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Moderated Forums => Faith Issues => Topic started by: GabrieltheCelt on October 02, 2007, 10:38:31 PM

Title: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GabrieltheCelt on October 02, 2007, 10:38:31 PM
Hey y'all,

 Well, it's that time of year again where folks who're trying to watch their weight are mocked and tempted by aisles and aisles of every type of sugary confection dipped in chocolate. ;) Yep, it's Halloween time. But weight aside, how are Orthodox Christians to deal with this 'holiday' now firmly rooted in our culture? Do we overlook it's pagan origins and provide some wiggle room or do we put our collective foot down and say 'no'. After listening to Fr. Joseph Hunnycut's (sp?) 'Orthodixie' podcast on Ancient Faith Radio, I personally feel that if you've never looked into the 'holiday', maybe you should.

 I did some research on the origins of the holiday as well as looked up some neo-pagan views on the matter and this is what one neo-pagan had to say from www.neopagan.net/Halloween-Origins.html :

 "A student sent me an email asking me to sum up in more personal terms what Halloween means to me and other Neopagans. Here is what I told her:

Halloween is the modern name for Samhain, an ancient Celtic holy day which many Neopagans — especially Wiccans, Druids and Celtic Reconstructionists — celebrate as a spiritual beginning of a new year.
  
Halloween is a time to confront our personal and cultural attitudes towards death and those who have passed on before us.
  
Halloween is a time to lift the veil between the many material and spiritual worlds in divination, so as to gain spiritual insight about our pasts and futures.
  
Halloween is a time to deepen our connection to the cycles of the seasons, to the generations that have come before us and those that will follow, and to the Gods and Goddesses we worship.
  
Halloween is a time to let our inner children out to play, to pass on our childhood traditions to our children, and to share the fun with our friends and neighbors of many other faiths.'


 If you wan't to vote, I hope you'll go ahead and write a little something about how you view Halloween.

 In Christ,

 Gabriel
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 02, 2007, 11:27:33 PM
I personally feel uncomfortable with Halloween, based on what I know of the holiday in the light of my Orthodox faith, so I voted 'No' in the above poll.  But I intend to not cast any aspersion on those Orthodox who do participate in the revelry in some seemingly innocent way.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: drewmeister2 on October 02, 2007, 11:41:35 PM
ON HALLOWEEN



With regard to our non-participation in the pagan festival of Halloween, we will be strengthened by an understanding of the spiritual danger and history of this anti-Christian feast. The feast of Halloween began in pre-Christian times among the Celtic peoples of Great Britain, Ireland and northern France. These pagan peoples believed that physical life was born from death. Therefore, they celebrated the beginning of the "new year" in the fall (on the eve of October 31 and into the day of November 1), when, as they believed, the season of cold, darkness, decay and death began. A certain deity, whom they called Samhain, was believed by the Celts to be the lord of Death, and it was he whom they honored at their New Year's festival.

There were, from an Orthodox Christian point of view, many diabolical beliefs and practices associated with this feast which, it will be clear, have endured to our time. On the eve of the New Year's festival, the Druids who were the priests of the Celtic cult, instructed their people to extinguish all hearth fires and lights. On the evening of the festival a huge bonfire built of oak branches, which they believed to be sacred, was ignited. Upon this fire sacrifices of crops, animals, and even human beings, were burned as an offering in order to appease and cajole Samhain, the lord of Death. It was also believed that Samhain, being pleased by their faithful offerings, allowed the souls of the dead to return to homes for a festal visit on this day. It is from this belief that the practice of wandering about in the dark dressed up in costumes imitating ghosts, witches, hobgoblins, fairies, and demons grew up. For the living entered into fellowship and communion with the dead by what was, and still is, a ritual act of imitation, through costume and activity of wandering around in the dark of night, even as the souls of the dead were believed to wander.

The dialogue of "trick or treat" is also an integral part of this system of beliefs and practices. It was believed that the souls of the dead who had entered into the world of darkness, decay, and death, and therefore into total communion with and submission to Samhain the lord of Death, bore the affliction of great hunger on their festal visit. Out of this grew the practice of begging, which was a further ritual enactment and imitation of what the Celts believed to be the activities of the souls of the dead on their festal visit. Associated with this is the still further implication that if the souls of the dead and their imitators were not appeased with "treats," i.e., offerings, then the wrath and anger of Samhain, whose angels and servants the souls and their imitators had become, would be unleashed through a system of "tricks," or curses.

From an Orthodox Christian point of view, participation in these practices at any level is impossible and idolatrous, a genuine betrayal of our God and our holy Faith. For if we participate in the ritual activity of imitating the dead by dressing up in their attire or by wandering about in the dark, or by begging with them, then we have willfully sought fellowship with the dead, whose lord is not Samhain as the Celts believed but Satan, the Evil One who stands against God. Further, if we submit to the dialogue of "trick or treat," we make our offering not to innocent children, but rather to Samhain, the lord of Death whom they have come to serve as imitators of the dead, wandering in the dark of night.

There are other practices associated with Halloween which we must stay away from. As was mentioned above, on the eve of the Celtic New Year festival, Druid priests instructed their faithful to extinguish their hearth fires and lights and to gather around the fire of sacrifice to make their offerings to pay homage to the lord of Death. Because this was a sacred fire, it was from this that the fire of the new year was to be taken and the lights and hearth fire rekindled. Out of this arose the practice of the jack o'lantern (in the USA, a pumpkin; in older days other vegetables were used) which was carved in imitation of the dead and used to convey the new light and fire to the home where the lantern was left burning throughout the night. Even the use and display of the jack o'lantern involves celebration of and participation in the pagan festival of death honoring the Celtic god Samhain. Orthodox Christians must in no way share in this Celtic activity, but rather we should counter our inclinations and habits by burning candles to the Savior and the Most Holy Mother of God and to all the holy saints.

In the ancient Celtic rite divination was also associated with this festival. After the fire had died out the Druids examined the remains of the sacrifices in order to foretell, as they believed was possible, the events of the coming year. Since this time the Halloween festival has been the night for participation in all kinds of sorcery, fortune telling, divination, games of chance, and in latter medieval times, Satan worship and witchcraft.

In the days of the early Celtic Church, which was strictly Orthodox, the holy Fathers attempted to counteract this pagan New Year Festival which honored the lord of Death, by establishing the Feast of All Saints on the same day (in the East, the Feast of All Saints is celebrated on the Sunday following Pentecost). As was the custom of the Church, the faithful Christians attended a Vigil Service in the evening and in the morning a celebration of the Holy Eucharist. It is from this that the term Halloween developed. The word Halloween has its roots in the Old English of "All Hallow's Even," i.e., the eve commemorating all those who were hallowed (sanctified), i.e., Halloween. The people who had remained pagan and therefore anti-Christian and whose paganism had become deeply intertwined with the occult, Satanism, and magic, reacted to the Church's attempt to supplant their festival by increased fervor on this evening. In the early middle ages, Halloween became the supreme and central feast of the occult, a night and day upon which acts of witch craft, demonism, sorcery, and Satanism of all kinds were practiced.

Many of these practices involved desecration and mockery of Christian practices and beliefs. Costumes of skeletons developed as a mockery of the Church's reverence for holy relics; holy things were stolen, such as crosses and the Reserved Sacrament, and used in perverse and sacrilegious ways. The practice of begging became a system of persecution designed to harass Christians who were, by their beliefs, unable to participate by making offerings to those who served the lord of Death. The Western Church's attempt to supplant this pagan festival with the Feast of All Saints failed.

The analogy of Halloween in ancient Russia was Navy Dien (old Slavonic for "the dead" was "nav") which was also called Radunitsa and celebrated in the spring. To supplant it the Eastern Church connected this feast with Pascha and appointed it to be celebrated on Tuesday of the Saint Thomas' week (the second week after Pascha). The Church also changed the name of the feast into Radonitsa, from Russian "radost" joy. Joy of Pascha and of the resurrection from the dead of all of mankind after Jesus Christ. Gradually Radonitsa yielded to Pascha its importance and became less popular in general, but many dark and pagan practices and habits of some old feasts of Russian paganism (Semik, Kupalo, Rusalia and some aspects of the Maslennitsa) survived till the beginning of our century. Now they are gone forever, but the atheist authorities used to try to revive them. We can also recall the example of another "harmless" feast - May 1, proclaimed "the international worker's day." That was a simple renaming of a very old satanic feast of Walpurgis Night (night of April 30 into the day of May 1) - the great yearly demonic Sabbath during which all the participants united in "a fellowship of Satan."

These contemporary Halloween practices have their roots in paganism, idolatry, and Satan worship. How then did something that is so obviously contradictory to the holy Orthodox Faith gain acceptance among Christian people?

The answer to this question is: spiritual apathy and listlessness, which are the spiritual roots of atheism and the turning away from God. In today's society one is continually urged to disregard the spiritual roots and origins of secular practices under the guise that the outward customs, practices and forms are cute, fun, entertaining, and harmless. Behind this attitude lies the dogma of atheism, which denies the existence of both God and Satan and can therefore conclude that these activities, despite their obvious pagan and idolatrous origin, are harmless and of no consequence.

The holy Church must stand against this because we are taught by Christ that God stands in judgment over everything we do and believe, and that our actions are either for God or against God. Therefore, the customs of Halloween are not innocent practices with no relationship to the spiritual world. But rather they are demonic practices, precisely as an examination of their origins proves.

Evil spirits do exist. The demons do exist. Christ came into the world so that through death He might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the Devil (Heb. 2:12). It is imperative for us to realize as Christians that our greatest foe is the Evil One who inspires nations and individuals to sin against mankind, and who prevents them from coming to a knowledge of the truth. Unless we realize that Satan is our real enemy, we can never hope for spiritual progress for our lives. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places (Eph.6:12).

Today we witness a revival of satanistic cults; we hear of a satanic service conducted on Halloween night; everywhere Satan reaches out to ensnare as many innocent people as possible. The newsstands are filled with material on spiritualism, supernatural phenomena, seances, prophecies, and all sorts of demonically inspired works.



It is undoubtedly an act of Divine Providence that Saint John of Kronstadt, that saintly physician of souls and bodies, should have his feast day on the very day of Halloween, a day which the world dedicated to the destroyer, corrupter, and deceiver of humanity. God has provided us with this powerful counterpoise and weapon against the snares of Satan, and we should take full advantage of this gift, for truly "Wondrous is God in His saints."

--Archpriest Victor Potapov

(Copied from the "paradosis" internet email list, and as reprinted from "Parish Life" of the St. John the Baptist Cathedral, Washington, D.C) from http://www.orthodox-christianity.net
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 02, 2007, 11:42:09 PM
As long as you dont glorify death, witchcraft of satan and his band of fallen baddies, I guess the candy is cool.  Just explain to the kids " No, you cant dress up as a blood gushing zombie.  I don't care what Billy is doing."  
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 03, 2007, 12:14:48 AM
As long as you dont glorify death, witchcraft of satan and his band of fallen baddies, I guess the candy is cool.  Just explain to the kids " No, you cant dress up as a blood gushing zombie.  I don't care what Billy is doing." 
But, according to the article drewmeister cited above, is it possible to recognize that even "innocent", ignorant participation in the Halloween festivities is in itself an unwitting glorification of death, satan, and the occult?  This is why one Orthodox church in my city offers a harvest party for their youth on Halloween night as an Orthodox alternative to the truly satanic holiday Halloween is.  As for the candy, no one in my house of three Orthodox men offers candy to trick-or-treaters, and we keep our front porch light off as a signal that our house is off limits.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Νεκτάριος on October 03, 2007, 12:18:43 AM
Quote
This is why one Orthodox church in my city offers a harvest party for their youth on Halloween night as an Orthodox alternative to the truly satanic holiday Halloween is.

I am very thankful for things like that.  Otherwise I would still be going from house to house worshiping satan for candy.  We'd even sacrifice cats in the backyard to the demons.  If it weren't for my parish's harvest festival, I know I'd still be doing that. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 03, 2007, 12:20:47 AM
I am very thankful for things like that.  Otherwise I would still be going from house to house worshiping satan for candy.  We'd even sacrifice cats in the backyard to the demons.  If it weren't for my parish's harvest festival, I know I'd still be doing that. 
You don't take any of our naysaying seriously, do you?  Why not just express why you like Halloween and disagree with us rather than ridicule us who think differently from you? ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: lubeltri on October 03, 2007, 01:04:29 AM
Perhaps all the games and costumes and candy are making fun of the Evil One? The devil does not like to be mocked. Most people's modern celebration of Halloween truly trivializes the pagan root of it. It's like Santa and reindeer with Christmas and the Easter bunny with Pascha---the revelry has little to no connection with the real meaning of the holiday. So a little candy and dressing up would seem harmless (with parental guidance) unless it includes real occult aspects to it.

Of course, like Peter Aleut says, parents are justified in deciding this matter for themselves.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on October 03, 2007, 01:08:37 AM
I think it's just cultural.
Don't we Orthodox do even stranger things than go around in fancy dress asking for candy?
Behind our Altars is the life-sized image of the Corpse of a Man Who was tortured to death by being nailed to a Cross. We eat His Flesh and drink His Blood. On Holy Friday night, we carry His symbolic Tomb in procession and venerate it. I was in Crete for Pascha in the late eighties, and they celebrate the Resurrection by hanging an effigy of Judas from a gallows and burning it with a bonfire at Midnight.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on October 03, 2007, 01:15:22 AM
"Junie Harper says a haunted house is the devil's mousetrap, and fun is the cheese."

(http://www.chem.ucla.edu/~itamar/icons/HankHill.jpg)

"Luanne, just when I think you've said the stupidest thing ever, you keep talking."

---

I think it should be left up to what the parent's feel comfortable with.  My parents never got into it since you never saw it in Europe (until very recently), so it was never really something we worried about.  I would just buy a couple bags of candy and sit down for the Coast to Coast AM Hallowe'en show.   :P
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 03, 2007, 01:16:50 AM
Of course, like Peter Aleut says, parents are justified in deciding this matter for themselves.
I do remember one Halloween while I was in college when I attended all the day's classes with a brown paper bag over my head just like Charlie Brown.  Of course, I also remember another, again while in college, when my campus security team had a devil of a time keeping order on campus that night.  Let's see what I can recall from that night...
I tell ya, that was one night of fun that I'll never forget. ::)  (Like I want to remember. ::))


NOTE:  This was all on the campus of a private Christian college.  Nothing against the true Christian witness of this institution of higher learning, but boys will be boys regardless of where they are.  The Dean of Student Life did speak with me a couple days later and promised me that he would try to identify those who engaged in the rowdy behaviors and mete out appropriate discipline.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Νεκτάριος on October 03, 2007, 02:07:33 AM
Quote
You don't take any of our naysaying seriously, do you?  Why not just express why you like Halloween and disagree with us rather than ridicule us who think differently from you?

Oh, I don't like Halloween in the least.  I think it is a waste of time and money.  By the time I was in middle school I had outgrown it.  I think it is embarrassing for adults to even care about it.  99% of people who celebrate Halloween are kids harmlessly dressing up in funny clothes and looking for an excuse to eat candy.  And now there is a commercial bandwagon since there is money to be made.  Most of these people will grow up to be normal adults and that will be that. 

By adding a mystique and a counter cultural element by calling Halloween satanic or adding any spiritual significance to it, you are only fueling something that otherwise wouldn't exist.  I remember being Peter Pan one year (although for the crowds here, I suppose this means I am a repressed homosexual ::) if the religious right can attack the Teletubies, he doesn't stand a chance), an astronaut and Luke Skywalker (I think that was it, since my parents were kind of frugal my sister and I used the same costume for as many years as it would fit!).  We got some candy and that was the extent of it (well except for the cat sacrifices in the backyard).

There are many important issues in society in which the Church should serve as a moral beacon.  Wasting our precious influence on what amounts to a mostly non-issue is a travesty.  And then there is that story about a boy and a wolf... so when it comes to a real issue in society, are people going to listen to people who had their knickers in a bunch over kids eating candy?     
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Fr. David on October 03, 2007, 02:17:35 AM
Didn't the Church try to change the "dress-up" tradition of the pagan holiday by having folks dress as saints for All Saint's Day?

I seem to remember that from somewhere...ring a bell w/anybody?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 03, 2007, 02:40:06 AM
I seem to remember that Halloween is also the anniversary of an event that shattered the Western Christian world.  Does anyone remember Wittenberg?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Νεκτάριος on October 03, 2007, 02:42:26 AM
It is also the day before All Saints Day.  Just go to mass and don't worry about it.  It is a holy day of obligation after all. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 03, 2007, 02:52:58 AM
It is also the day before All Saints Day.  Just go to mass and don't worry about it.  It is a holy day of obligation after all. 
Methinks you're preaching to the wrong choir here. ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on October 03, 2007, 02:58:23 AM
I seem to remember that Halloween is also the anniversary of an event that shattered the Western Christian world.  Does anyone remember Wittenberg?

What a great cause for celebration that the 95 theses were declared this day and helped shatter delusion. We should celebrate it every year by dressing up in costume and playing tricks on those still in delusion if they don't give us a treat.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Thomas on October 03, 2007, 08:58:08 AM
Here is an article that I wrote for our parish newsletter:

I am frequently asked by catechumen and recent converts to the Orthodox Church “What is the
Orthodox practice and teaching about Halloween? The first thing we need to do is to identify
Halloween by its correct Christian title, “All Hallows(Saints) Eve”. Within the Orthodox Church there
appears to be some very different opinions on the subject. As I was researching the topic, I found
every point of view ranging from it being a holy day of the Western Rite Orthodox Church (the eve of
All Saints' Day) to a secular day of fun for children to some calling it a neo-pagan holiday. The Eastern
Orthodox Christian Church, as a whole, has not made an official statement about whether or not to
celebrate Halloween. (It is not a religious Holy Day for us, as Eastern Orthodox Christians celebrate
All Saints on the Sunday after Pentecost.) There are, however, some things to know about this holiday
and basic Church teachings.

Origin of Halloween

"Halloween" is a contracted form of "All Hallows Eve" and is the Old English title for the evening of
All Saints Day (November 1), when Western Christians traditionally remember believers of other
times who are especially good role models of faith; many of whom were persecuted, tortured, and/or
died rather than renounce Christ. The Christian Church kept the Jewish custom of marking a holiday
(contracted form of "holy day") for the twenty-four hours beginning with sundown and ending with
sundown the following day. Even today Christmas Eve is almost as special as Christmas Day; and in our
Eastern Orthodox churches, all feast have Vesperal services attached to them to be done on the eve
of the Feast.

As northern Europe and the British Isles became Christianized, the Church saw that the pagan
festivals still lured Christians to compromise their faith. One such was the Druidic New Year that
began on November 1. In the strictly Orthodox early Celtic Church, the Holy Fathers tried to
counteract this pagan new year festival by establishing the feast of All Saints on that same day (in
the East, this feast is celebrated on the Sunday after Pentecost). Consequently, the Church in those
areas designated October 31 and November 1 as the "Holy Evening" and Holy Day of All Saints Day.
The night before the feast (on “All Hallows Eve”), a vigil service was held and a morning celebration of
the Eucharist. The Church not only sought to give Christians an alternative, spiritually edifying
holiday; but also to proclaim the supremacy of the Gospel over pagan superstition. Rather than fearing
the "tricks" of those who have died, Christians reflected on the lives and deaths of those who were
faithful and used them as role models for their own walks with the Lord; and thanked God for
preserving the saints in the midst of suffering and persecution.

In the United States and Canada, Halloween was adopted more or less as an excuse for a party in the
nineteenth century. In Puritan America, Halloween was little more than gatherings of superstitious
villagers. The general reluctance of folks to go outdoors gave many opportunities to vandals and
pranksters, and another Halloween tradition was born. During the 19th century with the influx of Irish
and Scottish immigrants, the celebrating of Halloween by largely the adult population began to spread
in the U.S and Canada in the areas the Irish and Scottish immigrants settled. By the end of the Great
Depression, 'trick of treating' had evolved into a nightmare for shopkeepers, with vandals wreaking
havoc on property, and many towns imposed curfews. Things eventually settled down as the economy
improved, however, and Halloween began to resemble the holiday we know today, with children begging
for treats door to door (the 'trick' in trick or treat is a reference to the old vandals' cry).

Trick or Treating

The practice of dressing up in costumes and begging door to door for goodies, is largely an American
adaptation of European masquerades, similar to Mardi Gras or the Greek Carnival “Apokria” Season
preceding Great Lent, and the late medieval Christian practice of "souling," when poor folk would go
door to door, receiving food in return for prayers for the dead.

It should be noted that while the wearing of costumes has been allowed by Orthodox people during
the Carnival or Apokria, and by interpretation for Halloween, the wearing of masks is not allowed or
likewise dressing as the opposite gender. Orthodox people should note that during the Greek Carnival
or Apokria, costuming often spoofs prominent political and social figures, as well everyday people,
clowns, etc. It is not the norm to dress as ghosts, skeletons, devils, witches, or what in western
culture we would call “hobgoblins”.

How can we observe the true spirit of All Hallows Eve?

If you are someone who follows the calendar of Western Rite Orthodoxy, it would be very appropriate
to continue to observe All Hallows Eve with the traditional vesperal services in the Church and on the
next day November 1 with morning prayer followed by the Holy Eucharist.
If you are an old Calendar/Julian Calendar Eastern Orthodox Christian, you have the great blessing of
attending the vigil service for St John of Kronstadt who feast day is celebrated on the Julian
Calendar date of October 19 and the Gregorian Calendar date of November 1.
If you are a “new Calendar” Revised Julian Calendar observant Eastern Orthodox Christian, like we
are at St.John’s, you have the opportunity to attend the vespers on October 31 for the feast of the
Holy Unmercenaries, Saints Cosmas and Damianos, celebrated on 1st November. As a proper
celebration encourage your children to look for acts of kindness to do in emulation of Sts Cosmas and
Damianos.

What do we do now?

Orthodox Christians should evaluate Halloween and determine an appropriate response for themselves
and their own families. Orthodox Christians should refrain from any participation that would
compromise one's faith or bring dishonor to the Lord Jesus Christ. A good principle is to look for ways
to become a positive, Christ-honoring voice in the midst of secularism and neo-paganism. However you
choose to handle this issue, it should be done in prayer, in a positive and informative way, one that will
not undermine the teaching of the Church. Take advantage of your children's interest in this holiday
to affirm your own faith in God's loving authority in all areas of life and His approval of all that is
good and helpful. Explain to them the meaning of the Feast in the West and use it to teach your
children about All Saints and the Orthodox understanding of life after death.

Orthodox Troparion for All Saints' Day

Throughout the world, Your Church, O Christ our God, is adorned with the blood of Your martyrs, as
with purple and fine linen. Through them she cries to You: Send down Your pity upon Your people. To
Your Church grant peace, and to our souls the Great Mercy. Amen.

article located at http://www.theforerunner.org/pubdocs/PDF%20Newsletter/Voice1007.pdf

Thomas
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Keble on October 03, 2007, 09:06:06 AM
My eldest son's first costume was St. Dunstan, complete with hammer and tongs.

In our little neighborhood, Halloween is really the only time that everybody meets everyone else. The older kids mostly stay home; the little ones swarm all over the neighborhood. Does it celebrate death, or anything pagan? Not that I can tell. The neo-pagans try to claim it, but given how pathetically little we actually know about pagan religion in Britain, it is a stretch at best. The people who need something to be hysterical about try to claim it too, but the notion that kids collecting candy is somehow effectively acting out an anti-Christian ritual is indefensible. In the end, I have to think that in my neighborhood, at least, the neighborliness and generosity it engenders far outweighs any pagan significance that someone else wants to lay on it.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Thomas on October 03, 2007, 09:09:10 AM
I took a survey while  preparing for my article and the following are how some Orthodox Christians in Texas and other areas responded to my question as to how did they observe or not observe halloween:

a)   One convert family turns off the porch light to assure they have no “trick or treaters” at their door and do a family Akathist service at their Icon Corner for the Repose of their family members who have fallen asleep in the Lord.  This is followed by a festal meal in which old family photo albums are opened and they tell stories about relatives who are asleep in the Lord.
b)   One Greek family has an icon of "All the Saints," showing the "great cloud of witnesses." They put it outside their door on Halloween with a white Vigil candle burning before it. When the kids come trick-or-treating they explain what the icon is all about and give a small homemade treat.
c)   Another Convert family decorates their home with autumn leaves, pumpkins and cornstalks, lights their porch and give out a lollipop with a small  strip of paper attached that simply says  “ Jesus won’t trick you He will treat you!” and then the scripture of John 3:16.
d)   Several families provide goody bags with a small brochure on their parish enclosed inviting the  child and his family to their parish for services.
e)   St. Nicholas Church [OCA]/Mogadore, OH, where there has been a "Fall Family Festival" for nine years. From 4:00 - 8:00 PM, there are games with prizes, candy, a cover-dish dinner, door prizes, entertainment [such as a magician, puppet shows, musicians, etc.], vespers, hayride, and ends with bonfire to roast marshmallows, drink cider, and eat donuts. Everyone in the parish is welcome to attend. A fall theme is used for the decorations: red, yellow and orange colors; multi-colored leaves; bales of hay; bundles of corn stalks; pumpkins, etc. There are no costumes involved.
f)   One family preempts the entire holiday by taking off together for a special trip. They go to another city, or to a hotel with an indoor pool. The children get so much attention and have so much fun that candy and costumes are poor competition.
g)   One family in a smaller town outside of Austin, uses their teenagers to plan and lead a "game night" for children in the neighborhood. They ask that the children dress as Biblical characters, or "fruits of the Spirit" (Galatians 5:22-23). Then organize an hour of active games and a creative scavenger hunt for candy. End the evening with a hay ride that features storytelling and singing.
h)   Another family decided to have absolutely no contact with Halloween. They have advised the school that they do not even wish their public school educated children to participate in any  potentially spiritually compromising activity, such as listening to ghost stories, or coloring picture s of witches.  On October 31st they assure their porch light is off and go out to eat or to a movie as a family.
i)   One priest noted that. "We have decided to tell them (our children) that as a Christian family striving to love the Lord and to do His will, we cannot participate (in Halloween). We can find other family activities for that evening or afternoon of 'trick-or-treat.' If there are school activities for the children, then at least we can set some guidelines and limitations for costumes. The guideline is found in 1 Thessalonians 5:22, 'Abstain from all appearance of evil.'... We do not make this decision lightly. We hope and pray that it will be an experience in which our children learn that sometimes we are called to be different than the world tells us to be when we strive to live God's plan for our lives."
j)   Another priest stated that he felt we should look at Halloween with a “whimsical” eye. A parent should really frown upon allowing their children to dress in costumes of evil people but likewise dressing up as clowns, angels, Bible Heroes, etc would be ok and should be done for fun.
k)   In one outlying community, the family takes their children to a “Children’ Miracle Network” Party where there are games and food with Candy given out as prizes.
l)   One family allows their children to participate fully in Halloween “Trick or Treating” but requires the children to dress in carnival style costumes avoiding spooky or evil costumes.
m)   Other families let their children attend a community party or Fall Festival rather than go trick or treating.
n)   One family prepares food baskets for the needy in their area and "treat" them with the anonymous food baskets
o)   Several families go “Trick or Treating for UNICEF” The United Nations Children's Fund - UNICEF. The funds they collect help needy children throughout the world.


I hope this helps to answer what some Orthodox people do with Halloween.

Thomas
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: lubeltri on October 03, 2007, 10:43:50 AM
I do remember one Halloween while I was in college when I attended all the day's classes with a brown paper bag over my head just like Charlie Brown.  Of course, I also remember another, again while in college, when my campus security team had a devil of a time keeping order on campus that night.  Let's see what I can recall from that night...
  • A band of about 15-20 male students who ran through campus in a military formation wearing nothing but their skivvies and running shoes and with their tee-shirts wrapped around their faces like masks
  • A group of about three other students who thought it funny to moon me on multiple occasions as I made my rounds
  • One or more unidentified students who targeted their paint ball guns on me--they missed with every shot, though one hit the wall just outside my dorm suite.  After I was done with my shift on patrol, I actually had to ask a couple of my teammates to give ME an escort to my dorm just to make sure I didn't get hit by one of those blasted paint balls.
I tell ya, that was one night of fun that I'll never forget. ::)  (Like I want to remember. ::))


NOTE:  This was all on the campus of a private Christian college.  Nothing against the true Christian witness of this institution of higher learning, but boys will be boys regardless of where they are.  The Dean of Student Life did speak with me a couple days later and promised me that he would try to identify those who engaged in the rowdy behaviors and mete out appropriate discipline.

That sounds downright innocent compared to stuff I've heard of, like pummeling the president's mansion with eggs and yobbish behavior like senseless vandalism. Thousands of us DID run around in our skivvies (barefoot, no running shoes---ouch!), but that was at Homecoming a week or two later. But I was at a heathen public university, so it could have been worse.

Halloween can be fun, but if God gives me children, I will definitely make it All Souls, All the Time, with just a little bit of candy and costume thrown in on the 31st.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: lubeltri on October 03, 2007, 10:53:20 AM
By adding a mystique and a counter cultural element by calling Halloween satanic or adding any spiritual significance to it, you are only fueling something that otherwise wouldn't exist.  I remember being Peter Pan one year (although for the crowds here, I suppose this means I am a repressed homosexual ::)     

LOL. My favorites were becoming a rubber-masked Bob Dole (while I was trick-or-treating, one middle-aged lady said to me, "If you think for ONE MOMENT you are going to get my vote, you can FORGET IT!" and slammed the door in my face*) and an Arm & Hammer deoderant can.

Halloween was so much fun growing up. But by the time I was 17, it was "kid's stuff."

*She subsequently opened the door in a giggle fit and gave me candy.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: lubeltri on October 03, 2007, 10:55:40 AM
Didn't the Church try to change the "dress-up" tradition of the pagan holiday by having folks dress as saints for All Saint's Day?

I seem to remember that from somewhere...ring a bell w/anybody?

Yeah, I've seen that before. Parish I went to last Halloween did that. All the kids dressed up as different saints before Mass.

Nice idea, I think.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 03, 2007, 11:25:21 AM
Honestly, I think in this American culture of ours, try as we might, the practice of dawning costumes and dressing up as vampires and werewolves wont go away into the darkness, no matter how much we look back at history, or warn of potential dangers.  As long as we teach our little ones what is acceptable and what isn't, and enforce it, all should be well.  That will, of course be left up to the parish priest and the individual parishoner and his family. 

I came up with an idea some years back of putting kids in light hearted to saintly costumes, hitching a wagon to the back of a big truck, putting kids and a couple of adults in the back of the wagon armed with candy, and instead of knocking on doors, finding trick or treaters and distribute it to them.  It'd be a good way to instill charity, I thought.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Heorhij on October 03, 2007, 11:30:49 AM
I am not in a position to judge whether it's OK for an Orthodox to celebrate Halloween, but what I do know is that I, personally, do not celebrate it and do not like it. I just do not like the idea of dressing in weird costumes (that was never attractive to me in any way), and I especially hate, hate, hate the idea that kids should go and extort candies. I do not like kids forming gangs, any gangs, and I very, very much dislike the legitimized begging of something for nothing. Totally, weird, totally wrong, un-attractive, no cultural "bells" ringing in me in association with this "holiday," - just nothing except a permanent thought in my head shortly before and during Oct. 31 that it would be so much better if there was no "halloween." :)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 03, 2007, 11:45:48 AM
I wonder if dressing up as a vampire really means anything.  It is not something quite attractive, but boys will be boys.  They also like action figures that fight and video games that has killing and blood.  We have to think much deeply than "it used to be pagan, and partaking of it partakes pagan practice."  A lot of the times we dress things that we know aren't real, for either comical or social purposes, but not religious purposes.  It even brings a community together.

I listened to my own Church bishops give talks against Halloween, and it hit me that a lot of their sources come from fundamentalist Protestant polemics and a poor way of interpret the Bible.  If someone dresses up as a witch and does some sort of incantations, it's un-biblical.  This assumes that the person dressing up as a witch actually believes in those incantations.  Most people act out what they do, and if "acting" is wrong, those actors who take roles as evil prophets and demons in saints' movies that we have are also doing "un-biblical" things.

What is wrong though?  Well, the mischievous acts done by children such as egging houses and cars and throwing toilet paper around trees.  This should definitely be condemned, and I can go further to say that you should bar your children from Halloween if there is an intention by them that they would do such a thing.  Curfews are important as well.  In addition, there is one thing that sticks out on me like a sore thumb that both Protestants and my Church taught.  The candy we buy during Halloween, the proceeds go to the religion of Wicca.  If this is true, where can I buy candy that doesn't fund Wicca, and if there is none, I think this would be well enough grounds for protest against Halloween, not because it jeopardizes my faith, but I am actually helping someone of another faith that I am to be virulently opposed to.

But besides this, I find nothing else about Halloween "inherently wrong."

God bless.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Heorhij on October 03, 2007, 12:12:23 PM
Mina, I don't think kids' pranks should be "condemned" - they are the least of my worries about this "holiday." :)

What I hate is organized begging, extortion, and bad taste (adults dressing in a looney way).
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: admiralnick on October 03, 2007, 02:09:03 PM
Instead of Halloween, we should all celebrate the feast day of St. John Kucurov (St. John of Chicago) which also falls on October 31.  ;D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 03, 2007, 02:56:04 PM
Mina, I don't think kids' pranks should be "condemned" - they are the least of my worries about this "holiday." :)

What I hate is organized begging, extortion, and bad taste (adults dressing in a looney way).

lol...Well, I agree that adults who partake of this event are just stupid, even teenagers imo.  But when it comes to little children, you just can't resist giving them candy  :)

My father hated Halloween, but when he saw little children at the door, after three knocks, the chocolate was almost gone...lol

God bless.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Heorhij on October 03, 2007, 03:24:10 PM
lol...Well, I agree that adults who partake of this event are just stupid, even teenagers imo.  But when it comes to little children, you just can't resist giving them candy  :)

My father hated Halloween, but when he saw little children at the door, after three knocks, the chocolate was almost gone...lol

God bless.

I knew a woman whose father was a very devout Protestant (Free Methodist), one of those selected few scholars who edited the first edition of NIV in the 1970's. She told me that when she was little, her father taught her and her siblings to GIVE candy and chocolate during Halloween, instead of begging for it or extorting it. :)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: TinaG on October 03, 2007, 03:48:39 PM
In addition, there is one thing that sticks out on me like a sore thumb that both Protestants and my Church taught.  The candy we buy during Halloween, the proceeds go to the religion of Wicca.  If this is true, where can I buy candy that doesn't fund Wicca, and if there is none, I think this would be well enough grounds for protest against Halloween, not because it jeopardizes my faith, but I am actually helping someone of another faith that I am to be virulently opposed to.

HUH????? I didn't know Hershey's kisses and Reese's peanut butter cups were made by Wiccans.  What about Easter Peeps and chocolate bunnies?

Minasoliman - On the whole I really agree with your post,  I love some of the  Halloween alternatives suggested by other OC netters too.  I respect how divisive this issue gets, and what others have done that honors our Lord and his saints on this day.  Years ago I bounced back and forth on my opinion of Halloween, with almost all the negativity coming from the warnings of evangelical protestants whose beliefs are "if it ain't of Jesus it's of the devil".  But honestly, I  could never give up the celebration, because I find it totally fun and silly.  IMO the old-fashioned family type celebration of Halloween is not Wiccan and it's not satanic (and let's give Wiccans a break - they are pagan but not Satan worshipers).   The same arguments against Halloween are the same ones we've had about Harry Potter novels.  

My kids know they are Orthodox Christians.  They do not believe they are one-eyed pirates, dinosaurs, Power Rangers, mummies or vampires.  We all like a fun scare and I like to give that same kind of fun scare to the neighborhood kids by decorating the yard with lights, pumpkin luminarias, white trashbag ghosts, spider webs and funny gravestones.  We'll decorate inside and make some Halloweeny food.  But my kids know it's make believe and a day to have fun.   I love someone's idea about distributing parish bulletins with candy and here's one I may do - Ancient Faith Radio cards with your parish address and website stamped on the back.  Tape a piece of candy to the corner (and don't be, as we say in Tejas, pinche' or cheap - make it a good chocolate, not Dollar General bulk stuff.

I do have a lot of objections as to how some people dress for Halloween - overtly sexy, seductive, or immodest costumes, or too great an emphasis on gore and extreme horror.   Spooky is fun - slasher is violent and not appropriate.   It's the difference between the 1930's/40's Frankenstein or Dracula films and Night of the Living Dead or Texas Chainsaw Massacre (which I did see as an 18 yo college student at Texas A&M on Halloween night 1980, dressed as a baby with a bottle full of tequila - I don't remember the whole thing but that was a horribly evil movie).

I think someone's post about how Halloween brings neighbors and neighborhoods together is right on.  We have a bigger turnout of neighbors on Halloween than National Night Out.  My kids get to meet all their neighbors and we visit more than any other time of the year.  

