Halloween is an opportunity waiting to be seized; not only to let our imaginations run free but as a meeting of minds. Originally celebrating summer’s end, over time — as holidays are wont to do — it got hijacked became more. Having long been a festival of the dead & now the lead-in to All Saints’ Day & All Souls’ Day, those whose Eve this is are a hallowed bunch. Always a celebration of spirits, as cultures merged, it also became spiritual. It’s marvelous mesh of ancient & religious traditions dates back to the pre-Christian Celtic calendar since its year ended on 31 October, the eve of Samhain (pronounced SOWin); celebrated with religious & harvest rites together. Samhain is also the name for November in the modern Scots Gaelic and Irish languages.
Consistently a time to celebrate harvest & honor the dead, All Hallows’ Eve is also about the protection of the living. For many, this night is a time to face fears, literal as well as figurative, & we’ll never make the most of these mortal lives without that willingness. Many who are more conservative in their beliefs cite religion as cause to ban or boycott Halloween but even Christmas & Easter have each been banned for religious reasons. When we recognize Religion as the human construct with which we grapple huge Truths, its varied forms & extreme fallibility make sense if still maddening saddening. Any exploration of truth should have no — & needs no — boundaries. I do believe in an ultimate Truth but that very belief dictates more possibilities encompassed by such an origin than we can imagine.
Like anything, this holiday’s what you make it thus its traditions should be afforded respect & understood rather than feared. Celebrating strictly from an occult perspective is dangerous, given the forces at play, but intention comes into play too. Trying to eliminate or avoid any occult associations becomes equally dangerous by ignoring very real powers that be & peddling fear. We’re creatures that require balance, living in a world striving to maintain that balance so it’s extremes we ought to be wary of. The more I understand of God, the less I find it possible to fear anything. A foundation of faith needs to foster appreciation for all we humans have wrought not to mention all that exists beyond us.
True to the spirit of this holiday, El Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) represents a mixture of Christian devotion with Pre-Hispanic traditions & beliefs. The result of Catholic Spaniards & the native Aztecs in what has since become Mexico influencing each other, it continues to incorporate other cultures. Every culture in its own time & distinct fashion has come to understand Truth. Whenever we try to segregate those truths or traditions, we lose much of what it truly means to be part of the human race. We are all one & most dynamic when our traditions are kept alive — in a phenomenal, thought-provoking, life- (& death-) honoring mix.
May we enjoy this hallowed eve, appreciate everyone’s pursuit of holiness & proudly honor the dead with respect for each other, our cultures & an openness to other traditions insofar as it affords us all
a Hell of a good time. 😯
“One need not be a chamber to be haunted;
One need not be a house;
The brain has corridors surpassing
~ Emily Dickinson ~
PS: Now that I’ve tricked you into thinking, here are a few treats..