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What happened to the Halloween thread?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Bruce Lindfield, Oct 3, 2002.


  1. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I put a lot of effort into finding some things out about Pagan festivals and I wanted to find one of the links again for a friend who asked me about this - just by chance last night and I was hoping to get back to this ?

    But I can't find it anywhere? :confused:
     
  2. This is just a guess, but maybe the thread starter was a tab bit disgruntled about his thread being hijacked and blow way off topic, and instead of quoting everyone who bastardized the thread with their thoughts, views, and opinions on "Halloween in Europe: An American Commercialist Invasion," decided to merely delete.

    And I go on to say further that the thread stater thought about creating another thread, in reference to Halloween, as it is celebrated in America, and ask all those who either did not celebrate it, or had to question the historical significance of the holiday* or start a religious debate, to please not post. But perhaps the original thread stater decided against it, believing it to be a futile gesture.

    But who knows? This was all just a guess. ;)

    *not to be confused with the European term for "vacation"
     
  3. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Has it just gone then? :(

    What does surprise me is that all year on TB you get people from the US talking about Christianity and then they just put all that out of their heads to join in a Pagan festival that is basically the complete antithesis of all they believe - what's that all about then?

    So the US seems to have the highest proportion of "active" Christians, but also the highest participation in Pagan festivals - how come nobody ever comments on that? :confused:
     
  4. Stephen S

    Stephen S Member

    Apr 10, 2002
    San Bernardino, CA
    hypercritical bastards
     
  5. Bruce, being more or less a "Pagan" myself, and considering the fact that my wife is Pagan, and that I've studied several obscure religions for years, many sects of Paganism included, I found your posts about Paganism to be completely one sided, told from a Christian point of view. I don't know if you are a Christian, nor am I even asking, but what I read from your posts was absurd.

    It seems to me that you are still clinging to that shred of info that you found that said Halloween was a Pagan holiday where they worship the devil, summon demons and dance around naked. Coming from the view of a Puritanical Christian with no knowledge of the pagan religions, I can see how they could be confused. But Halloween is not about raising the dead, or cursing the lands, or praising satan. Halloween, or its proper name Samhain (pronounces Sow-en) was a celebration of the Harvest. The depictions of the Devil were added by Christians. Even hear the term the gods of the old religion become the Devils of the new? In this case it's true. Paganism, which was around long before Christianity, was a polytheistic religion. Many times you would see two primary deities, a Goddess and a God. The God was the God of the Hunt, and was in the forefront in the fall and winter when hunting bacame a neccessity for survival. He was depicted with horns. In some cultures, he was also depicted as a Horned man with goat legs. The Roman (or maybe Greek) mythological figure Pan, a Satyr, was an example. How is Satan depicted in the Christian faith? As a Man with horns and goat legs. He was given red skin, and a barbed tail to enhance his evil look. However, Lucifer/ Satan was an angel. He was depicted in the Bible as such. When Jesus was tempted during his 40 days in the desert, Lucifer came to him, and his appearance was that of an angel.

    Halloween in america is not a Christian holiday. In fact many christian groups protest it. and besides, many pagans celebrate Christmas and Easter. So who really cares if Christians aren't so biased as to celebrate what they perceive as a "pagan holiday" even even if it really isn't?
     
  6. Stephen S

    Stephen S Member

    Apr 10, 2002
    San Bernardino, CA
    Completely informed bastards
     
  7. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member


    Of course you are right and I was very much simplifying and telling it from a Christian point of view, as I don't see how Christians in the US can reconcile their avowed faith with celebrating something that their Church vilifies?

    I know that Paganism is not all devils and zombies etc. But these are the elements that are played up, by the people who celebrate it.

    You say that Halloween is not a Christian Holiday - so does this mean that Christians don't celebrate it - not my understanding?

    I am not a Christian, but I did study Religion as part of my undergraduate degree and this has always interested me.
     
  8. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    But they're not celebrating the birth and ressurection of Jesus but rather the renewal of the earth and the fact that winter will not be the end of everything?
     
  9. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    IIRC a lot or at least some christian holidays have pagan origins...
     
  10. You bring up a good point. No, non Christians that celebrate the Christmas and Easter do not celebrate the Birth or Ressurection of Christ, but neither do Christians celebrate the harvest and good luck in the hunt during Halloween.

    It's about having fun andspending time with family and friends.
     
  11. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    If that's the case - the why not just have "secular" holidays and be honest about what these are, rather than going on about witches,devils etc.

    I'm not asking you really - but why do committed Christians want to celebrate all this stuff about ghosts, devils etc ?
     
  12. Well, Halloween has pretty much become a secular holiday.

    I grew up as a Christian, and I never really thought about the "why" when it came to Halloween. I just thought of it as a fun time to run around dressed up as whatever creative thing I could think of.
     
  13. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    In England as a child we never had this, but we did have Guy Fawkes Day or "Bonfire Night", which is similar - 5th November. But as an inquistive child, along with most of my friends - we knew exactly what this was all about - Guido Fawkes had tried to blow up Parliament failed and we celebrated this each year. We made "Guys" - burned them on bonfires and set off fireworks - it all made perfect sense.

    If we had celebrated Halloween, then I would have had a lot of very awkward questions for my teachers, parents and sunday school teacher!! ;)

    Aren't kids these days : "inquisitive" or questioning of what they're told?
     
  14. Not when it involves free candy and staying up late! :D
     
  15. APouncer

    APouncer

    Nov 3, 2000
    Lancashire, UK
    Not sure if this is relevant, but will add more grist to the mill, I grew up in England, we celebrated and knew the history of Guy Fawkes Day and I expect the vast majority of English also do this.

    However, in Ireland, they celebrate Halloween extensively, and have done for at least 50 years according to a couple of 60 year olds I know over there.

    Is this to simply find an alternative to (the political overtones of) the 5th of November or something else (large numbers of Irish going to US years ago?). Also, the "spooky" aspects of Halloween in Ireland are not the only theme, dressing-up in costume is the main theme.
     
  16. Maybe I'm being blunt, but I never saw it as celebrating ghosts and devils and stuff. In american schools, they do teach the meaning of Halloween to kids, but it's been so long I can't remember what we were told, nor do I know if they still teach it.

    I can pretty much safely say that they got it all wrong though. :rolleyes:
     
  17. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I would be intereted to hear from any current or recent school attendees in the US, if they are told what Halloween means and how it is explained?

    Seriously !!
     
  18. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Wel I think I mentioned in the previous thread that Celtic Pagans were amongst the main originators of the Samhain festival that CG mentions - presumably a lot of Irish immigrants took this to the US?

    The English were opposed to the "heathen barbarians" and all their weird practices!! ;)
     
  19. I never celebrated All Hallows Eve, either, as a kid. It seems to be quite a recent import from the US and seems to have been instigated by the "Trick-or-Treat" thing.

    Nowadays, there are plenty of innocent groups of children who like to dress up as witches, or whatever, and who are accompanied by adults to knock on doors, effectively begging for a few sweets. No problem with that. At the other end of the scale there are equal numbers of teenagers who use that night to bother law abiding families, frighten old folk, and generally make nuisances of themselves.

    I have no religious thoughts, ideas or persuasions about Halloween. Neither do I know anything about it's origin or history. I just wish it would go away :eek:

    John
     
  20. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS *

    Jan 25, 2002
    The frozen north
    I think maybe I was the one triggering the hijacking with my comment about commercial junk. I guess I should have started a new one instead, sorry about that. It seems however to me it's extremely rude to those having a discussion to just kill a thread. It's not as if this was the first time a thread gets side-tracked, and the discussion of the history and background of the celebration is very interesting.