Just my single little opinion.   This discussion just warms us all up for a good rip-roaring fight about Christmas Trees and Santa Claus.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: lubeltri on October 03, 2007, 04:11:05 PM
Texas Chainsaw Massacre (which I did see as an 18 yo college student at Texas A&M on Halloween night 1980, dressed as a baby with a bottle full of tequila - I don't remember the whole thing but that was a horribly evil movie).

I saw it when I was 6 years old. Pure poison. It and other films like it did damage to me that took years to heal. After my stepfather committed suicide several years later, I had terrible recurring nightmares of being locked into the coffin with him and buried, face to face, watching him decompose to a thoroughly revolting state, at which point he would reanimate and attack me in various gruesome ways. Not very pleasant dreams to have in the middle of the night in the same house where my stepfather hanged himself upstairs. I lived in fear in that house. Hard to think about even today.

I thoroughly do NOT approve of that kind of Halloween "revelry." Those Saw-type movies are evil.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: TinaG on October 03, 2007, 04:15:22 PM
I saw it when I was 6 years old. Pure poison. It and other films like it did damage to me that took years to heal. After my stepfather committed suicide several years later, I had terrible recurring nightmares of being locked into the coffin with him and buried, face to face, watching him decompose to a thoroughly revolting state, at which point he would reanimate and attack me in various gruesome ways. Not very pleasant dreams to have in the middle of the night in the same house where my stepfather hanged himself upstairs. I lived in fear in that house. Hard to think about even today.

I thoroughly do NOT approve of that kind of Halloween "revelry." Those Saw-type movies are evil.

That is horrifying!!! I am so sorry and I hope you have found peace and comfort so many years later.   I am suprised you have any fond memories of Halloween as a child. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: TinaG on October 03, 2007, 04:24:19 PM
??? I don't know what happened to my original post - one minute it was here and then gone.  I'm sure it wasn't much of a loss but I'm going to try and post again.

In addition, there is one thing that sticks out on me like a sore thumb that both Protestants and my Church taught.  The candy we buy during Halloween, the proceeds go to the religion of Wicca.  If this is true, where can I buy candy that doesn't fund Wicca, and if there is none, I think this would be well enough grounds for protest against Halloween, not because it jeopardizes my faith, but I am actually helping someone of another faith that I am to be virulently opposed to.
But besides this, I find nothing else about Halloween "inherently wrong."



HUH?? I didn't know Hershey's kisses and Reese's peanut butter cups were made by Wiccans.  What about Easter Peeps and chocolate bunnies?

Minasoliman - On the whole I really agree with your post,  I love some of the  Halloween alternatives suggested by other OC netters too.  I respect how divisive this issue gets, and what others have done that honors our Lord and his saints on this day.  Years ago I bounced back and forth on my opinion of Halloween, with almost all the negativity coming from the warnings of evangelical protestants whose beliefs are "if it ain't of Jesus it's of the devil".  But honestly, I  could never give up the celebration, because I find it totally fun and silly.  IMO the old-fashioned family type celebration of Halloween is not Wiccan and it's not satanic (and let's give Wiccans a break - they are pagan but not Satan worshipers).   The same arguments against Halloween are the same ones we've had about Harry Potter novels. 

My kids know they are Orthodox Christians.  They do not believe they are one-eyed pirates, dinosaurs, Power Rangers, mummies or vampires.  We all like a fun scare and I like to give that same kind of fun scare to the neighborhood kids by decorating the yard with lights, pumpkin luminarias, white trashbag ghosts, spider webs and funny gravestones.  We'll decorate inside and make some Halloweeny food.  But my kids know it's make believe and a day to have fun.   I love someone's idea about distributing parish bulletins with candy and here's one I may do - Ancient Faith Radio cards with your parish address and website stamped on the back.  Tape a piece of candy to the corner (and don't be, as we say in Tejas, pinche' or cheap - make it a good chocolate, not Dollar General bulk stuff.

I do have a lot of objections as to how some people dress for Halloween - overtly sexy, seductive, or immodest costumes, or too great an emphasis on gore and extreme horror.   Spooky is fun - slasher is violent and not appropriate.   It's the difference between the 1930's/40's Frankenstein or Dracula films and Night of the Living Dead or Texas Chainsaw Massacre (which I did see as an 18 yo college student at Texas A&M on Halloween night 1980, dressed as a baby with a bottle full of tequila - I don't remember the whole thing but that was a horribly evil movie).

I think someone's post about how Halloween brings neighbors and neighborhoods together is right on.  We have a bigger turnout of neighbors on Halloween than National Night Out.  My kids get to meet all their neighbors and we visit more than any other time of the year. 

Just my single little opinion.   This discussion just warms us all up for a good rip-roaring fight about Christmas Trees and Santa Claus.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Veniamin on October 03, 2007, 04:30:16 PM
which I did see as an 18 yo college student at Texas A&M on Halloween night 1980, dressed as a baby with a bottle full of tequila - I don't remember the whole thing but that was a horribly evil movie

Fr. Leo ought to get a kick outta that.  Whoop!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: lubeltri on October 03, 2007, 05:00:00 PM
That is horrifying!!! I am so sorry and I hope you have found peace and comfort so many years later.   I am suprised you have any fond memories of Halloween as a child. 

Well, I know not to allow my kids to see that poison. I know first-hand what it can do to a child's brain, especially children who have other traumas in their lives. I thank God for his opening my eyes to it.

Fortunately I am able to separate those horror movie experiences from the positive ones, like trick-or-treating with my whole extended family, trading candies with my siblings and cousins (think of the floor of the NY Stock Exchange and you've got the picture), and pumpkin carving (and my mom making pumpkin seeds and pumpkin bread and pumpkin pie out of them). The positive stuff is also bound up with the autumn season (the Apple Festival, October baseball, autumn leaves, harvest, cider and home-made donuts, etc.---I'm sipping some apple cider right now while I type).

I think Halloween can be a part of that, but I think every parent should use discernment about celebrating it. Some things are clearly not good for children.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Νεκτάριος on October 03, 2007, 05:03:22 PM
Quote
October baseball

This is as good a time as any to crush your Yankee hopes and point out that the Diamondbacks are winning it all this year. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Christodoulos on October 03, 2007, 05:50:17 PM
God bless!+

I think orthodox christians should not celebrate Halloween!
It is an abolute pagan feast and usully against christian piety even if it looks innocent!
Thanks to God in europe usually Halloween is not celebrated we have carneval and oktoberfest but this is also against christian piety:o

In CHRIST
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Thomas on October 03, 2007, 06:08:07 PM
As I noted before
 

"Halloween" is a contracted form of "All Hallows Eve" and is the Old English title for the evening of
All Saints Day (November 1), when Western Christians traditionally remember believers of other
times who are especially good role models of faith; many of whom were persecuted, tortured, and/or
died rather than renounce Christ. The Christian Church kept the Jewish custom of marking a holiday
(contracted form of "holy day") for the twenty-four hours beginning with sundown and ending with
sundown the following day. Even today Christmas Eve is almost as special as Christmas Day; and in our
Eastern Orthodox churches, all feast have Vesperal services attached to them to be done on the eve
of the Feast.

As northern Europe and the British Isles became Christianized, the Church saw that the pagan
festivals still lured Christians to compromise their faith. One such was the Druidic New Year that
began on November 1. In the strictly Orthodox early Celtic Church, the Holy Fathers tried to
counteract this pagan new year festival by establishing the feast of All Saints on that same day (in
the East, this feast is celebrated on the Sunday after Pentecost). Consequently, the Church in those
areas designated October 31 and November 1 as the "Holy Evening" and Holy Day of All Saints Day.
The night before the feast (on “All Hallows Eve”), a vigil service was held and a morning celebration of
the Eucharist. The Church not only sought to give Christians an alternative, spiritually edifying
holiday; but also to proclaim the supremacy of the Gospel over pagan superstition. Rather than fearing
the "tricks" of those who have died, Christians reflected on the lives and deaths of those who were
faithful and used them as role models for their own walks with the Lord; and thanked God for
preserving the saints in the midst of suffering and persecution.


Halloween is a tradition in the United States as much as is Carnival and the many Wine , Wursts, and beer fests of Europe.  If done with the proper spirit it can be very edifying to those who observe it as it should be observed but as with Christmas and Easter one can choose to celebrate it in ways that are neither edifying nor honoring God. As in everything we are given a choice of to observe or not and how to observe. Does one do it to the Glory of God or to  wet their own passions?

Thomas
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on October 03, 2007, 07:59:58 PM
This is as good a time as any to crush your Yankee hopes and point out that the Diamondbacks are winning it all this year. 
What? *checks calendar* 2001? Noooooooooooo....
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 03, 2007, 08:30:04 PM
HUH?? I didn't know Hershey's kisses and Reese's peanut butter cups were made by Wiccans.  What about Easter Peeps and chocolate bunnies?

Well, I don't know about made, but many Evangelicals have said that the money we use to buy the candy in the stores, some of them go to the church of Wicca.  If that is true, I personally would boycott buying the candy.  But I'd like some verification on that one.

I agree that the arguments used are no different than using them against Harry Potter.  In fact, I think Our Life in Christ radio commented on how there are Orthodox Christian themes in Harry Potter itself.

Dear Lubeltri,

God bless you man.  I can hardly imagine what that could have been like.

Dear Thomas,

I would say that celebrating Halloween is equivalent to going to the beach or just sitting around and play some board games with friends and family.  Now, I am called to do all things through His glory, but not to get into a conversation 24/7 about spirituality and theology.  Let's be practical here.  If Halloween was a time for friends and family and neighborhoods to get together in a modest and loving sense, why object?  Is it not the glory of God to simply make peace and friends and be a good example?  I personally wouldn't do so to compromise my own faith.  I think no one disagrees on that.

God bless.

PS I do love the idea about adding some Church bulletins and addresses to candy.  I mean if they do beg for candy, it's an opportunity to plant a seed.  ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GabrieltheCelt on October 03, 2007, 08:45:07 PM
I thoroughly do NOT approve of that kind of Halloween "revelry." Those Saw-type movies are evil.
Lubeltri, may the Lord God bless you and help you with this difficulty!
I totally agree with you. Those movies are perverted, sick, and definately Satanic! Friday the 13th, Saw, any slasher movie for that matter. I also hate 'demonic' movies like The Omen, The Exercism of Emily Rose, Amityville... When we tell ourselves, "Aw, that's just fiction or Hollywood.", it desensitizes us to violence and the occult. While we shouldn't be afraid of these things, what does it profit our souls to play around with them? Why not start playing with a Ouija board? Afterall, it's mass marketed under Parker Brother's board games so what's the harm? Candy Land, Life, Ouija board... no big deal.  ::)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 03, 2007, 08:56:49 PM
Well, the Exorcism of Emily Rose was more of an argumentative movie, a movie that makes you think rather than scary or demonic.  Not that I'm ignoring the Hollywood elements, but I felt it leaned towards questioning exorcism rather than a "The Exorcist" type of a movie.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Cephas on October 03, 2007, 09:11:07 PM
+ Irini nem ehmot,

I don't know, I've always been a sucker for a good horror movie (note the operative word: good).  For me, they are a source of pure entertainment.  I enjoyed Saw although I despised Saw III.  Not sure I want to see Saw II either.  And Saw IV?  What's with that... the man is dead for crying out loud.  I was also a fan of The Exorcist although I disliked the Exorcism of Emily Rose.  The latter was just too odd, and the ending/explanation of the movie just didn't sit right with me. 

As for Halloween in general, I'm all for it.  It's just another commercialized holiday (even though it may have its foundations in pagan ritual) where you get to dress up and let loose.  I remember as a kid having a blast going door to door collecting candy and our neighbors trying to scare us half to death.  Good times.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 03, 2007, 09:17:53 PM
I enjoyed Saw although I despised Saw III.  Not sure I want to see Saw II either.  And Saw IV?  What's with that... the man is dead for crying out loud.

Saw II is alright, better than III.  I is far better.  I agree about IV.  I never watched the Exorcist, and it seems like everyone around me did.

I wonder though if the writer of the Saw movies is really in his right mind.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GabrieltheCelt on October 03, 2007, 09:18:54 PM
Ah, well, I rest my case. Good ol' fashioned throat slashin' and demon possessin'. What's not to love? Esp for us Orthodox Christians. More blood, more gore, more murdering, more profanity, more dulling of the senses, more evil. Who care's what the Church may think or that it might be bad for my pyche, I just want my big ol' tub of popcorn and to be pandered to.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Cephas on October 03, 2007, 09:23:03 PM
+ Irini nem ehmot,

I just want my big ol' tub of popcorn and to be pandered to.

[in best Darth Vader impression] Welcome to the Dark Side!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 03, 2007, 09:23:35 PM
Ah, well, I rest my case. Good ol' fashioned throat slashin' and demon possessin'. What's not to love? Esp for us Orthodox Christians. More blood, more gore, more murdering, more profanity, more dulling of the senses, more evil. Who care's what the Church may think or that it might be bad for my pyche, I just want my big ol' tub of popcorn and to be pandered to.

I think eating pineapple pizza and anchovy pizza is heretical, blasphemy, and downright despicable!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Αριστοκλής on October 03, 2007, 09:26:43 PM
Of course it is...everyone knows it's pineapple and anchovy pizza...can't separate them and call it good pizza.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 03, 2007, 09:28:55 PM
Of course it is...everyone knows it's pineapple and anchovy pizza...can't separate them and call it good pizza.

Oh my...what has the world gotten into  :'(

PS no fair...that's cheating
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Cephas on October 03, 2007, 09:30:05 PM
+ Irini nem ehmot,

Of course it is...everyone knows it's pineapple and anchovy pizza...can't separate them and call it good pizza.

OH THE HUMANITY!!!!!!!!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 03, 2007, 10:03:48 PM
??? I don't know what happened to my original post - one minute it was here and then gone.  I'm sure it wasn't much of a loss but I'm going to try and post again.
This thread is haunted.  I had the same problem last night.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 03, 2007, 10:05:41 PM
This is as good a time as any to crush your Yankee hopes and point out that the Diamondbacks are winning it all this year. 
Yeah, right. ::)  This is the year the Cubs finally bury the Curse of the Billy Goat for good.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 03, 2007, 10:09:55 PM
This thread is haunted.

Pun intended?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 03, 2007, 10:11:31 PM
Of course it is...everyone knows it's pineapple and anchovy pizza...can't separate them and call it good pizza.
Anchovies on pizza?  BAH! >:(  You haven't had pizza unless you've eaten one with smoked oysters on it. 8)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Αριστοκλής on October 03, 2007, 10:19:55 PM
Good idea! I just bought two cans...now if I could only make pizza dough that didn't come out like concrete mortar. Smoked oysters AND anchovies...yes!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 03, 2007, 10:21:26 PM
Good idea! I just bought two cans...now if I could only make pizza dough that didn't come out like concrete mortar. Smoked oysters AND anchovies...yes!
I once tried anchovies straight out of the can.  Saltier than most sailors... :-X
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: lubeltri on October 03, 2007, 10:24:32 PM
although I disliked the Exorcism of Emily Rose.  The latter was just too odd, and the ending/explanation of the movie just didn't sit right with me. 

I saw it, as it received good reviews from Catholic film critics and the US Conference of Catholic Bishops (no "O" rating for "Morally Offensive"). Interestingly, I saw it with a group of Catholic and Evangelical friends. The Catholics, to a man, thought it quite good. All but one of the Evangelicals did not like it---[POSSIBLE SPOILERS]the Marian stuff rubbed them the wrong way, and the whole atmosphere of the supernatural (though I thought the movie was quite good at treading the ambiguous middle ground) bothered them (they are generally of the "grounded" kind like the Methodist prosecutor in the film). What bothered them most, however, was the idea that a "saved" person like Emily Rose could be possessed in the first place, and why a Christian like Emily would choose to continue her suffering for the sake of others---the concepts of redemptive suffering and the "victim soul" being objectionable to them.

I must say, it really stimulated some interesting discussion afterwards. Some more lukewarmly religious friends of mine saw it and did not like it because they were expecting a horror/suspense film (which it really isn't) instead of a court case. The Exorcist it certainly wasn't.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: lubeltri on October 03, 2007, 10:33:22 PM
Of course it is...everyone knows it's pineapple and anchovy pizza...can't separate them and call it good pizza.

I love pineapple pizza and anchovy pizza, but together?  :P :P :-X

I really want to try a pizza with fried clams on it. I'm on such a fried clam kick since I tried them New England style---whole belly clams instead of strips.

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GabrieltheCelt on October 03, 2007, 10:34:43 PM
I think eating pineapple pizza and anchovy pizza is heretical, blasphemy, and downright despicable!
Sidestepping the issue? You'd make a great politician. And BTW, I'm fluent in sarcasm, so keep it up. ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 03, 2007, 11:00:49 PM
Sidestepping the issue?

I was really making a very subtle point.  ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Jakub on October 03, 2007, 11:24:06 PM
Lubeltri,

Most places serve clam necks, not bellies, hard to find out in the left coast...
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Αριστοκλής on October 03, 2007, 11:32:07 PM
guess we'll can the anchovy talk...
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 03, 2007, 11:37:12 PM
guess we'll can the anchovy talk...

 :( was fun for the night
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Αριστοκλής on October 03, 2007, 11:49:13 PM
Please...carry on!


Talk about nutty tags...  V
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ebor on October 04, 2007, 12:19:21 AM
I do not intend any disrespect to the cleric who wrote this essay, but there are a number of errors or assertions that lack any real support in it. 

These pagan peoples believed that physical life was born from death.

Since the early Celts and Britons did not leave much in the way of written records, I wonder what source is used for this.

Quote
A certain deity, whom they called Samhain, was believed by the Celts to be the lord of Death, and it was he whom they honored at their New Year's festival.

This is an often repeated idea that is just not true.  There is NO Celtic god of death named "Samhain"/"Samain"/etc which by the way is pronounced more like "Sow'en".  It is the gaelic word that means "Summer's End".

Here is a Christian site with information on Halloween.  Along with looking at pagan and Christian customs in history, near the bottom of the first page is some information about just *when* "Trick or treat" started.  It isn't "druidic" by many many centuries.  The earliest written record of it that the author found is from 1938. 

http://www.new-life.net/halowen1.htm
http://www.new-life.net/halowen2.htm

Here is a site from Ireland about it
http://www.irelandforvisitors.com/articles/samhain.htm

And as a side note, there is not much record at all of just what the Druids or any other Celtic religions did or believed.  I will again recommend "The Pagan Religions of the Ancient British Isles" by Ronald Hutton, a scholar at the University of Bristol in England.  Another of his books that I found good is "Stations of the Sun: a History of the Ritual Year in Britain" which is about the folk customs of the year and how they go along with Christianity. 

If desired, I can also provide neo-pagan sites that also say that there is no such spirit/god as "Samhain".  This got started somehow, I suspect by someone who didn't understand what they were reading or didn't comprehend other cultures and then it got picked up by others and it took off.

Quote
On the eve of the New Year's festival, the Druids who were the priests of the Celtic cult, instructed their people to extinguish all hearth fires and lights. On the evening of the festival a huge bonfire built of oak branches, which they believed to be sacred, was ignited. Upon this fire sacrifices of crops, animals, and even human beings, were burned as an offering in order to appease and cajole Samhain, the lord of Death.

Again, I wonder what the source is for this, the extinguishing of the lights in particular.  There is the instance of St. Patrick in Ireland kindling a fire when no one was supposed to until that of the High King at Tara was lighted.  But in that case the saint was lighting the Pascal fire, that is to say, it was in the Spring. But whatever the case there would not have been a fire to any "Samhain" (see above).

Quote
The dialogue of "trick or treat" is also an integral part of this system of beliefs and practices. It was believed that the souls of the dead who had entered into the world of darkness, decay, and death, and therefore into total communion with and submission to Samhain the lord of Death, bore the affliction of great hunger on their festal visit. Out of this grew the practice of begging, which was a further ritual enactment and imitation of what the Celts believed to be the activities of the souls of the dead on their festal visit. Associated with this is the still further implication that if the souls of the dead and their imitators were not appeased with "treats," i.e., offerings, then the wrath and anger of Samhain, whose angels and servants the souls and their imitators had become, would be unleashed through a system of "tricks," or curses.

This reads like some of the "Jack Chick" booklet that the pastor refers to on the site I've linked to. "Begging" in the sense of going about and getting something is a British Isles custom at such times as Christmas (wassailing the neighbors for example, or the "Wren Boys" on St. Stephen's Day) and, I've been told, to get things to mark "Guy Fawkes Day" on the 5th of November ("Remember, remember, the Fifth of November/Gunpowder, Treason and Plot...")
http://www.hymnsandcarolsofchristmas.com/Hymns_and_Carols/Notes_On_Carols/wassailing.htm
http://www.irishfestivals.net/saintstephensday.htm

As a side note, in Japan the Feast of O-bon in the summer, marks the belief that one's ancestors return for a visit.  It's a festival to remember those who have passed on. And on November 1 is, of course Dia de Muertos with candy skulls and customs to set out food that family members liked.  It is a Human thing to want to remember our family and friends who have passed away.  But I suspect that someone who did not know about the culture and customs of Japan or Mexico might just to a conclusion that it was "satanic"

I will also confess that I'm having a bit of a difficulty with this sentence:
Quote
For if we participate in the ritual activity of imitating the dead by dressing up in their attire or by wandering about in the dark, or by begging with them, then we have willfully sought fellowship with the dead, whose lord is not Samhain as the Celts believed but Satan, the Evil One who stands against God.

The "lord" of the dead is Satan?  Ummm, I thought that God was the lord of those who have gone before us.  Perhaps I'm not fully understanding his ideas.

Quote
Further, if we submit to the dialogue of "trick or treat," we make our offering not to innocent children, but rather to Samhain, the lord of Death whom they have come to serve as imitators of the dead, wandering in the dark of night.

I'm sorry, no such being, and when I hand out Hershey's and Smarties it's to the 10 y.o. at the end of the block dressed as a princess and the boys in the football uniforms (and then there are our kids who've been such things as a rocket ship, "Arthur and DW" (type casting it was) Legolas and a "little Hobbit Girl", Raggedy Ann (Important note: after colouring the string mop head in the Rit red dye, do NOT put it in the dryer.. Do NOT.  You'll get a mess of fibers and strings and have to start all over again.) an elephant, a dinosaur, and ear of corn, a Blue Crab (we were insane that year), Faramir, and more.  Not a gruesome thing in the lot.

Quote
Out of this arose the practice of the jack o'lantern (in the USA, a pumpkin; in older days other vegetables were used) which was carved in imitation of the dead and used to convey the new light and fire to the home where the lantern was left burning throughout the night. Even the use and display of the jack o'lantern involves celebration of and participation in the pagan festival of death honoring the Celtic god Samhain.

No, this is not the case.  What we now know as the Jack O'lantern comes from a folktale involving a man named Jack.  Here is one version and an interesting letter about the custom:
http://www.new-life.net/halowen4.htm
http://www.new-life.net/halowen7.htm#turnip

Quote
In the days of the early Celtic Church, which was strictly Orthodox,

Again, I mean no disrespect, but I wonder what he means by that and what his sources are for much of the rest of the essay. 

Quote
The Western Church's attempt to supplant this pagan festival with the Feast of All Saints failed.

 ???  It's a Principal Feast and supplants regular Sunday liturgies if November 1 should fall on that day of the week and if it falls during the week it is moved to the next Sunday.  It is never missed. 

Quote
That was a simple renaming of a very old satanic feast of Walpurgis Night (night of April 30 into the day of May 1) - the great yearly demonic Sabbath during which all the participants united in "a fellowship of Satan."

Just as a side note, Walpurgis is the feast day of St. Walburga, an abbess and missionary to the Germanic people in the 700's.  The pagan name for the start of summer is "Beltain" and it is marked by lighting fires. (Considering that for most of human history the only way to have light in darkness was fire it's not surprising that bonfires or lanterns or other lights are part of celebrations and rituals. One may recall that William Manchester wrote a book called "A World Lit Only by Fire").  From my reading that is the holiday that St. Patrick lit his fire before the High King's.

If anyone would like more links and titles, I will be glad to provide them. .... Or I may have gone far enough that people's eyes are glazing over.  ;)

Ebor
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ebor on October 04, 2007, 12:23:33 AM
Please...carry on!


Talk about nutty tags...  V

Oh! Oh!  Can I play.  How about some of the things that go on pizza in Japan?  Not just anchovies or clams but a "Seafood Special" with "Shrimp, Squid, Octopus, Clam, Scallops, Crab Legs".  Or how about the Four Flavours with Shrimp, White Sesame/ Asparagus, Bacon/ Chopped Beef, Garlic, Steak Sauce/ Shimeji Mushrooms, Mushrooms, Red Pepper? 

And the most popular topping in Japan is said to be...... Sweet Corn

Ebor
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Νεκτάριος on October 04, 2007, 12:39:40 AM
Quote
Yeah, right. Roll Eyes  This is the year the Cubs finally bury the Curse of the Billy Goat for good.

Off to a fantastic start there. 

GO DIAMONDBACKS!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 04, 2007, 12:44:03 AM
Off to a fantastic start there. 

GO DIAMONDBACKS!
Hey, the Cubs still have four games in which to win their three to put your D-Backs to rest and move on.

(Sorry about the edit to your post.  I meant to quote the post but hit the wrong button. :-[)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 04, 2007, 12:50:08 AM
Quote
I think eating pineapple pizza and anchovy pizza is heretical, blasphemy, and downright despicable

Heretical?  I don't think that you can go wrong with most pizza toppings.  Though, in that regard, I am a traditionalist.  Beef, sausage and meatball with extra cheese.

BTW,  the movie EVENT HORIZON gave me the jibbluies more than the above listed movies.  It's just that scary.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: lubeltri on October 04, 2007, 02:21:23 AM
One may recall that William Manchester wrote a book called "A World Lit Only by Fire"). 

A book utterly worthless for reading, of course. Makes great toilet paper, though. When I see a copy of it in a bookstore (like last month), I have a strong temptation to remove it from circulation in that very fashion.

Thanks for the very erudite discussion of the real origins of Halloween customs.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Symeon on October 04, 2007, 02:27:03 AM
A book utterly worthless for reading, of course. Makes great toilet paper, though. When I see a copy of it in a bookstore (like last month), I have a strong temptation to remove it from circulation in that very fashion.

I particularly appreciated its assertion that iconoclasm was the traditional and early view of the Church.  ::) Worthless book indeed.

And Halloween is fine by me.  :P
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Nacho on October 04, 2007, 02:54:53 AM
I think some people are being extreme here lol. Lots not get too fruity like the protestants who have no fun. I would concur with Ebor's great post. I will always celebrate halloween and sometimes I even go out of my way and wear a costume. Still have a cool looking priest costume from a few years back. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: TinaG on October 04, 2007, 03:55:27 AM
Well, I don't know about made, but many Evangelicals have said that the money we use to buy the candy in the stores, some of them go to the church of Wicca.  If that is true, I personally would boycott buying the candy.  But I'd like some verification on that one.


I think that what you've probably heard is some kind of Evangelical/Fundie urban legend that gets used as another argument against Halloween.  This is the same type of misinformation that got Procter & Gamble inundated with Christian hate mail and boycotts several years ago.  Back in the 80's their old logo had a moon and stars woodcut drawing that people claimed contained the number 666.    Absolutely no connection but it actually caused the company to change their logo which had been used for over 140 years.  Even after the change, there were still internet warnings going around about their link to satanism and the anti-christ.

I think you are perfectly safe eating and giving out name brand candies.  The real Halloween offense is giving out lousy cheap candies.  Don't you remember separating your Halloween candies into piles of good stuff (real chocolate) and the stuff you'd only eat if you were starving or you'd trade it 3-for-one with your brothers and sisters?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: TinaG on October 04, 2007, 04:02:44 AM
church of Wicca. 

Forgot to mention, the give away clue here is that there is no "church of Wicca".  There is an incorporated, tax-exempt Church of Satanism but for the most part, Wiccans are not very well organized and there is no umbrella religious hierarchy that speaks for all flavors of Wicca.  Most are individuals or house covens, others belong to some pseudo-official Wiccan organizations.  I doubt you could find enough cohesiveness in pagan communities to pull off this kind of conspiracy.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on October 04, 2007, 06:49:52 AM
I think that I should say that The 700 Club (http://www.cbn.com/SpiritualLife/Devotions/DAugostine_Halloween.aspx) is totally against it. Just a taste of the wonderful journalism found here:

Quote
The lures of the Enemy are running more rampant. Chidren do not have to sneak over to their friends' houses to access demonic influences. There are online ouija boards that require only a mouse, as well as thousands of Web sites that specifically recruit young people to join the occult.
Hmm. I seemed to have survived childhood without going to an online ouija board or being recruited for this so-called Occult (a term which I heard an evangelical in my previous church apply to Orthodoxy).

Quote
Occultic-oriented rock performers have flourished in this generation. Some rockers even try to persuade teenage listeners to kill themselves and their parents.
No, sorry to burst your bubble, but Gene Simmons, Alice Cooper, and Marilyn Manson are really just trying to make a ridiculous amount of money. They really don't care what happens to your children.

Quote
there are Gospel tracts designed for trick-or-treaters that can be purchased online or at your Christian bookstore.
What child wouldn't want Jack Chick at Halloween? It's much tastier than Reese's.

Quote
Scripture Candy, the makers of Fish Mints™ contain wrappers that have scriptural text. Also, EvangeCandy,"the only candy with color-coded Gospels on every wrapper" are fun for children.
Yes, the child who got this and didn't immediately throw it in the trash if not back in the face of the one who gave it to him will receive wedgies all day Nov. 1. Indeed, EvangeCandy is great fun for children.

So I ask, are these really the sort of xenophobic control freaks we really want to be associating ourselves with? Pat Robertson is a sick man who desperately needs serious psychological and spiritual help. His opinion on anything is IMO a strong case for the opposition.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ebor on October 04, 2007, 07:32:24 AM
A book utterly worthless for reading, of course.

I didn't mention this book to recommend it.  It was just the title. Sometimes we forget that the way things are now is not how they have always been.  So with electric lights in homes and street lamps and businesses and being able to do things at night easily because if them, it can be useful to stop and think of what things were like (and still are in some parts of the world) not all that long ago.  It was Really dark at night with only stars and moon and fire.

Quote
Thanks for the very erudite discussion of the real origins of Halloween customs.

You're welcome.  Information is a Good Thing.  :) 
(I've also been known to go into Anglo-Saxon and how there is no such thing as any 'goddess' named "Eostre" in the spring  ;) )

Ebor
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ebor on October 04, 2007, 07:48:54 AM
Well, I don't know about made, but many Evangelicals have said that the money we use to buy the candy in the stores, some of them go to the church of Wicca.  If that is true, I personally would boycott buying the candy.  But I'd like some verification on that one.

As TinaG wrote, there is no organized 'church of Wicca'.  This sounds like more along the "Jack Chick" line.  Have you ever read any of those btw?  They can be ummm rather excessive?  undocumented?  wildly inaccurate?  It's hard to find the right set of words.  Do you recall if they gave any names of companies? 

Quote
I agree that the arguments used are no different than using them against Harry Potter.  In fact, I think Our Life in Christ radio commented on how there are Orthodox Christian themes in Harry Potter itself.

Indeed there are and there is a well known EO gentleman, John Granger, who has written books on this and has a blog as well that discusses them:  http://www.hogwartsprofessor.com/

Quote
I would say that celebrating Halloween is equivalent to going to the beach or just sitting around and play some board games with friends and family.  Now, I am called to do all things through His glory, but not to get into a conversation 24/7 about spirituality and theology.  Let's be practical here.  If Halloween was a time for friends and family and neighborhoods to get together in a modest and loving sense, why object?  Is it not the glory of God to simply make peace and friends and be a good example?  I personally wouldn't do so to compromise my own faith.  I think no one disagrees on that.

Well written.   :)

Ebor
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on October 04, 2007, 08:08:12 AM
In Chick's own article "Kid's (sic) Treat or Pagan Trick?" here (http://www.chick.com/seasonal/halloween/halloweenhistory.asp), he cites the following references:

Celebrations - The Complete Book of American Holidays, Robt. J. Myers, (Doubleday & Co., 1972). Amazon link: note that it's edited by Hallmark Cards (http://www.amazon.com/Celebrations-Complete-Book-American-Holidays/dp/0385076770/ref=sr_1_1/103-2896490-2027022?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1191499379&sr=8-1)
The Famous Druids, A. L. Owen, (Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1962). Amazon link (http://www.amazon.com/Famous-Druids-Centuries-English-Literature/dp/0313206295/ref=sr_1_1/103-2896490-2027022?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1191499483&sr=1-1)
The American Book of Days, George William Douglas, (H.W. Wilson Co., 1948). Amazon link (http://www.amazon.com/American-book-George-William-Douglas/dp/B0007E80E2/ref=sr_1_7/103-2896490-2027022?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1191499588&sr=1-7)
The Two Babylons, Rev. Alexander Hislop, (Chick Publications, 1998). He references something he himself published.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Keble on October 04, 2007, 08:47:32 AM
Well, I don't know about made, but many Evangelicals have said that the money we use to buy the candy in the stores, some of them go to the church of Wicca.  If that is true, I personally would boycott buying the candy.  But I'd like some verification on that one.

Well, as someone else pointed out, there's no such "church". But also, consider your three main US candy sources:

I've checked Snopes (http://www.snopes.com) and they don't list this, but even if one doesn't know the details, it's an implausible bit of nonsense.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Cephas on October 04, 2007, 08:54:32 AM
+ Irini nem ehmot,

Okay, someone's gotta tell me how to do the upside-down letters.   :D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ebor on October 04, 2007, 09:33:57 AM
In Chick's own article "Kid's (sic) Treat or Pagan Trick?" here (http://www.chick.com/seasonal/halloween/halloweenhistory.asp), he cites the following references:

Celebrations - The Complete Book of American Holidays, Robt. J. Myers, (Doubleday & Co., 1972). Amazon link: note that it's edited by Hallmark Cards (http://www.amazon.com/Celebrations-Complete-Book-American-Holidays/dp/0385076770/ref=sr_1_1/103-2896490-2027022?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1191499379&sr=8-1)

Well this one has no reviews on Amazon.  I can check it out later, but I have a suspicion that it's a kind of catch-all that isn't a work of historical scholarship.

Quote
The Famous Druids, A. L. Owen, (Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1962). Amazon link (http://www.amazon.com/Famous-Druids-Centuries-English-Literature/dp/0313206295/ref=sr_1_1/103-2896490-2027022?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1191499483&sr=1-1)

Here is the the book description from Amazon:
 "Owen traces classical and Gaelic writings on the Druids, and then discusses the ideas about these pre-Christian priests that informed English literature from the 16th to the 19th centuries. He finds these literary notions to be at variance with the ideas about the Druids current before and after the period."

and another bit on it: "The author discusses the 'famous and mysterious Druidae' as they appeared in the creations and conjectures of English literature from the sixteenth to the nineteenth centuries".

Emphasis added by me.

Jack Chick would seem to be taking the *literary* imaginings of much later writers for actual historical fact.  Which they aren't, just to be clear. 

Quote
The American Book of Days, George William Douglas, (H.W. Wilson Co., 1948). Amazon link (http://www.amazon.com/American-book-George-William-Douglas/dp/B0007E80E2/ref=sr_1_7/103-2896490-2027022?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1191499588&sr=1-7)

I haven't found much on this book yet, but since from my readings of Jack Chick works I have found many inaccuracies and historical errors, I don't really expect that this book was read as it was intended either.   

And then there's

Quote
The Two Babylons, Rev. Alexander Hislop, (Chick Publications, 1998). He references something he himself published.

Oh golly, it's this one again.  This was originally published in 1853 and then expanded.  This is the subtitle: "or The Papal Worship Proved to be the Worship of Nimrod and His Wife".  This is a grindingly anti-RC work (and if Hislop had known about EO I think that he would have included it in his "Pagan Worship" accusation.)  It can be read on-line if one really feels the need. An RC friend asked me years ago to pick up a copy from him to so that he would have it as a reference if it ever got invoked against his Church, so yes, I have had and read it.  It is still used today as an anti-RC polemic.

This is probably going to sound harsh, but without any kind of back-up or support, I wouldn't trust Jack Chick to interpret a greeting card, let alone any kind of scholarly work.  There was one tract of his on D&D, "Dark Dungeons" is the title that listed Tolkien and C. S. Lewis as authors whose works were "satanic".  He'd been told this by someone and accepted it without question.  In a later edition of this work that note was taken out.

