HAPPY HALLOWEEN to One and All–Living and Dead!
Through much anticipation and revival of my spiritual bonds recently, I am so thrilled to be writing this post. It is certainly a treat to see so many people reading my posts and actually liking me on Facebook. It shows me that people do care about themselves and the world around them the same as I do! It is however a TRICK to see people not be so enthused about Halloween or Samhain as Wiccans and Pagans would call it. I say both terms.
The history of Halloween can be deciphered in various ways and traditions through time so watching The Halloween Tree on YouTube will be a great start for children to get the gist of this spooky holiday, but if you are not too keen on cartoons and animated films then try The History Channel’s Haunted History of Halloween. Remember I am not hear to bore you with details, but provide you with amazing resources.
So basically, Halloween is not an original Christian holiday, but of course when you watch Haunted History of Halloween, you will soon discover that ancient Celtic farmers used this to mark the end of the harvest and that Christian influence was used to instigate the old practices of Samhain, summer’s end. So there is a conflict, any minimal research shows this obvious friction between witchcraft/folk magic and Christianity. Halloween than is omitted in Christianity and replaced with All Saint’s Day.
So those pilgrims came over and the United States of America was born through a revolution and there was no Halloween until the Irish potato famine in the 19th century? What about those witches that died in Salem isn’t that evidence of Halloween? Salem at the time was under English Law that prohibited witchcraft so it was against the law to practice any form of witchery because it would be looked upon as acting along with the devil. The Salem Witch Trials were based on accusations made against villagers who did not attend church all the time or just was a town outcast so to speak. So no Halloween in Salem, but today there is a HUGE following of witchcraft there.
Irish immigrants being affected by the Great Famine brought over their traditions of gourd carvings and that produced the modern day value of Jack-O-Laterns. And then from there trick or treating progressed and Commercial Halloween was alive. It is noted on Wikipedia, I know many do not trust this source, but in the reference section it shows articles written in the 1940s and 50s reporting on this popular idea of Halloween transforming and children are going to strangers homes and asking for treats. Which in the History Channel’s film it reveals that poor people would go around and pray for deceased loved ones’ souls in exchange of treats. The 1950s was certainly a time for rebellion in the youth’s eyes, rise of color television, and the last drops of modernism lingered.
Today, with the power of film, advertising, and the factor of money, Halloween has greatly transformed to being more about commercial tidings as oppose to the spiritual redemption of honoring the dead. With all the horror films and dramatization of witchcraft no wonder why some people lose sight of real Halloween. They are too busy working, cleaning, and just now in a post-modern society are living rather unaware and ignorant. Halloween in the eyes and minds of many grown-ups has been deemed a child’s holiday. So why celebrate Halloween?
Celebrating Halloween is not just for kids like commercial advertising has manipulated it to become. Yes for children it is fun to pretend by dressing up (not quite for the same intent as the Druids did back in the day), but for an adult knowing about the traditional ancient ways of Halloween will enable to you to better connect to the natural cycle of the seasons. Something children cannot quite comprehend yet so Halloween is masked with fun and games for association. YOU can enjoy the games too, but honoring the roots of Halloween will help you communicate to future generations of why we do the things we do. Always a favorite question of youth, WHY. Parents often yell at their kids for asking why which teaches the child that knowing why isn’t really cared for, so as the child grows up he or she learns to not use their higher level thinking caps and ask questions about the world around them. But asking why is still considered the most important question that as adults we still need to ask. Why is the government cutting taxes, why are schools getting rid of art and music, and why are we not paying attention to our ancestral traditions.
When it comes to Halloween, many understand it is a time for trick or treat. But, if you sit down and take the time to understand that your ancestors and past lives are revived on this day then you will expand your consciousness even further. Life (treat) and death (trick) are natural cycles and it is about understanding the balance of this cycle on Halloween. Since we are humans, forgetfulness is certainly part of our lives and so this holiday has been celebrated so that we can remember about the life and death cycle as the seasonal world transitions from living vibrantly to becoming hollow and ghostly. This time is often described as the veil between life and death in being the thinnest. As souls cross over, we should be ready to listen to them.
Halloween is a holiday that has been established not just for candy, costumes, and parties but a day for us to rejoice and realign ourselves with the past, present, and future.
“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” – George Santayana
Dead people had lives too and it is our job as the living to ask what can we learn from the dead in the past and apply it to our present so we can better our future. All part of Hallowe’en, the greatest reminder of the year.