The history of the Celtic festival, which today is known as Halloween, goes deep into the old days. According to Celtic legends, on the night of the first day of November, the gate between the two worlds opens, allowing the ancestral spirits to come to our world. The name of the holiday in its modern tale dates back to the English All Hallows’ Eve – the eve of All Saints Day – that in a reduction and gave everyone the familiar “Halloween“.
In the Anglo-Saxon world, on this day, with the onset of darkness, people “reincarnate” in mystical beings and characters – go out into the street in pre-prepared costumes of evil spirits, and in countries where the tradition of celebrating has not yet taken root, Halloween is an occasion for meeting friends and thematic parties. However, there are a lot of corners on the planet where All Saints’ Day is celebrated in its own way.
Let us see how different people in different corners of the world celebrate Halloween.
Celebrate Halloween in Mexico (Latin America)
On the holiday, small altars are usually built in memory of the deceased, skulls made of sugar and verbena are placed there. Small things for the altar are usually collected for a whole year.
Also, the Day of the Dead is a magnificent carnival with a lot of sweets and figures of skeletons “Katarina”. Cemeteries are decorated with bright ribbons, flowers and fruits, the paths leading to the houses are set with burning candles. Such traditions appeared several thousand years ago, even in the Maya and the Olmecs. Then the storage of the real skulls of the deceased relatives meant death and a return to life, relics were put on public display as part of the ritual.
Celebrate Halloween in France
In France, the banned Church of Samhain was replaced by a similar celebration – La Toussaint, which is celebrated on November 1.
On this day, the French are preparing traditional buckwheat biscuits with various fillings and seafood. On the streets are held costumed processions with fireworks, fireworks and torches, balls are held, performances are shown where the main characters are witches and monsters. Celebrants always with special care approach to thinking about every detail of the costumes, because for the best outfit you can get a prize in one of the competitions. Go to the course and mask, and makeup, and everything that will wander into the head. On this day it is customary to see werewolves, vampires, sorcerers, pirates, zombies, various animals and monsters on French streets: they frighten passers-by, knock on doors of houses, wait for encouragement in the form of sweets and other sweets.
In Paris, ancient manor houses, castles and abandoned buildings and cemeteries come to life. Appear luminous from within the pumpkin with carved holes for the mouth and eyes – the so-called lanterns of Jack.
Celebrate Halloween in Bolivia
In Bolivia, the central cemetery in La Paz becomes the site for the human skull parade on November 9 of each year. Feast of the Fiesta de las atitas – it is the rituals and Catholic rites, when all the action centered around the skulls: they are decorated with flowers, bring them something good to eat, give them symbolic gifts, pop in the mouth cigarettes bring to the streets in boxes made of wood or cardboard, packages.
So it is in Bolivia analogous to the usual Halloween, although the Day of the Dead is also coming here, but a week earlier (as Da de Muertos), however, it is not so widespread and noisy. The tradition of the Fiesta de las atatitas came from ancient times: the indigenous inhabitants of the Andes spent one day with the remains of their relatives – every year three years after their death. Now the celebration has acquired a modern character. An unusual tradition has survived, rather, out of fear that the skull, which the family does not care about, will bring misfortune and failure. Bolivians believe that everyone has seven souls, and the latter remains in the skeleton.
Celebrate Halloween in Russia
In Russia, the church opposes Halloween, which, however, does not prevent young people from enjoying the holiday, holding themed parties and having fun. Nevertheless, in Russia there is also a real analogue of the Western celebration if we talk about Halloween as the Day of All Saints, it is the Day of the Holy Trinity or Pentecost.
It was only in the 14th century that Pentecost began to celebrate Pentecost after St. Sergius of Radonezh introduced it into the calendar. There is no clearly fixed date – the Day of the Holy Trinity is celebrated on the 50th day after Easter and is one of the main holidays for Christians.
Pentecost lasts either one day, or three days (Sunday, Monday and Tuesday). The Trinity completes the spring cycle of festivities (Prelocation, Ascension, Semik, a week before the Trinity). On the eve of a parental Saturday is celebrated – a tribute of respect and reverence to those who were not buried according to Christian customs. On Holy Trinity Day, special songs are sung, ceremonial service, liturgy and vespers are held, when the descent of the Holy Spirit is celebrated. The traditional attire for the feast has an emerald color, it is customary to wear flowers and birch twigs. The day of the Holy Spirit is the day after the Trinity.