Ebor
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ebor on October 04, 2007, 09:34:34 AM
+ Irini nem ehmot,

Okay, someone's gotta tell me how to do the upside-down letters.   :D

Turn your monitor upside down while you type?   ;D

Ebor
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Cephas on October 04, 2007, 09:43:46 AM
+ Irini nem ehmot,

Turn your monitor upside down while you type?   ;D

Ebor

Touché!  :D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: TinaG on October 04, 2007, 10:27:06 AM
  • Nestle is a huge multinational conglomerate. I'm sure some wiccans hold stock in it, but one has to draw the line somewhere.

Nestle' most controversial position is that they are the world's largest manufacturer and distributor of baby formula.  There has been a longstanding boycott of Nestle products by breastfeeding advocates.  Their products go far beyond chocolates.  There is a lot of evidence that they unethically market baby formulas in third-world countries where breastfeeding is the only guarantee of long term baby health, but also outright dangerous because there are usually no clean water sources to mix up the stuff.

I'll back down off my soapbox now.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: lubeltri on October 04, 2007, 10:41:47 AM
Nestle' most controversial position is that they are the world's largest manufacturer and distributor of baby formula.  There has been a longstanding boycott of Nestle products by breastfeeding advocates.  Their products go far beyond chocolates.  There is a lot of evidence that they unethically market baby formulas in third-world countries where breastfeeding is the only guarantee of long term baby health, but also outright dangerous because there are usually no clean water sources to mix up the stuff.

I'll back down off my soapbox now.

May I also mention that their chocolate s**ks?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 04, 2007, 11:09:05 AM
Quote
May I also mention that their chocolate s**ks?

I dunno.  Their dark chocolate is pretty good.  And I know there are dutch and german brands that do it better, but I don't wanna pay 10 bucks for a piece of chocolate no bigger than my thumb. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: lubeltri on October 04, 2007, 11:11:23 AM
I dunno.  Their dark chocolate is pretty good.  And I know there are dutch and german brands that do it better, but I don't wanna pay 10 bucks for a piece of chocolate no bigger than my thumb. 

There's always Cadbury. Yummmmmmmmm. . .
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 04, 2007, 11:16:04 AM
Quote
There's always Cadbury. Yummmmmmmmm. . .


EH, take it or leave it.  Actually Ghiradelli don't do a half bad job, but then I gets all greedy-like and hand out Hersheys on Halloween, to my everlasting shame.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: TinaG on October 04, 2007, 11:42:38 AM
May I also mention that their chocolate s**ks?

Well, there you have it.  And as further proof of Nestle's evilness, if you re-arrange the letters it spells "SNETLE".  Obviously satanic.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Αριστοκλής on October 04, 2007, 12:49:12 PM
^ :D :D :D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Schultz on October 04, 2007, 01:32:30 PM
This is probably going to sound harsh, but without any kind of back-up or support, I wouldn't trust Jack Chick to interpret a greeting card, let alone any kind of scholarly work.  There was one tract of his on D&D, "Dark Dungeons" is the title that listed Tolkien and C. S. Lewis as authors whose works were "satanic".  He'd been told this by someone and accepted it without question.  In a later edition of this work that note was taken out.

Ebor

"Dark Dungeons" is my favorite one, by far.  The fact that there are not one but TWO female players in the game as presented in the story is bad enough, but one of them is actually the Dungeon Master! (FYI: for those non-RPG types, the DM is the person who creates/narrates/presents the storyline/gameworld in which the players play)  Such displays of horrid scholarship turned me against Chick Tracts forevermore ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GabrieltheCelt on October 04, 2007, 03:13:43 PM
Well, it looks like I got my answer; but you're all wrong and will pay dearly!  :D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: TinaG on October 04, 2007, 03:32:23 PM
I hope you'll go ahead and write a little something about how you view Halloween.


Write a little something!  You knew that was going to happen.  Opinions are as freely given out as Halloween candy (at least by 48.6% of us).
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GabrieltheCelt on October 04, 2007, 05:13:59 PM
Write a little something!  You knew that was going to happen. 
Yes, but most of them wrote the wrong answer...  :D Juuust kidding.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 04, 2007, 05:33:39 PM
Indeed...a friend of mine gave me the website on Jack Chick and I read the first thing which was anti-RC concerning a son who watched his mom die while suffering some sort of possession.  It was the strangest thing, and it was a great turn-off.  It's sad that our sources in rejecting Halloween comes from irrational and mentally deranged sources like Chick.

In any case, I'm a sucker for Hershey's Cookies and Creme.  In fact, any white chocolate will win me over.  Not a big fan of milk chocolate (and dark chocolate..yuk!).  Does anyone know anybody who can bake a white chocolate ice cream cake?

God bless.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 04, 2007, 05:49:37 PM
Quote
Does anyone know anybody who can bake a white chocolate ice cream cake?

I can.  I also do something that I have dubbed (thanks to Homestarrunner.com) "This Brownie Might Kill You", which is hommade brownie filled with Tin Roof ice cream, coverd in ganache, and topped with almonds and chocolate sprinkles.  And whpiied cream, when the mood suits.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 04, 2007, 05:55:34 PM
I can.  I also do something that I have dubbed (thanks to Homestarrunner.com) "This Brownie Might Kill You", which is hommade brownie filled with Tin Roof ice cream, coverd in ganache, and topped with almonds and chocolate sprinkles.  And whpiied cream, when the mood suits.

DUDE...where do you live!!!??? lol
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 04, 2007, 05:59:26 PM
Texas, where else! ;D

But if you want the recepie, I can probably write it up and post it.

I usually do it by memory, though.  The main ingredient is alot of...butterfat!

HA!  Thought I was gonna say love, didn't ya!

Nah, Just foolin. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: EofK on October 04, 2007, 06:04:06 PM
BTW,  the movie EVENT HORIZON gave me the jibbluies more than the above listed movies.  It's just that scary.

Oh man... I made the mistake of watching that in college when I was home alone.  I shut it off halfway through and slept with the lights on... when my roommate came back the next day, we finished it together and I still had to sleep with lights on for a week.  Interesting concept for a film, but very disturbing.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 04, 2007, 06:09:39 PM
Quote
Oh man... I made the mistake of watching that in college when I was home alone.  I shut it off halfway through and slept with the lights on... when my roommate came back the next day, we finished it together and I still had to sleep with lights on for a week.  Interesting concept for a film, but very disturbing.

Tell me about it.  the most disturbing part for me is when I fugured out the message in Latin "Liberate tutte lei ex inferis" with all that blood and gore spilling out.  "Save yourselves from Hell".  AndI saw it in the theatre with only three other people inthe actual room with me.  Complete strangers.  I think we all slept with the lights on that night. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: EofK on October 04, 2007, 06:13:25 PM
Tell me about it.  the most disturbing part for me is when I fugured out the message in Latin "Liberate tutte lei ex inferis" with all that blood and gore spilling out.  "Save yourselves from Hell".  AndI saw it in the theatre with only three other people inthe actual room with me.  Complete strangers.  I think we all slept with the lights on that night. 

Ah, I didn't even catch that.  Yeah, the blood and gore was enough to do me in.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 04, 2007, 06:18:23 PM
Well, the whole dang concept was freaky as stink.  I'd buy the movie, if I relly wanted to freak every on of my friends out before halloween.  But I don't think when I have kids I'll let them watch it until they are older.   
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: EofK on October 04, 2007, 06:22:57 PM
My astronomy professor mentioned it when we were talking about black holes and such, so I thought I'd watch it and maybe they'd have something I could apply to astronomy class.  The only thing I learned is how to gouge out eyes and vomit blood.  Valuable lessons, yeah?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 04, 2007, 06:26:05 PM
I could have taught you that!  Just watch "Kill Bill II" while eating gone off blood sausage!  Mission accomplished.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Nyssa The Hobbit on October 04, 2007, 06:47:42 PM
"Dark Dungeons" is my favorite one, by far.  The fact that there are not one but TWO female players in the game as presented in the story is bad enough, but one of them is actually the Dungeon Master! (FYI: for those non-RPG types, the DM is the person who creates/narrates/presents the storyline/gameworld in which the players play)  Such displays of horrid scholarship turned me against Chick Tracts forevermore ;)

Actually, I used to play in a D&D group with TWO other female players.  ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 04, 2007, 06:49:18 PM
I used to VTM.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 04, 2007, 06:54:06 PM
holla at me with the recipe  ;D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 04, 2007, 06:55:21 PM
Okay.  Gimmie a minute.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 04, 2007, 07:12:18 PM
For the cake:
3 large eggs
1 1/2 cups milk
3/4 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups granulated sugar
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/8 cups cocoa powder
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
2 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 cups very hot water

Ice cream center:
1 pint your favorite ice cream, slightly softened (I prefer dark chocolate for contrast)
 
Chocolate Topping:
1 cup heavy cream
8 ounces white chocolate, chopped (or use chips)
 
White Chocolate Trim: (optional)
1/2 cup heavy cream
4 ounces white chocolate, chopped

Preheat oven to 350*F (175*C). Grease a 13 x 9 x 2-inch baking pan and line the bottom and sides with parchment or waxed paper.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla extract; set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the 3 cups sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the wet mixture to the flour mixture and mix at low speed of an electric mixer for 5 minutes. Gradually add the hot water while mixing at low speed just until combined. Batter will be thin. Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan.
Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool cake in pan on wire rack, then refrigerate, covered, for 1 hour or until ready to assemble cake.
To assemble cake: Place a piece of parchment over the entire cake and then carefully turn it out onto a large work surface. Peel off the original parchment and carefully cut the cake in half lengthwise into 2 layers using a large serrated knife. Place one layer of cake on a rectangular serving platter (or line an upside-down 13 x 17 x 1-inch baking pan with foil). Spread the softened ice cream evenly to the cake edges. Freeze for 15 to 20 minutes.
Once chilled, carefully place the second layer of the cake onto the ice cream layer, cover with parchment paper and gently press down with another baking sheet pan gently to adhere the top layer. Return cake to the freezer.
For the Chocolate Topping: In a small saucepan, heat the 1 cup of cream just to a boil; remove from heat and add the chopped semisweet chocolate and whisk until smooth. Set aside and prepare the White Chocolate Trim.
For the White Chocolate Trim: Repeat the same procedure as for the Chocolate Topping and place it in small pastry bag with a small plain tip.
Remove the cake from the freezer and working quickly, spread the Chocolate Topping evenly over the top of the cake only.
Drizzle straight lines of the White Chocolate Trim across the entire surface of the cake diagonally. Draw a wooden pick back and forth in the opposite direction of the lines to make decorative pattern.
Return finished cake to the freezer until ready to serve

Eat until bursting.

Peace!

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 04, 2007, 07:45:41 PM
sweet...i'm saving this...thanks Ian   :)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 04, 2007, 07:59:40 PM
No prob.  If you want a killer pasta bake or pizza, lemmiekno.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 04, 2007, 08:15:28 PM
Post 450!  YAY!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Fr. George on October 04, 2007, 08:56:48 PM
Post 450!  YAY!

*yawn*

Oh, I should be more helpful...

"The journey of 4000 posts begins with 450..."
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 04, 2007, 09:19:31 PM
Shees.  Thanks for the sour persimmons, cousin. ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Bono Vox on October 04, 2007, 10:08:10 PM
Before becoming Orthodox, i came out of the Anglo Catholic tradition. We were always taught Halloween could be used to glorify God. Sure it had pagan origins like the Christmas tree, but it can be turned around and sanctified. As St. Paul said imitate me, we were taught to imitate the saints of God. I think it is not a good idea to dress disgusting or evil, but to imitate something positive and praise worthy. Halloween was the hallowed evening before all saints day. We don't celebrate witches, devils, etc.. We honor Christ in His saints.

We usually put some icons with candles outside the doors during Halloween (We then hand out tracks and ask people if they want to say the sinners prayer ...just kidding). I usually put my old alter server vestments on, or priest costumes on to pass out candy.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Nigula Qian Zishi on October 04, 2007, 11:49:44 PM
Turn your monitor upside down while you type?   ;D

Ebor

¡ɐ1oıʌ puɐ 'buıdʎʇ ǝɹɐ noʎ uǝɥʍ pɐǝɥ ɹnoʎ uo puɐʇs oʇ pǝǝu ʇsnظ noʎ 'ʎ11ɐnʇɔɐ
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 05, 2007, 01:32:56 AM
Indeed...a friend of mine gave me the website on Jack Chick and I read the first thing which was anti-RC concerning a son who watched his mom die while suffering some sort of possession.  It was the strangest thing, and it was a great turn-off.  It's sad that our sources in rejecting Halloween comes from irrational and mentally deranged sources like Chick.
Volume I of a series on the life and work of Alberto Rivera, I believe.  I read it and believed it when I was a gullible kid.  Now I recognize it as the stuff one would wipe out with toilet paper.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 05, 2007, 10:18:53 AM
Volume I of a series on the life and work of Alberto Rivera, I believe.  I read it and believed it when I was a gullible kid.  Now I recognize it as the stuff one would wipe out with toilet paper.

Ya, that's the one...disgusting and revolting.  I see the worst Muslims as much more righteous than these idiotic wannabe "Christians."
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Didymus on October 05, 2007, 12:30:00 PM
Deacon Nikolai, how did you do that please?

Volume I of a series on the life and work of Alberto Rivera, I believe.  I read it and believed it when I was a gullible kid.

Are there many of us here who used to be involved with JTC?

I haven't read all of this thread but would you please be able to let me know your view on this issue PeterTheAleut as I'm against Halloween celebrations (which aren't traditionally part of the Australian way anyway) due to association with witches and the like yet I wonder whether my bias is too greatly tilted by JTC or not?

Thank you and pray for me please.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: yes halloween is evil on October 06, 2007, 08:18:12 AM
Of course, halloween is NOT okay to observe and celebrate. This is so upsetting to see fellow Christians observing it and acting like it's okay. I know all about halloween. I used to love it and it was my favorite day of the year - before I got saved! Then I woke up to the truth. It is evil. It is a pagan observance. Celebrating it at all in any fashion is sin because it is a pagan observance with pagan roots and it completely contradicts the WORD OF GOD. We already have our own fall festival and it's called the Feast Of Tabernacles aka Sukkot which is the fall feast that God set up Himself for us to celebrate (which I just finished observing from 9/26/07 - 10/04/07 as it last eight days). Most Christians don't observe the feasts instituted by God because I believe they are being deceived by satan to not even think about those observances and because they are so caught up in their own "holidays" with pagan roots such as halloween, easter and even Christmas (which I would be happy to tell you about). But, God Himself said to observe the Feast Of Tabernacles:

Leviticus 23:2, 4, 37, 44, . . . the feasts of the LORD, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are My feasts . . . . These are the feasts of the LORD, even holy convocations, which ye shall proclaim in their seasons . . . . These are the feasts of the LORD, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations . . . the feasts of the LORD. (God instituted the holiday and requires us to observe it)

Zechariah 14:16-19, "And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left . . . shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the Feast of Tabernacles. And it shall be, that whoso will not come up of all the families of the earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain. . . . This shall be the punishment of Egypt, and the punishment of all nations that come not up to keep the Feast of Tabernacles." (God requires us to observe it. And this is a prophecy talking about our future when Jesus rules the earth.)

This is a history of halloween from MS Encarta Encyclopedia:

"Many of the ancient peoples of Europe marked the end of the harvest season and the beginning of winter by celebrating a holiday in late autumn. The most important of these holidays to influence later halloween customs was samhain, a holiday observed by the ancient Celts, a tribal people who inhabited most of Western and Central Europe in the first millennium bc. Among the Celts, samhain marked the end of one year and the beginning of the next. It was one of four Celtic holidays linked to important transitions in the annual cycle of seasons.
samhain began at sundown on October 31 and extended into the following day. According to the Celtic pagan religion, known as druidism, the spirits of those who had died in the preceding year roamed the earth on samhain evening. The Celts sought to ward off these spirits with offerings of food and drink. The Celts also built bonfires at sacred hilltop sites and performed rituals, often involving human and animal sacrifices, to honor druid deities.
By the end of the 1st century ad, the Roman Empire had conquered most of the Celtic lands (see Rome, History of). In the process of incorporating the Celts into their empire, the Romans adapted and absorbed some Celtic traditions as part of their own pagan and Catholic religious observances. In Britain, Romans blended local samhain customs with their own pagan harvest festival honoring pomona, goddess of fruit trees. Some scholars have suggested that the game of bobbing for apples derives from this Roman association of the holiday with fruit.
Pure Celtic influences lingered longer on the western fringes of Europe, especially in areas that were never brought firmly under Roman control, such as Ireland, Scotland, and the Brittany region of northwestern France. In these areas, samhain was abandoned only when the local people converted to Christianity during the early Middle Ages, a period that lasted from the 5th to the 15th century. The Roman Catholic Church often incorporated modified versions of older religious traditions in order to win converts. For example, Pope Gregory IV sought to replace samhain with All Saints’ Day in 835. All Souls’ Day, closer in spirit to samhain and modern halloween, was first instituted at a French monastery in 998 and quickly spread throughout Europe. Folk observances linked to these [Christian holidays], including halloween, thus preserved many of the ancient Celtic customs associated with samhain.
halloween traditions thought to be incompatible with Christianity often became linked with Christian folk beliefs about evil spirits. Although such superstitions varied a great deal from place to place, many of the supernatural beings now associated with halloween became fixed in the popular imagination during the late Middle Ages and the Renaissance (14th to 17th century). The jack-o’-lantern, originally carved from a large turnip rather than a pumpkin, originated in medieval Scotland. Various methods of predicting the future, especially concerning matters of romance and marriage, were also prominent features of halloween throughout the British Isles.
Between the 15th and 17th centuries, Europe was seized by a hysterical fear of witches, leading to the persecution of thousands of innocent women. witches were thought to ride flying brooms and to assume the form of black cats. These images of witches soon joined other European superstitions as symbols of halloween."

There are many different resources on the Internet that you can find in order to know the origin of halloween. If you research the history of halloween, as I have, you will find that there is something very wrong about it and it's not only about decorating your house with witches and goblins. It goes even deeper than that. These are only a few Bible quotes that forbid and warn against such practices:

Colossians 2:8: "Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ." (NKJV)

Proverbs 14:12: "There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death." (NKJV)

Exodus 23:24: "You shall not bow down to their gods, nor serve them, nor do according to their works; but you shall utterly overthrow them and completely break down their sacred pillars." (NKJV)

Leviticus 18: "...According to the doings of the land of Egypt, where you dwelt, you shall not do; and according to the doings of the land of Canaan, where I am bringing you, you shall not do; nor shall you walk in their ordinances. You shall observe My judgments and keep My ordinances, to walk in them: I am the LORD your God. You shall therefore keep My statutes and My judgments, which if a man does, he shall live by them: I am the LORD." (speaks of some of the abominations that they do) ..."Do not defile yourselves with any of these things; for by all these the nations are defiled, which I am casting out before you. For the land is defiled; therefore I visit the punishment of its iniquity upon it, and the land vomits out its inhabitants. You shall therefore keep My statutes and My judgments, and shall not commit any of these abominations, either any of your own nation or any stranger who dwells among you for all these abominations the men of the land have done, who were before you, and thus the land is defiled, lest the land vomit you out also when you defile it, as it vomited out the nations that were before you. For whoever commits any of these abominations, the persons who commit them shall be cut off from among their people. Therefore you shall keep My ordinance, so that you do not commit any of these abominable customs which were committed before you, and that you do not defile yourselves by them: I am the LORD your God." (NKJV)

Deuteronomy 12:29-32: "When the LORD your God cuts off from before you the nations which you go to dispossess, and you displace them and dwell in their land, take heed to yourself that you are not ensnared to follow them, after they are destroyed from before you, and that you do not inquire after their gods, saying, 'How did these nations serve their gods? I also will do likewise.' You shall not worship the LORD your God in that way; for every abomination to the LORD which He hates they have done to their gods; for they burn even their sons and daughters in the fire to their gods. "Whatever I command you, be careful to observe it; you shall not add to it nor take away from it."' (NKJV)

Mark 7: 6-9: He answered and said to them, "Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written:
'This people honors Me with their lips, But their heart is far from Me. And in vain they worship Me, Teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.' For laying aside the commandment of God, you hold the tradition of men - the washing of pitchers and cups, and many other such things you do." He said to them, "All too well you reject the commandment of God, that you may keep your tradition." (NKJV)

1 Corinthians 3:18-21: "Let no one deceive himself. If anyone among you seems to be wise in this age, let him become a fool that he may become wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, 'He catches the wise in their own craftiness;' and again, 'The LORD knows the thoughts of the wise, that they are futile.'"

BUT

2 Chronicles 7:14: "If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land."

1 John 1:8-9: "If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."


Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on October 06, 2007, 08:46:16 AM
Why don't they call them "Boredementalists"- They're hardly "fun".
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: yes halloween is evil on October 06, 2007, 08:56:39 AM
Isaiah 5:20-21: "And woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who regard light as darkness and darkness as light, who regard bitterness as sweet and sweetness as bitter. Woe to those who are wise in their own sight, but those standing before them they regard as fools." (Ancient Aramaic Scriptures)

Isaiah 5:20-21: "Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, And prudent in their own sight!" (New King James Version)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on October 06, 2007, 08:58:42 AM
What does it say about those who are sure they are saved?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: scamandrius on October 06, 2007, 08:59:18 AM
I sure hope you're not setting up a Christmas tree this year, because that comes from pagan ritual and, therefore, evil.  I hope you don't dare dye easter eggs because that also comes from pagan ritual and, therefore, evil.  Come to think of it--the name Easter is a pagan Anglo-Saxon word and, therefore, evil.

Why don't they call them "Boredementalists"- They're hardly "fun".

Nice.  Perhaps you should forward that to the "What's your favorite Evangelical bumper sticker" thread. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Αριστοκλής on October 06, 2007, 09:06:58 AM
Two concurrent threads, identical in purpose, have been merged here.

Αριστοκλής, Section Moderator
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: yes halloween is evil on October 06, 2007, 09:14:55 AM
I sure hope you're not setting up a Christmas tree this year, because that comes from pagan ritual and, therefore, evil.  I hope you don't dare dye easter eggs because that also comes from pagan ritual and, therefore, evil.  Come to think of it--the name Easter is a pagan Anglo-Saxon word and, therefore, evil.

Nice.  Perhaps you should forward that to the "What's your favorite Evangelical bumper sticker" thread. 

I don't observe christmas anymore nor easter. That is one of the reasons why I went through the process of writing what I wrote.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Fr. George on October 06, 2007, 09:23:15 AM
I don't observe christmas anymore nor easter. That is one of the reasons why I went through the process of writing what I wrote.

You don't observe them?  I would understand if you kept all the pagan-influenced elements out, but to say you don't observe Christmas and Pascha is to say you don't observe the biggest two feastdays on the Church calendar and don't respect the Incarnation and Death and Resurrection.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: yes halloween is evil on October 06, 2007, 09:35:04 AM
I am not an Orthodox Christian, I am simply Christian who tries to live by the Bible and not a particular church's way of doing things. I don't know very much about Orthodox Christianity, so I don't really know much about what Orthodox Christians observe. I just came onto this thread because I was looking up something on the Internet and noticed this thread on Google Search.

Mark 6:9 "He said to them, 'All too well you reject the commandment of God, that you may keep your tradition.'" (NKJV)

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on October 06, 2007, 09:40:30 AM
I am not an Orthodox Christian, I am simply Christian who tries to live by the Bible and not a particular church's way of doing things.
Complete contradiction in terms. You cannot "live by the Bible" and not be "within the Church", since the Epistles are addressed to the Church. Therefore, you cannot even be Christian. There is no such thing as a Christian outside of the Church.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Didymus on October 06, 2007, 10:10:12 AM
yes halloween is evil, peace be with you my friend.

Though we do not know one another, yet have I known your spirit. You my friend, are a Protestant who believes that faith which you have been taught. However this is an Orthodox forum whereon matters run much deeper than you are now able to comprehend.

Please click on "My Messages" in the bar near the top of the screen to see the message which I have sent you in private; for I would not that this conversation be diverted onto another topic when all your questions could be answered by discussions between us.

I am near Brisbane, Australia. Please let me know where you are from that we may figure out whether we might be able to speak via ICQ/Y!/AIM/MSN rather than solely via messages.

Thank you and please pray for me.

For those of Protestant backgrounds, please remember from whence we came.

For those of Orthodox backgrounds, please be patient with us as children in the Faith.

Thank you.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: lubeltri on October 06, 2007, 10:11:43 AM
Complete contradiction in terms. You cannot "live by the Bible" and not be "within the Church", since the Epistles are addressed to the Church. Therefore, you cannot even be Christian. There is no such thing as a Christian outside of the Church.

Just to be sure . . . you aren't saying Christians outside your church are not Christians, are you?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Didymus on October 06, 2007, 10:45:56 AM
I don't observe christmas anymore nor easter. That is one of the reasons why I went through the process of writing what I wrote.

May the grace of God enlighten your heart and eyes my friend.

There was a time when I observed neither Christmas nor Easter but kept the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the Day of Atonement and the Feast of Tabernacles similarly to how Armstrong's movement once observed these relics of the Faith of ancient Israel. All these things I did in zealous ignorance whilst a Seventh Day Baptist. Yet the Lord, by His grace, has seen fit to show me the error of my ways and grant me forgiveness by the Blood of Christ.

Now (and I realise this may cause some debate even on these forums), I affirm that history strongly suggest that Jesus Christ our Lord and King was indeed born on Christmas Day (ie the 25th of December- according to the Julian calendar). I know this may astonish you and had somebody told me the same not too many years ago I would have marvelled at him; yet I would have been bound for the Truth's sake to seek out why he would say such a thing.

I have read The Two Babylons by Hislop and know the arguments presented therein yet they are often incorrect or misleading. (For more on this you may like to begin by reading The Babylon Connection? available here: http://www.ralphwoodrow.org/books/pages/babylon-connection.html or on amazon.)

My friend, I have sent you a personal message so please reply as there are too many issues to discuss in so short a time as now for it is late here.

May the love of God be with you as you pray for me.

Thank you.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Didymus on October 06, 2007, 11:07:44 AM
Heorhij, you seem right there ;)

yes halloween is evil, we don't believe that MS Encarta Encyclopedia is infallible so quoting from it won't win you any particular support around here. Just look up the history of man and read about evolution and you may not think its version of history is so reliable either.
By the way, I'm against Halloween but seems it's not celebrated much in Australia anyway.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: lubeltri on October 06, 2007, 11:34:37 AM
I guess what OzGeorge is saying is that there is no such thig as "your" Church and "my" Church - there is only one Church, visible, tangible, hierarchical, with one Bread and one Cup. :)

That is true.

I was just confused by the wording---that one cannot be a Christian if he is outside the Church. There are two interpretations of that statement. There's the boredamentalist one, everyone who is not a formal member of the Eastern Orthodox Church is not a Christian, and then there's the alternative, every Christian outside the visible boundaries of the Eastern Orthodox Church is only a Christian by the grace given to the Eastern Orthodox Church. The more common interpretation of that statement would be the former, but I didn't think George subscribed to that view.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: drewmeister2 on October 06, 2007, 12:15:44 PM
every Christian outside the visible boundaries of the Eastern Orthodox Church is only a Christian by the grace given to the Eastern Orthodox Church.

I'm not sure that is quite how we would explain it.  Met. St. Philaret of NY (ROCOR) explained it well (although now I can't find the quote).  He said something to the effect that according to the strictest interpretation, all those who are heretics are not Christian.  However, he noted too that not everyone is a heretic per se.  Those that openly and vehemently and intentionally attack the Church cannot be called Christian, however, those who are just born into a non-Orthodox faith and are just following their religious leaders (Catholicism, Protestantism, etc) are not necessarily so much heretics and thus can be called Christians.  :) 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 06, 2007, 12:32:33 PM
Aint this thread supposed to be about Spooks and sweets and whether we should suffer suckers who solicit our sweet stuffs on Samhain sourly?

I can understand the diversion from our prostestant friend, but still.  Lets get back to candy and costumes, m' cay?  :)

What I cant stand about the holday is the egging and toilet papering of trees and houses.  It never fails!  I bought a tarp this year to make sure that the damage won't be that bad.  It's not a very christian thought , I know, but it makes me want to become a paintball sniper for one night!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Didymus on October 06, 2007, 12:40:48 PM
Agree that this is getting off track and if we're to go further a new thread is warranted but if not then might I please say that I've heard Pope Shenouda says Protestants aren't Christians and Roman Catholics aren't in The Church although HH greatly desires Orthodox unity. Thank you.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Αριστοκλής on October 06, 2007, 12:57:32 PM

I understand. This thread is supposed to be about halloween. That's what I originally wrote about and it ended up turning into a different topic. Btw, I'm not Protestant.

 

A probable result of the merging of two closely related threads.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Αριστοκλής on October 06, 2007, 01:30:35 PM
Thread temporarily locked whilst moderator re-splits the thread (if hosting allows him).

Will re-open shortly

Αριστοκλής

New Topic (supposed to be) Orthodoxy and 'Non-Denominationalism':
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,12988.msg178006/topicseen.html#msg178006

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Didymus on October 06, 2007, 01:56:58 PM
Αριστοκλής , thank you :) however the new thread title has lots of "\\\\" for me. Is this an error?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Αριστοκλής on October 06, 2007, 02:22:37 PM
Αριστοκλής , thank you :) however the new thread title has lots of "\\\\" for me. Is this an error?

Yes, it was. How? I don't know...maybe the devil made me do it!  :o
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Nigula Qian Zishi on October 06, 2007, 02:36:30 PM
Deacon Nikolai, how did you do that please?

Thank you and pray for me please.

(-: .noʎ ɹoɟ ʇı ʇɹǝʌuoɔ 11ıʍ ʇı puɐ 62242=pı_ʞuı1¿ɯɟɔ.ʞuı1_pǝɹoq/ɯoɔ.pǝɹoq-ɯɐ-ı.ʍʍʍ//:dʇʇɥ (http://www.i-am-bored.com/bored_link.cfm?link_id=24226) ʇɐ ǝʇıs qǝʍ ɐ oʇ buıob ʎq uʍop ǝpısdn ǝʇıɹʍ puɐ "ʇɐǝɥɔ" uɐɔ ǝuo 'sɹǝʇʇǝ1 ǝsoɥʇ ɹoɟ sǝpoɔ 8-ɟʇn ǝɥʇ ʍouʞ ʇou op noʎ ɟı 'snɯʎpıp
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Cephas on October 06, 2007, 10:21:34 PM
+ Irini nem ehmot,

¡dɯıd sı sıɥʇ
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on October 06, 2007, 10:30:58 PM
¡sbuıɥʇ uo ǝʌıʇɔǝdsɹǝd ʇuǝɹǝɟɟıp ɐ ǝuo sǝʌıb ʎ1uıɐʇɹǝɔ sıɥʇ
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Cephas on October 06, 2007, 10:32:26 PM
¿dn ʍou uʍop sı ɹo uʍop ʍou dn sı os

'ʇoɯɥǝ ɯǝu ıuıɹı +
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 06, 2007, 10:34:47 PM
sʇɹnɥ pɐǝɥ ʎɯ
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 06, 2007, 10:59:16 PM
Hey, the Cubs still have four games in which to win their three to put your D-Backs to rest and move on.
OK, I concede.  UNCLE!  You win. :(
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: lubeltri on October 06, 2007, 11:09:40 PM
OK, I concede.  UNCLE!  You win. :(

We're next.  :(

At least you guys are expected to lose!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 06, 2007, 11:16:12 PM
We're next.  :(

At least you guys are expected to lose!
Hey, at least you don't have to deal with those infernal bugs in Yankee Stadium.  Or do you?

"What do they live on when they can't get hobbit (or Yankee)?"
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: lubeltri on October 06, 2007, 11:28:21 PM
Hey, at least you don't have to deal with those infernal bugs in Yankee Stadium.  Or do you?

"What do they live on when they can't get hobbit (or Yankee)?"

Sigh . . . I will know that God is no longer a Yankee fan if that plague follows the team plane to New York.

I think we've still got a chance. If the offense breaks out against Cleveland's second tier, we may yet return to Lake Erie (may it freeze over!) for Game Five. That's if A-rod and company don't roll over first.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Bono Vox on October 06, 2007, 11:56:50 PM
I don't observe christmas anymore nor easter. That is one of the reasons why I went through the process of writing what I wrote.

Are you a Jehovah's witness?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 07, 2007, 12:13:39 AM
Are you a Jehovah's witness?

With such statements against JW teaching as in the following:
Therefore, if someone that is a Mormon or JW is saved, then they are saved through and through even though many Mormon and JW teachings are messed up.
I doubt it.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Νεκτάριος on October 07, 2007, 12:40:21 AM
Now the big question, Colorado or Philadelphia ?  Who are the Dbacks supposed to beat next? 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 07, 2007, 01:25:37 AM
Now the big question, Colorado or Philadelphia ?  Who are the Dbacks supposed to beat next? 
Colorado (def. Philly 2-1 to sweep the Phillies)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Didymus on October 07, 2007, 07:12:12 AM
(: ɹǝpun uʍop ɯoɹɟ ǝ1doǝd sn ɹoɟ 1ɐɯɹou sʞoo1 ʇı ʍou .ɥɔnɯ ʎɹǝʌ noʎ ʞuɐɥʇ

Orthodox Bagpiper, if you follow the links through to this person's blog there is a reference to the Feast of Tabernacles so it is likely that this lady is somehow linked to Armstron's movement or one of its offshoots. This may simply occur indirectly through contact with somebody who has been in contact with such teachings or it could be direct also.

If not, then this lady is simply zealously following the Holy Bible in a method as taught by many Protestant school and following those teachings through to their logical conclusions. The only other option would be if this lady is of those called Jews by birth. Nobody else (at least none I know of) keep the Feast of Tabernacles and refer to it in the way this lady does.

JWs on the other hand are supposed to celebrate nothing (except what they call "The Lord's evening meal").
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Simayan on October 07, 2007, 02:50:06 PM
When adults dress up for Halloween...it's a little weird. But when 5 year old kids do it, I'm positive they're not honoring some pagan god.

I loved my trick-or-treating days, and so long as one doesn't do anything to hurt others, I see nothing wrong with it.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: calligraphqueen on October 07, 2007, 03:14:55 PM
Anchovies on pizza?  BAH! >:(  You haven't had pizza unless you've eaten one with smoked oysters on it. 8)

How exactly does one smoke this bile filter of the seas?  Just sitting here picturing someone smoking an oyster is laughable. ;D

As a descendent of practicing witches, and not the tree huggin kind, I don't bother with the ween. One of my earliest memories is of my grandmas laughing at 'christians' for celebrating such a 'holy' day to them. It has no true redeeming value. A little bit of fun aside for the littles is irrelevant, there are many things i can do with my children on that night-and without honoring a Jack Chick pamphlet either.  Since my fil works for Nestle, I don't skimp on the sugary no no's either.  It's just a pointless day when you break it down to its purpose. Like is there a genuine need for those specific activities?


Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GiC on October 07, 2007, 05:53:11 PM
How exactly does one smoke this bile filter of the seas?  Just sitting here picturing someone smoking an oyster is laughable. ;D

Well, on this I actually agree with you, in part. It is absurd to smoke an Oyster. The Oyster is amongst most succulent and divine of foods, it is to be taken straight from the ocean, removed from its shell, and eaten raw and alive where you stand, marinated only in its own brine. It is a food that, for all our advances in the culinary arts, is impossible to improve upon. Its consumption in its natural state is a personal, emotional, sexual, spiritual, and culinary experience unlike any other. Sure, there maybe individual acts and foods that better excel at one of these characteristics, but none that combines them more fully. ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Νεκτάριος on October 07, 2007, 07:04:16 PM
Quote
sexual

ummm... I don't think we eat food in the same manner. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 07, 2007, 08:07:06 PM
Quote
"The Oyster is amongst most succulent and divine of foods, it is to be taken straight from the ocean, removed from its shell, and eaten raw and alive where you stand, marinated only in its own brine. It is a food that, for all our advances in the culinary arts, is impossible to improve upon. Its consumption in its natural state is a personal, emotional, sexual, spiritual, and culinary experience unlike any other. "

And they make great tennis balls.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: lubeltri on October 07, 2007, 09:43:17 PM
ummm... I don't think we eat food in the same manner. 

Perhaps GiC has been watching too much Como Agua Para Chocolate!  ;)



Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GiC on October 08, 2007, 12:41:55 AM
ummm... I don't think we eat food in the same manner. 

