christmas With An Alien Nativity!

Xhurch, a repurposed church in North Portland, has decided to take last year’s live reenactment of the Nativity one step out of the terrestrial and into a more cosmic direction, with this year’s Alien Nativity.

See full slideshow of last year’s Nativity.

Last year’s Nativity had the usual characters — Mary, Joseph, Jesus, three wise men, a sheperd, animals — but this year, the three wise men have been replaced by four aliens holding elementary particles of the universe, baby Jesus by… yourself?

“You wind up seeing a reflection of yourself, and that’s the symbolic message of nativity. Recognizing divinity and potential in yourself. And at the same time perhaps recognizing the terrestrial nature of Christ,” says Matt Henderson in this interview.

Upon first entering Xhurch, one is presented with a beautiful full-color postcard and 3-D glasses to use when passing through portals of neon light. Here is just one of many thousands of potentially brilliant images (it’s remarkable what a combination of 3-D glasses and some neon lights can do…)

As lifted from the back of the postcard:

WE ARE NOT HUMAN BEINGS HAVING A SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCE
WE ARE SPIRITUAL BEINGS HAVING A HUMAN EXPERIENCE

You can search throughout the entire universe for someone who is more deserving of your love and affection than you are yourself, and that person is not to be found anywhere. You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.

Upon entering the nativity you shall walk through the five archways of the material world. Each represents a new stage of life beginning with birth and ending in death. Since these are the only certainties in life, the meaning of the three remaining archways are your choice. While taking your journey down life’s vibrant tunnel you will see to your left the four “wise men” bearing the four molecules of life. These are carbohydrates, lipids, nucleic acids, and proteins, all of which are necessary to sustain life on Earth. Each wise man also bears a symbol on its chest representing the four elements of Fire, Water, Air, and Earth. If you look to the right you will be confronted by the therianthropic shaman figure representing a mixture of myth and tradition that have led to our current conception of Santa and his reindeer…

Suspended in the sky above is our largest Alien entity representing cosmic intelligence. In all of us, this wisom is accessible. In all of us, it is the fabric of the cosmos. We are connected to the source, but have no means of truly understanding it.

This video below says it all with local news cheesiness. This installation will be running every evening through Christmas.

Written by
Vee Hua 華婷婷

Vee Hua 華婷婷 (they/she) is a writer, filmmaker, and organizer with semi-nomadic tendencies. Much of their work unifies their metaphysical interests with their belief that art can positively transform the self and society. They are the Editor-in-Chief of REDEFINE, Interim Managing Editor of South Seattle Emerald, and Co-Chair of the Seattle Arts Commission. They also previously served as the Executive Director of the interdisciplinary community hub, Northwest Film Forum, where they played a key role in making the space more welcoming and accessible for diverse audiences.

In 2017, Vee released the narrative short film, Searching Skies — which touches on Syrian refugee resettlement in the United States — and co-organized The Seventh Art Stand, a national film and civil rights discussion series against Islamophobia. 2022 sees the release of their next short film, Reckless Spirits, which is a metaphysical, multi-lingual POC buddy comedy for a bleak new era, in anticipation of a feature film.

Vee is passionate about cultural space, the environment, and finding ways to covertly and overtly disrupt oppressive structures. They also regularly share observational human stories through their storytelling newsletter, RAMBLIN’ WITH VEE!, and are pursuing a Master’s in Tribal Resource and Environmental Stewardship under the Native American Studies Department at the University of Minnesota.

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