Why such a spooky night?
|The holiday has its origin from the
names "All Hallowed Eve" or "All Hallows
Eve" for the night before November lst or All Saints Day
(All Souls Day). In the Catholic Church they honored all the
Saints in heaven on this day. This was also said to replace the
old 7th century pagan holiday for the dead.
An old pagan custom that their god dies on "All
Hallowtide" (Halloween) only to be reborn again at Yule,
would celebrate the eternal cycle of reincarnation. A day of
rituals, sacrifices and forklore. As the souls of the dead roam
for All Souls Day, so too do the devil, witches, and goblins
with supernatural powers that come with the land of the dead.
A new year celebration since the 1st century in Ireland, that
on this day ghosts walked among the living, marking the last day
of summer, the final harvest of the year, and the beginning of
In Europe, ghosts were believed to come door to door asking
for treats or else they would play a trick on you. When the
Irish immigrated to the United States, so did this "Trick
or Treat" tradition migrate with them.
with the Irish legend about Jack:
Jack was an ol' drunk who liked to play mean games on
everyone. One day he tricked the Devil into climbing up a tree
to throw some fruit down. But once the Devil had climbed up,
Jack placed crosses on and around the tree making it impossible
for the Devil to get down. Trapped, the Devil agreed to not take
Jack's mean ol' soul when he died and Jack let the Devil go.
But when Jack died years later, Saint Peter wouldn't allow
him in Heaven because of his mean life on earth. So he was sent
down to Hell. The Devil kept his promise and Jack was allowed to
roam free ... But he was wandering around in the darkness of
earth between Heaven and Hell. So the Devil tossed him a burning
ember from the flames of Hell to light his way.
Without a resting place, Jack hollowed out a turnip and
placed the burning ember inside ... lighting his eternal way,
roaming the earth. On All Hallows Eve, the Irish would hollow
out turnips, gourds, potatoes and place a light inside to ward
off mean ol' Jack and any other wandering evil spirits. When the
Irish migrated to America they found pumpkins were easier to use
... and that became the modern Jack-o-Lantern.