Apparently not, sounds like you need to learn to better enjoy your food...eating is one of the truly great pleasures in life, one of the few things that make life worth living. ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 08, 2007, 01:59:56 AM
Apparently not, sounds like you need to learn to better enjoy your food...eating is one of the truly great pleasures in life, one of the few things that make life worth living. ;)

To me, it's not just about taste, but also about volume.  So if you're overweight, eating is definitely a burden  :P
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GiC on October 08, 2007, 02:30:42 AM
To me, it's not just about taste, but also about volume.  So if you're overweight, eating is definitely a burden  :P

Sounds like you're not eating the right foods...a couple ounces of foie is just as satisfying as a 20 oz. steak (though just about as fattening, unfortunately). ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: calligraphqueen on October 08, 2007, 08:38:37 AM
since my endo system has been offline for so many years, and I can't burn a calorie to save my life anymore-I would have to vote for the steak over the foie.  Some things in life must be savored when all else is going to 'that place'
A steak done truly correct is a work of art, and is quite sensual when paired with certain other items...
haven't had breakfast yet so this morning will surely come up short now!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Thomas on October 08, 2007, 09:01:37 AM
Has this topic gone off topic? Are we now discussing  baseball and food?

Thomas
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Αριστοκλής on October 08, 2007, 10:10:42 AM
Boredom...
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 08, 2007, 02:48:08 PM
And apparantly hunger.  I could use a Deep Dish Pizza. :)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Fr. George on October 08, 2007, 03:12:37 PM
And apparantly hunger.  I could use a Deep Dish Pizza. :)

MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM... Pizza.


But seriously, folks.  Are we done here?  If so, let's not lengthen the thread with nonsense - go to the Random Postings thread for that.  Leave this to real discussion of Halloween.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Αριστοκλής on October 08, 2007, 03:15:34 PM
I agree...we're just 'talking among ourselves' (who else?) awaiting the debate to continue.

Unless we're done here...
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ian Lazarus on October 08, 2007, 03:17:12 PM
Okay.  So does having a pizza delivered on Haloween constitute a trick or a treat?

No, seriously!  I once read an article of a pizzeria that coveed it's pies in candy corn and had them distributed in fron to the car with the actual orders.  So they would pay for the pizza and get p.o.'d  seconds befroe the actual order arrived! :D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 08, 2007, 04:23:07 PM
Okay.  So does having a pizza delivered on Haloween constitute a trick or a treat?

No, seriously!  I once read an article of a pizzeria that coveed it's pies in candy corn and had them distributed in fron to the car with the actual orders.  So they would pay for the pizza and get p.o.'d  seconds befroe the actual order arrived! :D

Nasty...candy corn and pizza don't go together

On the debate, I think we are done.  I mentioned that Halloween is no different essentially than going to the beach or acting or having quality time like video games or playing cards (or eating oysters... ???, except the sexual part).  That goes for Halloween or anything else.  Modesty is key.  All the mischief that goes on is obviously not condoned, and no one here partakes of some sort of pagan ritual either.

God bless.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Fr. George on October 08, 2007, 04:33:49 PM
Nasty...candy corn and pizza don't go together 

Candy Corn is disgusting.  I defer to Lewis Black's rant about it.

Quote from: Lewis Black
The worst thing about Halloween is, of course, candy corn. It's unbelievable to me. Candy corn is the only candy in the history of America that's never been advertised. And there's a reason. All of the candy corn that was ever made was made in 1911. And so, since nobody eats that stuff, every year there's a ton of it left over. And the candy corn company sends the guys to the villages and they collect out of the dumpsters all the candy corn we've thrown away. (pause, while audience is grossed out)They wash it!! They wash it!

I'll never forget the first time my mother gave me candy corn. She said, "Here - Lewis, this is candy corn. It's corn that tastes like candy". (high pitched sound) This tastes like doo-doo! And every year since then, Halloween has returned and I, like an Alzhiemer's patient, find myself in the room, and the room has a big table in it, and on the table is a bowl of candy corn. And I look at it as if I've never seen it before. "Candy corn", I think. "Corn that tastes like candy. I can't wait". (makes eating motion) Expletive!!

Maybe this is why we shouldn't celebrate Halloween - the Orthodox come from cultures with such rich culinary heritage, why celebrate a day with this disgusting candy?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GabrieltheCelt on October 08, 2007, 08:35:36 PM
  I mentioned that Halloween is no different essentially than going to the beach or acting or having quality time like video games or playing cards (or eating oysters... ???, except the sexual part).  That goes for Halloween or anything else.  Modesty is key. 

Just remember brother, not everyone will agree with this viewpoint (of which there are many). The above quote has an air of authority, which I'm sure you didn't mean to present.

 In Christ

 Gabriel
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GiC on October 08, 2007, 10:46:59 PM
Just remember brother, not everyone will agree with this viewpoint (of which there are many). The above quote has an air of authority, which I'm sure you didn't mean to present.

 In Christ

 Gabriel

I don't agree, especially with that whole moderation thing (anything worth doing is worth doing to excess ;))...but you don't see me getting all uptight about it. ;D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GabrieltheCelt on October 08, 2007, 11:16:19 PM
I don't agree, especially with that whole moderation thing
surprise, surprise  ::)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Bono Vox on October 31, 2007, 10:13:38 PM
I wanted to wish you all a Happy Halloween!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ebor on November 03, 2007, 10:56:35 AM
Princesses, winged fairies, pirates and super heros were popular this year. Also there were some nice animal costumes including a nifty sea-creature.  There were also some sports uniforms and an ice cream cone among the children at the elementary school Halloween parade.  Yes, some of the older (5th grade) boys went for spooky, but not lots of them. 

Our oldest (14) decided to go different with his pumpkin and put an "Eye of Sauron" on it.  :D  But he didn't trick or treat himself.  Instead he took his little brother, who was a dinosaur, around to a few houses (his first time).  The neighbors thought it was very nice of him to do that and gave him some candy too.

Ebor
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Timos on November 03, 2007, 12:16:28 PM
I actually encourage my sister to go out for Halloween. Whats the big deal?? The way I think about it, Halloween is a beautiful Christian feast (the Western Christian All Saints Day). My lil sister is not allowed to dress up as a goblin or anything ridiculous like a demon but its just a fun time for kids to have candy...theres not satanic element to it at all. Maybe we should stop celebrating Christmas as well...does anyone recall What Decemeber 25th or January 7th were before they became Christmas?? The winter solstice which was a huge pagan feast. If we can take something pagan and sanctify it then thats great!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Sophia on November 03, 2007, 12:31:57 PM
When our children went out for candy we didn't let them be anything like "witches, serial killers," etc. During the "protestant stage" of our journey, we didn't pass out candy, took them to the church festival for games, candy, etc.  For the past several years we've done the following:

Prior to passing our candy, we prepare in prayer.  We pray over the candy as well; blessing the candy with Holy Water.  When we pass out candy with a smile, we're silently praying over the children.  As they are leaving our porch, we say "God bless you, or God be with you".  

May the grace and peace of our Lord Christ Jesus be with you,

Sophia
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Νεκτάριος on November 03, 2007, 04:54:42 PM
Good grief, the religious right isn't content to just take Halloween away from everybody, but now they want to make passing out candy a religious experience. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on November 03, 2007, 05:09:42 PM
Good grief, the religious right isn't content to just take Halloween away from everybody, but now they want to make passing out candy a religious experience. 
And why not?  Should we not make EVERYTHING a means of communicating God's grace and love? ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Νεκτάριος on November 03, 2007, 05:13:13 PM
And why not?  Should we not make EVERYTHING a means of communicating God's grace and love? ;)

Next thing you know, you'll be trying to convince me that Christmas is about Jesus and not Santa Claus. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on November 03, 2007, 05:20:58 PM
Next thing you know, you'll be trying to convince me that Christmas is about Jesus and not Santa Claus. 
Not biting...
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Sophia on November 03, 2007, 05:51:45 PM

And why not?  Should we not make EVERYTHING a means of communicating God's grace and love? ;)
]


Very well put :-)


May the grace and peace of our Lord Christ Jesus be with you

Sophia



Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on November 04, 2007, 12:05:52 AM
Speaking of celebrating halloween, these people (http://thatplaceonline.net/dotmac/1072/Halloween.html) did it 16-bit style. Awesome.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: antiderivative on March 18, 2008, 11:04:31 AM
I don't think it's wrong to dress up and go trick or treating, as long as your parents explain to you the pagan roots and remain careful about it. Christmas has pagan roots, yet it's okay to have a Christmas tree, or other decorations. The holiday does, however, have a grim pagan past, which is why I think if your church is doing its own thing that would be better to go to. Halloween is also a very dangerous night too, we always have to catch our cat and keep her indoors the whole time because their are nuts out there who still do sacrifices. The night is also full of vandalism where people go house to house smashing pumpkins.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on March 18, 2008, 03:12:58 PM
Last I checked, the origin of Christmas was to celebrate the birth of Christ. You really can't get less pagan than that. I'm not sure what you mean by "your church doing its own thing"--as if the whole world does something different from what Christians do. It's our holiday; the people who celebrate Christmas are Christians. Those who celebrate something other than Christ's birth are the ones "doing their own thing."
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Myrrh23 on March 18, 2008, 09:35:54 PM
I don't care what you all say--I LOVE Halloween! I'm past the taste for trick-or-treating. I go broke at the haunted houses they have all over the place instead! It's a blast to be scared and to scare! It all has to do with intention here, people! There is no maliciousness behind my acts of scaring, even with the blood, body parts, fangs, etc. Satan and his Merry Band of Losers intend to do harm to us, to drive us away from Christ time and time again. Halloween is just one silly night...or week, depending on where you are! ;)
Afterwards, life goes back to normal. Anyways, even if I were to dress up as a brain-eating bloody-chinned zombie, Jesus can see into my soul. He sees I care about people.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: EofK on March 19, 2008, 09:12:25 AM
^Yeah, but you may not see the effect you have on people.  I remember going trick-or-treating and having some guy with a Jason-style hockey mask and a *real* chainsaw jump out of his house and follow me (at a safe distance, but safe distance means nothing when you're little and scared to death).  It still freaks me out to think about it.  For some people, fear is not an enjoyable thing.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Myrrh23 on March 19, 2008, 05:31:17 PM
E of K, whoever dressed up as Jason to scare you when you were little didn't have all his pork and beans in one can. I believe that certain aspects of Halloween must be toned down for those that are very impressionable. However, parents and friends should explain that the holiday is suppose to be celebrated for pure, silly fun. If necessary, those that dress up as scary themes should be made to take off their masks for those that might believe they're real.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on March 20, 2008, 04:30:03 PM
^ You're right about the guy being off his rocker, but I completely disagree with you about forcing people to celebrate in a certain way. Obviously we must have laws against threatening or destructive behavior, but forcing someone to reveal their identity ought never be a law. That's a can of worms if ever I've seen one.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Zarabas on July 23, 2008, 10:41:41 AM
I need not waste my time or anyone elses describing the history of Halloween since there are plenty of internet sources that outline its extremely satanic origins and continuation today.

I would like anyone who is curious to consider the following.

Halloween continues to be an activity in Public Schools (funded by our taxes). The Public School system has chosen to seperate EDUCATION from RELIGION and in most cases, the teaching of Christianity (no, Christmas with Santa Claus or Easter with the Easter Bunny is not Christianity) is prohibited! But Halloween (which is celebrated by the Witchraft practitioners - Wiccans - and Satanists, and YES! Freemasons) is permitted to be propagated in the Public School system. It is not a commercial holiday, although commercialism benefits greatly from this "holiday". You have to ask yourself, if Christianity is not allowed to be taught in Public Schools, why do Educators allow Halloween to be promoted along with, in recent years, Wiccans to speak about their "religion" to young children as if to educate them about Halloween?

Everyones tax dollars are being used to tolerate Halloween and to discriminate against Christianity.

Think about it.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on July 23, 2008, 11:38:19 AM
I need not waste my time or anyone elses describing the history of Halloween since there are plenty of internet sources that outline its extremely satanic origins and continuation today.

The remotest origins of Halloween lie in the construction of the Pantheon in Rome by Agrippa
(27 BC).  The burning of this building was remedied by Hadrian (125).
Hadrian's structure was donated to Pope Boniface IV in 609 by the emperor Phocas; Boniface
dedicated it to Santa Maria et Martyres and ordered the anniversary of its commemoration and
its patrons to be observed on May 13.
When Pope Gregory III dedicated a chapel in St. Peter's to all the saints (731?), he transferred Boniface's
expanded celebration to the day on which he dedicated his chapel, the now infamous November 1.
So, unlike a number of other Christian feasts, Halloween started off Christian.
The gruesome aspects of Halloween are as far as I can tell strictly American in character.  There are a
number of European and more specifically Celtic or English customs involved in Halloween, but the
nasty stuff is all ours. 
In particular, there is a great deal of rubbish in circulation regarding Samhain and the origins of
Halloween.  Samhain is of course a kind of harvest-home festival held on 1 November (although it can
also be an Irish hero whose magical cow was stolen); the stuff about how we are worshipping the
Lord of the Dead is silly.  Even a great deal of the straight-faced talk about Halloween is nonsense. 
Mumming is definitely a British habit, connected with Halloween and Christmas; to insist that the
masked children are warding off evil spirits etc. is the same kind of loose talk that produces Freudians
and Jungians.  We simply cannot know why certain customs were performed after so many centuries--
only that the people performing them enjoy them or at any rate prefer to perpetuate them.
DanM
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on July 23, 2008, 02:29:48 PM
I need not waste my time or anyone elses describing the history of Halloween since there are plenty of internet sources that outline its extremely satanic origins and continuation today.

I would like anyone who is curious to consider the following.

Halloween continues to be an activity in Public Schools (funded by our taxes). The Public School system has chosen to seperate EDUCATION from RELIGION and in most cases, the teaching of Christianity (no, Christmas with Santa Claus or Easter with the Easter Bunny is not Christianity) is prohibited! But Halloween (which is celebrated by the Witchraft practitioners - Wiccans - and Satanists, and YES! Freemasons) is permitted to be propagated in the Public School system. It is not a commercial holiday, although commercialism benefits greatly from this "holiday". You have to ask yourself, if Christianity is not allowed to be taught in Public Schools, why do Educators allow Halloween to be promoted along with, in recent years, Wiccans to speak about their "religion" to young children as if to educate them about Halloween?

Everyones tax dollars are being used to tolerate Halloween and to discriminate against Christianity.

Think about it.
As a teacher, I can vouch for the fact that most of what you have written here is based on gross misconceptions of reality and logical errors.

The teaching of Christianity is not prohibited, only proselytism and coerced practice of Christianity. Students are free to pray, read Scripture, whatever in school, but teachers must not make Christian practice part of the curriculum. We cannot lead the students in prayer or any such thing. But I myself teach many Christian practices as part of my Spanish classes, under the curriculum objective of learning about Latino culture. Our history teachers teach the history of Christianity as part of world history, and of the history of Christianity in the U.S. as part of American history.

Religion is by no means taboo in schools, but it must be taught, as must everything else, as part of a valid curricular objective. If the students aren't learning anything related to the curriculum, what's the point in teaching it?

Schools do teach civic duty, and part of that is engaging in our civic holidays. We celebrate Labor Day, Columbus Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Dr. Martin Luther King Day and Presidents' Day (and Memorial Day and Independence Day during summer school) by closing the school, as does every government office. Beyond that, we do celebrate other holidays in accordance with our community. Halloween, Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day, and Easter are some prime examples.

We want our children to grow up in a community, and part of being a community is doing things together. These celebrations are important to our culture, and therefore they are important to the school. Teachers are by no means conspirators to your children's destruction; we care more than almost anyone else about their well-being.

That said, I'm all for education, and I'm always willing to learn myself. So if you can show me some research on how drawing pumpkins in art class creates psychopaths, I'm more than willing to listen.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Zarabas on July 23, 2008, 02:37:21 PM
Greetings in Christ DanM,

Disinformation aside, I am speaking of those valid sites (users discretion of course) that trace the pagan components from Rome, to the British Isles from which Druidry is a component.

There is no disinformation in the symbols used in Halloween and the theme of "darkness" and "evil". I am not discussing sensationalistic theories, but practical and probable facts that link Halloween to beliefs and practices that are contrary to the teachings of the Orthodox Church.

Historical examples aside, just look at WHO has infiltrated the so-called innocence of Halloween! Wiccans celebrate Halloween, and some Public Schools (at least in Toronto Canada) have had the audacity to invite Wiccans to discuss their beliefs and Halloweens relevance to them in front of impressionable youth. What this does is introduce children to alternate forms of spirituality, where supposedly, School and Religion is supposedto be seperate.

Do not forget that the "Church of Satan" founded by Anton LeVey also celebrates this "holiday" as part of its anti-Christian image!

You can pretend to make Halloween harmless and define it any way you wish, but its practices and origins are not Christian.

We can pretend we are not partaking in a Holiday celebrated by Witches and Satanists, and we can pretend that dressing up like Saints makes a difference, etc. etc. The point is millions of people partake in Halloween unwittingly subjecting themselves to harmful spiritual imagery and spirituality!

To defend Halloween in a Christian context is not possible without consequences.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Zarabas on July 23, 2008, 03:00:32 PM

We want our children to grow up in a community, and part of being a community is doing things together. These celebrations are important to our culture, and therefore they are important to the school. Teachers are by no means conspirators to your children's destruction; we care more than almost anyone else about their well-being.

That said, I'm all for education, and I'm always willing to learn myself. So if you can show me some research on how drawing pumpkins in art class creates psychopaths, I'm more than willing to listen.

Community through Christ is priority, but because we live in a multicultural society, we are prohibited to find community through Christ. Therefore, secularism provides other venues. Halloween, in your opinion, is a method of building community. In secular terms this is true: children dressing up, neighbourhoods involved in handing out candies, parties, story telling, etc.

I'm sorry you feel it necessary to reduce my comments to and argument that implies I believe pumkins create psychopaths. However, if I provide you symbols, and you learn that these symbols are aligned with negative concepts and beliefs, this might rub off on you.

A monastic Elder once said "Your mind is like a mill. If you throw wheat down the shoot, out comes flour. But if you should throw in thorns, out comes a harmful substance"

You may believe that something harmless like a vegetable (a pumkin) cannot produce anything. But when children learn to assign meanings and definitions to objects and symbols, what went into their mind will be determined by what is expressed outwardly.

Small example: teens and their attraction to what is "gothic". Its not just a style, but an emotional expression.

As an educator, perhaps you are familiar with emotionalism in children?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Zarabas on July 23, 2008, 03:06:43 PM
ytterbiumanalyst

Where you said other holidays are practiced (Valentines Day, Christmas etc.)

I do believe I indicated that Santa Claus is not a Christian belief, but this is permitted as an expression of Christmas in the public school to misinform children.

Valentines Day? I urge you (as an educator) to learn the very pagan holiday that everyone has been told is a Christian day of "love".

Easter? Last I checked, the Easter Bunny was not crucified for our sins.


So please do not assume I'm some sort of fanatic when clearly your arguments against me are based on sweeping generalizations against Christianity and what I actualy posted.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on July 23, 2008, 04:39:52 PM
Community through Christ is priority, but because we live in a multicultural society, we are prohibited to find community through Christ.
Wow--I'm sorry you live in such an oppressive society. Come on downstairs; over here, we have freedom of religion and assembly written right into our Constitution. We are freely allowed to find community through Christ.

Quote
Therefore, secularism provides other venues. Halloween, in your opinion, is a method of building community. In secular terms this is true: children dressing up, neighbourhoods involved in handing out candies, parties, story telling, etc.
Yep. Therefore, secular Halloween celebrations are no more harmful than New Years' celebrations or Independence Day celebrations. Proper precautions must be taken for safety's sake, but provided they are, why not have some fun?

Quote
I'm sorry you feel it necessary to reduce my comments to and argument that implies I believe pumkins create psychopaths. However, if I provide you symbols, and you learn that these symbols are aligned with negative concepts and beliefs, this might rub off on you.
I deny that there is any such thing as a "negative concept or belief." Is there anything which God cannot use? We pray, "O Heavenly King, the Comforter, the Spirit of Truth, Who art everywhere and fillest all things." Do we believe this? The Holy Spirit is present even in Halloween, and can use even the symbol of the pumpkin to bring people to Him.

Quote
A monastic Elder once said "Your mind is like a mill. If you throw wheat down the shoot, out comes flour. But if you should throw in thorns, out comes a harmful substance"

You may believe that something harmless like a vegetable (a pumkin) cannot produce anything. But when children learn to assign meanings and definitions to objects and symbols, what went into their mind will be determined by what is expressed outwardly.

Small example: teens and their attraction to what is "gothic". Its not just a style, but an emotional expression.

As an educator, perhaps you are familiar with emotionalism in children?
Absolutely. And most children get over the Gothic stage fairly quickly. The fascination with death may seem disturbing, but usually it's just a way of proclaiming self-identity that accompanies adolescence. The child, having always been identified as her parents' daughter, wants now to be known on her own, as her own person, and finds in the Gothic subculture a way of doing so. She is now identified by her friends rather than her family. This is simply part of a natural progression which will eventually lead to an adult being identified as herself and not merely as part of a group.

One must never forget that children do not and cannot think as adults do. As they age, they get closer to adult thinking, but even teenagers do not see the world as adults see it. What may seem shocking to us may only be so because we are able to see the world more clearly than children do.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on July 23, 2008, 04:46:00 PM
I do believe I indicated that Santa Claus is not a Christian belief, but this is permitted as an expression of Christmas in the public school to misinform children.
No, he's not a Christian belief; he's a Christian saint.

Quote
Valentines Day? I urge you (as an educator) to learn the very pagan holiday that everyone has been told is a Christian day of "love".
Perhaps you allude to Lupercalia, a Roman festival to the fertility god Faunus, which began on February 15?

Quote
Easter? Last I checked, the Easter Bunny was not crucified for our sins.
Hmm. If you think Easter has anything to do with the Easter Bunny, perhaps your understanding of Christianity is not what I had thought it was.

Quote
So please do not assume I'm some sort of fanatic when clearly your arguments against me are based on sweeping generalizations against Christianity and what I actualy posted.
Oh, I don't assume you're a fanatic; I just burn your straw men.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Keble on July 23, 2008, 05:39:07 PM
I need not waste my time or anyone elses describing the history of Halloween since there are plenty of internet sources that outline its extremely satanic origins and continuation today.

I do not think it would be a waste of your time to go back and read the first four pages of this thread. The internet is the world's greatest purveyor of misinformation, and it is a tremendous enabler for the hysterical to promote their screeds in spite of any evidence arrayed against them.

It keeps coming down to the same thing: the connection between current Hallowe'en practices and any pagan antecedents is at very best tenuous; at worst it is closer to a complete fabrication. We do it as an act of charity and fellowship to our neighborhood, and therefore, that is what it is.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Rosehip on July 23, 2008, 05:49:42 PM
Thank you, Keble, for being the voice of reason and sanity (no offense meant to anyone else!)!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Zarabas on August 08, 2008, 10:17:27 AM
While people may disagree with my anti-Halloween views, and argue the historical connections between Halloween and paganism, I can however offer as advice the following.

Wiccans celebrate Halloween. So do Satanists. Even Freemasonry has set aside this 'holiday' for themselves.

While so many Orthodox are against modern ecumenism, they fail to see how Halloween is part of modern ecumenism in terms of participating in a holiday that Orthodoxy has nothing to do with.

People can define Halloween as harmless but this is only used as an excuse to partake in it. Halloween is taken very seriously by Wiccans and Satanists who laugh at Christian hypocrisy whereby Halloween is celebrated and justified as a 'Christian' celebration.

Last I checked, All Saints is not Nov 1 and therefore All-Hallows-Eve is not Orthodox.

Halloween is a perfect example of people justifying their own preferances against God. People can argue the historical arguments but not the present day arguments that reveal that Halloween is satanic since it is celebrated by Witches and devil worshippers today.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 08, 2008, 10:53:50 AM
^ You can certainly have your opinion. If your opinion is that you should not celebrate it, then don't. The rest of us who feel no such restriction will celebrate it, but we will not pressure you into doing the same. St. Paul discusses this at length in I Corinthians 8.

You are correct that it is not an Orthodox holiday, but neither is Independence Day or New Year's Day, so those of us who categorize trick-or-treating with fireworks displays and beating pots at midnight see no problem with celebrating what we consider a civic holiday. Those who see Halloween as a religious holiday have no reason to celebrate it, since it has nothing to do with Orthodoxy. In that case, it should probably not be celebrated, since it would be tantamount to celebrating a feast of another religion.

So it's all in how you look at it. Each one should check his own conscience and decide whether it is appropriate. But I do not believe that this is an issue on which we need to be dogmatic.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on August 08, 2008, 12:38:03 PM
1.  Historical examples aside, just look at WHO has infiltrated the so-called innocence of Halloween! Wiccans ... "Church of Satan" ...
2.  You can pretend to make Halloween harmless and define it any way you wish, but its practices and origins are not Christian.
3.  The point is millions of people partake in Halloween unwittingly subjecting themselves to harmful spiritual imagery and spirituality!

1.  The fact that Wiccans and the so-called "Church of Satan" celebrate Halloween does not mean that Halloween is their special feast.  There are of course Christians who do not celebrate Christmas because they discovered its pagan origins; they point to Satanists who regard us as hijacking their feast.  Shall we dis-observe Christmas in order to preserve our purity?
(On this subject, so much of what we assume to be normative has taken form relatively late in the day.  I have often wondered what it was like for the first generations of Christians who did not have our elaborate scheme of fasts, our dizzying number of feasts, our sumptuous monastic civilizations, our incredibly detailed--yet never detailed enough--canon laws.  What on earth did they do in their spare time?  One is tempted to wonder if they resembled early Protestants or neo-Primitive Methodists, yet Ignatius, Clement et al. give no such impression.)
2.  When you say that Halloween was not a Christian feast, which of the the facts I alleged in my earlier post are you able to debunk:  was the Pantheon was built by Agrippa in 27 BC or not?  Was it rebuilt by Hadrian or not?  Was it dedicated as a church to Santa Maria et Martyres by Pope Boniface IV in 609 with an attached foundation feast or not?  Was it expanded from All Martyrs to All Saints by Pope Gregory III in the early 8th century and moved to November 1 or not?  Unless these facts can be challenged by recourse to generally accepted evidence--Chick publications are out!--I do not see how it is possible for anyone to maintain seriously that Halloween is not a Christian feast in its origins. 
As for its practices, there are too many spread across Europe to speak with any certainty.  However, it seems to me that to assume that since we do not understand a given custom does not furnish us grounds for assuming a diabolical origins or significance.  I recall that the spells said to be used by certain "witches" were once examined and found to be (slightly garbled?) blessings preserved in Latin from the Middle Ages.  This reminds us to be cautious about giving to the Devil more than his due.
3.  I do believe that we Americans have corrupted Halloween with loads of diabolical baggage via commercial means.  This Satanization is recent enough, but truly we should not blame Halloween for our own evil desires. 
DanM

Please note I removed the duplicate of this post. Thomas Convert Issues Moderator
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 08, 2008, 02:57:02 PM
While people may disagree with my anti-Halloween views, and argue the historical connections between Halloween and paganism, I can however offer as advice the following.

Wiccans celebrate Halloween. So do Satanists. Even Freemasonry has set aside this 'holiday' for themselves.

While so many Orthodox are against modern ecumenism, they fail to see how Halloween is part of modern ecumenism in terms of participating in a holiday that Orthodoxy has nothing to do with.

People can define Halloween as harmless but this is only used as an excuse to partake in it. Halloween is taken very seriously by Wiccans and Satanists who laugh at Christian hypocrisy whereby Halloween is celebrated and justified as a 'Christian' celebration.

Last I checked, All Saints is not Nov 1 and therefore All-Hallows-Eve is not Orthodox.

Halloween is a perfect example of people justifying their own preferances against God. People can argue the historical arguments but not the present day arguments that reveal that Halloween is satanic since it is celebrated by Witches and devil worshippers today.

I agree with you 100%

Unfortunately your concern for those who love this "observance" may not net you much or change the hearts of this type of person.

People make there own choices.

You are right...Halloween is wickedness. Evil (as always) focuses on the innocent; the very essence that God loves which we find in our children.

The Lord asked us to be like our children as a means of obtaining eternal life. We instead engage our innocent children in worldly lusts and aspirations. Our kids know more about the "easter bunny" and "rudolph the red nose reindeer" than about Jesus Christ.

It is shameful indeed.

As people by nature we are drawn to make our kids "happy". So then that is what matters the most.

A kid who can not participate in halloween activities will certainly grow up with a feeling of being deprived. This is difficult for people to deal with; including myself.

It seems we need to decide which we are more affraid of our kids or our God. That is my opinion of course.

halloween may not be satanic as I know it to be. What I know may about this upside down celebration may be wrong.

May be it is perfectly good!

It may just be this "cute day of fun and candy and masquerade and so on.

Seems harmless to me!

But where I am coming form here is far, more than just halloween.

Orthodox mentallity is the main issue for me. Not simply wether halloween is good or not.

As an orthodox I refuse to allow myself or anyone I am responsible for to engage in popular culture in general because as a Christians and orthodox we are suppose to be UP ROOTIN ourselves from the world as well as our children; like our father Abraham who left all he knew to follow God including his way of life; his father and relatives.....everything ws left behind.

WE are new in Christ. Thus each of us a are an "Abraham". WE knowlonger hunger for the ways of old nor the ways of the world. WE loathe the world and its ways. WE are like the angels of heaven who are preoccupied only with obedience to God and everything that is filled with HIS holiness; worshipping HIM day and night without end. WE are waiting for HIM to return. WE have already packed and are ready to go......

This is the lifestyle we are striving for as orthodox.

Of course this means the company we keep and traditions we embrace will be very specific just by natural selection.

You can rest assure with this holy lifestyle we will not find ourselves hob-nobbing with wiccins or devil worshippers or some other kind of Godless element even if only by accident; without intention since we were only at the 'hallowen gatherings and activities' for very sincere and non-religious resasons...you know; for the kids! or being with "the family" or because we 'know' that the halloween practice is ok.

Well it may be OK; but many people in this dead world want us to think just that. They love the world and love secularism, liberalism, materialism. Some also consider all these and more as a religion. They worship life this way. They like for us (orthodox) to play along with them....be like them....become them.

The people you meet at the hallowen store you will not meet at the orthodox book store or orthodox feast...EVER! for NO reason....PERIOD!

They have no interest in looking like, playing along with or becoming orthodox...PERIOD!

WE are stuck trying top look like orthodox on our own.

Oh! Uhm....What does an orthodox look like anyway? Maybe we can discuss this at another time.

But they will look for us and our kids each year.

The world is corrupted and has nothing to offer us who are aware of these seemingly innocent simple acts of "culture" that play out in our long list of sins and fall from grace.

halloween is a day for the dead.

I do not expect many to respect that.

I am just glad I know it.

Let us always pray for each other.



Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on August 08, 2008, 06:08:31 PM
1.  Zarabas:  Wiccans celebrate Halloween. So do Satanists.
DanM:  The fact that Wiccans etc. celebrate Halloween is irrelevant.  If they celebrate Thanksgiving or Christmas, does that mean we have to give those feasts up?  Of course not! 

2.  Zarabas:  Last I checked, All Saints is not Nov 1 and therefore All-Hallows-Eve is not Orthodox.
DanM:  The word Halloween is a compression of [All] Hallows Even.  Hallows is an older English word for saints.  The feast ordained by Pope Gregory III was 1 November, so October 31 would be what we Orthodox are wont to call the pre-feast.
I have so far argued that Halloween has Christian origins.  Nevertheless, you are correct that Halloween is not stricto sensu Orthodox, since we have a different All Hallows feast.

3.  Zarabas:  People can argue the historical arguments but not the present day arguments that reveal that Halloween is satanic since it is celebrated by Witches and devil worshippers today.
DanM:  If any feast may be enslaved by Satanists merely by being celebrated by them, what stops them from hijacking every single feast of our faith by establishing a mock-feast? 

4.  Zarabas:  Halloween is taken very seriously by Wiccans and Satanists.
DanM:  But I do not take them seriously.  They do not know history.

Please believe, y'all, that if anyone can prove any of the facts I have adduced are false, I will be very grateful.  The facts I mean are as follows:
(1)  The Pantheon was built by Agrippa.
(2)  It was rebuilt by Hadrian.
(3)  It was dedicated to Santa Maria et Martyres by Pope Boniface IV in 609 with an attached foundation feast celebrating all martyrs.
(4)  That feast was transfered by Pope Gregory III to November 1 on the occasion of dedicating a chapel in St. Peter's to All Saints.
If you do not debunk these facts, it does not do any good to debate the origins of Halloween:  these four facts are the foundations of my argument.  If you only allege that Satanists etc. observe Halloween, you allege nothing that disturbs my foundational arguments.  If you can disprove (3) and (more crucially) (4), the entire edifice of my indifference to pilfering neo-pagans crashes to the ground.  I assure you that you will find it next to impossible if you use the sort of sources generally admitted to be unimpeachable. 
DanM


Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: SolEX01 on August 08, 2008, 08:04:27 PM
Do any Orthodox Churches perform Vespers before All Saints Day?

A 6 PM Vespers Service would be a good excuse not to do anything related to Halloween.  ;)

Well, the GOA calendar doesn't recognize All Saints Day as occurring on November 1.  November 1 is the Feast Day of St. Raphael of Brooklyn - a Saint who lived in 20th Century America just as St. Nektarios lived in 20th Century Greece
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 09, 2008, 09:01:10 AM
^ Yes, for us All Saints' Day is the Sunday following Pascha.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on August 09, 2008, 11:23:43 AM
Do any Orthodox Churches perform Vespers before All Saints Day?

A 6 PM Vespers Service would be a good excuse not to do anything related to Halloween.  ;)

Well, the GOA calendar doesn't recognize All Saints Day as occurring on November 1.  November 1 is the Feast Day of St. Raphael of Brooklyn - a Saint who lived in 20th Century America just as St. Nektarios lived in 20th Century Greece

A common theory explaining the invention of Christmas (and other feasts) is illustrated by the above exchange:  since certain Christians wanted to continue customs associated with the Saturnalia and Sol Invictus (or Mithras?) on 25 December, the church fathers established a nativity feast of Our Lord in order to give them a reason to go to church.  Julianus Africanus was apparently the first Christian scholar to propose 25 December, which was already a feast for the virgin-born Mithras (maybe the Roman decision to make 25 Dec. the official winter solstice was influenced by eastern custom); at any rate, neo-pagans ridicule Christians for maintaining what in its origins was a pagan festival in the form of Christmas (bully for them!).  If history repeats itself, though, what will happen to the feast of St. Raphael is that children will celebrate St. Raphael's pre-feast by trick-or-treating etc.  This is what seems to have happened to the nativity--the customs of the Saturnalia and (I think) of the (new) New Year's were tacked on to Christmas.  For what it's worth, when Augustine, bishop of Hippo Regius, drew up his calendar of major feasts, Christmas was not even listed; whether it was too recent or too trivial, I do not know. 

I must say that I am disappointed by the absence of response to my challenge to the anti-Halloween partisans.  Is it possible that our convictions sometimes outpace the relevant facts, so that facts seem rather rude when introduced into discussion?  Or maybe people are researching the matter patiently to uncover the evidence of my errors? 
If it matters, I am not pro-Halloween--just not anti-Halloween.
DanM
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: SolEX01 on August 09, 2008, 12:58:40 PM
^ Yes, for us All Saints' Day is the Sunday following Pentecost Pascha.

I think you meant Pentecost rather than Pascha.  All Saints' Day fell on June 22 this year...
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: SolEX01 on August 09, 2008, 01:03:43 PM
^^^^I amend my question to ask if Greek Catholics hold Vespers Services on Halloween?

The West decided to celebrate All Saints' Day on November 1 instead of the Sunday after Pentecost making Halloween like the Vespers/Vigil Service.  From the Catholic Encyclopedia article for All Saint's Day (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01315a.htm).

Quote
Gregory III (731-741) consecrated a chapel in the Basilica of St. Peter to all the saints and fixed the anniversary for 1 November. A basilica of the Apostles already existed in Rome, and its dedication was annually remembered on 1 May. Gregory IV (827-844) extended the celebration on 1 November to the entire Church.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 09, 2008, 02:05:21 PM
I think you meant Pentecost rather than Pascha.  All Saints' Day fell on June 22 this year...
I wrote Pascha? I must not have been awake yet....

Thanks for catching that.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: SolEX01 on August 09, 2008, 02:24:28 PM
^ Mr. Y, You're welcome.  ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 09, 2008, 09:03:26 PM
A common theory explaining the invention of Christmas (and other feasts) is illustrated by the above exchange:  since certain Christians wanted to continue customs associated with the Saturnalia and Sol Invictus (or Mithras?) on 25 December, the church fathers established a nativity feast of Our Lord in order to give them a reason to go to church.  Julianus Africanus was apparently the first Christian scholar to propose 25 December, which was already a feast for the virgin-born Mithras (maybe the Roman decision to make 25 Dec. the official winter solstice was influenced by eastern custom); at any rate, neo-pagans ridicule Christians for maintaining what in its origins was a pagan festival in the form of Christmas (bully for them!).  If history repeats itself, though, what will happen to the feast of St. Raphael is that children will celebrate St. Raphael's pre-feast by trick-or-treating etc.  This is what seems to have happened to the nativity--the customs of the Saturnalia and (I think) of the (new) New Year's were tacked on to Christmas.  For what it's worth, when Augustine, bishop of Hippo Regius, drew up his calendar of major feasts, Christmas was not even listed; whether it was too recent or too trivial, I do not know. 

