Monday, October 31, 2011

Halloween History and Origin

Happy Halloween! Boo!

These days Halloween is a holiday to go out and have fun. Any people love to get into costumes and go have fun. Kids go trick or Treating and OD on candy. A lot of adults hold parties or attend one or more (and often OD on liquid spirits). As a good Irish-American I felt is was my duty to point out that you owe all that fun to what was originally a Celtic Holiday! So for today’s blog here is a short history of the 2nd most popular Holiday in the world.

Halloween is the one of the oldest holidays still being celebrated today. It is also one of the most popular holidays (second only to Christmas). Most of the millions of people celebrate Halloween without knowing its origins and myths, the history and facts of Halloween make the holiday more fascinating.

While many people view Halloween as a time for fun, putting on costumes, trick-or-treating, and having theme parties others view it as a time of superstitions, ghosts, goblins and evil spirits that should be avoided at all costs.

Halloween is on October 31st, the last day of the Celtic calendar and iIt was originally a holiday honoring the dead. It was called ‘All Hallows Eve’ and dates back to over 2000 years. All Hallows Eve is the evening before All Saints Day, which was created by Christians to convert pagans, and is celebrated on November 1st. The Catholic Church honored saints on this day.

There are many versions as to the origins and old customs of Halloween with some aspects remaining consistent by all. Different cultures view Halloween somewhat differently but traditional Halloween practices remain very much the same.

Halloween culture can be traced back to the Druids, a Celtic culture in Ireland, Britain and Northern Europe. Roots lay in the feast of Samhain, which was annually on October 31st to honor the dead. Samhain signifies "summers end" or November. Samhain was a harvest festival with huge sacred bonfires, marking the end of the Celtic year and beginning of a new one. Many of the practices involved in this celebration were fed on superstition.

The Celts believed the souls of the dead roamed the streets and villages at night. Since not all spirits were thought to be friendly, gifts and treats were left out to pacify the evil and ensure next years crops would be plentiful. That practice evolved into today’s trick-or-treating.

Well, however you decide to celebrate today, I hope your Halloween is filled with fun and goodies!

Live Long and Prosper….

1 comment:

Meow Opre said...

I was browsing for Halloween related blogs and I came by your post. Please allow me to pin some remarkable photos in here :D Thank you so much! I’m also sharing a post of the usual activities in our country, for some of you to know what is halloween in the Philippines .
Cheers and keep up writing nice posts 