The Spooky Truth About Halloween

The Spooky Truth About Halloween

Halloween was two Saturdays ago and people are still counting their candy. Halloween is fun for everyone no matter what age. Who is too old for candy? Besides the Halloween parties, the costumes, and the candy do people really know the meaning of Halloween?

If I were asked this question I would say it was about eating candy and scaring people, but that clearly would not be a good response. Other names for Halloween include: All Hallows’ Eve, All Saints’ Eve, and Allhalloween. Halloween is observed in many countries.

Halloween is dedicated to remembering the dead including saints, martyrs, and all the faithful departed. In the Christian religion Halloween involves going to church services, lighting candles on the graves of the dead, and eating certain foods like potato pancakes, and soul cakes.

When we think of Halloween we think of pumpkins. They are seen in front of every house, on every porch. But people don’t know why pumpkins are such a big part of Halloween.  The name “jack-o-lantern” originates from the 17th century, when it literally meant “man with a lantern”, or a watchman.

Candy was never an official part of Halloween. The whole idea of going door-to-door began in the late 1930’s. Kids would ask people for soul cakes for the dead. The candy company took advantage of these trick-or-treaters. Another thing we do, but we do not know why, is dress up.

We dress us up because a long time ago the ancient Celts believed that the time between October 31 and November 2, the living dead, and the spirits could walk among the living.  The Celts impersonated them with costumes and masks. If they encountered a spirit during this time the spirits would mistake the Celts for other spirits and leave them alone.

Next time you go trick-or-treating you will know why we do what we do. Even though the history behind Halloween may not sound as fun as what we do today, it is still a holiday we celebrate every year.  Halloween is a holiday that we continue to celebrate, and every year we will eat more candy.