Dan,

I am under the impression that the 25th December, the Natalis Solis Invicti (Birthday of the Invincible Sun), was chosen in the West as the anniversay of Christ's birth because it was seen as a foreshadowing of the birth of Christ Victor. St Cyprian declared that this "anniversary of the invincible" was made actual in Christ's birth; the only invincible one and the Sun of Justice. Christ is also referred to as the Sun of Righteousness in Malachi.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 09, 2008, 11:18:09 PM
^ December 25 is the date of Christmas in the East, too (on the Old Calendar Dec. 25 falls on Jan. 7 of the New, but it's still Dec. 25 according to that calendar).
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 10, 2008, 04:29:04 AM
^ December 25 is the date of Christmas in the East, too (on the Old Calendar Dec. 25 falls on Jan. 7 of the New, but it's still Dec. 25 according to that calendar).

Yes, but I think that the date was first celebrated in the West; picked for some of the reasons I mentioned. At least, that's what I understand, but I could be wrong.  ;D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on August 10, 2008, 10:27:22 AM
I am under the impression that the 25th December, the Natalis Solis Invicti (Birthday of the Invincible Sun), was chosen in the West as the anniversay of Christ's birth because it was seen as a foreshadowing of the birth of Christ Victor.

Thanks for the Cyprianic quote. 
Can we say which came first--the symbolism of the date chosen or the need for the celebration of Christ's nativity? 
I am very sure that Mithras and Sol were celebrated because 25 March was a winter solstice date.  But why celebrate the nativity at all? According to the Monk of the Eastern Church, "the first signs of this celebration come from Egypt" about 200.  But they picked May 20.  Cappadocian Christians used 25 December (Nyssa), whereas Jerusalem had no Christmas until the 6th cent.  These and other pieces of evidence indicate a very uneven attitude towards the Nativity.  What we would like to know, above all, is the motivation for Christmas in Egypt and why May 20?  Very puzzling.
DanM
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on August 10, 2008, 12:12:20 PM
Thanks for the Cyprianic quote. 
Can we say which came first--the symbolism of the date chosen or the need for the celebration of Christ's nativity? 
I am very sure that Mithras and Sol were celebrated because 25 March was a winter solstice date.  But why celebrate the nativity at all? According to the Monk of the Eastern Church, "the first signs of this celebration come from Egypt" about 200.  But they picked May 20.  Cappadocian Christians used 25 December (Nyssa), whereas Jerusalem had no Christmas until the 6th cent.  These and other pieces of evidence indicate a very uneven attitude towards the Nativity.  What we would like to know, above all, is the motivation for Christmas in Egypt and why May 20?  Very puzzling.
DanM

wow...that's pretty interesting.  What's the sources the Monk used?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Bogoliubtsy on August 10, 2008, 01:42:54 PM
I need not waste my time or anyone elses describing the history of Halloween since there are plenty of internet sources that outline its extremely satanic origins and continuation today.

I would like anyone who is curious to consider the following.

Halloween continues to be an activity in Public Schools (funded by our taxes). The Public School system has chosen to seperate EDUCATION from RELIGION and in most cases, the teaching of Christianity (no, Christmas with Santa Claus or Easter with the Easter Bunny is not Christianity) is prohibited! But Halloween (which is celebrated by the Witchraft practitioners - Wiccans - and Satanists, and YES! Freemasons) is permitted to be propagated in the Public School system. It is not a commercial holiday, although commercialism benefits greatly from this "holiday". You have to ask yourself, if Christianity is not allowed to be taught in Public Schools, why do Educators allow Halloween to be promoted along with, in recent years, Wiccans to speak about their "religion" to young children as if to educate them about Halloween?

Everyones tax dollars are being used to tolerate Halloween and to discriminate against Christianity.

Think about it.

It's become a day for kids to dress in silly costumes and eat candy. Relax.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on August 10, 2008, 07:34:48 PM
wow...that's pretty interesting.  What's the sources the Monk used?

He does not cite them.  However, this chequered pattern conforms to what I have read elsewhere.
I am not near a research library, but The New Schaff-Herzog corroborates the Monk in outline and provides some nice if dated references (http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/encyc03/Page_47.html).  NewAdvent.org supplies an article from the old Catholic Encyclopedia that throws even more confusion with the riot of details (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/03724b.htm).  In particular, we have

"In view of a reaction to certain Jewish rites and feasts, Chrysostom tries to unite Antioch in celebrating Christ's birth on 25 December, part of the community having already kept it on that day for at least ten years. In the West, he says, the feast was thus kept, anothen; its introduction into Antioch he had always sought, conservatives always resisted . This time he was successful; in a crowded church he defended the new custom. It was no novelty; from Thrace to Cadiz this feast was observed -- rightly, since its miraculously rapid diffusion proved its genuineness. Besides, Zachary, who, as high-priest, entered the Temple on the Day of Atonement, received therefore announcement of John's conception in September; six months later Christ was conceived, i.e. in March, and born accordingly in December."  [Emphasis added.]

I wish I could recall what I had read about the origins of the Annunciation--it rocked my little boat. 
Also,

"Pope Leo I (Serm. xxxvii in nat. dom., VII, 4; xxii, II, 6 in P. L., LIV, 218 and 198) bitterly reproves solar survivals — Christians, on the very doorstep of the Apostles' basilica, turn to adore the rising sun. Sun-worship has bequeathed features to modern popular worship in Armenia, where Christians had once temporarily and externally conformed to the cult of the material sun (Cumont, op. cit., p. 356)."

But the Sol Invictus is a pretty recent innovation on the part of the Roman emperors.  The Armenians, who felt no need to ape anybody, never went along with the 25 December date, and still emphasize the Theophany more than the birth--just as the Nestorian Church of the East never recognized the Apocalypse of St. John.  (The connection of the divine nativity and Theophany is illustrated by the fact that we cannot always tell whether certain sermons are for Christmas or Theophany.)

Finally,

"Should a deliberate and legitimate 'baptism' of a pagan feast be seen here no more than the transference of the date need be supposed. The 'mountain-birth' of Mithra and Christ's in the "grotto" have nothing in common: Mithra's adoring shepherds (Cumont, op. cit., I, ii, 4, p. 304 sqq.) are rather borrowed from Christian sources than vice versa."

The latter observation is a warning to the hapless!
The refs. of the Catholic Encyclopedia should provide enough for a pretty detailed paper. 
Good hunting.
DanM

PS.  Is anyone near a seminary able to locate a paper which sketches out the pagan origins of as many Christian feasts as are still celebrated?  It would be nice to have it all in one place so that I do not have to hunt high and low.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on August 10, 2008, 08:22:51 PM
Besides, Zachary, who, as high-priest, entered the Temple on the Day of Atonement, received therefore announcement of John's conception in September; six months later Christ was conceived, i.e. in March, and born accordingly in December."
St. Zachary was not the High Priest and nor was the Feast on which he offered incense in the Temple Yom Kipppur (The Day of Atonement).
The Gospel of Luke tells us that "the lot fell" on Zachary (Luke 1:8 ) to offer incense in the Temple. However, on the Day of Atonement, all priestly functions were performed by the High Priest alone, and lots were not drawn among the other Priests, nor were the priestly roles rotated for that day. Only the High Priest could enter the Holy of Holies and offer incense on Yom Kippur, and the office of High Priest was hereditary and held for life.
However, "offering incense in the Temple" does not necessarily mean entering the Holy Of Holies which the High Priest did only once a year on Yom Kippur. The "Altar of Incense" in the Temple of Solomon actually stood outside of the Holy of Holies, and any priest whose turn it was would offer incense at it on Feast days. The fact that "the lot fell" on Zacharias to offer incense means that it could not have been the Feast of Yom Kippur (the Day of Atonement), since lots were not drawn for that day. So the first clue to which Feast it may have been is the fact that "the lot fell" on Zachary. Clearly it was not the Day of Atonement.
The other clues as to which feast it may have been are also in the Gospel of Luke. It was a Feast in which "the multitude of the people was praying outside" (Luke 1:10), so it was a major Feast, and it was a Feast which lasted more than one day (Luke 1:23).  The other clue is the fact that St. Zachary was struck mute after offering the incense  (Luke 1:20), and therefore would no longer be able to function as a Priest, yet we are told that St. Zachary "completed the days of his service" (Luke 1:23), so therefore he must have been struck mute on the last day of the Feast.
A Feast which would fit these criteria would be Sukkot (the Feast of  Tabernacles), the last day of which is called "Shemini Atseret" ("Solemn Assembly") in which "the multitude of the people" gathered at the Temple. The Feast of Sukkot begins on the Hebrew date of 15th day of the month of Tishrei, and it runs for a week. The 8th day is "Shemini Atseret". Sukkot was a harvest festival which was the last Feast of the last Month of the Jewish calendar- (quite a fitting day to announce the conception of last Prophet of the Old Testament and Forerunner of the New One!)
The last day of Sukkot ("Shemini Atseret" or "Solemn Assembly") falls on Tishrei 23rd (which was September 19th in 1BC according to the Julian calendar). The Orthodox Church commemorates the Conception of St. John the Baptist on September 23rd (and he is the only Saint apart from the Theotokos whose Conception is celebrated with a Feast). So it is possible that the Jewish date "Tishrei 23rd" was simply converted to "September 23rd". At any rate, Yom Kippur is celebrated on the 10th day of Tishrei, which in 1 BC corresponded to September 6th. So the theory that 23rd Tishrei (Shemini Atseret) as the Feast on which St. Zachary offered incense seems more likely.
We are then told in Luke 1:26 that that 6 months later (March 23rd if this theory is correct) the Annunciation of Christ was made to the Theotokos, which is celebrated  in the Church on March 25th. Nine months after this is December 25th (Christmas).
If you are as interested in calendars as the geek that I am, may I recommend downloading the freeware program "Kalendis" (http://individual.utoronto.ca/kalendis/kalendis.htm) created by Dr. Irv Bromberg of the University of Toronto which allows you to convert between Hebrew, Julian, Gregorian Roman and various other calendar dates on a perpetual calendar.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 10, 2008, 09:52:51 PM
It's become a day for kids to dress in silly costumes and eat candy. Relax.

And the day after is the day when parents are trying to get their kids down from the ceiling because they are so hyped from eating all that sugar!  :laugh:
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Pravoslavbob on August 11, 2008, 02:40:20 AM
Would everyone please keep the discussion on topic. Whoever wishes to discuss general calendar questions may ressurect an old thread on this issue or create a new one. 

Thank you. 

Pravoslavbob
Religious Topics Moderator
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on August 11, 2008, 11:53:47 AM
Would everyone please keep the discussion on topic. Whoever wishes to discuss general calendar questions may ressurect an old thread on this issue or create a new one. 

Thank you. 

Pravoslavbob
Religious Topics Moderator


It seems to me that the Halloween topic at any rate is dead, since its discussion has not been able to advance so far enough beyond general religious sentiments as to refute or accept the available facts of the matter. 
Perhaps the discussion of Christmas ought to have its own thread, though I suspect that it would not be relevant for a few more months.  Also, ozgeorge has already provided a very masterly finale to any such discussion.
Another thread that comes out of the Halloween topic that might be worth pursuing, if anyone is interested, would concern the accumulation of feasts and fasts in church history.  I hope it is obvious that St. Ignatius, e.g., did not celebrate Christmas, Annunciation, the Conception of the Forerunner etc., nor would he have kept the Apostles' Fast, the Dormition Fast, Lent etc., nor, finally, would he have known what to do with monasteries and hermits.  What exactly was happening in the churches as these feasts and fasts multiplied?  Did popular piety borrow from the pagan milieu for so long that the church claimed ownership at some point?  Or were these things simply tacked on at the behest of professional clergy who enjoyed filling out the year with more fun things to do or perhaps were meeting popular demand?  Or what?  Have the feasts and fasts have taken on a life of their own?  Do we have an advantage over St. Ignatius or did he have one over us?  These are for me absorbing questions.  Perhaps others are interested in pondering them. 
DanM
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on August 11, 2008, 12:56:32 PM
Sorry for the little digression.  :-[

But thank you DanM for answering my question.  :)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 11, 2008, 02:53:45 PM
It seems to me that the Halloween topic at any rate is dead, since its discussion has not been able to advance so far enough beyond general religious sentiments as to refute or accept the available facts of the matter. 
Perhaps the discussion of Christmas ought to have its own thread, though I suspect that it would not be relevant for a few more months.  Also, ozgeorge has already provided a very masterly finale to any such discussion.
Another thread that comes out of the Halloween topic that might be worth pursuing, if anyone is interested, would concern the accumulation of feasts and fasts in church history.  I hope it is obvious that St. Ignatius, e.g., did not celebrate Christmas, Annunciation, the Conception of the Forerunner etc., nor would he have kept the Apostles' Fast, the Dormition Fast, Lent etc., nor, finally, would he have known what to do with monasteries and hermits.  What exactly was happening in the churches as these feasts and fasts multiplied?  Did popular piety borrow from the pagan milieu for so long that the church claimed ownership at some point?  Or were these things simply tacked on at the behest of professional clergy who enjoyed filling out the year with more fun things to do or perhaps were meeting popular demand?  Or what?  Have the feasts and fasts have taken on a life of their own?  Do we have an advantage over St. Ignatius or did he have one over us?  These are for me absorbing questions.  Perhaps others are interested in pondering them. 
DanM

These are not questions for orthodox christians I do not believe; since we already know what is our religion and faith.

Welcome to the site DanM.

A point of note; celebrating a feast in the holy church is our perogative. It is an embelishment, the richness, the see-able, hear-able, feel-able aspects of orthodoxy. Like your own birthday; it does not change becuase you do not celebate it. Like your wedding the marriage does not change becuase you did not have the 'reception' with the huge cost and fanfare. It is a peragotive.

But if we do celebrate holy occasions than let them be "holy' in nature without blemish. Fully 'characterising' our belief, edifying God and edifying to God. NOT celebration for celebrations sake and if God is not edified than "that is not my fault....I am gonna do it anyway".

Halloween, xmas, easter are today widely accepted celebrations; thanks to the U S.

In my New York office I have hindus, muslims, "non-practicing catholics (as they call themsselves), and orthodox and jewish. All of these people love halloween, easter and especially xmas. They bring in all the lovely pictures of their children from xmas day, halloween and easter celebrations.

Interesting thing is that HOW they celebrate these occasions never permits them or allows the teachings of the holy church to be revealed to them since the main aspects of the "celebrations"  can not and does not 'characterise' the true faith in Christ and His holy Church. Thus through these "celebrations" God is not edified and can not be. These are family days full of fun and pre-occupations with the enjoyments of life. Typical, common, human behavior and desire no matter what religion you claim.

Thus how we 'celebrate' NOT-THAT-WE celebrate is the real issue...The key point.

xmas trees and rudolph and frosty the snow man and all the halloween trappings are good for hindues and muslims and non-practicing catholics and so on since 'holiness' and 'reverence' to God in the name of our Savior Jesus christ is a non-issue and not edified in the nature of the practices.

WE are too busy with the virginia ham and the new drapes. Not that there is anything wrong with ham and drapes if that is what your into during trhe Holy Days (Holidays if you wish).

The 'christians' observe the same 'element' just like the muslims and hindues find no problem with enjoying and embracing but with Jesus at the center. At lease that is what they (the christians say).

Only problem to me is trying to descern the Jesus of the bible and His Church with what is happening.

Kids sitting on the lap of an over wieght man dressed like a shaman in the middle of an expensive department store with visions of sugar plumbs dancing in thier heads all night.

This is christian?

I find it just the same with halloween. Christ is not justified in the antics, the glib, the boohs, the whole ghosts and goblin thing.

I read all the hopeful posts about how halloween and its traditions are christian. That is of no consequence since these traditions are not distinguished as "christian" today. As such they fail to edify God. So the faith is fine. the tradtition is corrupted and can not thus qualify the faith anymore. It should be abandoned until corrected or just abandoned.

I blame the christ loving holloween goers for letting the traditions slip into the subculture it is now.

Orthodox people have no interest in things that do not and can not edify God.

We do not look for 'time-off' from being Orthodox christians. We are looking for ways to be more orthodox and all the time; even when we sleep if possible.


Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 11, 2008, 05:14:09 PM
Laying aside any Christian connection with Halloween for the moment, I'm not sure how kids having a bit of fun can be anti-Orthodox; even if they dress up and ghosties and ghoulies and whatever. However, I've lived all my life in countries that don't celebrate Halloween and I have reservations about the holiday from a safety point of view, probably because the thought of my kids accepting sweets from strangers is something completely foreign to me. Over the years, I have seen a growing objection to the holiday, mostly through fundamentalists, mostly through the internet and mostly in the form of complete misinformation based on outright fear. IMO, if anyone feels that celebrating Halloween is a threat to their faith and ultimately their eternal salvation, they probably shouldn't do it. Those who don't fear it should probably continue in freedom. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: EofK on August 11, 2008, 05:22:55 PM
I have reservations about the holiday from a safety point of view, probably because the thought of my kids accepting sweets from strangers is something completely foreign to me.  

This is my one objection with Halloween as well.  My parents only let me go trick-or-treating at family members' houses, though, so they didn't have that to worry about.  Halloween was basically just an excuse to dress up silly and eat candy with grandma.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 11, 2008, 06:30:52 PM
Laying aside any Christian connection with Halloween for the moment, I'm not sure how kids having a bit of fun can be anti-Orthodox; even if they dress up and ghosties and ghoulies and whatever. However, I've lived all my life in countries that don't celebrate Halloween and I have reservations about the holiday from a safety point of view, probably because the thought of my kids accepting sweets from strangers is something completely foreign to me. Over the years, I have seen a growing objection to the holiday, mostly through fundamentalists, mostly through the internet and mostly in the form of complete misinformation based on outright fear. IMO, if anyone feels that celebrating Halloween is a threat to their faith and ultimately their eternal salvation, they probably shouldn't do it. Those who don't fear it should probably continue in freedom. 

Is not this the same as saying:

'I have seen a growing objection to getting your palm read, mostly through fundementalists, mostly throught he internet and mostly in the form of complete misinformation based on outright fear. IMO, if anyone feels that having your palm read is a threat to their faith and ultimately eternal salvation, they probably should'nt do it. Those who don't fear it should probably continue in freedom'.

I see no difference in slipping-in whatever subject of behavior or belief or attitude or so on in your statement I want; it has the same affect: "Do what you want to do if you like it".

Very liberal and secular attitude indeed.

I get your point but sadly this 'thinking of yours' does not deliver on sound orthodoxy.

I will agree that many on this forum would side with your open and airy point of view.

That is what we all like. "freedom"

After we get home from liturgy or vespers we want to be what we want to be and decide how we want to live and what is important and what is not. That is why views like your are well received.

It is nothing "wrong" with that. We are pre-occupationists by nature. "freedom" allows us time to be carried off; be it fantasy or what have you. And who wants to be denied "freedom"?

Orthodox Christians do!

Our fathers taught us to deny ourselves the world and seek the path of rightiouness. That "path" is straight. It is thus 'Orthodox'. Like Paul we are bond servants of Christ. Thus our freedon is IN Christ only.

As I have been saying for years on this forum; Orthodoxy is the life we live full time. It is a life no different from our forefathers.

Orthodox christians are just as pre-occupationistic as the next person but our pre-occupation is with fervent and contrite prayer and living in this world in a way that is obedient to God. We pray that He will place in us His divine grace and will for us, His Holy Church and all mankind.

Orthodox christians are NOT interested in anything that distracts us from our Holy and rightious way of life. Such distractions makes us unhappy. It is not that these distractions are sins but they are DISTRACTIONS.

I hope that is clear.

Who wants to be distracted from something that they enjoy and are hoping to achieve? NO body!

So then halloween may be a fun day of goofy-ness and booh and gooh and that is it. No bad no foul. But how do we make time for it. How do we get the energy to persue the traditions. The answer is that these traditions are important to our lives, our kids lives our heritage...WE are pre-occupied with these practices. We can not appreciate life without them.

I understand that completely!

But this is clearly not the love of Christ and rightious life in Him that is driving us at all. It is this life "OUR" life we love so much. The life we should have left behind at baptism in exchange for a holy life in Christ. Walking and living Christ like in all manners and everything.

It seems that is why so many people have high-jacked this practice this 'holiday' halloween and use it for all kinds of reasons religion, money making, ludeness etc. What else should be done with the thngs of the world? They are to be corrupted just like the world they come from .....this world. This world and all its aspects are corrupted. The lord said :"If the salt looses its flavor how shall it be seasoned? It is to be trampled under foot by men"

Thus is what we have today with halloween.

On the other hand........

Nothing truly holy and of God in the name of Christ could ever be corrupted and abused this way.

I am not convinced that we are better christian or improving our circumstances in a way that brings us or our children closer to God with trick-er-treating and the whole halloween tradition. It has the potential to take away more than it offers to our true and holy lives; especially now since now the enemy has caught hold of it.

Best we discard it.

We can give our kids candy on another day. And instead of costumes of vampires and witches and dead people or superman we can make them into Davids and Solomans, and Arch Angels and Apostles etc. That sounds real good to me.

Ask you kids if they want to be Arch Angel Michael. I hope they are bursting with excitement. If not than we have a work cut out for us.

We have to use every opportunity to protect our spiritual lives and the spiritual lives of our children. That is why the Church is on earth. We should not right off this duty to placate ourselves or our loved ones with things that are contrary to our aim.

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 11, 2008, 09:25:30 PM
Is not this the same as saying:

'I have seen a growing objection to getting your palm read, mostly through fundementalists, mostly throught he internet and mostly in the form of complete misinformation based on outright fear. IMO, if anyone feels that having your palm read is a threat to their faith and ultimately eternal salvation, they probably should'nt do it. Those who don't fear it should probably continue in freedom'.

I see no difference in slipping-in whatever subject of behavior or belief or attitude or so on in your statement I want; it has the same affect: "Do what you want to do if you like it".

Very liberal and secular attitude indeed.

I see that you have not failed to approach the subject with your usual judgemental attitude. Feel free to continue, because it makes no difference to how I will live my life and how I will ultimately face my Saviour. I rely on His mercy, not yours. Thanks be to God for that.

Quote
I get your point but sadly this 'thinking of yours' does not deliver on sound orthodoxy.

At least you "get my point". That's something, at least.

Quote
I will agree that many on this forum would side with your open and airy point of view.

Well, that certainly is a relief to hear.

Quote
That is what we all like. "freedom"

Indeed! Christ came to free us from the fundamental and legalistic mindset that plagued His own people and I take that freedom very seriously. Judge not that ye be not judged. His words, not mine.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Bogoliubtsy on August 11, 2008, 10:15:51 PM
Is not this the same as saying:

'I have seen a growing objection to getting your palm read, mostly through fundementalists, mostly throught he internet and mostly in the form of complete misinformation based on outright fear. IMO, if anyone feels that having your palm read is a threat to their faith and ultimately eternal salvation, they probably should'nt do it. Those who don't fear it should probably continue in freedom'.

I see no difference in slipping-in whatever subject of behavior or belief or attitude or so on in your statement I want; it has the same affect: "Do what you want to do if you like it".

Very liberal and secular attitude indeed.

I get your point but sadly this 'thinking of yours' does not deliver on sound orthodoxy.

I will agree that many on this forum would side with your open and airy point of view.



Watching baseball isn't sound Orthodoxy. Reading James Joyce isn't sound Orthodoxy. Listening to The Clash isn't sound Orthodoxy. However, none of these "secular" activities claim to be Orthodoxy, or an alternative to sound Orthodoxy. Likewise, Halloween, an entirely secular evening once a year where American kids dress up like spacemen, bumble bees, infantry, pirates, ghosts, princesses, and pumpkins (and maybe the one really economically unfortunate kid who has to wear a trash bag and pretend he's a california raisin), and go door to door filling plastic pumpkins with candy. It's about as harmful as the "pagan" Christmas tree, in my opinion. Just because Druids worship trees doesn't mean we become tree worshipers when we put up a tree in our houses and wish each other a Merry Christmas.

This whole issue is a matter of opinion. It's not a question of abused "freedom" as you've cast it. It's an innocuous "holiday"(not holy day) in the States meant for fun. If you see it as otherwise, then fine. Be the weird neighbors who admonish those of us who allow our children to have a little harmless fun that isn't directly related to the Church. (You know, like when they read "secular" books in school, or play "secular" sports). Please though, don't elevate your opinion to dogma.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 12, 2008, 09:50:33 AM
I see that you have not failed to approach the subject with your usual judgemental attitude. Feel free to continue, because it makes no difference to how I will live my life and how I will ultimately face my Saviour. I rely on His mercy, not yours. Thanks be to God for that.

At least you "get my point". That's something, at least.

Well, that certainly is a relief to hear.

Indeed! Christ came to free us from the fundamental and legalistic mindset that plagued His own people and I take that freedom very seriously. Judge not that ye be not judged. His words, not mine.


Orthodoxy!

Think Orthodoxy!

We will be able to understand each other and help each other then.



Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Rosehip on August 12, 2008, 10:11:05 AM
I'm truly of very mixed feelings about Hallowe'en. Now that I am no longer a child, and have no children of my own, it really doesn't affect me and I rarely, if ever, think about it.

My parents very strictly forbid me to dress up or go 'trick or treating' (although we always handed out candy to the otherkids), and I remember well that first Hallowe'en when I begged them to allow me to dress up like the other kids were-to no avail. My childish mind made  no associations whatsoever with the spirit world, the occult etc. I merely wanted to be part of a lovely make-believe world of dress-up and a bit of fun with the other kids. Dressing up was the key attraction for me, and I cried bitterly to be left out of the fun.

To this day, I believe this was unnecessary harshness for a small child to have to endure. And it didn't stop with Hallowe'en-no participation was permitted for Christmas concerts or anything else. I do rather wish it had been otherwise. I wouldn't want any other child to have to experience these things. Life is so hard as it is.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 12, 2008, 10:21:26 AM
Watching baseball isn't sound Orthodoxy. Reading James Joyce isn't sound Orthodoxy. Listening to The Clash isn't sound Orthodoxy. However, none of these "secular" activities claim to be Orthodoxy, or an alternative to sound Orthodoxy. Likewise, Halloween, an entirely secular evening once a year where American kids dress up like spacemen, bumble bees, infantry, pirates, ghosts, princesses, and pumpkins (and maybe the one really economically unfortunate kid who has to wear a trash bag and pretend he's a california raisin), and go door to door filling plastic pumpkins with candy. It's about as harmful as the "pagan" Christmas tree, in my opinion. Just because Druids worship trees doesn't mean we become tree worshipers when we put up a tree in our houses and wish each other a Merry Christmas.

This whole issue is a matter of opinion. It's not a question of abused "freedom" as you've cast it. It's an innocuous "holiday"(not holy day) in the States meant for fun. If you see it as otherwise, then fine. Be the weird neighbors who admonish those of us who allow our children to have a little harmless fun that isn't directly related to the Church. (You know, like when they read "secular" books in school, or play "secular" sports). Please though, don't elevate your opinion to dogma.

"Innocuous", "pagan christmas trees", wierd neighbors, baseball, druids, and last but not lease church. then a quip about "secular sports and books".

You deserve to celebrate halloween.

This kind of argument is exactly what I hear from most protestants and non-beleivers who love this strange tradition.

You deserve to celebrate halloween.

Enjoy!


May I mention:

I may be the wierd nieghbor to you but in my world I am not wierd at all; I am the president of my "secular" block association and a leader in the "secular" boy scouts. I even drive a "secular" car on "secular" streets. Sometimes I read "secular" newspapers and drink "secular" coffee out of "secular" cups. I even use "secular" money.

Never-the-less people respect me for being Orthodox or they dislike for being orthodox.

I am happy either way.

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Bogoliubtsy on August 12, 2008, 10:28:25 AM


This kind of argument is exactly what I hear from most protestants and non-beleivers who love this strange tradition.





It's also the argument I hear from most Orthodox- if they're ever even confronted with a question about October 31st.

Never-the-less, people also respect me for being Orthodox or they dislike me for being Orthodox. If only dressing like a dinosaur had anything to do with it.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 12, 2008, 10:30:37 AM
I'm truly of very mixed feelings about Hallowe'en. Now that I am no longer a child, and have no children of my own, it really doesn't affect me and I rarely, if ever, think about it.

My parents very strictly forbid me to dress up or go 'trick or treating' (although we always handed out candy to the otherkids), and I remember well that first Hallowe'en when I begged them to allow me to dress up like the other kids were-to no avail. My childish mind made  no associations whatsoever with the spirit world, the occult etc. I merely wanted to be part of a lovely make-believe world of dress-up and a bit of fun with the other kids. Dressing up was the key attraction for me, and I cried bitterly to be left out of the fun.

To this day, I believe this was unnecessary harshness for a small child to have to endure. And it didn't stop with Hallowe'en-no participation was permitted for Christmas concerts or anything else. I do rather wish it had been otherwise. I wouldn't want any other child to have to experience these things. Life is so hard as it is.

You are right.

It is even harder for those of us who 'choose' to live in Christ.

Our faith is a suffering faith. For the kids to.

"Suffer the little children unto me"


My parents always provided us with wonderful alternatives. I had a wonderful childhood. NO halloween and NO xmas trees or toys.

I respect to this day my parents sacarfices for my protection.

It is through them and the grace of God that I am so firmly ingrained in the holy church way of life.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 12, 2008, 10:32:33 AM
It's also the argument I hear from most Orthodox- if they're ever even confronted with a question about October 31st.

Never-the-less, people also respect me for being Orthodox or they dislike me for being Orthodox. If only dressing like a dinosaur had anything to do with it.

???
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Bogoliubtsy on August 12, 2008, 10:33:16 AM
You are right.

It is even harder for those of us who 'choose' to live in Christ.

Our faith is a suffering faith. For the kids to.

"Suffer the little children unto me"


My parents always provided us with wonderful alternatives. I had a wonderful childhood. NO halloween and NO xmas trees or toys.

I respect to this day my parents sacarfices for my protection.

It is through them and the grace of God that I am so firmly ingrained in the holy church way of life.

It's wonderful for you to imply that those of us who DID have Christmas trees (like the furs we cover our churches with around Nativity!) are less spiritual than you. You weren't "protected", friend...you just lived a different life.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 12, 2008, 10:39:41 AM
It's wonderful for you to imply that those of us who DID have Christmas trees (like the furs we cover our churches with around Nativity!) are less spiritual than you. You weren't "protected", friend...you just lived a different life.

I was not impling that.

I have no issue with you having your church covered with branches and shrubs.

And please refrain from referring to me as "friend"; this is extremely impolite.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Galina-Volga on August 12, 2008, 10:58:01 AM
Just voted.

ABSOLUTELY NO.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Bogoliubtsy on August 12, 2008, 11:01:41 AM
Beware the witches' coven.


(http://i199.photobucket.com/albums/aa48/bcsmith46/Presentation1.jpg)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 12, 2008, 11:07:42 AM
Our faith is a suffering faith. For the kids to.

"Suffer the little children unto me"

The two instances of the word suffer here have drastically different meanings; the first is synonymous with mistreated, and the second with bring. It is an accident of the English language that the same sequence of characters is used in both meanings.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Rosehip on August 12, 2008, 11:16:47 AM
The two instances of the word suffer here have drastically different meanings; the first is synonymous with mistreated, and the second with bring. It is an accident of the English language that the same sequence of characters is used in both meanings.

Other, more modern translations use the word "permit" or "allow" in place of "suffer".
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on August 12, 2008, 11:23:54 AM
Our faith is a suffering faith. For the kids to.

"Suffer the little children unto me"

(http://www.clipartof.com/images/emoticons/xsmall2/469_jaw_dropping.gif) (http://www.clipartof.com)

Please tell me you didn't mean to say that......
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 12, 2008, 11:24:51 AM
Other, more modern translations use the word "permit" or "allow" in place of "suffer".
Yes, but these words are both more passive than that sense of suffer. Perhaps "direct them unto Me" might be a little better.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: SolEX01 on August 12, 2008, 11:27:35 AM
In Reference to Reply #242 - is that a Greek School Halloween Party?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 12, 2008, 11:31:12 AM
In Reference to Reply #242 - is that a Greek School Halloween Party?
No, Scottish.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Rosehip on August 12, 2008, 11:54:01 AM
i checked the OSB (NKJV), and the Greek Interlinear NT Online for Mark 10:14.  Both use the word "Let" in place of the word "suffer".

But when Jesus saw it, He was greatly displeased and said to them, "Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of God.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Rosehip on August 12, 2008, 11:58:15 AM
I had another thought. If Orthodox Christians had their own Christian schools, this whole problem could be solved. There would be no need to celebrate Hallowe'en. If none of the other kids were dressing up, no one would feel left out. I wonder if Hallowe'en is celebrated in the RCC Separate School System?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on August 12, 2008, 12:23:43 PM
I wonder if Hallowe'en is celebrated in the RCC Separate School System?

Ages ago I knew an Orthodox couple whose children attended a Catholic school.  The kitchen staff at any rate dressed up for Halloween. Scared the kids silly with an axe. 

The best argument against H. may be, "If in doubt, throw it out."  I can respect that argument when applied by individuals to themselves.  The problem starts when I decide that if I am not sure of something, I must intimidate others into believing that they must not be sure of it, either.  This Rousseauist instinct (forcing men to be free) is dangerous, not least because of the many times I have been wrong before; it is best for me to apply my opinion only to me.  The value of a discussion like this is obvious:  the only way to be sure that I am right is to meet with opposition.

Amdetsios pleads with us to "Think Orthodox," but there is no Orthodox position on H.  The best bet would be to find injunctions against celebrating non-Christian feasts and argue from analogy, though that would entail either proving that H. is not Christian (which I have already demonstrated to be false) or that proscriptions against non-Christian feasts are validly applied to non-Orthodox feasts (which requires proof, not presumption, of religious nature) or to non-Orthodox non-religious celebrations (which would remove Thanksgiving, Valentine's, Labor Day etc.).  My advice to the anti-H. partisans in a discussion like this is to provide more proof and less presumption. 

DanM
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Asteriktos on August 12, 2008, 02:14:33 PM
Quote
And please refrain from referring to me as "friend"; this is extremely impolite.

It is, bro?  ;D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: SolEX01 on August 12, 2008, 02:19:44 PM
^^^ In New York metro area and a few other US cities, the GOA operates its own Schools.  I don't know if Halloween is celebrated at those schools by parties and such.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: SolEX01 on August 12, 2008, 02:21:14 PM
No, Scottish.

Seriously?  Scottish?  I think my leg is being pulled....
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Bogoliubtsy on August 12, 2008, 02:23:10 PM
Thought I would add that if you and yours decide that Halloween isn't for you, more power to you. That's your decision, of course. My gripe came when it was suggested that taking part in the silly aspects of Halloween is a disqualifier for practicing genuine Christianity. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: SolEX01 on August 12, 2008, 02:27:04 PM
The best bet would be to find injunctions against celebrating non-Christian feasts and argue from analogy, though that would entail either proving that H. is not Christian (which I have already demonstrated to be false) or that proscriptions against non-Christian feasts are validly applied to non-Orthodox feasts (which requires proof, not presumption, of religious nature) or to non-Orthodox non-religious celebrations (which would remove Thanksgiving, Valentine's, Labor Day etc.).  My advice to the anti-H. partisans in a discussion like this is to provide more proof and less presumption.

What kind of proof is needed especially when the West celebrates All Saint's Day on a different date than Orthodoxy.

OK, looking at Thanksgiving - we are Thankful every day and we don't need a 388 year old feast to remind us of being Thankful.  I attended the Thanksgiving Eve Divine Liturgy - only 5 people showed up.

There was actually a St. Valentine who may (or may not) be commemorated on February 14.

Every Sunday is Labor Day for the Orthodox.

Point is made.   :)  If our Hierarchs aren't going to express an opinion on Halloween, I suppose each person can do what he/she feels.  Personally, I don't celebrate Vespers services for Western Holidays especially when the Eastern equivalent of that Holiday has long passed.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on August 12, 2008, 03:24:24 PM
OK, looking at Thanksgiving - we are Thankful every day and we don't need a 388 year old feast to remind us of being Thankful.  I attended the Thanksgiving Eve Divine Liturgy - only 5 people showed up.

