The holiday observed and celebrated in most parts of Europe on the 31st of every October is referred to as Halloween. The name Halloween may also refer to other items such as movies. This article is about the Halloween holiday.
Halloween is to a large extent associated with the secular customs. However, it is not uncommon to have some religious innuendos laced with the ceremony.
It all depends on the community celebrating the Halloween. There are as many variations about certain traditions during Halloween as there possibly can, at any one moment. The holiday is not celebrated around the world. In fact there are some societies around the world who may never have even heard of the name Halloween.
This notwithstanding, it is evident the ceremony is gaining popularity around the world. It is a ceremony that is strongly linked to the supernatural in the core of it symbolism. Popular myths suffice.
It is believed that during Halloween, spirits of the dead arise from the graves and maraud, crisscross and travel the land of the living. It is a period coupled with lots of fear and anxiety especially among the children who take in all that is said about the spooky and eerie aspects of Halloween. There is then a close association with the supernatural in the actuation of Halloween as a holiday.
This link with the supernatural, particularly the part about the possibility of the dead awakening from their graves and walking among the living is what pits the festival against heavy critics from religious circles. Yet still, it is this very characteristic that some argue has kept the holiday alive. Indeed the mystery aspect is a major point of attraction for many enthusiasts of Halloween.
With the effects of globalization here with us, it is bound to find favor with many more around the world. It, in fact, can no longer be referred to as a European holiday. It has found favor even in the most unlikely places and has taken root in a dramatic way. In countries where the traditional customs and culture are at a tangent,
Halloween has been able to transcend the myopic boundaries of race, cradle, origin or color of the skin. In countries such as Kenya for example, Halloween holiday is beginning to take root among the youths who see it as a perfect opportunity for taking time off and having some fun. Owing to the age of the agents of Halloween in Kenya, it has become like some euphoric phenomena; something the youth are known for.
Many will join in observing the day but with little or no information about its origins and significance. Yet still they will popularize the holiday to their friends, kith and kin. Halloween, it should be noted, is not on the official Calendar as an official holiday or any other holiday in Kenya.
There are some common practices that seem to cross the boarders with Halloween as more and more people get to embrace it as an important holiday. These rituals, items and paraphernalia associated with Halloween have been identified as the most distinguishing factors attributed to Halloween and Halloween celebration.
Halloween is associated with certain costumes, parties, pumpkins, divinations, ghost tours, treat or tricks, apple bobbing, fireworks displays. During Halloween, there are several relevant activities associated with the holiday. One may go out to watch horror movies or decide to sit at home and tell eerie stories of ghosts and spirits. It is more a universal time for fear.
One can also play pranks or go out on treat or trick around the neighbor’s homes. The latter is a particularly a popular Halloween activity for children around the world. Costume parties are another common festivity you will come across around Halloween. Owing to the diverse cultures that observe Halloween, its meaning and significance will vary considerably. The common denominator, though, seems to underline the fact that Halloween is time to stop and have some fun.