(I am posting this before Sunday in the spirit of the Halloween weekend)
Out of all the holidays, Halloween has got to be the most friendly one. The one that most embodies the spirit of love and community. Don’t believe me? Please hear me out.
First, let me say that this post is largely a response to a recent article I read about an elementary school that changed their yearly Halloween celebration/parade into a “Black and Orange Spirit Parade”, justifying it by saying that a Halloween Parade is not “inclusive” of all the students. The article was on CBS News. Massachusetts school drops Halloween for “black and orange” spirit day.
I find this upsetting, because Halloween happens to be the most inclusive holiday there is. It is not confined to any one faith, or culture. Heck, it’s not even confined to one country. It is literally FOR EVERYBODY. True, it has a big focus on the darker side of our reality, and this may be against many peoples beliefs. To this I have to say:
- It’s fantasy …… not real. There is no problem with exercising the imagination a little and embracing our darker side for a spell.
- If we believe that Halloween glorifies evil and violence, and we want to limit our exposure to it, then I suggest we first remove the television from the home. There are no evils greater than the evils men do in real life. And these evils can be heard about and even seen on TV all day long. Don’t get me started on video games.
- It doesn’t have to be about the darker side. It is still ok to dress up our children as astronauts, firemen, doctors, or even a trees and obscure, but creative things.
While Halloween does not promote the spirit of giving and sharing like Christmas and Thanksgiving do, It does promote the spirit of community and creativity far better than they do. And truthfully the spirit of community is in very short supply these days, while the spirit of giving is just growing stronger and stronger every year. This is not for any sense of “love” mind you, but because the expectation is in place, and people love to get their “giving credits”. Big business promotes, and depends on this.
Christmas and Thanksgiving confine our kindness and love to our families and close friends; ya know, people we are already expressing kindness and love to. The tradition of Halloween however, has us going up to our neighbors homes (potentially strangers), and start up a dialog. Potential beginnings of new relationships. It is my opinion that the best “ice breaking” line we have here in American culture is: “Trick or Treat!”
Also consider Halloween costume parties. Now there are Christmas parties too, but most of them are confined to family and friends. ALSO, Halloween costume parties are far more friendly. This is just because everyone is in costume. Plenty of topics of conversation built in. Plenty of ice breakers: “Excellent costume man!”, “How did you get the wings to stay on?”, “How long did it take you to get that on”, “I would have never thought in a million years to make a costume based on that.”, etc.
The act of “Trick or Treating” (The very heart of Halloween) is not as prevalent as it was when I was a child. Paranoia is more prevalent instead. As we hear more about child abductions, and violent incidents, so many of us feel less safe taking our children out to do it. Over time this diminishes community relations, and creates a whole slew of other problems I won’t get into here. I encourage that we take back Halloween. Exercise more trust in our communities. Be safe, but be friendly, be kind.
Have a Happy Halloween
OOOO, and don’t forget to listen to my Halloween Radio Station: WHWR Halloween Radio. Available also on all mobile devices through the Radionomy app, and on the sidebar of my website.⇒>>>