The direction in which I think I was heading is this, that H-ween, V-day, T-giving and Christmas are, like Labor Day and D-Day, American institutions.  As such they are not feasts in the same sense that All Saints is in Orthodoxy & All Souls in Catholicism.  Perhaps some opposition to H-ween comes from the feeling that H-ween really is someone else's feast. 
It seems to me that H-ween, V-Day and T-giving are much less important for their roots than for the pleasure of the activities each encourages.  All three have religious roots, but those have long since been forgotten as we have amplified what at one time would have been incidental details. 
I personally know of no incidental details attached to feasts commemorating, say, ecumenical councils.  I value those feasts for objective reasons that are subjective in impact.  With H-ween it is exactly the opposite:  no one is interested in the (original) point of the night because all the attention is focused on the candy, costumes etc.  NO ONE would care for a H-ween that was really a pre-feast for All Saints and Martyrs.  In short, H-ween has been secularized.  The fact that people attribute to it apocryphal pre-histories and bizarre motivations constitutes the insult of demonization  added to the injury of secularization.  The same thing has happened to the Christmas tree in some Fundamentalist circles and to Christmas itself in others.
DanM

PS.  The idea of a T-giving Eve liturgy seems to show the church at work again--sanitizing local pre-Orthodox customs so that the local converts (does anyone remember how Conrad's _H of D_ starts off?) can retain an institution in the Orthodox context. 

PPS.  Fr. Schmemann provides an interesting test for H-ween.  Somewhere in his journals he says that the chiefest question is how the objective in the faith is made subjective.  Feasts and fasts appear to be viable means thereto.  Now, what objective truth is it that is being subjectively experienced in H-ween?  If there is one, then maybe it is a religious celebration from which we should abstain.  If not, then it is what it seems to be--a meaningless, national  carnival night.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on August 12, 2008, 03:42:25 PM

Orthodoxy!

Think Orthodoxy!

We will be able to understand each other and help each other then.

But is Orthodoxy to be identified SOLELY with the monastic, ascetic struggle to escape the world, as you would suggest?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 12, 2008, 04:38:01 PM
Seriously?  Scottish?  I think my leg is being pulled....
It's an obscure reference. I'm hoping someone will be able to decipher it.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 12, 2008, 04:40:52 PM
But is Orthodoxy to be identified SOLELY with the monastic, ascetic struggle to escape the world, as you would suggest?

Good question!

Yes!

"Oh my brethren love not the world neither the things that are in the world; the world is passing away and the lusts thereof for all is passing".

This is what the apostles commanded for us to observe.

But I believe you already knew the answer to this question.

Considering all the various posts on this thread; your post is quite odd and out of place. Just as my posts are.

I pray that your question was sincere. My response is.

God bless you+++
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 12, 2008, 04:54:20 PM
Beware the witches' coven.


(http://i199.photobucket.com/albums/aa48/bcsmith46/Presentation1.jpg)

Nice pictures!

Proverbs 22:6 ("train a child in the way he should go")

Keep up the good work!

May I offer simple words of God to His Church since we have resorted to pictures of children to help support a point. I thought the word of God a very good picture as well since it makes the ultimate point of all.

1 Thessalonians 5:21-22 ("Test everything. Hold on to the good. Avoid every kind of evil.")

James 1:27 ("keep oneself from being polluted by the world")

3 John 1:11 ("do not imitate what is evil")

Romans 12:9 ("abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good.")

Deuteronomy 18:9-14 (do not learn to imitate detestable ways, including spiritists, sorcerers and witchcraft)

Ephesians 5:11-12 ("Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness" / "live as children of light")

1 Timothy 4:1 (don't "follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons")

1 Corinthians 10:21
2 Corinthians 6:14-17 ("what fellowship can light have with darkness?")

Philippians 4:8 (think about pure, lovely, noble things)

1 Corinthians 11:1 ("follow the example of Christ")

1 Corinthians 10:31 ("whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God")   James 4:7-8 (submit yourselves to God / resist the devil / purify your hearts)

Ezekiel 44:23 ("…teach my people… to distinguish between the unclean and the clean.")

Proverbs 22:6 ("train a child in the way he should go")

Matthew 18:6 ("if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin…")

Hosea 4:6 ("My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.")

John 3:19-20 (people love darkness instead of light)

Romans 13:12 ("put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.")

Ephesians 6:11-18 ("take your stand against the devil's schemes.")

1 John 5:19

2 Chronicles


The readings in scripture is endless that point us to the way of God in our lives.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on August 12, 2008, 04:55:41 PM
Good question!

Yes!
So you condemn as non-Orthodox any idea that contradicts your strict, ascetic view of the faith, even though the sanctification of times, places, and even cultures has become very much a part of the prevailing Orthodox ethos?

Quote
"Oh my brethren love not the world neither the things that are in the world; the world is passing away and the lusts thereof for all is passing".

This is what the apostles commanded for us to observe.
But what of how Tradition has come to interpret what the Apostles commanded us to observe?  At least equal in strength to the ascetic ethos of the monastics is the sacramental ethos that sees everything in the world as potentially manifesting the sanctifying life of Jesus Christ.  Would you deny that this is also part of Tradition?

Quote
But I believe you already knew the answer to this question.

Considering all the various posts on this thread; your post is quite odd and out of place. Just as my posts are.

Indeed!  Quite out of place, but necessary to address a mentality that, though truthful insofar as it goes, is potentially quite imbalanced and even judgmental.  Besides, within the context of a discussion of whether we should feel free to celebrate Halloween or not, a critique of the spiritual foundation of your strict opposition to Halloween is not exactly so far out of place.

Quote
I pray that your question was sincere. My response is.

God bless you+++
And also you, Deacon.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Bogoliubtsy on August 12, 2008, 05:05:18 PM
Nice pictures!

Proverbs 22:6 ("train a child in the way he should go")

Keep up the good work!

May I offer simple words of God to His Church since we have resorted to pictures of children to help support a point. I thought the word of God a very good picture as well since it makes the ultimate point of all.

1 Thessalonians 5:21-22 ("Test everything. Hold on to the good. Avoid every kind of evil.")

James 1:27 ("keep oneself from being polluted by the world")

3 John 1:11 ("do not imitate what is evil")

Romans 12:9 ("abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good.")

Deuteronomy 18:9-14 (do not learn to imitate detestable ways, including spiritists, sorcerers and witchcraft)

Ephesians 5:11-12 ("Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness" / "live as children of light")

1 Timothy 4:1 (don't "follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons")

1 Corinthians 10:21
2 Corinthians 6:14-17 ("what fellowship can light have with darkness?")

Philippians 4:8 (think about pure, lovely, noble things)

1 Corinthians 11:1 ("follow the example of Christ")

1 Corinthians 10:31 ("whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God")   James 4:7-8 (submit yourselves to God / resist the devil / purify your hearts)

Ezekiel 44:23 ("…teach my people… to distinguish between the unclean and the clean.")

Proverbs 22:6 ("train a child in the way he should go")

Matthew 18:6 ("if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin…")

Hosea 4:6 ("My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.")

John 3:19-20 (people love darkness instead of light)

Romans 13:12 ("put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.")

Ephesians 6:11-18 ("take your stand against the devil's schemes.")

1 John 5:19

2 Chronicles


The readings in scripture is endless that point us to the way of God in our lives.

Yes, I've resorted to pictures of children to help support my point. The point is- what does a kid in a superman costume excited over a bucket of candy have to do with  the devil? In all my years as an American youth dressing up on Halloween and strolling around my neighborhood for a couple of hours I not ONCE had a single thought of evil, the devil, ...or even anything remotely spiritual in nature.  By casting yourself in such "spiritual", binary opposition to what has become a day devoid of any spiritual strength, you infuse it with a new spiritual strength that it never had. By making your children aware of the "devil's work" supposedly celebrated on that day, you are creating demons they would otherwise have never heard of. This reminds me of my fundamentalist neighbor when I was a child- one day I wandered over to his yard to find him burning his kid's toys- the toys that represented "unreal" things. He burned a stuffed purple dragon, a few dolls based on creatures that could have come from a Tolkien novel, etc. I found his daughter (around my age) weeping in her room from a total lack of understanding. He brought the adult world of demons and spirits into her pure world and shattered her innocence, infusing her innocent play with all sorts of crazy notions she otherwise would not have been privy to- thereby filling her innocent world with horrible spirits and terrible things. 

Perhaps not a direct result of these types of things, but the daughter did have two children out of wedlock from two different men by the time she was 21.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 12, 2008, 06:19:48 PM
So you condemn as non-Orthodox any idea that contradicts your strict, ascetic view of the faith, even though the sanctification of times, places, and even cultures has become very much a part of the prevailing Orthodox ethos?
But what of how Tradition has come to interpret what the Apostles commanded us to observe?  At least equal in strength to the ascetic ethos of the monastics is the sacramental ethos that sees everything in the world as potentially manifesting the sanctifying life of Jesus Christ.  Would you deny that this is also part of Tradition?
 
quite imbalanced and even judgmental.  

a critique

Excuse me for only slicing out key phrases from your last paragraph.

I do not "condem" anything.

I do not have a "strict ascetic view of the faith".

You give me too much credit.

It is the Lord who condems and who commands us to obey Him.

You write very well.

The"traditions" and "cultures" that prevail in the Holy Church are only good if they are edifying to God in the name of Jesus Christ our Savior.

Who needs church "traditions" and "cultures" that do not and or can not edify God?

If these "traditions" and "cultures" are embraced by those of us who are the faithful than we are the subject of what we embrace. That is our fault NOT the Churches. If what we embrace (in the church) is edifying to Him then we are fruitful servants of the Lord and His Holy Church. If what we embrace (in the church) does not edify Him then we are not fruitful servants.

The "ethos" of the holy Church is the same as the Ethos in heaven. If not than we have made a wrong turn since these two are equal. "On earth as it is in Heaven". Says the Lord our God.

I am sure that the Alter in heaven has NO trees and shrubs around it with the Saints singing 'rudolph the red nose reindeer'.

Not that I am saying these things are sins. I am saying they are of NO value to God and so they are of NO value to His Church or His people.

The point here is NO VALUE TO GOD. NO value to the Church

Fruitlessness is wickedness. Read the scripture on the fig tree with no figs. Such things are to be discarded and thrown out into outer darkness where they belong. Twice dead.

WE are busy with being 'fruitful' as christians..at all times and with all things. WE avoid fruitless pursuits, fantasies and endeavors. These things may not be evil but are prepared for the devil and his angels. NOT us.

WE dwell on earth in the spirit of truth which is filled with Gods Glory. We seek out men to follow this way with US. WE do not follow anyone but Christ.

Listen to Bogoliubtsy who completely disagrees with what I am saying but manages to state this:

The point is- what does a kid in a superman costume excited over a bucket of candy have to do with  the devil? In all my years as an American youth dressing up on Halloween and strolling around my neighborhood for a couple of hours I not ONCE had a single thought of evil, the devil, ...or even anything remotely spiritual in nature.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Interesting.

Apparently he sees nothing wrong with engaging his kids or anyones kids in mindless, spiritless endeavors.

I beleive him. Even before the pictures he posted as well.

That is why I am praying that we can all understand that this mindset is destructive. WE are to be Orthdodox in our view point and thinking on all matters. Orthodoxy does not promote mindless, spiritless thinking and pursuits. Quite the opposite.

The orthodox mind is always at work. We do not take off for mindless spiritless halloween and the like.

Such activities may not be evil. But they lack of sprituality and thus can not bear fruit so they are to be dismissed, and discarded whole.

All of us are not going to think this way.

All of us are not going to make it into heaven either.

I love you all.

As my posts would indicate I am very weak so I need each person here to truly remember me in their prayers. I have fallen down and am trying to stand back up again. But not where I was standing before. I am willing to give away my previous position to stand firmly with the Lord.

Maybe if I succeed in that he we let me be a door keeper in in His heveanly kingdom.

PLease pray for me.

WE must remember to pray for each other right now and always no matter how different unfortunately our views may be.


God bless us all..Amen







Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on August 12, 2008, 06:23:55 PM
Such activities may not be evil. But they do the lack of sprituality can not bear fruit so they are to be dismissed, and discarded whole.

To the pure, all things are pure.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 12, 2008, 07:46:35 PM
Such activities may not be evil. But they lack of sprituality and thus can not bear fruit so they are to be dismissed, and discarded whole.

How do you know what fruit any activity might bring to bear? Going to the grocery store "lacks spirituality", but we don't know who we might affect while involved in that mundane activity; what hope in Christ is offered to a stranger in an act of kindness. Do you truly believe that God is restricted by the limitations of your own intuition and discretion, and that he is prevented from acting in activities that you disapprove of?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 12, 2008, 07:57:00 PM
This reminds me of my fundamentalist neighbor when I was a child- one day I wandered over to his yard to find him burning his kid's toys- the toys that represented "unreal" things. He burned a stuffed purple dragon, a few dolls based on creatures that could have come from a Tolkien novel, etc. I found his daughter (around my age) weeping in her room from a total lack of understanding. He brought the adult world of demons and spirits into her pure world and shattered her innocence, infusing her innocent play with all sorts of crazy notions she otherwise would not have been privy to- thereby filling her innocent world with horrible spirits and terrible things. 

Perhaps not a direct result of these types of things, but the daughter did have two children out of wedlock from two different men by the time she was 21.

What a terribly hurtful thing to do to his children. Really sad.  :( It's easy to understand the daughter's confusion and her disappointment that her father would do such a thing.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on August 12, 2008, 08:06:21 PM
What a terribly hurtful thing to do to his children. Really sad.  :( It's easy to understand the daughter's confusion and her disappointment that her father would do such a thing.

And what will it do to her understanding of God when the man who is supposed to represent Him to her behaves this way?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 12, 2008, 08:12:22 PM
How do you know what fruit any activity might bring to bear? Going to the grocery store "lacks spirituality", but we don't know who we might affect while involved in that mundane activity; what hope in Christ is offered to a stranger in an act of kindness. Do you truly believe that God is restricted by the limitations of your own intuition and discretion, and that he is prevented from acting in activities that you disapprove of?

I have no idea what you are talking about.

'I' have not claimed to "know" anything much less "what fruit any activity might bring to bear".

Do you know?

Going to the grocery store? You lost me here. Sorry!

I have no activities noted on this thread that 'I' disapprove of.

I suggest you re-read the posts on this thread.

You seem to simply be disagreeing just to disagree.

Which is your perogative of course.

What is your point?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 12, 2008, 08:14:18 PM
And what will it do to her understanding of God when the man who is supposed to represent Him to her behaves this way?

I agree - it's very sad.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 12, 2008, 08:26:19 PM
I have no idea what you are talking about.

'I' have not claimed to "know" anything much less "what fruit any activity might bring to bear".

Do you know?

Going to the grocery store? You lost me here. Sorry!

I have no activities noted on this thread that 'I' disapprove of.

I suggest you re-read the posts on this thread.

You seem to simply be disagreeing just to disagree.

Which is your perogative of course.

What is your point?

 ??? You're not serious...or are you?  :laugh:

Quote
The orthodox mind is always at work. We do not take off for mindless spiritless halloween and the like.

Such activities may not be evil. But they lack of sprituality and thus can not bear fruit so they are to be dismissed, and discarded whole.

I suggest you re-read your own posts. Unless, of course, you are claiming that the above indicates that you actually approve of taking part in Halloween, because it appears to be quite the opposite to me.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on August 12, 2008, 10:19:02 PM
Who needs church "traditions" and "cultures" that do not and or can not edify God?
Not that I am saying these things are sins. I am saying they are of NO value to God and so they are of NO value to His Church or His people.
The point here is NO VALUE TO GOD. NO value to the Church
Fruitlessness is wickedness.
WE are to be Orthdodox in our view point and thinking on all matters. Orthodoxy does not promote mindless, spiritless thinking and pursuits. Quite the opposite.
The orthodox mind is always at work. We do not take off for mindless spiritless halloween and the like.
Such activities may not be evil. But they lack of sprituality and thus can not bear fruit so they are to be dismissed, and discarded whole.

This view strikes me as a crypto-Manichaean view of things.  Such a view makes more sense if we believe that the whole material creation is the work of a demented or evil demiurge. 
Tertullian wanted to drive as sharp an opposition as possible between Christian and pagan:  "Moreover, we must inquire likewise touching schoolmasters; nor only of them, but also all other professors of literature. Nay, on the contrary, we must not doubt that they are in affinity with manifold idolatry."  But like nearly everyone else, he admitted that there was no getting around pagan classics in an education worthy of the title.  St. Augustine, like St. Jerome, experienced serious concerns about the study of pagan literature, but in De Doctrina Christiana he managed to take St. Basil's position (http://www.tertullian.org/fathers/basil_litterature01.htm), though probably without St. Basil's cheerfulness.  I just don't see St. Augustine as cheerful.  Yet go to the review at http://www.leaderu.com/ftissues/ft9202/reviews/wilken.html, where we are told that "though the clergy did not approve of the spectacula or festivals such as the Lupercalia, they did not forbid the faithful from participating in them. 'These things,' wrote Augustine, 'are to be tolerated not loved.'"  The relevance of this comment to Halloween is remarkable!
Down through the centuries there have always been voices pleading with the less pure to abandon unspiritual pursuits.
I now suspect that the whole problem is the identification of something called spirituality.  In short, I think that spirituality is itself a kind of delusion.  Either we keep the commandments or we don't.  That's it!  I don't mean to keep the commandments in a legalistic sense; I mean in a deep sense. 
Fr. Schmemann said it best:  "A kind person is kind because he accepts people as they are, covers them with kindness.  Kindness is beautiful, the most beautiful thing on this earth.  Virtuous people are activists, obsessed with the desire to impose their principles and goodness and easily condemning, destronging, hating.  ... In this word there is a lot of virtue, and so little kindness." 
How often does monastic literature peal forth condemnation of Christians in the world, who, it is said, can scarcely be saved .  Is it because its authors are virtuous?  Is it perhaps not an accident that such a central ideal as arete^ (excellence or virtue) has so little representation in the NT, but so much in the monastic literature? 
Cum grano salis, DanM
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Rosehip on August 12, 2008, 10:33:35 PM
VERY interesting thoughts, Dan! I'm learning so much!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Anastasios on August 12, 2008, 11:13:04 PM
But is Orthodoxy to be identified SOLELY with the monastic, ascetic struggle to escape the world, as you would suggest?

We are to be in the world, but not of it. It's not just a monastic thing (although as we all know, monastic asceticism and married asceticism differ in some ways).

I am aware of the dangers of fundamentalism (my mother went through this phase once and cut out a lot of "fantasy" things and it really bugged me as a kid) and think we need to be moderate but I don't see how celebrating Halloween can be good for Orthodox.  Despite her sometimes extreme positions, in relation to Halloween, Mom explained why it was wrong to participate in it and always arranged alternative entertainment.  I didn't miss it.  Also interestingly my wife, who was not raised religious and not raised in her early years in the US, was disturbed by Halloween and couldn't figure out why Christian people were interested in participating in it. When we were Catholics, we would take her little brother to the parish for an All Souls' Day celebration and he enjoyed it a lot.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 13, 2008, 12:29:33 AM
We are to be in the world, but not of it. It's not just a monastic thing (although as we all know, monastic asceticism and married asceticism differ in some ways).

I am aware of the dangers of fundamentalism (my mother went through this phase once and cut out a lot of "fantasy" things and it really bugged me as a kid) and think we need to be moderate but I don't see how celebrating Halloween can be good for Orthodox.  Despite her sometimes extreme positions, in relation to Halloween, Mom explained why it was wrong to participate in it and always arranged alternative entertainment.  I didn't miss it.  Also interestingly my wife, who was not raised religious and not raised in her early years in the US, was disturbed by Halloween and couldn't figure out why Christian people were interested in participating in it. When we were Catholics, we would take her little brother to the parish for an All Souls' Day celebration and he enjoyed it a lot.

That's fair enough, Father, but would you mind explaining your decision and why your Mum thought it was wrong to participate in Halloween? It's a thoroughly foreign concept to me, having never experienced the practice. I respect the Christian tradition behind it, even if it is a Western Feast. But all I see is a bunch of children dressed up as ghosties, witches and monsters and it all seems completely nonreligious and just a bit of fun. I can understand how people might be senstive to all those allusions to death and such, but they are just that, allusions. However, that a person is sensitive to something, doesn't necessary make their decisions correct for everyone. For instance, St Paul seemed to have no problems eating meat offered on idols, but others would have been horrified. And vegetarian saints, for example, don't insist that everyone follow their path and not eat meat at all, yet clearly they were very sensitive to the killing of animals. Perhaps, the "eating" or "not eating" (so to speak) is not sinful, so much as the insistance that everyone should feel the same as one does. (Not that I'm suggesting that you are doing that, I hasten to add!)

There doesn't seem to be much difference (these days) between Halloween and the English tradition of Guy Fawkes Night, and though I don't like the long-forgotten anti-Catholic origins of the celebration, my children (along with just about everyone else) were completely ignorant of that fact, so I would never see the need to deny their involvement in a what amounts to an innocent bit of fun with their friends and family. No one would accuse anyone today of actually celebrating the executions of long dead Catholic insurgents and the hope of death to the pope which was seen in earlier celebrations in the burning of a Papal effigy. And if the tone of the celebration hadn't changed and had been clearly anti-Catholic and political, as it was in its early days, we wouldn't have partaken. Although, I do take rather a dim view of anyone trying to blow up the Houses of Parliament.  ;)

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 13, 2008, 01:35:10 AM
??? You're not serious...or are you?  :laugh:

I suggest you re-read your own posts. Unless, of course, you are claiming that the above indicates that you actually approve of taking part in Halloween, because it appears to be quite the opposite to me.


No you should read re-read them.

I have been stating "orthodox mindset" and the like.

That does not have anything to do with what I think. It is the teachings of the church that are at the root of orthodox mind set. Thus I am saying the faith we have and the nature thereof is what rejects this celebration.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 13, 2008, 01:37:51 AM
We are to be in the world, but not of it. It's not just a monastic thing (although as we all know, monastic asceticism and married asceticism differ in some ways).

I am aware of the dangers of fundamentalism (my mother went through this phase once and cut out a lot of "fantasy" things and it really bugged me as a kid) and think we need to be moderate but I don't see how celebrating Halloween can be good for Orthodox.  Despite her sometimes extreme positions, in relation to Halloween, Mom explained why it was wrong to participate in it and always arranged alternative entertainment.  I didn't miss it.  Also interestingly my wife, who was not raised religious and not raised in her early years in the US, was disturbed by Halloween and couldn't figure out why Christian people were interested in participating in it. When we were Catholics, we would take her little brother to the parish for an All Souls' Day celebration and he enjoyed it a lot.

Thanks Father.

Please pray for me.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 13, 2008, 01:46:18 AM
No you should read re-read them.

I have been stating "orthodox mindset" and the like.

That does not have anything to do with what I think. It is the teachings of the church that are at the root of orthodox mind set. Thus I am saying the faith we have and the nature thereof is what rejects this celebration.

You have been stating your viewpoint of what an "orthodox mindset" is. Others, who are Orthodox, seem to disagree. But perhaps you could answer my original question to you.

You said: Such activities (referring to Halloween) may not be evil. But they lack of sprituality and thus can not bear fruit so they are to be dismissed, and discarded whole.

I asked: How do you know what fruit any activity might bring to bear? (skip the bit about the grocery store, if it's confusing) Do you truly believe that God is restricted by the limitations of your own intuition and discretion, and that he is prevented from acting in activities that you disapprove of?

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 13, 2008, 01:48:58 AM
Such a view makes more sense if we believe that the whole material creation is the work of a demented or evil demiurge. 


Exactly!

The whole world is corrupted because of this very fact you state.

We are therefore to reject the whole world and everything in it.

We are only here on earth to edify God with all of our life. All the time. Till we die.

Reject halloween in whole.

Save yourself and your kids from this useless and sinister activity disguised as a cute day of innocent fun.

If not me Listen to Fr. Anastasios.

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 13, 2008, 01:55:40 AM
You have been stating your viewpoint of what an "orthodox mindset" is. Others, who are Orthodox, seem to disagree. But perhaps you could answer my original question to you.

You said: Such activities (referring to Halloween) may not be evil. But they lack of sprituality and thus can not bear fruit so they are to be dismissed, and discarded whole.

I asked: How do you know what fruit any activity might bring to bear? (skip the bit about the grocery store, if it's confusing) Do you truly believe that God is restricted by the limitations of your own intuition and discretion, and that he is prevented from acting in activities that you disapprove of?



I can not answer this question for you. I am sorry.

You must see the truth as our fathers teach us. There is only one way to view this. And that is with orthodoxy.

You are not sure what you want to believe it seems.

I have alot of support on this thread. They are just not posting.

Fr. Anastasios agrees with what I have said.

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 13, 2008, 01:58:03 AM
I can not answer this question for you. I am sorry.

You must see the truth as our fathers teach us. There is only one way to view this. And that is with orthodoxy.

You are not sure what you want to believe it seems.

I have alot of support on this thread. They are just not posting.

Fr. Anastasios agrees with what I have said.

 ??? How did my question to you become about me? Nice dodge, but no prize.  ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on August 13, 2008, 02:05:52 AM
No you should read re-read them.

I think what Riddikulus may see, and what I certainly see, is how you often appear to contradict yourself and equivocate.

But is Orthodoxy to be identified SOLELY with the monastic, ascetic struggle to escape the world, as you would suggest?

Good question!

Yes!

Yet, a few posts later, you say the exact opposite.

I do not have a "strict ascetic view of the faith".


I don't need to quote any posts to show how consistently you have railed against Halloween and implored us to not celebrate it, yet you give us the following, which can be read as saying you don't disapprove of any activity spoken of on this thread--to include Halloween, I imagine.

I have no activities noted on this thread that 'I' disapprove of.

Just a question:  In placing the I in quotes in the above, do you intend to say that it is someone else--I assume you mean God--who disapproves of Halloween?  In the light of this discussion, how can you actually be so dogmatic as to claim to speak with God's voice?  Did God reveal to you something He didn't reveal to any of us?  Maybe you disapprove of Halloween, but please don't claim that this is anything more than your own personal disapproval.  Even Fr. Anastasios, whose post you cite in support of your pleading, had enough tact to claim his position as merely his own experienced opinion.  He didn't claim to be speaking any special dogmatic revelation as you appear to be speaking.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 13, 2008, 02:13:12 AM
I think what Riddikulus may see, and what I certainly see, is how you often appear to contradict yourself and equivocate.

Definitely! It's like trying to dialogue with a will-o-the-wisp!

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on August 13, 2008, 02:15:18 AM
You must see the truth as our fathers teach us. There is only one way to view this. And that is with orthodoxy.
And yet, I'm not aware that the Church has spoken authoritatively on this issue.  It is you who are speaking with dogmatic authority and claiming it to be the definitive word of the Fathers.

Quote
I have alot of support on this thread. They are just not posting.
If they're not posting, then how do you know?

Quote
Fr. Anastasios agrees with what I have said.
But again, he doesn't appear to be trying to claim his position as Orthodox dogma, as you have been trying to do.  Sharing his advice from personal experience?  Absolutely!  Should we at least hear his counsel?  Certainly!  But he still didn't say explicitly or implicitly that his advice is the only way Orthodox can see this and still be Orthodox.  All he did say was, "I can't see how Orthodox can celebrate Halloween."  Can you see how this personal ownership of his opinion comes across in a way that shows much greater respect for our own Orthodox sensitivities?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on August 13, 2008, 02:21:39 AM
Exactly!

The whole world is corrupted because of this very fact you state.

We are therefore to reject the whole world and everything in it.
Do you realize how Gnostic this makes you look now?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on August 13, 2008, 02:36:07 AM
We are to be in the world, but not of it. It's not just a monastic thing (although as we all know, monastic asceticism and married asceticism differ in some ways).
With this biblical admonition I wholeheartedly agree!  I just don't think it necessarily wise to restrict our understanding of Christian life SOLELY to this particular teaching, such that we see the Gospel as merely a call to escape the world and leave it to its own fallen devices.  We are not to be of the world, but we certainly find ourselves in it.  So what can we do to make sure that God's will is done on earth as it is in heaven?  What can we do as the Body of Christ, without holding onto any "pie in the sky" chiliastic dreams, to redeem the fallen world and turn it back over to its Creator?  Is this not part of what Christ meant in his commission to make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Bogoliubtsy on August 13, 2008, 08:29:04 AM
Exactly!

The whole world is corrupted because of this very fact you state.





Spirit good, matter evil?  Is that your point?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Thomas on August 13, 2008, 09:14:57 AM
I took a survey while  preparing for my article and the following are how some Orthodox Christians in Texas and other areas responded to my question as to how did they observe or not observe halloween:

At the very start of this topic, on page one, I listed ways in which Orthodox Christians celebrated or did not celebrate Halloween. My favorite response was the family who placed an icon of all saints with a candle on it and gave a lolipop with an explaination of Halloween as a celebration tied to the Saints who intercede for us and an invitation to visit their parish. What a great missionary tool!  They actually had some people come a visit their Greek Orthodox Church as a result.As Halloween is not an eastern Orthodox tradition,there is no unified Orthodoxapproach to this issue, perhaps the best solution is to pray and let the Holy Spirit guide you to the path you are to take.

Thomas
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 13, 2008, 01:30:53 PM
Do you realize how Gnostic this makes you look now?

I am an Orthodox Christian in the Holy Universal Apostolic Church of God.

I have no idea what "Gnostic" is nor do I care to know.

You seem to have the greater understanding on these people considering that you have found some idea of what 'they' may believe from reading my point which is strictly orthodox.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 13, 2008, 02:25:38 PM
I am an Orthodox Christian in the Holy Universal Apostolic Church of God.

I have no idea what "Gnostic" is nor do I care to know.

You seem to have the greater understanding on these people considering that you have found some idea of what 'they' may believe from reading my point which is strictly orthodox.
They believe this:

The whole world is corrupted because of this very fact you state.

We are therefore to reject the whole world and everything in it.
Sometimes it is helpful to understand why some are heretics so that we do not fall into the same lies they did.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Anastasios on August 13, 2008, 09:54:26 PM
That's fair enough, Father, but would you mind explaining your decision and why your Mum thought it was wrong to participate in Halloween? It's a thoroughly foreign concept to me, having never experienced the practice. I respect the Christian tradition behind it, even if it is a Western Feast. But all I see is a bunch of children dressed up as ghosties, witches and monsters and it all seems completely nonreligious and just a bit of fun. I can understand how people might be senstive to all those allusions to death and such, but they are just that, allusions. However, that a person is sensitive to something, doesn't necessary make their decisions correct for everyone. For instance, St Paul seemed to have no problems eating meat offered on idols, but others would have been horrified. And vegetarian saints, for example, don't insist that everyone follow their path and not eat meat at all, yet clearly they were very sensitive to the killing of animals. Perhaps, the "eating" or "not eating" (so to speak) is not sinful, so much as the insistance that everyone should feel the same as one does. (Not that I'm suggesting that you are doing that, I hasten to add!)

Mother's reasoning, which I agree with, is that to put on costumes of ghosts, witches, and monsters is to associate oneself with demons and the occult.  Especially in this era, when occultism and neopaganism is on the rise (I know, I used to be into the former many years before baptism) such revelry desensitizes people to the fact that there are ghosts (which are demons), there are witches (they do not ride brooms but they deny the Lord Jesus Christ), and monsters are an allusion to various demonic forces. I don't think it is an allusion to death or any other non-incarnate thing, but to real beings that are around us at all times.  Demons are real, and we should not do anything that suggests that they are just a bit of fun via Casper the Friendly Ghost or anything like that, even if the intent is innocent.  Now, you could make the argument that one could select his costume to be more appropriate, but one still is participating in the revelry with children dressed as devils, ghosts, and now unfortunately, often in sensual costumes even for little children.

I understand that there were Christian antecedents in All Souls' Day but that is not what people in the US are celebrating.

Quote
There doesn't seem to be much difference (these days) between Halloween and the English tradition of Guy Fawkes Night, and though I don't like the long-forgotten anti-Catholic origins of the celebration, my children (along with just about everyone else) were completely ignorant of that fact, so I would never see the need to deny their involvement in a what amounts to an innocent bit of fun with their friends and family. No one would accuse anyone today of actually celebrating the executions of long dead Catholic insurgents and the hope of death to the pope which was seen in earlier celebrations in the burning of a Papal effigy. And if the tone of the celebration hadn't changed and had been clearly anti-Catholic and political, as it was in its early days, we wouldn't have partaken. Although, I do take rather a dim view of anyone trying to blow up the Houses of Parliament.  ;)

To me it's quite sad that people have forgotten why they do things; it is a symbol of our culture being lost into a sea of postmodern relativity IMO.  My grandmother, a Protestant, wears orange on St Patrick's Day...it may seem stupid nowadays but she is making a point. I don't agree with her, but she knows what she is doing and why. If I were Catholic I would certainly not be interested in celebrating Guy Fawkes Night  ;)  I understand your point perfectly, but actually to me it proves my point; Guy Fawkes is now unknown to most, but ghosts, witches, and such things are very clear.

I don't really think it's a question of eating meat or not (a la St Paul) which is a question of praxis, although I am not going to explode on people who let their kids play dressup.  I would just simply encourage them not to, since any association with the spirit world whether serious or not, can damage one's spiritual life and is a question of faith.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Anastasios on August 13, 2008, 09:58:16 PM
With this biblical admonition I wholeheartedly agree!  I just don't think it necessarily wise to restrict our understanding of Christian life SOLELY to this particular teaching, such that we see the Gospel as merely a call to escape the world and leave it to its own fallen devices.  We are not to be of the world, but we certainly find ourselves in it.  So what can we do to make sure that God's will is done on earth as it is in heaven?  What can we do as the Body of Christ, without holding onto any "pie in the sky" chiliastic dreams, to redeem the fallen world and turn it back over to its Creator?  Is this not part of what Christ meant in his commission to make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit?

Well we can start with prayer, fasting, almsgiving, and works of charity and mercy :)

Some things can be baptized, such as Thanksgiving, Memorial Day, etc--other things should be avoided, such as Halloween.  We should get the kids together on that evening for a party at Church or some such thing.

My point is there is no set rule. We have to take it as it comes, one issue at a time; no pre-set answer.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Fr. George on August 13, 2008, 10:15:36 PM
Mother's reasoning, which I agree with, is that to put on costumes of ghosts, witches, and monsters is to associate oneself with demons and the occult.  Especially in this era, when occultism and neopaganism is on the rise (I know, I used to be into the former many years before baptism) such revelry desensitizes people to the fact that there are ghosts (which are demons), there are witches (they do not ride brooms but they deny the Lord Jesus Christ), and monsters are an allusion to various demonic forces. I don't think it is an allusion to death or any other non-incarnate thing, but to real beings that are around us at all times.  Demons are real, and we should not do anything that suggests that they are just a bit of fun via Casper the Friendly Ghost or anything like that, even if the intent is innocent.  Now, you could make the argument that one could select his costume to be more appropriate, but one still is participating in the revelry with children dressed as devils, ghosts, and now unfortunately, often in sensual costumes even for little children. 

As an addendum - the Halloween culture not only desensitizes people to the actual demonic influence, it also paradoxically sensitizes them in the sense that they believe more in the witches, ghosts, and whatnot than they do demons, and because of that they turn to superstition (i.e. garlic, salt, etc.) and the occult-sponsored methods of combatting such apparitions (i.e. special incantations, ouiji boards, consulting with occult specialists).  I had 7th grade kids the other day asking me if I knew about Kallikantzaroi, "Bloody Mary," and haunted houses, and they were telling me the things they had been told to do if they thought these things were happening... and none of them mentioned prayer once.  I clearly taught them about demonic influence (in a toned-down way), and how first and foremost one should turn to prayer in any time of distress - whether it seems supernatural or not.  It's much easier than trying to remember a recipe-book of "how to chase away ghouls," anyway.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 13, 2008, 11:31:02 PM
Mother's reasoning, which I agree with, is that to put on costumes of ghosts, witches, and monsters is to associate oneself with demons and the occult.  Especially in this era, when occultism and neopaganism is on the rise (I know, I used to be into the former many years before baptism) such revelry desensitizes people to the fact that there are ghosts (which are demons), there are witches (they do not ride brooms but they deny the Lord Jesus Christ), and monsters are an allusion to various demonic forces. I don't think it is an allusion to death or any other non-incarnate thing, but to real beings that are around us at all times.  Demons are real, and we should not do anything that suggests that they are just a bit of fun via Casper the Friendly Ghost or anything like that, even if the intent is innocent.  Now, you could make the argument that one could select his costume to be more appropriate, but one still is participating in the revelry with children dressed as devils, ghosts, and now unfortunately, often in sensual costumes even for
little children.

Thanks for your reply, Father. Whilst I respect you and your Mum's right to your decision, I simply don't see how putting on costumes that involve a parody world can possibly be associating onself with demons and the occult. To be associated with such things surely comes from a conscious decision, not guilt by some fantastic association that has no correlation to the real thing. Perhaps I'm misunderstanding your use of "association". Certainly, occultism and neopaganism is on the rise, but teaching children to fear fantasy characterisations is hardly preparing them for a real-life battle against such issues. Make-believe monsters aren't demons; they are make-believe. Make-believe witches aren't witches, they are make-believe. The real danger, IMO, is that in teaching children to fear the make-believe one never really teaches them how to recognise the real threats. These occasions give us a wonderful opportunity to talk to our children about the real thing and what the real thing looks like so they recognise it later in life.

