Halloween has always been celebrated in my family as a Celtic Holiday. Even when I lived in Great Britain everyone got the day off work as it is a Holiday. It wasn’t until I had children and they started attending elementary school that I realized that Halloween was a big problem with several different religions who wanted the subject ban from the public schools. My son came home from First Grade crying because other children were calling him a Devil Worshiper. I’m not sure about your kids, but my 6 year old son had no clue what a Devil Worshiper was, all he knew is the kids were being mean to him because he celebrated Halloween in a Family Tradition. I was appalled. I called the teacher the next day. She had wanted to have a Halloween party, but too many parents complained to the School Board that it was a day of Devil Worship and it had to be canceled. Now I was mad.
I ended up writing a letter to the School Board explaining the true meaning of Halloween. My son’s teacher wanted to sign the letter with a comment of her approval that Halloween should be allowed in the public schools as a History lesson. By the time I got the letter back, every teacher including the Vice Principal and Principal had signed it. The School Board approved it and I was asked to come in and tell the story of Halloween to the First Graders and their parents under the guise of a Family Heritage Day. All parents who attended were asked to share their family heritage with their children. (I did not include the religious aspect of Halloween to the parents and kept it on a first grade level for the kids, but I am including it in this blog)
This is the story of Halloween as taught to me by my Great Grandfather and Celtic Lord. Keep in mind I am translating to the best English words for descriptive purposes, as my Great Grandfather spoke a mix of the Celtic Languages when he talked about the “Old Land”, of Great Britain and Ireland.
‘The story of why we honor and respect Halloween and other Celtic holidays goes back 1000’s of years through our Family bloodline. Times change and people change their view of life and how it should be lived. Those believing they are great rise to great heights, but they will always fall and eventually have to pay the price for their wrong actions on others. Our People (the Celt’s), saw the Earth and Universe as part of a musical rhythm in space and time. We spent hundreds of years marking the planets in the sky and building “towers” to view them better, marking seasonal changes of the Earth, and developing defenses to protect our people from those tribes that wanted control of our land and our life. We were and will always remain docile people, at least until we are provoked by someone else’s hate, greed or jealousy. On this day, when you honor Halloween you are honoring Samhain. It is the Gaelic word for the month of November and on the first day, it is the beginning of the Celtic New Year. As now, we celebrate New Years on the Eve of New Years Day that comes the first of January, but there is more to the celebration of October 31st than most people understand today. The Christians of the Roman Catholics observe it as All Saints Day to honor their Saints. Other religions have called it All Hallows Eve to honor the “Sacred Eve” in the Bible, (as hallow means sacred), but to Our People the Eve of anything means the Goddess of All things reproduced and soon to be brought forth for our existence on this planet, as only a female can reproduce. It is only in this “Age” of all things ending that men have taken control and women are considered weak. It will change when the “New Age” arrives.
In the past, All Hallows Eve, was changed to Halloween, but still people don’t understand why. It’s true meaning comes from the Celts, as Hallow means sacred, but een means eye. It was the Gift of Sight (sacred sight) given to all people, but many ignore it, don’t understand it, are afraid of it or allow themselves to choose the Wrong Path in their decisions because they refuse the Sight out of fear.
Halloween is celebrated on the last day of October because it is also the last day of Harvesting Food to store during the winter months in the Old Land. People piled their food into barns. Their town may have spread across miles of land, but there was always a Center to their town. At the end of the day of Harvest, the people gathered to the Center and all brought food and drink to have a celebration. During their celebration of the end of Harvest, thieves would raid the barns full of food while no one was home. Our Family (meaning the Celtic people in general) decided to scare the thieves by carving pumpkins with scary faces and making ghosts and goblins out of things they had, then leaving them around their homes and barns. Most of the other people (non Celt’s) were afraid of being attacked by scary things they didn’t understand and Our Family knew what would scare them. It worked for awhile, but the thieves realized they weren’t real and continued to raid the Harvest. So, during their celebration of Harvest the Celt’s continued to make scary faces and hang ghostly creatures around their land, but dressed their children up in scary costumes to scare away the thieves by making ghastly noises in the dark. The children were missing the Harvest celebration with all the food, sweet fruits and honey Our Family Harvested. Many children ran between homes, some miles apart, to help protect neighbors who didn’t have children, so the neighbors would give those children food and sweet fruit, like apples, cherries, plums and sloes, that had been dipped into honey, and left them a barrel of cider to drink from, to repay them for protecting their food for the winter.
When the Quakers came to this country to live so did many thieves, but harvesting continued, so the Quakers could eat, with the help of the Indians that already lived here. The same principal of All Hallows Eve was used in this country that was used in the Old Land, to help protect the food through the winter and kept the thieves away. All Hallows Eve became Hallows Eve and eventually Halloween. Times changed and the celebration of Community Harvest ended, but the Spirit of Harvest will never end in the minds of the true Celtic children who look forward to running from home to home for sweets. Without the children we wouldn’t be here at all.’
After I presented my story of Heritage, not one parent had a problem with Halloween as they looked at it as a Heritage they really never understood or were given the wrong information about growing up.
The following year, however, when my daughter entered the first grade, the very same problem arose around Halloween, but this time with a new Principal, who was convinced it was a day of Devil Worship and wanted it ban from the school. I had no choice, I complained to the Governor of the State and submitted my Great Grandfather’s story. Educators, including Principals and the School Boards in public schools were not allowed to impose a ban on Halloween, as it fell under the Freedom of Religion, since the Christian and Jewish Holidays were acknowledged by teachers and children in public schools, so could any other religious Holiday on the calendar be acknowledged. Negative language and the term “Devil Worshipping” had to be omitted from all School officials and not allowed by children in the classroom.
Although, my children are beyond elementary school learning, it doesn’t mean that adults are beyond learning things that they are ignorant too. Not everything may be as it seems, as Halloween, in no way worships the devil. Don’t be afraid to seek out alternative information and judge for yourself whether it is possible or even probable in this time. After all, Pluto WAS a planet. For those of you that don’t understand why it’s not anymore, it does not rotate on it’s own axis like the rest of the planets, but does rotate around the Sun’s gravitational pull. Smile, your life is about to get more complicated and confusing in the “New Age”.