I don’t know too much about Halloween. In fact, I’m one of those people that hide under the covers or half close my eyes when watching scary movies let alone investigating a supposedly scary day. But admittedly (perhaps because now I have a young son), I’ve gotten really into Halloween and autumn in general over the past couple years.
I decided to look up the ancient origins of Halloween and found this website that says Halloween’s origins date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain. The Celts, who lived 2,000 years ago in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom and northern France, celebrated their new year on November 1. This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death. Spooky huh? Apparently (as the website goes on to detail), Celts believed that on the night before the New Year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred. Now whether this is all true or not, you have to admit it is absolutely fascinating and somewhat interesting for those of us who relish a great story.
Beyond the origins of Halloween, it’s incredible to see what a commercial holiday it has turned into, especially here in the U.S. Or even to see the traditions and superstitions it has left us with. Trick-or-treating anyone? I also have to fess up that I ran across a black cat in my neighborhood the other day and the unsettling thought of having bad luck did cross my mind. What about dressing in costumes or walking under ladders? We are full of traditions and superstitions, some fun, some scary and some just plain silly. But best of all, it’s the spirit this holiday creates within each of us to continue age old traditions and connect with both our past and future.
What about you all? Do you have any traditions, superstitions or thoughts on the origins of Halloween? I’m giving away a $10.00 Amazon or B&N gift card to one lucky commenter so please leave your emails! You have until 11:59 p.m. EST on October 31st to be entered into the random drawing.