Samhain is my favorite holiday. I mean, really and truly. I had to be the only kid I knew who rated it (though I called it Halloween when I was a kid) above Christmas.
So it really grates on my nerves to hear the usual stuff that gets spouted off this time of year. The admonishments to keep your cats (especially black ones) inside, the scare tactics, the crappy “real histories” of the holiday that some Christian stations bat around.
The thing that really gets me is the effort that some churches are going to in order to “take back” the holiday. The Bestower of Righteous Silliness and her family are members of a church that’s advertising that.
BoRS’s church has “Harvest Celebration”s every year. I went to one a couple years ago, and yeah, it was the same stuff we used to do for the holiday as kids: dress up in costumes and nab ten times our weight in sugary goodness, except it was on the church grounds.
After blinking at the huge banner that proclaimed it was a “Harvest Celebration” and observing the usual trick-or-treat madness going on around me, I asked BoRS why they changed the name.
“Because we want to show people that this has nothing to do with that evil devil holiday,” was her answer.
Oh, really? Kids and grown-ups are dressed up in costumes, there are little stations all around the church parking lot, and at each station the kids say “Trick or treat!” and present their bags to be filled with said pounds of sugary goodness. But what I’m seeing has nothing to do whatsoever with the holiday that you say is an evil devil day?
Right. Please tell me what the difference is, as I see none.
Is the difference that it’s on the church grounds, and so none of those “devil” influences can possibly sneak up and grab the unsuspecting party-goers as they get candy? Granted, it’s safer than going door-to-door to get the candy (though that was part of the fun for me when I was a kid). If that’s the reason, then say so. But why go through the craziness of a name change?
I’m not even going to touch the craziness of the statement that Samhain is evil and has to do with the devil, except to say this: it’s not and it doesn’t. Do some research.
If you want to protect the kids and yourselves from the day’s “evil influences”, why are you celebrating the day, anyway? That makes no sense to me. The day is so bad and evil, but you’re having the celebration of the bad, evil day on your holy ground!
Rant over. We now return you to your regularly scheduled blog.