When you think of Halloween what is it you think of? Jack-o’-lanterns, pumpkin spice lattes or the cute dark cocktails served in bars and clubs, children dressed up as ghosts, goblins or superheroes knocking on doors asking for candy, adults as sexy nurses, wizards, and witches playing out there alter egos and fantasies.
Here, I will share Halloween's origin it'll make your celebrations, even more, umm insight.
After all, this old-fashioned holiday actually dates back many generations before it was commercialized. So it turns out it's a lot older than you may realize.
As we know Halloween has been a big deal in the Northern Hemisphere for hundreds of years, generally, it is celebrated on the Last day of October.
Have you ever stopped to wonder what the history of Halloween even is in the first place?
Trick or treating the origins is a custom that has transformed into what we know today but it wasn’t always a bag full of lollies according to Wikipedia:
“In Britain and Ireland, the tradition of going house to house collecting food at Halloween goes back at least as far as the 16th century, as had the tradition of people wearing costumes at Halloween. In the 19th century Britain and Ireland there are many accounts of people going house to house in costume at Halloween, reciting verses in exchange for food, and sometimes warning of misfortune if they were not welcomed. The Scottish Halloween custom of "guising" – children disguised in costume going from house to house for food or money; Halloween is first recorded in North America in 1911 in Ontario, Canada. In North America, trick-or-treating has been a Halloween tradition since the 1920s. While going house to house in costume has remained popular among Scots and Irish, the custom of saying "trick or treat" has only recently become common.”
Then along comes the Jack-o’-lantern today you think of pumpkin with a silly or scary expression carved into Bright yellow/ orange pumpkin. But did you know they originally were made from turnips and Potatoes. Originating from Ireland Large turnips and potatoes according to history.com The legend of “stingy Jack” started the craze here how it goes:
The Legend of "Stingy Jack”
People have been making jack-o’-lanterns at Halloween for centuries. The practice originated from an Irish myth about a man nicknamed “Stingy Jack.” According to the story, Stingy Jack invited the Devil to have a drink with him. True to his name, Stingy Jack didn’t want to pay for his drink, so he convinced the Devil to turn himself into a coin that Jack could use to buy their drinks. Once the Devil did so, Jack decided to keep the money and put it into his pocket next to a silver cross, which prevented the Devil from changing back into his original form.
Jack eventually freed the Devil, under the condition that he would not bother Jack for one year and that, should Jack die, he would not claim his soul. The next year, Jack again tricked the Devil into climbing into a tree to pick a piece of fruit. While he was up in the tree, Jack carved a sign of the cross into the tree’s bark so that the Devil could not come down until the Devil promised Jack not to bother him for ten more years.
Soon after, Jack died. As the legend goes, God would not allow such an unsavory figure into heaven. The Devil, upset by the trick Jack had played on him and keeping his word not to claim his soul, would not allow Jack into hell. He sent Jack off into the dark night with only a burning coal to light his way. Jack put the coal into a carved-out turnip and has been roaming the Earth with ever since. The Irish began to refer to this ghostly figure as “Jack of the Lantern,” and then, simply “Jack O’Lantern.”
Halloween itself literally means “Hallowed evening” and in early European countries known as “ All Hallows EVE. All Hallows Eve falls on the 31st of October and All saints day the 1st November both of these days pay homage to saints, eventually combining the two names to Halloween which is what we celebrate and love today.
But wait there is more to this then just combining two holidays that happen to go back to back. Before Christianity took a foothold it wasn’t always back to back up until the 7th century CE, All Hallows Eve fell on the 13th of May. Pope Boniface IV ultimately made the call to change the date to its current date 1 November in an attempt to offset the pagan celebration with a Christian one. As happened a lot through history.
So Halloween why the 31st of October why not 4th of June or 5th of September you ask well the ancient Gaelic festival of Samhain, pronounced (sow-in), is classed as the earliest known root of Halloween, occurred to have taken place on this day.
As with most ancient celebrations, it was celebrated to honor the pivotal time of the year when the season changes from Summer into Autumn and we enter the dark half of the year where days are shorter and nights are longer.
But the most important belief around this time of the year was the veil between our physical world and that of the spirit realm is at it thinnest, that it allows us to connect more easily with past souls. Other religions also share in this belief, it's not just limited to pagans. but this aspect it where Halloween gets the “haunted” reputation from.
So why do we celebrate Halloween here in the southern end of the hemisphere, Glad you asked.
Well, simply put it we aren’t celebrating Samhain or Halloween on the correct day its has been super commercialized that most people have lost sight of the change of season and the real meanings behind it.
We Forgot that it's honoring the change of seasons, "not just dates that are is one shoe fits all of the earth."
For use in the Southern Hemisphere, we celebrate Halloween on the 30th of April to the 1 of May. Our Summer to Autumn that’s when we enter our dark half of the year and the veil is the thinnest for us.
So what is it we celebrate this time of the year for us in the Southern Hemisphere we celebrate Beltane from the 1st of November to the 3rd of November.
It where we celebrate the transformation of spring into winter to the Goddess transition from maiden to mother. but more about that in another blog.
I hope this brief overview has helped to clear up some questions and maybe even inspired a few more…
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