all saints day, america, ancient, baltane, beliefs, celebrations, celtics, christianity, church, day of the dead, druids, fantasy, feast of all saints, festivals, folklore, halloween, harvest, history, holiday, holy day, ireland, jesus, lughnasadh, october 31, oimelc, paganism, religion, rites, rituals, samhain, satan, satanism, scotland, superstition, traditions, victor salinas, witches
Up until 1500 the word “hallow” referred to a holy person and so Halloween was named as the night before All Saints’ Day.
In pre-Christian Ireland and Scotland, the Celtic year ended on October 31, the eve of Samhain, and was celebrated with both religious and harvest rites.
The Celts believed that at the time of Samhain, more so than any other time of the year, the ghosts of the dead were able to mingle with the living.
The Church traditionally held a vigil on All Hallows’ Eve when worshippers would prepare themselves with prayers and fasting prior to the feast day itself.
The day is thought to have come from ancient rituals of Celtics in which they would light bonfires and dress up in costume to scare off ghosts that came to earth.
Samhain was known in Ireland as the “Lord of Darkness”. The Druid religion was practiced by ancient Celtic tribes that populated Ireland and parts of Europe.
For some, the fears associated with Halloween go beyond fake-scary ghosts and into genuine spiritual warfare for the souls of the innocent.
According to sparse records, around 800 AD, the Pope mandated November 1st the “Feast of All Saints” and November 2nd the “Feast of All Souls.”
As darkness falls and families light their pumpkin Jack-o’-lanterns, they are, perhaps unknowingly, repeating the ancient traditions of honoring the dead and marking the beginning of the ‘dark half’ of the year.
In this episode of The Graucast, author Victor Salinas and editor Leigh Anne Cassell discuss the conflict of religion and Halloween.
History shows that there has been a long, rocky relationship between Christianity and Halloween. The Puritans, for example, were known for outlawing the holiday; this banning was also the case for Christmas.
Halloween (also Hallowe’en) is thought to have derived from a pre-Christian festival known as Samhain (pronounced “Sah-wen”) celebrated among the Celtic peoples.
Americans today associate candy, late-night pranks and carved pumpkins with Oct. 31, but the spooky holiday has ancient roots that trace back to the other side of the Atlantic Ocean.
I like it as more of a handcrafted, neighborhoody children’s frolic, rather than an excuse to litter yards with icky vinyl inflatables and for adults to wear embarrassing, shoddy costumes.
Halloween is one of the world’s oldest holidays, dating back to pagan times. But it is celebrated today by more people in more countries than ever before.
For years, nefarious little shits have been trying to have their way with it and make it awful, because some people just want to watch the world burn.
Straddling the line between fall and winter, plenty and paucity, life and death, Halloween is a time of celebration and superstition.
This is part of the History channel’s series on the origins of the great American holidays we celebrate.
For further study, trivia and facts, we refer you to the WIKIPEDIA:HALLOWEEN page for starters.