Autor : Yasmina haddad zaimi ,@jasminitaaa
Halloween originated as a pagan festival in parts of Northern Europe, particularly around what is now the United Kingdom. Many European cultural traditions hold that Halloween is a time when magic is most potent and spirits can make contact with the physical world. In Christian times, it became a celebration of the evening before All Saints’ Day. Immigrants from Scotland and Ireland brought the holiday to the United States.
In America, Halloween stands for a congregation of both religious and pagan beliefs, rituals and traditions. Irish immigrants were the ones to bring the festival to America. In 1840, during their escape from their country’s potato famine, they came to America and made it familiar with
Halloween. Anoka, Minnesota, was the first city in America to conduct Halloween celebration officially, in 1921. Every year on October 31, Americans celebrate Halloween with complete zeal and enthusiasm. The festival is celebrated to pay tribute to the departed souls of the near and dear ones. It is believed that the souls of the dead relatives come to earth to visit their living relatives.
Halloween is not an official holiday. Government offices and businesses are open as usual and public transit services run on regular schedules..
Halloween is usually celebrated amongst family, friends and, sometimes, co-workers. However, some areas hold large community events. Parties and other events may be planned on October 31 or in the weekends before and after this date. Adults may celebrate by watching horror films, holding costume parties or creating haunted houses or graveyards.
A popular tradition followed by American children on Halloween is trick-or-treaters. This is a fun game where the children dressed up in fancy costumes go from house to house asking “trick or treat?” In this game, the children mildly threaten the house owners about doing some mischief, if they are not given treats. In North America, the idea of trick-or-treat hails from the belief that one must be kind to the departed souls, lest they play a trick on the person. Neo-pagans in North America consider Halloween to be the turning point between the old and the new year. Besides, the festival marks the gateway between the living and dead world. They believe that the two worlds come closer during this festival, which facilitate their communication with the ancestors.
Some families carve lanterns with ‘scary’ faces out of pumpkins or other vegetables or decorate their homes and gardens in Halloween style. These were traditionally intended to ward off evil spirits