Ever wonder why we celebrate Halloween or where some of our crazy customs come from? In thinking about Halloween, which is just four creepy nights away, I did some research on Halloween customs and just where they originated from, and thought I’d share…
Where Halloween Originated – Halloween actually originates from Northern Ireland where it was customary for Druids to perform ritual ceremonies and make sacrifices to their gods. The story says that on Halloween, the disembodies spirits of those who had passed the year before would come back in search of new bodies to possess for the next year. To make sure they were not possessed, the Druids would make Bonfires to frighten the spirits away! Look around on Halloween night and see how many bonfires you see! You may be surprised.
Costumes – Halloween costumes originate from the outfits worn by the Druids at the bonfires. They would dress in animal skins and disguise themselves as evil spirits and demons so that the real evil spirits couldn’t tell they were human and possess them! Their ceremonies would involve dancing, telling stories and reading fortunes, (or misfortunes)!
Pumpkins – Jack-O-Lanterns come from an old Irish tale which says that a man named Jack, a notorious trickster, tricked Satan into climbing a tree. He carved an image into the tree, thus trapping the devil up the tree. He then made a deal with the devil that if the devil never tempted him again, he would let him down. After Jack died, he was denied into Heaven because of his trickster ways, and also denied into Hell because he had tricked the devil. The devil then gave him a single ember to light his way through the darkness. It was placed inside a hollowed turnip so that it would burn longer. When this legend came over to America, immigrants found that the pumpkin held the ember much longer than a turnip, and thus the Jack-O-Lantern was born!
With those fun facts, I think I am definitely ready to celebrate Halloween these Saturday and Sunday nights. Make sure you capture fun pictures of your kids on Halloween so that you can share them with family and friends with a Halloween or autumn greeting card. These items are also great keepsakes of Halloweens past!