While many would argue that today’s version of Halloween has become commercialized, there is a rich history to the holiday of Halloween, with traditions that have continued over centuries and lessons that can be applied to how we approach our every day lives.
Halloween is a time of both celebration and superstition, celebrating the end of fall and the beginning of winter and what that stands for: light vs. dark, life vs. death. The holiday is thought to have originated from the Celtic holiday Samhain, which celebrated the end of the harvest season and the start of winter, or the “darker” portion of the year. Celtics would wear costumes to honor the dead and ward off ghosts. It may have been believed that the beginning of winter was the most fitting time to honor the dead since the plants were ‘dying’ at this time. Today, Wiccans, a religious movement that stems from old Paganism, believe that Samhain marks when the veil between this world and the afterlife is at its thinnest, allowing communication with the dead.
Whether you call the holiday Samhain, All Hallow’s Eve, or Halloween, remember the rich history of Halloween throughout the month of October as ghouls and goblins are hung in yards, costumes are worn, and trick-or-treating commences.