Halloween is a holiday celebrated on the night of October 31st. It is celebrated with Halloween parties and kids going house to house going trick or treating. It is celebrated in the US and in other parts of the world like the United Kingdom and Canada.
How Halloween is celebrated today goes back to the time when ancient pagans believed that October 31 is the day when the boundary between the living and the dead dissolves. Since the dead could cause harm to those who are living, people will go out into the streets wearing costumes and masks to ward off the evil spirits.
But that was then and now, we simply do it for fun. Weeks before Halloween, people would go out and by costumes. The most saleable ones are the skeletons, ghosts, vampires, witches and devils. If you have the time, you can make your own costume based on a television show or movie.
One study shows that of the people surveyed, more than half of the American public plan to buy a costume for Halloween even if it costs $10 more than it did last year. This means that sales will reach more than $6 billion from a little over $5 billion last year.
People in the Halloween spirit will also put up decorations in their homes like carved pumpkins, skeletons and candles.
During parties, aside from the food and drinks, several games are played. The most common is dunking or bobbing for apples in which applies that are floating in a tub or large basin are picked up by the participants using their teeth.
Another is to eat syrup coated scones that is hanging by a string. Again, you have to eat it without using your hands.
If you don’t want to go to party and do something daring, try going with a few friends and visit a haunted house. Many people don’t do this literally when they can have fun visiting a theme park that has something special for the occasion.
The favorite fruit during Halloween is the apple because it comes during the wake of the harvest season. You can eat it directly or have this mixed with sticky syrup and nuts.
Other countries celebrate Halloween differently. In most Asian countries, the people put food and water as well as a lantern so those who have departed will have something to eat, drink and a lighted path as they travel the earth during Halloween night. In Czechoslovakia, chairs are placed by the fireside on Halloween night. Each chair represents a living member and those who have passed on. The Swedes simply give students a day-off and a shortened working day for the employees.
But paying homage to the dead is what most countries do during Halloween. In fact, the day after which is November 1, is considered to be All Saint’s Day while the 2nd is called All Soul’s Day. This is done to commemorate those who are in purgatory with the hope of being cleansed of their sins so they may go to heaven.
For most children and adults, Halloween is simply a time to have fun with friends and family. They can go around getting candy by moving from one house to the next while the grown ups will go to a party where there is a lot of food and drinks.