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The Origins Of Halloween




While trick-or-treating is the modern version of celebrating Halloween, it is a far cry from the true origins of the tradition. It is common knowledge that Halloween was once known as All Hallow's Eve and was celebrated long ago as a day when the spirits of the past could once again walk the earth. However, the roots of Halloween trace back much farther to a time before Christianity, to the Celtic and Druid rites of Samhain (pronounced Sow'en). Samhain is the Celtic and Druid New Year that marks the beginning of winter. The holidays, which are called Sabbats, are 8 days of the year that correspond with the yearly solstices, equinoxes and four other dates that were important to the Celts. Druids and Celts also celebrate every full moon of the year, each of which is an Esbat, or "a coven meeting." According to Celtic/Druid/Wiccan beliefs, there exist in the world a god and a goddess who are represented by the moon and the sun, respectively. Samhain is seen as a farewell to the god, as his days on earth are done, until he is reborn through the goddess on the Yule, the winter equinox. Samhain was the time where the veil between this world and the world of spirits is said to be the most thin, and passage between the two worlds is easier for those who prepared. It is a time to honor ancestors and those family members and friends who have recently passed from the world of reality into the world of spirits. Samhain is the third and final Harvest and the dark winter half of the year commences on this Sabbat. It is generally celebrated on October 31st, but some traditions prefer November 1st. It is one of the two "spirit-nights" each year, the other being Beltane. It is supposedly a magical interval when the mundane laws of time and space are said to be temporarily suspended, and the thin veil between the worlds is lifted. Witches believe that ancestors and departed loved ones journey through this world on their way to the Summerlands. It is a time to study the Dark Mysteries and honor the Dark Mother and the Dark Father, symbolized by the Crone and her aged Consort. Originally the "Feast of the Dead" was celebrated in Celtic countries by leaving food offerings on altars and doorsteps for the "wandering dead," and today many practitioners still carry out that tradition. Single candles were lit and left in a window to help guide the spirits of ancestors and loved ones home. Extra chairs were set to the table and around the hearth for the unseen guest. Apples were buried along roadsides and paths for spirits who were lost or had no descendants to provide for them. Turnips were hollowed out and carved to look like protective spirits, for this was a night of magic and chaos. The Wee Folke became very active, pulling pranks on unsuspecting humans. Traveling after dark was was not advised. People dressed in white like ghosts, wore disguises made of straw, or dressed as the opposite gender in order to fool the Nature spirits. This was the time that the cattle and other livestock were slaughtered for eating in the ensuing winter months. Any crops still in the field on Samhain were considered taboo, and left as offerings to the Nature spirits. Bonfires were built, originally called bone-fires. After feasting, the bones were thrown in the fire as offerings for healthy and plentiful livestock in the New Year and stones were marked with peoples names then they were thrown into the fire. The condition of the retrieved stone foretold of that person's fortune in the coming year. Hearth fires were also lit from the village bonfire to ensure unity, and the ashes were spread over the harvested fields to protect and bless the land. Various other names for this Greater Sabbat are Third Harvest, Samana, Day of the Dead, Old Hallowmas (Scottish/Celtic), Vigil of Saman, Shadowfest (Strega), and Samhuinn. Also known as All Hallow's Eve, and Martinmas (celebrated November 11th), Samhain is now generally considered the Witch's New Year. The witch's New Year. If you're a believer, then you are not to follow the abominations of the world you live in. Believers are called to be separate from the world. “When you come into the land which the Lord your God is giving you, YOU SHALL NOT learn to follow the abominations of those nations.” Deuteronomy 18:9 The Word of God spells it out clearly: vs:10-11 There shall not be found among you: anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, or one who practices witchcraft, or a soothsayer, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. Any involvement in the occult is so serious that it brings judgment on the one involving himself in it not only to him, but to his children down to the third and fourth generation. Involvement in the occult always brings a curse. Involvement in the new age and the occult is deadly. In fact, God states that not only are these abominations in his sight, but those WHO DO THEM are an abomination before him. vs 12: FOR ALL WHO DO THESE THINGS ARE AN ABOMINATION TO THE LORD...