Autumn leaves, carved pumpkins and a bunch of kids in costumes going around harassing neighbours for free candy.
The spooky time of the year is back (I know. Who thought we would have survived this long) and so are the repeats of horror movies on the TV.
Halloween (All Hallows’ Eve) is celebrated on the 31st of October every year and it marks the beginning of the cold dark winter. Celts thought that the boundaries between the living and the dead become thin and the spirits are more likely to cross them and enter our world. (And the humans want to go to space. Why doesn’t anyone stay where they are?)
And so to appease the restless spirits of their ancestors and their playful gods who tend to mess up with their harvested crops, Celts made offerings and prayed. They grew huge bonfires and sat around it, telling stories, singing, dancing with instrumental music. Costumes were also worn to ward ghosts (Because the best way to scare the ghosts is to be one) and people tried to predict their fortunes and make prophecies.
And when the influence of Christianity grew, the festival slowly blended with the new beliefs and it became known as All Hallows’ Eve or All Saints Day.
The focus also shifted from the past to the future and Tarot card readers and fortune-tellers attempted to match young women with their future spouse through some peeled apple skin, egg yolks, hazelnuts and some even went as far as to hide a ring in mashed potatoes, hoping that they will find love with the diner who finds it. (I know it sounds pretty wild)
But as time went by, a lot of superstitions and beliefs faded off and it’s just a great day to eat delicious food, play games, dress up as our favourite characters and tell each other spooky stories.
Even if the festival isn’t immensely popular in India, why would anyone refuse to enjoy a fun day? So here are some ways you and your friends can celebrate Halloween!