Halloween is a celebration that generates a bit of controversy around the world. For some communities, this celebration represents an evil practice while for others this is a tradition that is part of their cultural identity. Perhaps both children and adults have wondered what is the origin of this date that we celebrate every October 31. In this special edition of La Isla Magazine, we will tell you a little about its history.
Many of us have believed that Halloween is a celebration of American culture. However, this tradition has its origin in a religious ritual celebrated by Celtic tribes many years ago on the European continent. The Celts celebrated the “Samhain” or “festival of the end of summer” in October, a celebration that coincided with the end of the Celtic year and the official start of the autumn season. For this reason, the “Samhain” was related in the Celtic culture to the belief of the “death” of summer where it was considered important to commemorate the “passage to the afterlife”, never in a dark way but as a moment of special connection with Mother Earth. During these dates, the Celts gathered the fruits of the earth to begin the preparation for the arrival of winter. After a certain time, this celebration was complemented with characters dressed as ghosts or demons who did tricks to get food.
Years later, the Christians who conquered various territories and cultures decided to welcome some pagan traditions to their own religious practices, as is the case of the celebration of “Samhain”. It was through the Irish Pilgrim immigrants that this tradition entered North America in the 19th century. Halloween celebrations, in the beginning, consisted of practical jokes and boisterous parties where people did mischief to collect food. Over time, the celebration of Halloween became a family and enjoy food gathering practice, especially aimed at children. Later, in the thirties, costumes began to be used to make this collection of food, and then in the sixties, sweets replaced food.
After this long journey that began in Celtic Europe, today we celebrate Halloween based on the American tradition of trick-or-treating wearing costumes, which has spread to all regions of the world as a party for children. We hope you liked today’s story. We are just a few weeks away from dressing up together with our children and going out trick-or-treating, and by the way, do you already have your costume and your pumpkin ready?
Happy Halloween! – By: Natalia Delgadillo