Quote
I understand that there were Christian antecedents in All Souls' Day but that is not what people in the US are celebrating.

What exactly are they celebrating?

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 13, 2008, 11:42:39 PM
As an addendum - the Halloween culture not only desensitizes people to the actual demonic influence, it also paradoxically sensitizes them in the sense that they believe more in the witches, ghosts, and whatnot than they do demons


But this doesn't need to be the case if the opportunity is taken to educate our children. The anual fantasy event could serve to prompt us to remember not to allow our children to remain ignorant of the real-life dangers. What fundamentalists do, in spreading lies about the origins about Halloween, overlooks reality and dwells on make-believe. Our children quickly learn not to trust such admonitions, but they could benefit from a lesson or two on what witchcraft, demons, etc.

Quote
and because of that they turn to superstition (i.e. garlic, salt, etc.)

But wasn't throwing salt over the left shoulder - and therefore in satan's face - to ward of evil, a Christian practice? Give me time and I'll think of others!  :) We might think that modern Christianity is beyond all that sort of thing, but until recently Christianity seems to have been rife with superstition and, in some countries, is to this very day. It would seem that one can be both superstitious and Christian. The problem is that Christianity has lost its hold on people and while we are complaining about superstition as if it has never touched us, we really seem to be complaining that people are going for the pagan variety. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: SolEX01 on August 13, 2008, 11:46:20 PM
In Greece, during the Week after Meatfare Sunday, people attend Masquerade Parties and ham it up until Clean Monday, the beginning of Great Lent.  Nothing demonic about those celebrations.
Link to Athens Carnival Blog (http://www.mytripjournal.com/journals/UngarsTravels/Athens-Carnaval.html)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 14, 2008, 12:10:13 AM

Sometimes it is helpful to understand why some are heretics so that we do not fall into the same lies they did.

This is not for me. Thanks.

Maintaining orthodoxy will serves just fine. Orthodoxy is truth un-adulterated, straight, unchanged.

The people you are talking about are liars. What is there to understand?...Nothing!

I have no connection which this type nor do I care to undersatnd them. they are required to understand US.

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Bogoliubtsy on August 14, 2008, 12:13:15 AM
Thanks for your reply, Father. Whilst I respect you and your Mum's right to your decision, I simply don't see how putting on costumes that involve a parody world can possibly be associating onself with demons and the occult. To be associated with such things surely comes from a conscious decision, not guilt by some fantastic association that has no correlation to the real thing. Perhaps I'm misunderstanding your use of "association". Certainly, occultism and neopaganism is on the rise, but teaching children to fear fantasy characterisations is hardly preparing them for a real-life battle against such issues. Make-believe monsters aren't demons; they are make-believe. Make-believe witches aren't witches, they are make-believe. The real danger, IMO, is that in teaching children to fear the make-believe one never really teaches them how to recognise the real threats. These occasions give us a wonderful opportunity to talk to our children about the real thing and what the real thing looks like so they recognise it later in life.

What exactly are they celebrating?



Well said. I couldn't agree more. Children, at some point, should be made aware of the real thing, not a parodied make-believe version of it. Are fairy tales involving "witches" harmful as well? What about Tolkien's fantasy world? Where is the line drawn, exactly?
I also agree with Fr. Anastasios that these things should be evaluated on a case by case basis. It just so happens that in the case of the Americanized Halloween, I fall on the permissive side.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Bogoliubtsy on August 14, 2008, 12:16:35 AM
This is not for me. Thanks.

Maintaining orthodoxy will serves just fine. Orthodoxy is truth un-adulterated, straight, unchanged.

The people you are talking about are liars. What is there to understand?...Nothing!

I have no connection which this type nor do I care to undersatnd them. they are required to understand US.



The point is that you have expressed Gnostic, UN-Orthodox opinions while claiming to espouse unadulterated Orthodoxy. You wrote "The whole world is corrupted because of this very fact you state. We are therefore to reject the whole world and everything in it." Without a qualifying statement of some kind, this is not Christianity. Perhaps you mean "worldliness"?  Or, as I asked earlier, do you place the spiritual in the realm of goodness, and all created matter as evil?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: livefreeordie on August 14, 2008, 12:26:22 AM
Well said. I couldn't agree more. Children, at some point, should be made aware of the real thing, not a parodied make-believe version of it. Are fairy tales involving "witches" harmful as well? What about Tolkien's fantasy world? Where is the line drawn, exactly?  

Drawing the line is a hard thing, I know, we have 5 children.  And based on the patience and fortitude of myself and my wife that line can change daily! :) But there is a difference between participating in something,i.e Halloween, and reading about something, i.e. Tolkien or Harry Potter.  We've always had a problem with Halloween, but acquiesced for years using a lot of the excuses listed above, i.e. it's innocent fun, don't confuse make believe with the real thing, etc. even though we knew better.  It's hard to turn down invitations from friends.  But eventually we woke up and decided no more Halloween.  When little girls start dressing up and parading around like little Bratz doll sluts or Paris Hilton and Britney Spears look-a-likes, the line was drawn for us.  It's not just about make believe demons, witches and monsters, it's about a spirit of decadence. And we figured if we weren't creative enough to give them a fun alternative, then we must be pretty lame.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Fr. George on August 14, 2008, 12:30:19 AM
But wasn't throwing salt over the left shoulder - and therefore in satan's face - to ward of evil, a Christian practice? Give me time and I'll think of others!  :) We might think that modern Christianity is beyond all that sort of thing, but until recently Christianity seems to have been rife with superstition and, in some countries, is to this very day. It would seem that one can be both superstitious and Christian. The problem is that Christianity has lost its hold on people and while we are complaining about superstition as if it has never touched us, we really seem to be complaining that people are going for the pagan variety.   

Superstition may be rife with Christians, but not with Christianity (or true Christianity).  When people confront us with Superstitions, we counter with prayer (hence, why we even have a prayer for those who believe in the "evil eye").
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on August 14, 2008, 12:33:56 AM
This is not for me. Thanks.

Maintaining orthodoxy will serves just fine. Orthodoxy is truth un-adulterated, straight, unchanged.

The people you are talking about are liars. What is there to understand?...Nothing!

I have no connection which this type nor do I care to undersatnd them. they are required to understand US.

But when you state very clearly your view that the whole world is corrupted because the whole material creation is the work of a demented or evil demiurge, then you state a doctrine that comes straight out of the Gnosticism that St. Irenaeus wrote many treatises to combat, a heretical doctrine that has nothing to do with orthodox Christianity.  Don't you see now how doing this undermines your credibility when you claim to teach nothing but unadulterated Orthodoxy?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 14, 2008, 12:42:32 AM
When little girls start dressing up and parading around like little Bratz doll sluts or Paris Hilton and Britney Spears look-a-likes, the line was drawn for us.  It's not just about make believe demons, witches and monsters, it's about a spirit of decadence. And we figured if we weren't creative enough to give them a fun alternative, then we must be pretty lame.

I think the concerns you express are far more dangerous than dressing up as make-believe goblins and ghosties. I would think that acting upon sexuality that has been awoken too early is a far easier step to take than finding our way from make-believe witchcraft to the real thing. I see a lot of that very thing you mention while out shopping on the other 364 days of the year and I wonder how parents can be so casual with the modesty of their little girls.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Mo the Ethio on August 14, 2008, 12:55:47 AM
I think the concerns you express are far more dangerous than dressing up as make-believe goblins and ghosties. I would think that acting upon sexuality that has been awoken too early is a far easier step to take than finding our way from make-believe witchcraft to the real thing. I see a lot of that very thing you mention while out shopping on the other 364 days of the year and I wonder how parents can be so casual with the modesty of their little girls.

   Agreed! As the parent of an eight year old girl , we stick to innocuous themes ...butterflys,Simpsons, and ...Hippies!



                      edited to included the word "girl"
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: livefreeordie on August 14, 2008, 01:08:55 AM
I see a lot of that very thing you mention while out shopping on the other 364 days of the year and I wonder how parents can be so casual with the modesty of their little girls.

In 2007 there were 11.7 million Cosmetic procedures done in the US including almost 400,000 Breast augmentations and close to 2.5 million Botox procedures.  Vanity tends to be casual about modesty, and as society glorifies the appearance of youthful sexuality in adults, it stands to reason society will slowly and surely value modesty at all ages less and less.  Which of course makes the demons happy, especially on Halloween when the children get a chance to purchase the Bratz outfits and really look like their parents!  ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 14, 2008, 01:13:48 AM
Superstition may be rife with Christians, but not with Christianity (or true Christianity).  When people confront us with Superstitions, we counter with prayer (hence, why we even have a prayer for those who believe in the "evil eye").

But what you are combating in that instance is ignorance, and what you are saying seems to agree with me. It is ignorance that is the danger, not anything untoward in the celebrating of a fantasy event. IMO, such an event is of itself innocuous and yet it gives us the opportunity to irradicate the ignorance our children might have concerning real witchcraft and demons; just as reading the fantasy of Tolkien might do the same thing. Tell them that they are associating with real demons and real witches in reading Tolkien or dressing up and that might be leading them terribly astray. It is the real thing that is the danger, not the fantasy. Without being explicitly Christian, fantasy can be a moral guide and help our children learn about the battle against good and evil. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 14, 2008, 01:21:00 AM
In 2007 there were 11.7 million Cosmetic procedures done in the US including almost 400,000 Breast augmentations and close to 2.5 million Botox procedures.  Vanity tends to be casual about modesty, and as society glorifies the appearance of youthful sexuality in adults, it stands to reason society will slowly and surely value modesty at all ages less and less.  Which of course makes the demons happy, especially on Halloween when the children get a chance to purchase the Bratz outfits and really look like their parents!  ;)

Inappropriate behaviour at an event doesn't make the event itself evil, but I can certainly see that you would have good reason to stay away. As an aside, I really can't see anything attractive about those Bratz dolls!!!! :laugh:
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Myrrh23 on August 14, 2008, 02:46:36 AM
Quote
Without being explicitly Christian, fantasy can be a moral guide and help our children learn about the battle against good and evil.

Not just children, but adults, too. This last Halloween, I dressed up as the Grim Reaper in pink bedroom slippers. I like to think I was teaching the kids on my college campus that death is no longer to be feared...or something, I dunno. :P ;D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 14, 2008, 03:52:10 AM
Not just children, but adults, too. This last Halloween, I dressed up as the Grim Reaper in pink bedroom slippers. I like to think I was teaching the kids on my college campus that death is no longer to be feared...or something, I dunno. :P ;D

LOL - I'm sure the lesson went down a treat. Making fun of the boogie man helps to defuse our fear of him. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Myrrh23 on August 14, 2008, 04:25:53 AM
Man, it was hard on my feet walking around the cement sidewalks in those slippers... the things I do for the spiritual progression of other people... ;) :P
Next time, I oughta put a giant pink bow on top, in case people miss the slippers... :D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on August 14, 2008, 10:11:34 AM
In Greece, during the Week after Meatfare Sunday, people attend Masquerade Parties and ham it up until Clean Monday, the beginning of Great Lent.  Nothing demonic about those celebrations.
Link to Athens Carnival Blog (http://www.mytripjournal.com/journals/UngarsTravels/Athens-Carnaval.html)

In order for Greece to do to its carnival what we did to Halloween, she must allow her mass media to locate and magnify all the points of the carnival which lend themselves to horror movies to be released at carnival time. 

Not germane to the above is the recollection of reading that only 2% of the American public celebrated H-ween in the 19th century; the introduction of a calendar instructing us in how proper English gentlemen behave during a time of Anglophilia tipped that figure to 48%, since the calendar told people what proper English gentlemen do on each day of the year. 
DanM
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: SolEX01 on August 14, 2008, 12:32:34 PM
In order for Greece to do to its carnival what we did to Halloween, she must allow her mass media to locate and magnify all the points of the carnival which lend themselves to horror movies to be released at carnival time.

Huh?  Greece hasn't been totally secularized to the point where the above statement is remotely true.

Not germane to the above is the recollection of reading that only 2% of the American public celebrated H-ween in the 19th century; the introduction of a calendar instructing us in how proper English gentlemen behave during a time of Anglophilia tipped that figure to 48%, since the calendar told people what proper English gentlemen do on each day of the year.

Is there a source for above statement?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on August 14, 2008, 01:11:51 PM
Huh?  Greece hasn't been totally secularized to the point where the above statement is remotely true.

Is there a source for above statement?

Not only did I not mean to imply that Greece has been secularized to such an extent, I do not want it to be.
I lost the source years ago after I quite teaching world history in HS.
DanM

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Pravoslavbob on August 14, 2008, 01:17:20 PM
The discussion on monasticism and ascetism has been moved here (http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,17067.0.html).

Pravoslavbob
Religious Topics Moderator
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 14, 2008, 01:42:06 PM
But when you state very clearly your view that the whole world is corrupted because the whole material creation is the work of a demented or evil demiurge, then you state a doctrine that comes straight out of the Gnosticism that St. Irenaeus wrote many treatises to combat, a heretical doctrine that has nothing to do with orthodox Christianity.  Don't you see now how doing this undermines your credibility when you claim to teach nothing but unadulterated Orthodoxy?

The only thing "credible" is Orthodoxy.

The thread is about halloween not me.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on August 14, 2008, 04:54:57 PM
The only thing "credible" is Orthodoxy.

The thread is about halloween not me.

Can you direct me to online documents of the Ethiopian Orthodox church which will provide sources for the belief that the world was created by a mad or evil demiurge?  Is such a doctrine contained in the Broader Canon, perhaps? 
If you care to read them, St. Irenaeus and Tertullian can be found at http://www.ccel.org/fathers.html.
DanM

PS.  I insist it was accidental that I found this:  "Bible Messages: Pagan Festival of Easter ...  Most Christians (so-called as well as many genuine ones) are celebrating Easter this weekend. Do you realize this is a pagan festival?" at http://www.christianhospitality.org/.  Shades of Halloween!

PPS.  Not to be overlooked:  online critical texts of OT pseudepigrapha at http://ocp.acadiau.ca/index.html?1En.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Keble on August 15, 2008, 12:17:53 PM
Amdetsion, this thread (as well as the "born again" thread) is increasingly about your failure to recognize that you are tending to represent yourself as Orthodoxy.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 15, 2008, 01:44:16 PM
Amdetsion, this thread (as well as the "born again" thread) is increasingly about your failure to recognize that you are tending to represent yourself as Orthodoxy.


Insulting words indeed.

God bless you.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: SolEX01 on August 15, 2008, 01:57:59 PM
Exactly!

The whole world is corrupted because of this very fact you state.

We are therefore to reject the whole world and everything in it.

Father Deacon Amdetsion, you and I know that Christ selected His Disciples from the World and told them that the world would ultimately reject and kill them as a price for spreading the message of Christ.  Christ never told His Disciples to reject the whole world and everything in it.  Why would you teach and preach something contrary to what Christ taught and what authority gives you the right to do so? 

You said elsewhere that you have attended Orthodox sponsored UN prayer services in NYC, Christ wants you to find the people whose hearts are turned towards God like the Disciples found Roman officials whose hearts were turned towards God.  Christ doesn't want you to reject the UN (for example) and crawl under a rock - Elijah paid the price for disobeying God even though He was taken up in a chariot of fire.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on August 15, 2008, 03:37:09 PM
Insulting words indeed.
Insulting only if the words are false.  The question is:  Is what Keble said true?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ComingHome on August 15, 2008, 09:36:22 PM
I'm so glad I read this whole thread rather than just the Deacon's comments.  As a former Jack Chick believer, this discussion has been of benefit to me in seeing things from another perspective.  (BTW, I deserted Chickism long ago.) 

I did appreciate the reference to Ralph Woodrow who was once as crackers as Jack but has since come to see things differently (although he has not as yet seen the fulness of Orthodoxy AFAIK).
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Salpy on August 15, 2008, 10:02:56 PM
Spirit good, matter evil?  Is that your point?

I think you are reading too much into Deacon Amde's post.  He never said matter was evil.  He said to reject the world.  "The world" in Christian understanding can mean other things besides matter.  I think what Deacon Amde means is something more along the lines of what Christ was talking about in John 15:18-19, or What St. James was talking about in James 4:4 ("...friendship with the world is hatred toward God.  Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God.") 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Salpy on August 15, 2008, 10:19:13 PM
Can you direct me to online documents of the Ethiopian Orthodox church which will provide sources for the belief that the world was created by a mad or evil demiurge?  Is such a doctrine contained in the Broader Canon, perhaps? 
If you care to read them, St. Irenaeus and Tertullian can be found at http://www.ccel.org/fathers.html.
DanM



Again, I think you and Mr. Y, like Bogoliubtsy, are giving an interpretation to Deacon Amde's use of the word "world" that is not supported by his posts.  I don't see him condemning matter or suggesting that matter was created by a demiurge, like the gnostics.  Perhaps you guys can point out where he did that.  I can't see it.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 15, 2008, 10:45:12 PM
Salpy,

This might be the source of some confusion;

Reply #272;

Quote from: Amdetsion on August 12, 2008, 06:19:48 PM
Quote
Who needs church "traditions" and "cultures" that do not and or can not edify God?
Not that I am saying these things are sins. I am saying they are of NO value to God and so they are of NO value to His Church or His people.
The point here is NO VALUE TO GOD. NO value to the Church
Fruitlessness is wickedness.
WE are to be Orthdodox in our view point and thinking on all matters. Orthodoxy does not promote mindless, spiritless thinking and pursuits. Quite the opposite.
The orthodox mind is always at work. We do not take off for mindless spiritless halloween and the like.
Such activities may not be evil. But they lack of sprituality and thus can not bear fruit so they are to be dismissed, and discarded whole.

DanM replies;

Quote
This view strikes me as a crypto-Manichaean view of things.  Such a view makes more sense if we believe that the whole material creation is the work of a demented or evil demiurge.

Then in reply #279, Deacon Amde repeats DanM's quote;
Quote
Such a view makes more sense if we believe that the whole material creation is the work of a demented or evil demiurge. 

To which Deacon Amde responded with;

Quote
Exactly!

The whole world is corrupted because of this very fact you state.

We are therefore to reject the whole world and everything in it.

We are only here on earth to edify God with all of our life. All the time. Till we die.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Salpy on August 16, 2008, 02:25:16 AM
O.K.  I see where the confusion came from.  I get the feeling from other posts by Deacon Amde that he is not familiar with gnosticism or with the concept of the demiurge.  That could be why he replied the way he did.  I would be astounded if he were a gnostic.  I think his use of the word "world" is more along the lines of what I cited from the Bible a few posts ago.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 16, 2008, 03:04:32 AM
O.K.  I see where the confusion came from.  I get the feeling from other posts by Deacon Amde that he is not familiar with gnosticism or with the concept of the demiurge.
 

Yes, I would agree.

Quote
That could be why he replied the way he did.  I would be astounded if he were a gnostic.  I think his use of the word "world" is more along the lines of what I cited from the Bible a few posts ago.

Yes, I would agree again, but I also believe that Deacon Amde's propensity to diatribe (no matter how well-meaning) rather than dialogue might be at the heart of the matter.  ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: username! on August 16, 2008, 03:13:47 AM
On feast days the church is empty.  Even our parish feast day it was Father and I at liturgy.  No preparations by the faithful, no dinner, no kids, no one was there.  But for secular halloween preparations will be starting in several weeks, people will be expected by secular social customs to participate and in some instances hundreds and hundreds of dollars will be spent by a single family on costumes, candy and partying.  Does anyone else see the problem here? 
I despise secular Halloween for many reasons.  Not only has some pseudo-pagan ritual been thrust upon our society but we have been trained by the corporations to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on Halloween.  And the funniest part about it...... trick-or-treat night here isn't even on official Halloween.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 16, 2008, 03:51:11 AM
On feast days the church is empty.  Even our parish feast day it was Father and I at liturgy.  No preparations by the faithful, no dinner, no kids, no one was there.  But for secular halloween preparations will be starting in several weeks, people will be expected by secular social customs to participate and in some instances hundreds and hundreds of dollars will be spent by a single family on costumes, candy and partying.  Does anyone else see the problem here? 

Of course, there is a problem, but that people aren't attending Church on feast days doesn't exclude us from partaking in secular activities; with the hope of affecting others with the love of Christ. Hiding out doesn't make any impact on the status quo - and (begin rant) fundamentalists spreading lies about the origins of Halloween being satanic has just the opposite impact (end rant). We might see family members putting more effort into preparing for the celebration of a nephew's 21st than the Birth of Christ, but that doesn't mean we should avoid the nephew's celebration because it doesn't fall into the category of sacred. How does it serve Christ to offend our family members?

Quote
I despise secular Halloween for many reasons. Not only has some pseudo-pagan ritual been thrust upon our society but we have been trained by the corporations to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on Halloween.  And the funniest part about it...... trick-or-treat night here isn't even on official Halloween.

The same reasoning can be applied to Christmas. Do you despice that celebration because of all the secular broohaha, pseudo-pagan ritualism and corporate manipulation involved? And I'm sure people aren't forced to partake in Halloween, and are at liberty to arrange an alternative event - or they could, of course, work at reinstating the original Christian celebration.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 16, 2008, 10:53:39 AM
I despise secular Halloween for many reasons.  Not only has some pseudo-pagan ritual been thrust upon our society but we have been trained by the corporations to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on Halloween.  And the funniest part about it...... trick-or-treat night here isn't even on official Halloween.
So is the problem Halloween or is it manipulative corporations?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on August 16, 2008, 12:08:47 PM
So is the problem Halloween or is it manipulative corporations?

We may wish to blame manipulative corporations, but if they did not read the desires of the masses properly, they would be manipulating nothing.  I might become a billionaire by manipulating everyone into reading Locrian Greek texts, but it is not likely to happen, is it?
All public holidays/holy days, feasts etc. are subject to continuing re-evaluation by everyone.  E.g., certain American civic holidays used to be celebrated with a great deal of solemnity and personal involvement which are now simply used as an excuse for three-day week-ends.  Again, Christmas has been constantly re-evaluated throughout Christian history makes that obvious.  At bottom, the problem is how we read Halloween, or Christmas, or Memorial Day etc. 
The fact that there is a growing sense that Halloween is no longer fit for children--so churches are now having Halloween substitute parties (rather as the Fathers are said to have inaugurated Chrismas to keep Christians out of Saturnalian-influenced celebrations of Sol Invictus)--is probably a good sign.
I think that if we are really opposed to Halloween, our best precedent is St. Augustine's tolerance of Lupercalia (a genuinely pagan feast celebrated by Christians!).
DanM
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 16, 2008, 12:36:55 PM
^ The French don't have to have excuses for three-day weekends. Vive le vondredi!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: username! on August 17, 2008, 07:02:14 AM
Of course, there is a problem, but that people aren't attending Church on feast days doesn't exclude us from partaking in secular activities; with the hope of affecting others with the love of Christ. Hiding out doesn't make any impact on the status quo - and (begin rant) fundamentalists spreading lies about the origins of Halloween being satanic has just the opposite impact (end rant). We might see family members putting more effort into preparing for the celebration of a nephew's 21st than the Birth of Christ, but that doesn't mean we should avoid the nephew's celebration because it doesn't fall into the category of sacred. How does it serve Christ to offend our family members?

The same reasoning can be applied to Christmas. Do you despice that celebration because of all the secular broohaha, pseudo-pagan ritualism and corporate manipulation involved? And I'm sure people aren't forced to partake in Halloween, and are at liberty to arrange an alternative event - or they could, of course, work at reinstating the original Christian celebration.

I celebrate Old Calender Feast of the Nativity.  It is a quiet day of reflection and celebration with my family.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: username! on August 17, 2008, 07:07:27 AM
So is the problem Halloween or is it manipulative corporations?

Manipulative corporations.  Secular holidays say a lot about the customs, mores and norms of a society.  I think the question may be that is it wrong to have such a large secular festival that centers around a pagan ritual/holy day, custom?  We do the trick-or-treat thing.  But like I said the whole lame thing is that each community in my area has a different night for trick-or-treat.  So you actually have people that do the trick-or-treat circuit and go more than one night.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 17, 2008, 08:15:41 AM
I celebrate Old Calender Feast of the Nativity.  It is a quiet day of reflection and celebration with my family.

My goodness. With our tradition Christmas we have little chance of a quiet day of reflection. There's plenty of reflection, but it's on the move. There's always so much preparation with a house full of children and friends and family dropping in to exchange gifts and share the meal. I missed that very much last Christmas; the first we spent in Australia. The Feast of Nativity has always been truly clamourous day for us. I remember one year a member of our family had saved fireworks from Guy Fawkes Night and as they weren't going to be with us for New Year's we let them off on Christmas Day instead; to the delight of the children. Of course, we can't do that in Australia; we might start a bush fire! ;D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 17, 2008, 08:58:11 AM
So you actually have people that do the trick-or-treat circuit and go more than one night.
Yeah, and they get a lot of candy. I think there are worse crimes against humanity.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on August 17, 2008, 09:09:57 PM
O.K.  I see where the confusion came from.  I get the feeling from other posts by Deacon Amde that he is not familiar with gnosticism or with the concept of the demiurge.  That could be why he replied the way he did.  I would be astounded if he were a gnostic.  I think his use of the word "world" is more along the lines of what I cited from the Bible a few posts ago.

Correct.

Thanks Salpy.

"World" is man and all of his ideas and pursuits.

"Earth" and Gods creation is another subject altogether.

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: username! on August 17, 2008, 11:32:11 PM
Yeah, and they get a lot of candy. I think there are worse crimes against humanity.

Never said it was a crime against humanity.


This is a crime against humanity

(http://chiefasianinspector.typepad.com/photos/uncategorized/worker2_v2_230806.jpg)


(http://www.constructiveanarchy.com/blog/gotkids2.jpg)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: username! on August 17, 2008, 11:34:23 PM
My goodness. With our tradition Christmas we have little chance of a quiet day of reflection. There's plenty of reflection, but it's on the move. There's always so much preparation with a house full of children and friends and family dropping in to exchange gifts and share the meal. I missed that very much last Christmas; the first we spent in Australia. The Feast of Nativity has always been truly clamourous day for us. I remember one year a member of our family had saved fireworks from Guy Fawkes Night and as they weren't going to be with us for New Year's we let them off on Christmas Day instead; to the delight of the children. Of course, we can't do that in Australia; we might start a bush fire! ;D

Pascha is the feast of feasts and is usually a joyous and busy busy time for us.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Quinault on August 17, 2008, 11:43:50 PM
My daughter wants to dress up as her patron saint Paraskeve this year and carry a bowl of eyeballs like in her icon.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 17, 2008, 11:47:32 PM
Pascha is the feast of feasts and is usually a joyous and busy busy time for us.

We wouldn't have Pascha if not for the Nativity! And certainly it is a most joyous and preparation intensive time, too!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 17, 2008, 11:49:09 PM
My daughter wants to dress up as her patron saint Paraskeve this year and carry a bowl of eyeballs like in her icon.

What a fabulous idea, Quinault!! And just think of the opportunity she could have to share the reasons for her costume choice. We Christians really need to take St Paul's advice and be as cunning as serpents, instead of flies in the ointment. Trust a little child to come up with such a cunning plan! :)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Quinault on August 17, 2008, 11:53:55 PM
Riddikulus; I wish I could claim owndership of the idea, it was completely my daughter's idea.

Her sisters patron saint is Anna and her brothers is Seraphim of Sarov. So if she wants to be Paraskeve I need to be sure that her little brother and sister follow the saint theme also. Seraphim would be fairly easy- a hunchback and a teddy bear.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 18, 2008, 12:07:12 AM
Riddikulus; I wish I could claim owndership of the idea, it was completely my daughter's idea.

Her sisters patron saint is Anna and her brothers is Seraphim of Sarov. So if she wants to be Paraskeve I need to be sure that her little brother and sister follow the saint theme also. Seraphim would be fairly easy- a hunchback and a teddy bear.

^^LOL
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: username! on August 18, 2008, 12:53:01 AM
We wouldn't have Pascha if not for the Nativity! And certainly it is a most joyous and preparation intensive time, too!

 thank you for the theology lesson, I wasn't aware of that. :P ::)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ebor on August 18, 2008, 12:55:16 AM
Our eldest boy's first Halloween costume was as St. Dunstan: simple monk's tunic and belt with a little homemade wooden blacksmith's hammer tucked into the belt.  Dunstan being the patron saint of blacksmiths and locksmiths and the legend of how he was working in the forge when Old Scratch came in for some new shoes for his cloven hooves.   :)

The bowl of eyeballs is quite an idea. Any idea how you'll do it?

Ebor
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 18, 2008, 02:48:42 AM
thank you for the theology lesson, I wasn't aware of that. :P ::)

No trouble, at all.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Zarabas on August 18, 2008, 09:35:47 AM
Some people are saying we need "moderation" in our lives. Then those same people have the nerve to define what is and what is not ORTHODOX. Orhtodoxy does not teach that moderation allows to engage in what is satanic by its very nature.

Halloween has been "Christianized" by the Western Churches. So many Orthodox protest against the Roman Catholics and Protestants and are Anti-Ecumeists only in some cases. Where Halloween is involved, the ecumenism is tolerated for the sake of children having "fun". But what kind of "fun" are kids having? Why are ghosts witches vampires and devils "fun" for children? How are these "fun" things moderate? They represent evil in various forms. Laughing at our fears? Only fools laugh at evil to pretend it doesn't exist.

While most people here are ready to criticize Coptics and call them un-Orthodox or erroneously "monophysites" they eagerly enjoy celebrating Halloween just as Wiccans enjoy doing this, and Satanists. Co-celebrating Halloween with such people who are clearly anti-Christian is what is happening. You dont have to participate in Wiccan and Satanic rituals to co-celebrate. But using their symbols, promoting their beliefs, and justifying it all for the sake of your childrens "fun" is so hypocritical and stupid. Parents are supposed to protect their children and teach them that fear of evil is not a laughing matter, but part of their salvation in Christ. When we reduce the satanic to "fun" we invite it into our lives on a spiritual level that is harmful. Halloween has and always will introduce children to alternative spiritualities that are against the Orthodox Church.

Halloween is an example of ecumenism that is far worse than you can imagine. It unities Christians under the false sense that it is a Christian event, and it unites us with those who despise Jesus Christ.

If you think I'm wrong, then dress up your children in Halloween costumes and take them to Church if its so appropriate. Let the Papa give communion to your child or yourself dressed up as a witch or vampire. Sounds crazy? According to most people here its just "fun".

Wake up people.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on August 18, 2008, 11:41:38 AM
Orthodoxy does not teach that moderation allows to engage in what is satanic by its very nature.
Halloween has been "Christianized" by the Western Churches.

Dear Zarabas,
So far no one has taken me up on the matter of the non-Satanic origins of H-ween.  You may recall that I nailed four theses on the local Wittenberg door:
(1)  The Pantheon was built by Agrippa.
(2)  It was rebuilt by Hadrian.
(3)  It was dedicated to Santa Maria ad Martyres by Pope Boniface IV in 609 with an attached foundation feast celebrating all martyrs.
(4)  That feast was transfered by Pope Gregory III to November 1 on the occasion of dedicating a chapel in St. Peter's to All Saints, giving rise to All Hallows' Even (Halloween).
If you could prove that (3) and (4) are false, my argument would be undone.
However, it seems to me that you have raised the ante somewhat:  you have alleged that H-ween is Satanic by its very nature but Christianized subsequently.  Surely you can furnish some evidence of these claims? 
You see, H-ween, unlike murder and theft, is not explicitly condemned by, say, Scripture, so we must use our wits to decide if it is acceptable or not.  Part of that procedure is generally acceptable evidence and validly inferred conclusions.  You are saying all sorts of striking things, but cite no evidence to buttress your claims.  Please consider whether you can rebut my theses and buttress yours.
No matter how strongly we may hold our opinions, if they are not based on properly understood evidence, there is not much point on forcing them on others.
DanM
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 18, 2008, 12:02:40 PM
Some people are saying we need "moderation" in our lives. Then those same people have the nerve to define what is and what is not ORTHODOX. Orhtodoxy does not teach that moderation allows to engage in what is satanic by its very nature.
No, it does not teach that. Rather, it teaches that nothing is satanic by nature: that all things belong to God and are corrupted by the devil and his angels.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on August 18, 2008, 01:36:05 PM
Speaking as a Copt, I know many Coptic Churches that host Halloween parties at their own churches, encouraging children to dress up as saints, angels, clergy, etc.

I personally don't see the issue with vampires, ghosts, and werewolves.  The intention is acting like something, like....an actor.  I'm sure my Coptic friend knows the low budget Egyptian saint movies that contain protagonists and antagonists, antagonists that include demons, thieves, harlots, murderers, heretics, etc.

Arguing the origins of a practice is irrelevant.  Christmas lights seem to originate from pagan practices.  Doesn't make the use of lights pagan.

Now one could argue that the use of antagonist actors and Christmas lights have been given a symbolic purpose, while the use of Christmas costumes are just vain fun.  I personally wouldn't call "fun" vain.  It would seem just as "vain" as reading a non-religious book, watching the "Dark Knight" or any other non-religious movie, going to the beach, watching the news (nothing can be more vain and "evil" than politics, but it's fun ;-) ), listening to music, playing sports, playing home games like monopoly or backgammon, etc. etc. etc.

Doing things for the sake of "fun" was never thought of as vain, but as long as it brings friends and families together safely and without any wrongs (or if it stimulates the mind in some way), why not "fun" for the sake of "fun?"

Finally, it has come to my attention, if you read the beginning of the thread, many of the things you may have heard from a Coptic priest's sermon on Halloween (or from HG Bishop Sourial) are either false (like the idea that the money used for candy goes out to Wiccans) or partially true and out of context (like the origins of Halloween).

God bless.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: livefreeordie on August 18, 2008, 01:45:25 PM
No matter how strongly we may hold our opinions, if they are not based on properly understood evidence, there is not much point on forcing them on others.
DanM

Here is some "evidence" those of you who are interested can chew on.  I'm no historian, but the following is from the History Channel. It'll have to suffice as a historian for now! I guess how you view the origins of Halloween comes down to how you view the ancient celtic religion and druids.

"Halloween's origins date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced sow-in).

The Celts, who lived 2,000 years ago in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom, and northern France, celebrated their new year on November 1. This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death. Celts believed that on the night before the new year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred. On the night of October 31, they celebrated Samhain, when it was believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth. In addition to causing trouble and damaging crops, Celts thought that the presence of the otherworldly spirits made it easier for the Druids, or Celtic priests, to make predictions about the future. For a people entirely dependent on the volatile natural world, these prophecies were an important source of comfort and direction during the long, dark winter.

To commemorate the event, Druids built huge sacred bonfires, where the people gathered to burn crops and animals as sacrifices to the Celtic deities.

During the celebration, the Celts wore costumes, typically consisting of animal heads and skins, and attempted to tell each other's fortunes. When the celebration was over, they re-lit their hearth fires, which they had extinguished earlier that evening, from the sacred bonfire to help protect them during the coming winter.

By A.D. 43, Romans had conquered the majority of Celtic territory. In the course of the four hundred years that they ruled the Celtic lands, two festivals of Roman origin were combined with the traditional Celtic celebration of Samhain.

The first was Feralia, a day in late October when the Romans traditionally commemorated the passing of the dead. The second was a day to honor Pomona, the Roman goddess of fruit and trees. The symbol of Pomona is the apple and the incorporation of this celebration into Samhain probably explains the tradition of "bobbing" for apples that is practiced today on Halloween.

By the 800s, the influence of Christianity had spread into Celtic lands. In the seventh century, Pope Boniface IV designated November 1 All Saints' Day, a time to honor saints and martyrs. It is widely believed today that the pope was attempting to replace the Celtic festival of the dead with a related, but church-sanctioned holiday. The celebration was also called All-hallows or All-hallowmas (from Middle English Alholowmesse meaning All Saints' Day) and the night before it, the night of Samhain, began to be called All-hallows Eve and, eventually, Halloween. Even later, in A.D. 1000, the church would make November 2 All Souls' Day, a day to honor the dead. It was celebrated similarly to Samhain, with big bonfires, parades, and dressing up in costumes as saints, angels, and devils. Together, the three celebrations, the eve of All Saints', All Saints', and All Souls', were called Hallowmas."
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Quinault on August 18, 2008, 02:41:24 PM
Our eldest boy's first Halloween costume was as St. Dunstan: simple monk's tunic and belt with a little homemade wooden blacksmith's hammer tucked into the belt.  Dunstan being the patron saint of blacksmiths and locksmiths and the legend of how he was working in the forge when Old Scratch came in for some new shoes for his cloven hooves.   :)

The bowl of eyeballs is quite an idea. Any idea how you'll do it?

