What’s so hollow in Halloween?

I grew up without any Halloween experience. Staying in the province and away from the metro did not afford me to at least wear the costumes kids on TV wore. Probably, such event was never part of the tradition. And my experience was more substantially religious and traditional.

Brought about by the globalized, popular culture, I came to know about the Halloween from TV shows and even movies. To me, it was nothing more than just wearing colorful costumes, getting creative with the some fun ideas, and just putting up a show with music, food and drinks. It was all fun to me. I just get excited whenever October 31 is fast approaching. It is a feel-good, soothing event to me.

After years, I finally got the chance of putting up a little show at work. Good thing, working for a Canadian human resources BPO company made people diversified and open to cultural experience, and the Halloween is held for the sake of “fun” and some some non-work event. The sociality it bears, increasing the opportunity for people to gather, come up with the best costumes, and just have so much fun just makes it nothing more than just a social event and a moment to detach from the tiresome, repetitive work.

However, as is any social trend or happening, there is always a downer. The “religious” and “biblical” questions this annual event, justifying reference after reference, that this does not resemble any religiously fundamental event. It is not even written in the Bible. Just to recall history in brevity, the Halloween was supposedly a celebration of the holy, the hallow. It was then popular as All Hallow’s Eve. And as society evolved, so is the celebration. What used to be a Celtic and feast-like celebration turns out to be just a party, fun, and booze-like event today. What the “religious” is harping on is the idea of “other-god” worship, or in a less appealing term, paganism. Though I may still be open to the religious logic behind this idea, I find it crudely insubstantial and inept of experiential and actual proof. Why? Two reasons.

First, such “celebration” or simply party, has become so commercialized and mundane. It has become more of just an eve of people gathering together. The banality proves the absence of any religious connotation or worship. Such absence of imposed ideas couldn’t prove more than just some partying event.

Secondly, the supposed religious event is set on the two days that follow the 31st. Halloween may actually just be independent of the religious sphere in the present day. What worries the religious authorities is that people are misled to an idea that may be mistaken to be real, thus threatening certain principles taught biblical. But what is to worry when first, people are celebrating detached from the religiosity of the days that would follow, and second the “religious” can re-enlighten people of the supposed “hallow” days independent of the banal eve?

To add more to this, it is important to include the time element explaining that what was celebrated as a feast before is not actually celebrated as such today. I would like to reiterate that at times, these “religious” remain so enclosed in the olden times ideals that they stay locked-up in their own bubbles of false self-righteous understanding.

I just find it interesting to discuss in little detail and in the simplicity of terms and history some social events that occur. The cultural experience may not necessarily be good all the time, but it may actually stir up conversations and debates on its purpose, relevance, and essence. The cultural experience is relative. And such relativity makes it even more interesting just by looking at how it plays among people of different backgrounds.

The Halloween will always be an event that people will always look forward celebrating. It’s one of those celebrations that just put people together, considering they have the same mindsets.

Photo Credit: [www.imgion.com, Featured photo: info.greenhouseecocleaning.com]


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