Some Spooky, Jaw-Dropping and Reassuring Halloween Facts You Need To Familiarize With
Few nights can compete with the spookiness and mysteriousness commonly associated with Halloween. From stories of witches, mysterious ghosts which pay homage at the wee hours of the night to the spirits of the dead which come to haunt the living, let’s just say this is one of the most controversial holidays the world has ever seen. Who would have even thought that this western-culture would become a part of Indian routines? It seems like the crazier the snap-apple night gets, the more appealing it becomes. Beyond the myths and beliefs, there are a number of facts we all need to know as we wait for yet another round of scariness this 31st of October.
1.Scariness Reigning Supreme During Harvest Season
Halloween is a unique holiday where families come face-to-face with fears and superstitions. This is, therefore, the night where scariness reigns supreme while good people try their best to protect themselves from perceived evil spells. But this night is not all about bad things. Overtime, the event has become more of a candy affair where families and friends exchange candy. Save for the occasional pranks pulled by costume-wearing, fun-loving individuals, this is an otherwise festive time where people celebrate and share goodies. Historically, the Halloween night came at harvest time and farmers used the occasion to celebrate their achievements in the fields as well as ward-off evil spirits.
2.The Entry of Mischievous GhostsThe carved pumpkins and turnip lanterns commonly associated with this celebration are credited to the character of Jack-O-Lantern. The words Jack-O-Lantern simply mean “man with lantern” or a nightly, scary figure which roams like an evil spirit. This tradition has for a long time been associated with the existence of mischievous ghosts. However, unless you believe in ghosts, there is absolutely no harm in wearing a carved-pumpkin costume during this day. If anything, pumpkins were historically used to keep off evil spirits.
3.Pondering Upon HistoryAlthough quite popular in North America, Halloween is actually not an American thing. Historians believe it originated in Ireland some 6,000 years ago. The tradition only gained roots in the USA after some Irish potato farmers escaped their country due to famine and settled in America (that was in the 1800s). While it’s a relatively new phenomenon here in India, it clearly has deep roots and a strong cultural backing worth pondering upon.
4.More Chocolate, That’s All Kids WantAs we told you earlier, Halloween is a fantastic time to share gifts. May be you’re wondering what kind of gifts to go for. Well, you really don’t have to go out of your way to make every moment count. Research indicates that 50 percent of kids prefer to receive chocolate gifts compared to 24 percent who prefer non-chocolate stuff. 10 percent of kids prefer gum. You see – the greatest joy of this occasion lies in making everything from the costumes to the candies as authentic as possible.
5. Homemade CandiesTalking about candies and authenticity, we thought you should know that the ready-made candies we find in our shops today are only a recent development. Many years ago, there were no commercial candy manufacturers and as you would expect, there were no candy shops. Halloween with no candy? You might be wondering how such an auspicious event could rule over the airwaves without candy. The reality however, is that there was still candy. Not the commercial ones we have today but homemade ones.
6. Dancing Your Way to CandiesStill on candies, unlike today where one can grab as many they want, kids had to perform certain rituals to receive some niceties in return. This is how it worked – kids would dress up in their best costumes and form small groups made up of neighbours and friends. They would then walk around their residential areas at night, from house-to-house. Once welcomed to a homestead, they were expected to dance and in return for their “hard work” they would be given some treats. This original concept has gradually shifted into sharing of candies as we know it today. Don’t you think it’s high time we revert to the original idea of kids dancing in the hood? It sounds like such a cool way to keep parents busy all night long looking for their missing kids. LOL.
7.Of Extra Calories and Naughty KidsJust to avoid any unpleasant surprises during the big day, it is worth noting that kids tend to get a little naughtier during Halloween. We are yet to know whether it is the spirits commonly associated with the holiday that strike or it’s simply the candy the kids indulge in. However, we tend to think that candies are to blame because of the sugar spike. As you might be aware, a sugar spike can transform an otherwise cool kid into a pumped up champ. So, brace yourself, things are just about to get a little heightened up. With over 11,000 calories in their loot bag, expect them to throw a tantrum (or two) if you try to lure them to sleep.
8.How Costumes Came Into BeingThere are many different kinds of costumes you and/or your kids can wear to mark this day. It is generally recommended to wear something creative and scary. Actually, the scarier the better. The culture of wearing costumes is as old as the holiday itself. People started wearing unique costumes due to the fear that evil spirits would strike the earth and that the dead would come back to haunt the living.
9.Scary Symbols and Their Deep HistoryNone of the Halloween symbols we see today are random. Of course, the pumpkins and turnips lanterns have something to do with nightly ghosts. Spiders, black cats and bats on the other hand come from the witches who ruled over the world in the middle-ages. Another common symbol is the full moon which we admit is rarely experienced during Halloween nights nowadays.
10.Trick-or-TreatThough not so common in India, the trick-or-treat custom is quite common in the west during the October 31st night. Kids usually move from door-to-door within their neighbourhoods collecting candies. If they don’t find ready candies at the door, they knock until the owner comes out. The “trick” part involves threatening the homeowner of some mischief should they fail to produce candies as requested. The “treat” is either candy or money depending on the culture one comes from. I think this would be a great culture for us to adopt as well...but maybe we should first send a memo to all neighbours to avoid some not-so-funny encounters.
Have you celebrated Halloween before? What are some of the funny or scary encounters you have made so far? Looking forward to reading your stories
Creative Personality by Profession and Heart
A creative personality by profession and heart, finds fulfilment through digital medium. By building concepts to mood boards to execution of ideas.
A vivacious person looking for beauty in every aspect of both animate and inanimate things. In her world she is often triggered by children and their colourful outlook. She leads a digital team as the chief Strategist in Delhi and finds time for social causes in her private time.