Ebor

Depends upon whether the eyeballs will be to just look at or if she wants to let people play with them.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Schultz on August 18, 2008, 03:00:34 PM
I'm positive candy companies make edible eyeballs, but I don't know if such things would be available in all markets.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on August 18, 2008, 04:05:40 PM
Here is some "evidence" those of you who are interested can chew on.  I'm no historian, but the following is from the History Channel . . .
In the course of the four hundred years that they ruled the Celtic lands, two festivals of Roman origin were combined with the traditional Celtic celebration of Samhain.  The first was Feralia, a day in late October when the Romans traditionally commemorated the passing of the dead. The second was a day to honor Pomona, the Roman goddess of fruit and trees. The symbol of Pomona is the apple and the incorporation of this celebration into Samhain probably explains the tradition of "bobbing" for apples that is practiced today on Halloween.

I restrict my comments to two points:  the Feralia and the Pomonalia. 
The Feralia to which the History Channel alludes occured on February 21, not October.  It was a private feast connected with the Parentalia.
The so-called Pomonalia was never celebrated by the Romans, although it is celebrated with relish by anti-historical neo-pagans.  Pomona was an Italo-Roman goddess of fruit but of no importance.
I am confident that anyone who does his homework will discover other holes in the same bucket.  E.g., the amount of nonsense swirling about Samhain boggles the mind.  What I have read indicates that the scholars are unsure of all their facts, but it seems safe to say that Samhein was not combined with non-existent Roman feasts.

Livefreeordie has done everyone a service by citing his source.  For my part, I have debunked the History Channel's Roman errors using The Oxford Classical Dictionary.  I would accept published materials that are online.
Opinions are dicey anyway, but we could avoid a lot of trouble if we all agreed to restrict our evidence to published or authoritative sources.  This does not remove the need to exercise caution--I had a professor who sternly reminded me that just because something was in print did not mean that it was true--but at least we would be relieved from the onerous chore of winnowing out enormous piles of Internet-propagated piffle. 
DanM


Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: livefreeordie on August 18, 2008, 04:17:08 PM
  For my part, I have debunked the History Channel's Roman errors using The Oxford Classical Dictionary.  I would accept published materials that are online.

You are an intense fella DanM, I'm afraid I've exhausted any desire I had to know more about the subject, so hopefully someone else will help you carry the flame of inquiry in the origins of good ole' Halloween.  In the meantime, this inquiring mind wants to know, will you be making the History Channel aware of it's error?  ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: EofK on August 18, 2008, 04:24:22 PM
Post of the Month!

I restrict my comments to two points:  the Feralia and the Pomonalia. 
The Feralia to which the History Channel alludes occured on February 21, not October.  It was a private feast connected with the Parentalia.
The so-called Pomonalia was never celebrated by the Romans, although it is celebrated with relish by anti-historical neo-pagans.  Pomona was an Italo-Roman goddess of fruit but of no importance.
I am confident that anyone who does his homework will discover other holes in the same bucket.  E.g., the amount of nonsense swirling about Samhain boggles the mind.  What I have read indicates that the scholars are unsure of all their facts, but it seems safe to say that Samhein was not combined with non-existent Roman feasts.

Livefreeordie has done everyone a service by citing his source.  For my part, I have debunked the History Channel's Roman errors using The Oxford Classical Dictionary.  I would accept published materials that are online.
Opinions are dicey anyway, but we could avoid a lot of trouble if we all agreed to restrict our evidence to published or authoritative sources.  This does not remove the need to exercise caution--I had a professor who sternly reminded me that just because something was in print did not mean that it was true--but at least we would be relieved from the onerous chore of winnowing out enormous piles of Internet-propagated piffle. 
DanM



Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Myrrh23 on August 18, 2008, 05:49:32 PM
No, it does not teach that. Rather, it teaches that nothing is satanic by nature: that all things belong to God and are corrupted by the devil and his angels.

So, would the practice of witchcraft be a corruption of prayer?

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: username! on August 18, 2008, 06:30:09 PM
So, would the practice of witchcraft be a corruption of prayer?



I don't know what you are getting at with this.  I know that in Islam prayer must be done a certain way for it to count and if it is corrupted, well, Allah will thusly not be pleased. 

The practice of witchcraft period by a self-professed Orthodox Christian would place that person outside of the church.  The Latins would call that excommunication.  Of course if a person would stop practicing witchcraft and make a confession then he could be received back into the church.  Being "in the church" in Orthodoxy means being able to receive Communion/participate in the Sacramental life of the church.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on August 18, 2008, 07:18:15 PM
In the meantime, this inquiring mind wants to know, will you be making the History Channel aware of it's error?  ;)

In some circles facts are regarded as rude.
DanM
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 19, 2008, 12:58:24 AM
At least the History Channel didn't trot out the claim that Samhaim was a Celtic God; the Lord of the Dead - as did one Orthodox source some years ago.  ::)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 19, 2008, 12:59:37 AM
In some circles facts are regarded as rude.
DanM

^Isn't that the truth!!  ;D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Keble on August 19, 2008, 01:09:28 AM
A quick Google on "Pomona" etc. discloses that DanM's statement is essentially correct-- not that I didn't already basically know it.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Myrrh23 on August 19, 2008, 01:40:33 PM
I don't know what you are getting at with this.

I meant it in that prayer puts God's Will before our own, while witchcraft puts our will before God's. I used it also because I've been told by many practitioners that witchcraft is "a form of prayer". ::)
I was wondering if that's what Ytter meant:
No, it does not teach that. Rather, it teaches that nothing is satanic by nature: that all things belong to God and are corrupted by the devil and his angels.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Zarabas on August 19, 2008, 03:32:12 PM
No, it does not teach that. Rather, it teaches that nothing is satanic by nature: that all things belong to God and are corrupted by the devil and his angels.

So according to you (not the Church) nothing is satanic by nature. But then you say all things are corrupted by the devil. You forget that satanic ritual did not begin as uncorrupt but was instituted as satanic.

So keep making excuses to celebrate Halloween.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Zarabas on August 19, 2008, 03:40:36 PM
Speaking as a Copt, I know many Coptic Churches that host Halloween parties at their own churches, encouraging children to dress up as saints, angels, clergy, etc.

I personally don't see the issue with vampires, ghosts, and werewolves.  The intention is acting like something, like....an actor.  I'm sure my Coptic friend knows the low budget Egyptian saint movies that contain protagonists and antagonists, antagonists that include demons, thieves, harlots, murderers, heretics, etc.

Arguing the origins of a practice is irrelevant.  Christmas lights seem to originate from pagan practices.  Doesn't make the use of lights pagan.

Now one could argue that the use of antagonist actors and Christmas lights have been given a symbolic purpose, while the use of Christmas costumes are just vain fun.  I personally wouldn't call "fun" vain.  It would seem just as "vain" as reading a non-religious book, watching the "Dark Knight" or any other non-religious movie, going to the beach, watching the news (nothing can be more vain and "evil" than politics, but it's fun ;-) ), listening to music, playing sports, playing home games like monopoly or backgammon, etc. etc. etc.

Doing things for the sake of "fun" was never thought of as vain, but as long as it brings friends and families together safely and without any wrongs (or if it stimulates the mind in some way), why not "fun" for the sake of "fun?"

Finally, it has come to my attention, if you read the beginning of the thread, many of the things you may have heard from a Coptic priest's sermon on Halloween (or from HG Bishop Sourial) are either false (like the idea that the money used for candy goes out to Wiccans) or partially true and out of context (like the origins of Halloween).

God bless.

You must remember that what brings us together as the only way is Christ. Halloween is a deception.

If we excuse Halloween with its ability to bring us together, I can only imagine what will happen when the Antichrist provides such "goodness" for humanity.
I'm not comparing Halloween to the antichrist, but I am comparing the fact that people are justifying evil because it brings about good.

I realize you are talking about very young children but they will grow up to be young adults. I recall people dressing up as "saints" at a Halloween party when I didn't know any better. Couples were making out, drinking to the point of getting drunk and vomiting. What a nice sight to behold! "Saints" fornicating and drinking into a stupor! How appropriate is it to see "saints" smoking or a girl dressed as a Nun and a guy dressed as a Priest making out?
Obviously not everyone at these parties was dressed up like a "saint" but the same activity (some things I refuse to mention here) occurred.

Halloween is an excuse to disobey God.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 19, 2008, 04:27:28 PM
So according to you (not the Church) nothing is satanic by nature. But then you say all things are corrupted by the devil. You forget that satanic ritual did not begin as uncorrupt but was instituted as satanic.
And according to you (not the Church) ritual is satanic by nature. You forget that ritual began as service to God and is corrupted when used as service to the devil.

Quote
So keep making excuses to celebrate Halloween.
Actually, I don't celebrate it. I just don't judge those who do.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: asmotj on August 19, 2008, 06:01:08 PM
IMHO

Any celebration devoid of Christ as the central focus is not worth celebrating... unceasing prayer...

which begs these two dead horse questions which are still relevant and still current.

??? what gift was given the most, in the scriptures, for someones birthday???

??? where, in the scriptures, does it say celebrate Christ's Birth or our birth for that matter???

in Service to Christ
James

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on August 19, 2008, 06:18:09 PM
You must remember that what brings us together as the only way is Christ. Halloween is a deception.

If we excuse Halloween with its ability to bring us together, I can only imagine what will happen when the Antichrist provides such "goodness" for humanity.
I'm not comparing Halloween to the antichrist, but I am comparing the fact that people are justifying evil because it brings about good.

I realize you are talking about very young children but they will grow up to be young adults. I recall people dressing up as "saints" at a Halloween party when I didn't know any better. Couples were making out, drinking to the point of getting drunk and vomiting. What a nice sight to behold! "Saints" fornicating and drinking into a stupor! How appropriate is it to see "saints" smoking or a girl dressed as a Nun and a guy dressed as a Priest making out?
Obviously not everyone at these parties was dressed up like a "saint" but the same activity (some things I refuse to mention here) occurred.

Halloween is an excuse to disobey God.

What you describe sounds like the same things that happen in Christmas, New Years, and St. Patrick's Day (especially St. Patrick's Day).  Doesn't make those holidays evil either.  It's sad that you saw those things especially in what they dressed, but you can't overgeneralize that the same thing happens everywhere else.

I see people dress up like the team of Captain Planet, or Batman, or a clown, or the pop icon Prince (although it was a fat guy who wore it, which made it even funnier), or a Hillbilly, etc.  I see a costume party of people making fun of our present culture.  It's funny, it's safe.  There might be alcohol and there will be some idiots who will get drunk, but there will be the responsible friends who will take these drunk people home when the need comes.  I attended a bachelor party in Egypt (in Egypt, both sides of the family celebrate together; guys and gals don't separate).  There was dancing and drinking.  One of my cousins got drunk and I had to take care of him.  It was an idiotic move, but overall, one sees that idea behind such parties are not evil.  I see this bachelor party no different than the Halloween parties I've attended in the US, no different than the beaches and sports stadiums that may contain some drunk idiots as well.

God bless.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Myrrh23 on August 19, 2008, 10:31:50 PM
So according to you (not the Church) nothing is satanic by nature. But then you say all things are corrupted by the devil. You forget that satanic ritual did not begin as uncorrupt but was instituted as satanic.


The satanic ritual is an "after-the-fact" phenomenon, in that Satanic practictioners originally devised it as a mockery to the Christian ritual. The Christian ritual came first, and is "the original non-Satanic nature". The Satanic ritual is a corruption of that nature.
IMHO

Any celebration devoid of Christ as the central focus is not worth celebrating... unceasing prayer...

which begs these two dead horse questions which are still relevant and still current.

??? what gift was given the most, in the scriptures, for someones birthday???

??? where, in the scriptures, does it say celebrate Christ's Birth or our birth for that matter???

The writers of the American Constitution, as far as I know, never said to celebrate the 4th of July, but we do it because it's a joyful event in history. One of the most joyful events in all of human history was the birth of God in the flesh: Jesus Christ. Why must we use scripture as a basis for everything, such as celebrating each other's birthdays? We're made in the image and likeness of God, so I believe that by celebrating birthdays, we're celebrating what God made-- our human family.

  There might be alcohol and there will be some idiots who will get drunk, but there will be the responsible friends who will take these drunk people home when the need comes.  I attended a bachelor party in Egypt (in Egypt, both sides of the family celebrate together; guys and gals don't separate).  There was dancing and drinking.  One of my cousins got drunk and I had to take care of him.  It was an idiotic move, but overall, one sees that idea behind such parties are not evil.  I see this bachelor party no different than the Halloween parties I've attended in the US, no different than the beaches and sports stadiums that may contain some drunk idiots as well.


Jesus Christ is recorded as having attended a wedding celebration where there was lots of alcohol, and after the alcohol ran out...the Son of God made MORE alcohol! :laugh:
Alcohol has its time and place, and there will be responsible people that will act as safety nets, like minasolman ( yippy, eh, minasolman? :D). As long as there are measures in place to keep people from getting dangerously crazy or to keep the dangerously crazy from drinking, then it's okay.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on August 19, 2008, 10:50:47 PM
which begs these two dead horse questions which are still relevant and still current.

??? what gift was given the most, in the scriptures, for someones birthday???

??? where, in the scriptures, does it say celebrate Christ's Birth or our birth for that matter???
which begs THESE two dead horse questions which are just as relevant and just as current:

??? How are your questions relevant?

??? What's your point, anyway?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on August 19, 2008, 10:50:49 PM
Alcohol has its time and place, and there will be responsible people that will act as safety nets, like minasolman ( yippy, eh, minasolman? :D).

I've developed quite a reputation among my friends as DD most of the time.   :angel:  Of course, there was the one time when a friend threw up in my car.  :(
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Myrrh23 on August 19, 2008, 11:42:19 PM
I've developed quite a reputation among my friends as DD most of the time.   :angel:  Of course, there was the one time when a friend threw up in my car.  :(

When I was at SIUC, I heard of this one college student who, when his friends were ready to throw up in his car, made them throw up in this big funnel which had a big tube attached to a bucket. Don't know how well that worked, though. :P
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Thomas on August 20, 2008, 11:10:06 AM

The writers of the American Constitution, as far as I know, never said to celebrate the 4th of July, but we do it because it's a joyful event in history. One of the most joyful events in all of human history was the birth of God in the flesh: Jesus Christ. Why must we use scripture as a basis for everything, such as celebrating each other's birthdays? We're made in the image and likeness of God, so I believe that by celebrating birthdays, we're celebrating what God made-- our human family.


Actually Founding father John Adams actually predicted in his corespondence with his beloved wife Abigail that we would celebrate the fourth of July with fireworks, political speeches and great feasting & celebration. Much like we do here in texas every fourth.

Thomas

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: EofK on August 20, 2008, 11:24:37 AM
The writers of the American Constitution, as far as I know, never said to celebrate the 4th of July, but we do it because it's a joyful event in history. One of the most joyful events in all of human history was the birth of God in the flesh: Jesus Christ. Why must we use scripture as a basis for everything, such as celebrating each other's birthdays? We're made in the image and likeness of God, so I believe that by celebrating birthdays, we're celebrating what God made-- our human family.

Well said!  *clap clap*
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on August 21, 2008, 02:11:51 AM
When I was at SIUC, I heard of this one college student who, when his friends were ready to throw up in his car, made them throw up in this big funnel which had a big tube attached to a bucket. Don't know how well that worked, though. :P

hmmm...sounds better than the occasional plastic bag
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: asmotj on August 21, 2008, 11:32:11 AM
OK, I think I see what your saying
 let me make sure I understand.
The 4th of July celebrates the day we declared War/Our independence and for the  next 8 years the deaths of some 100,000 people that does not seem joyful nor does comparing  Christ's birth to a secular event.

Since you also asked "why Should" let me Should.... I believe we should use scripture for celebrating every event we are Orthodox after all.
I believe if your Celebrating what God Made  yourself... it is impossible to celebrate it without the Knowledge contained in your lesson book The Bible which is about God and His relation to us, that plus your personal experience is a beautiful and wonderful celebration.

"All Hallowed even" {halloween} with the exception of maybe Jack's story about the tricking the devil himself and becoming the  Jack o' Lantern
Is just another day of Secular Corporately money grabbing and contributed to the unhealthy eating habbits we already have in Fall/winter.

Peace be upon your Family
James

The writers of the American Constitution, as far as I know, never said to celebrate the 4th of July, but we do it because it's a joyful event in history. One of the most joyful events in all of human history was the birth of God in the flesh: Jesus Christ. Why must we use scripture as a basis for everything, such as celebrating each other's birthdays? We're made in the image and likeness of God, so I believe that by celebrating birthdays, we're celebrating what God made-- our human family.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: asmotj on August 21, 2008, 12:02:45 PM
Thanks for welcoming me to the forum in such Orthodox Style...
I feel like Peter circa 1810 San Francisco or maybe more like I was back in boot camp getting Instructed by my Drill Sergeant!

I compared my question to the original about halloween  as "just as relevant" so I never really said they were relevant however, How my questions might be relevant is the fact you read them and were moved enough to comment, but you comment on most things so maybe it was wishful thinking on my part...

so I will in as non polemic a way as I can muster\, to digress further, If you knew the answer to the birthday question you would understand and after reading many of your  posts on this forum I am shocked you don't know and would reply to me that way...
Quote from: PeterTheAleut link=topic=8372.msg110775#msg1don't know and 10775 date=1141970734
In one sense--and I don't think this is the sense you mean--the love of self is actually a great evil, the sin of pride.  Is not our modern psychology of self-esteem really built on the foundation of this overweening arrogance and pride?
How might a celebration devoid of Christ begets evil might have been a better way to phrase my question and in light a recent post of yours...would you suffer me that one question and answer it from yours in an Orthodox perspective?
What have we to fear, though, from genuine, discerning investigation of our Tradition?  What have we to lose from asking questions?  If what we Orthodox proclaim is Truth, don't you think it should be able to stand up to intellectual scrutiny? ...the Church...developed a theological language for articulating what she had always believed and practiced....

My Point is simple  Celebrate everything Scripturaly 

Warmest Regards
In Service to Christ

James

??? How are your questions relevant?
??? What's your point, anyway?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on August 21, 2008, 05:20:16 PM
The 4th of July celebrates the day we declared War/Our independence and for the  next 8 years the deaths of some 100,000 people that does not seem joyful nor does comparing  Christ's birth to a secular event.

Sounds like a reason to celebrate.  After all, in celebrating the commemoration of St. Constantine, we remember how he was victorious in war killing others with the blessing of the Cross on his soldiers' breastplates.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Myrrh23 on August 22, 2008, 04:26:11 AM
OK, I think I see what your saying
 let me make sure I understand.
The 4th of July celebrates the day we declared War/Our independence and for the  next 8 years the deaths of some 100,000 people that does not seem joyful nor does comparing  Christ's birth to a secular event.

Yes, people died, but on this flawed earth, freedom does not come free. It is a terrible thing that so many people died to give our country its freedom from an English brat on a throne, but look also at the terrible price that was paid for humanity so that we could not only enter Heaven, but enter a more full relationship with God through Jesus Christ. What are 100,000 dead compared to the torture and death of God in the flesh? But both had a purpose, and we should still celebrate both based on the precious thing they gave us. :)
Both events sought to give us freedom, and that is worth dying for, whether it's the death of our people or the death of the Son of God. :)
Okay...(gets off her mighty speech box) ;D
"All Hallowed even" {halloween} with the exception of maybe Jack's story about the tricking the devil himself and becoming the  Jack o' Lantern
Is just another day of Secular Corporately money grabbing and contributed to the unhealthy eating habbits we already have in Fall/winter.

It's true that the Fat Pig Corporations like to stick their fingers into our wallets on the secular and religious holidays, but that doesn't mean a holiday itself is evil or useless. Look at the healthier spin that many conservative communities and modest Christians take on Halloween, with Pumpkin Fests, Harvest celebrations, prayer and mass vigils, etc. As for the unhealthy eating habits, I highly disagree. I think Halloween is teaching us that eating sweets and candy should be largely reserved for special occasions like Halloween, instead of the enormous access we now have to such things. I also think Halloween teaches us to be generous with such good things as sweets, by buying them with your own money and giving them away for free to little children. Also, it's not just treats that people give children, but school supplies, money, bible tracts, baby clothes (like socks), books, gift certificates, etc. I absolutely love Halloween, except when the little kids dress as movie serial killers or smut costumes. As Christians, we can give a good Christian tone to the holiday. Now Christmas...THAT needs improvement! I personally think we've turned that holiday into a "buy, buy, buy" event. :(
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 22, 2008, 09:01:36 AM
Yes, people died, but on this flawed earth, freedom does not come free. It is a terrible thing that so many people died to give our country its freedom from an English brat on a throne,
Actually George III was a German brat, of the house of Hanover. In fact, his father and grandfather could not even speak English, and he barely could.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Myrrh23 on August 22, 2008, 09:58:14 AM
Actually George III was a German brat, of the house of Hanover. In fact, his father and grandfather could not even speak English, and he barely could.

Looks like you'll not only be educating kids this new semester, but adults on the internet as well, Ytter! Aint you glad you picked education as a career choice?? ;D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 22, 2008, 11:43:02 AM
Looks like you'll not only be educating kids this new semester, but adults on the internet as well, Ytter! Aint you glad you picked education as a career choice?? ;D
I educate anyone who will listen, and anyone who is forced to listen.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: EofK on August 22, 2008, 12:03:50 PM
I educate anyone who will listen, and anyone who is forced to listen.

Amen to that!  (LOL... there is no end to a teacher's teaching.  There was one morning I woke up at 5:30 am to a lesson on the road systems in Canada.)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on August 22, 2008, 12:08:04 PM
^ I don't remember this. ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: EofK on August 22, 2008, 12:28:39 PM
^Probably not.  It was 5:30 am.   :laugh:
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on August 23, 2008, 02:10:38 AM
Since you also asked "why Should" let me Should.... I believe we should use scripture for celebrating every event we are Orthodox after all.
Yes, we are Orthodox, which explains why we don't follow after your Protestant idea of sola scriptura.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Myrrh23 on August 24, 2008, 12:23:32 AM
I educate anyone who will listen, and anyone who is forced to listen.

Wow. Ytter the Jedi.... ;)
I swear that was so Qui-Gon Jinn! :D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: asmotj on August 29, 2008, 09:34:28 PM
Good Point,

However I am not a "scriptures only" OR a "protestant."
I don't consider myself a protestant because I am unwilling to protest someone in a made up position especially since the first one denied Christ three times. I cannot imagine how that would be infallible so in my opinion and thought(not scripture)  he was never involved in Orthodoxy in the first place. 
But thank you for commenting I really have enjoyed your posts...


Yes, we are Orthodox, which explains why we don't follow after your Protestant idea of sola scriptura.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on August 29, 2008, 10:51:37 PM
Good Point,

However I am not a "scriptures only" OR a "protestant."
I don't consider myself a protestant because I am unwilling to protest someone in a made up position especially since the first one denied Christ three times. I cannot imagine how that would be infallible so in my opinion and thought(not scripture)  he was never involved in Orthodoxy in the first place. 
But thank you for commenting I really have enjoyed your posts...

First of all, you seem to be working on the assumption that the Papal claim of infallibility works on a personal level, when it applies only when the Pope is speaking ex Cathedra. And are you claiming that because St Peter denied the Lord, he was never involved in Orthodoxy?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Asteriktos on October 11, 2008, 07:47:57 PM
About time for this subject to come up again...

Quote
Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?

Yes.

And now on to a more important matter:

Quote
I've always been a sucker for a good horror movie (note the operative word: good). 

I've always been the opposite: I love "bad" (cheesy, campy) horror movies. Redneck Zombies is probably my favorite.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: SolEX01 on October 11, 2008, 08:38:43 PM
About time for this subject to come up again...

Quote
Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?

Yes.

This thread is resembling the ones on homosexuality and deserves to be locked....   ::)

Edited for clarity.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Myrrh23 on October 11, 2008, 10:38:21 PM
So what's everyone doing for Halloween this year? Wanna do something? :)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on October 12, 2008, 12:12:46 AM
So what's everyone doing for Halloween this year? Wanna do something? :)

May I propose that we reduce the similitude of Halloween discussion to paint-ball battles by adhering to a strict format of numbered theses and documentation.
Theses without documentation would not even be allowed to be posted by the moderator.
It would be nice if people used the terms of Toulmin's Argument Model to comment on their theses (Claim, Grounds, Warrant, Backing, Qualifier, Rebuttal), but that may be asking too much.

Example:
Thesis1.  The date of Halloween was fixed as a universal feast in the West by Pope Gregory III on November 1 in order to commemorate the dedication a chapel in St. Peter's to All Saints.
Thesis1.Documentation:  "All Saints' Day," in the Catholic Encyclopedia (http://newadvent.org/cathen/01315a.htm).

Now that Thesis1 has been stated, it is up to partisans to supply grounds, warrant, backing, qualifiers and of course rebuttals.  However, any rebuttal must also enjoy documentation or else receive the Omnia obstat of the moderator.  This approach would make it possible for us to give all arguments the cold, piercing eye of the hard-boiled egg.  It would prevent us from making silly claims fueled more by passion than by fact.  Unanswered theses would count as victories by default.  I expect that I would learn a lot from people I disagree with, than which very little more could be desired from an argument.
DanM
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Myrrh23 on October 12, 2008, 01:19:23 AM
DanM, what did your response have to do with my invitiation towards to whole Board to celebrate this Halloween together? ???
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Asteriktos on October 12, 2008, 01:43:54 AM
Quote
It would be nice if people used the terms of Toulmin's Argument Model to comment on their theses (Claim, Grounds, Warrant, Backing, Qualifier, Rebuttal), but that may be asking too much.

I tried reading The Uses of Argument by Toulmin... ZZZzzz.  :angel: Maybe I'll give it another shot.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on October 12, 2008, 11:01:38 AM
DanM, what did your response have to do with my invitiation towards to whole Board to celebrate this Halloween together? ???

Myrhh23,
I simply mistook you.
Where exactly would the Halloween party be celebrated?
DanM
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Myrrh23 on October 12, 2008, 04:10:30 PM
DanM, what did your response have to do with my invitiation towards to whole Board to celebrate this Halloween together? ???

Myrhh23,
I simply mistook you.
Where exactly would the Halloween party be celebrated?
DanM

Nah, s'cool! ;D
I don't know where the party would be celebrated; I just want to do something. People could bring their kids, everyone could dress up and meet each other.... Maybe all of us could make plans to do something together for Halloween? Yay or nay?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GabrieltheCelt on October 17, 2008, 07:35:52 PM
Here's what I get to put up with everynight until November!  My neighbor has turned his front yard into a cemetery.  One more reason I can't stand this satanic 'celebration'...
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Asteriktos on October 17, 2008, 07:53:20 PM
Maybe I'm just desensitized or something, but that doesn't seem that bad :)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Jetavan on October 17, 2008, 08:53:33 PM
Here's what I get to put up with everynight until November!  My neighbor has turned his front yard into a cemetery.  One more reason I can't stand this satanic 'celebration'...

Looks like another day at the office. ;D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Myrrh23 on October 17, 2008, 09:26:27 PM
Gabriel, that is so cool!! :o
Man, if I were younger, I'd so trick-or-treat at that house! You're so lucky to live there......I'm jealous. :(
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Αριστοκλής on October 18, 2008, 06:43:13 AM
I know I voted "no" in this poll a long time ago, but made no explanation via a post (I think - too lazy to read 9 pages of posts at 45 each).
We've a QA/QC saying at work on the production line, "When in doubt, throw it out". Applying a version of that to the question here..."When in doubt, leave it out".
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Rosehip on October 18, 2008, 09:10:21 AM
My parents never allowed us children to participate in any way with Halloween. It was hard on me as a child to feel  left out of the dressing up and trick-or-treating antics, but now as an adult, I am totally oblivious to this holiday. It's a total non-event and irrelevant to me. I'm hardly aware of its existence. The whole thing seems bizarre.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GreekChef on October 18, 2008, 11:21:52 AM
Halloween has always been a hard thing in my house, because my birthday is on the 28th (yes, OXI day).  I was almost a halloween baby, so I've always celebrated my birthday as everyone was gearing up for halloween.  I think my parents did a good job of balancing things out-- she let me have parties with pumpkin plates and napkins, stuff like that.  And my sister and I did go trick-or-treating, because my parents didn't want us to feel left out.  But we were never allowed to have scary costumes.  We were things like princesses and pumpkins, and, my personal favorite, a bag of M&M's.  :)

I just have to relay a little story that happened at halloween two years ago... my husband and I and a dear friend of ours were in a party store just before halloween.  We were just wandering around waiting for the restaurant next door to seat us (there was a 45 minute wait to be seated that night).  We wandered through the costume section just as a woman and her two kids walked up to the giant wall where the costumes were hanging.  There were pictures of each costume on a model, and the costumes themselves came in packages.  The little boy was probably five and the little girl about seven.  The girl picked out a snow white costume and the boy a costume of a soldier in fatigues (no gun).  The mother OBJECTED to their picks.  She gave the little boy a costume of the devil.  Now this wasn't just any costume.  It was probably the scariest one I've ever seen.  It was truly demonic--- wrinkled, scary mask with the curled horns, etc.  And she gave the girl a PROSTITUTE costume!  Fishnet stockings, hot pink "leather" mini skirt, tube top, etc.  I was appalled.  I was even more appalled because the kids obviously didn't want them.  They both immediately threw temper tantrums.  But she yelled at them both and forced them to take them, saying that if they didn't wear those, they wouldn't wear costumes at all!  My husband and Dimitri and I were standing open-mouthed watching the whole thing, our eyes as big as dinner plates.  I couldn't believe what I was seeing.  Personally, I was horrified that the store would even sell those costumes in little kid sizes, but then this display was awful!!!  I wanted to say something so badly, and I wanted to hug those little kids, and I wanted to slap the mother (God forgive me).  The whole thing made quite an impression on me, which is why I remember it to this day.  It was the perfect example of "what are we teaching our children!!??!!"

I don't have any problem, personally, with a halloween alternative for kids, such as a fall festival at Church.  This way the kids aren't left out of the festivities (you have to admit that it IS fun to play dress up!), but the emphasis is on good fun, fellowship, community, love, Christ.  No scary costumes, no ghost stories... At retreats I've done, we tell saint stories instead.  Their much more captivating for the kids, I find, because they're true!  And what better way to emphasize Christ and His love than telling stories of miraculous saints!?!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Rosehip on October 18, 2008, 01:13:38 PM
That's a very sobering story you shared with us, Presbytera! So very sad when adults intentionally mar those precious, fleeting years of childhood innocence and purity in such a manner.  I'm thankful my parents protected me as well as they did from such vulgarity and evil. Lord have mercy on us all!

Recently, a friend of mine was telling us how at her parish the priest holds a moleben to St. John of Kronstadt in the evening and afterwards the children receive lots of candy. This way they are occupied by a prayer service and can "brag" to their peers at school the next day about all the candy they received! I thought it was a wonderful, and very godly, alternative.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Myrrh23 on October 18, 2008, 03:24:42 PM
GreekChef, I WOULD have said something, as big-mouthed as I am! ;)
I probably would have even said to the mother that if she was going to make her kid dress up as a prostitute, I'd report her to child services, even if the store IS selling it! >:(
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GabrieltheCelt on October 18, 2008, 11:10:34 PM
Gabriel, that is so cool!! :o
Man, if I were younger, I'd so trick-or-treat at that house! You're so lucky to live there......I'm jealous. :(
Ummmm, I was kinda goin' for the opposite reaction. :-\  I think we've become sooo desensitized that we tend not to think twice when someone turns their front yard into a graveyard.  Beyond bizarre.  Like smoking. :)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Rosehip on October 18, 2008, 11:17:32 PM
I agree about the desensitization part, Gabriel.  I spent several years in Eastern Europe, where people simply do not celebrate Halloween (what a relief!). How well I remember my first Halloween back here in North America! :o I was calmly walking down the street when suddenly, before my very eyes, in someone's front yard was a "man" with only the lower half of his body (waist down) above ground-legs skyward! I was literally terrified, thinking it was a real person in this distressing situation. All around him were "tombstones". It all seemed in very bad taste, and this was amplified by not having been exposed to such terrors for several years.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Papist on October 20, 2008, 10:46:55 AM
I think it's just cultural.
Don't we Orthodox do even stranger things than go around in fancy dress asking for candy?
Behind our Altars is the life-sized image of the Corpse of a Man Who was tortured to death by being nailed to a Cross. We eat His Flesh and drink His Blood. On Holy Friday night, we carry His symbolic Tomb in procession and venerate it. I was in Crete for Pascha in the late eighties, and they celebrate the Resurrection by hanging an effigy of Judas from a gallows and burning it with a bonfire at Midnight.
Being a Christian is so much fun.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Amdetsion on October 20, 2008, 01:38:30 PM
Mari, that story is simply appalling. I cannot fathom why a mother would choose to override the choice of innocuous costumes.

And GIC, what can I say? Every day I drive my daughter to school, and I see a bunch of pre- to barely-pubescent wearing clothing that says, "I am a sexual object." (The preferred boys' statement, by contrast, is "I am a slob.") Kids that age need a childhood.
I agree completely.

I agree completely.

Lord help us.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Pravoslavbob on October 20, 2008, 04:07:42 PM
For the discussion on prostitution, please go to this (http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,17954.msg261126.html#msg261126) thread.

Pravoslavbob
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: AMM on October 28, 2008, 05:10:50 PM
People do stupid stuff and have their kids exposed to inappropriate things 365 days a year.

I love watching Charlie Brown and taking my kids trick or treating.  So I will be celebrating.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on October 28, 2008, 08:03:41 PM
As northern Europe and the British Isles became Christianized, the Church saw that the pagan
festivals still lured Christians to compromise their faith. One such was the Druidic New Year that
began on November 1. In the strictly Orthodox early Celtic Church, the Holy Fathers tried to
counteract this pagan new year festival by establishing the feast of All Saints on that same day (in
the East, this feast is celebrated on the Sunday after Pentecost).

I am pretty sure that the Pope Gregory III would have cared--if he had known--about what the Picts in the sticks were doing, but I can only claim absence of evidence.  Can you cite chapter and verse for the Christianization of Samhein?
Thanks, DanM
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Chacci on October 29, 2008, 04:13:47 PM
So what's everyone doing for Halloween this year? Wanna do something? :)

This year, my family will go trick or treating on Friday - my kids are dressing up as Dorothy Gail(?), a Scarecrow, A SWAT team guy, and a Chile pepper.  Then on Saturday, after Vespers, we are celebrating a semi-traditional dia de los muertos, replete with marigolds, an altar with pictures of our loved ones, some tequila and posole.  We have invited our Priest with the rest of our Church to come over do a Trisagion to remember our loved ones.  As is traditional, those coming over will bring their loved ones favorite dish to share.

Your welcome to join us...

Chacci
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Asteriktos on October 29, 2008, 04:44:05 PM
Quote
and a Chile pepper

Lol! Sweet :)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ebor on October 30, 2008, 11:21:11 AM
So what's everyone doing for Halloween this year? Wanna do something? :)

This year, my family will go trick or treating on Friday - my kids are dressing up as Dorothy Gail(?), a Scarecrow, A SWAT team guy, and a Chile pepper. 

Those are some great costumes!  Re: the chili pepper, the second year our oldest went trick or treating (and the first time he decided on his own costume) he was an ear of corn.  That was an interesting bit of construction with a front of little yellow 'pillows' and a kind of cape that also was on his head in green that had a tuft of raffia as the silk.  Someone thought he was an alligator.  :D

I think Youngest will be a dinosaur again, while the oldest now 15 is 'too mature' to dress up, though he might take his brother (who doesn't like much candy but does like to visit and ring door bells) to a few houses in the neighborhood.  Our daughter is coming up with her own costume this year and at one point was going to be a sushi-roll (!).  Now I don't know what she has in mind.

On the pumpkin front, last year the teen carved the "Eye of Sauron" on his.  He's pondering what to do this year, but I think the Stargate is out because it could fall out if the base isn't big enough.   ;D

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GabrieltheCelt on October 30, 2008, 11:29:50 AM
Quote
and a Chile pepper

Lol! Sweet :)
They're actually more spicy than sweet. 8)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: thetraditionalfrog on October 30, 2008, 03:11:39 PM
For myself, not having any children it is a non issue. I'm going to join my parents for dinner then visit with them for the remainder evening.

Rather than "trick or treat", I much prefer the phrase from Scotland "The sky is blue, the grass is green, let us have our Halloween"!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Αριστοκλής on November 01, 2008, 05:08:21 AM
One of the best pieces on this issue I've read:
"Halloween Orthodoxy and Secular Culture"
By Fr. John Moses
Nov 1, 2008, 10:00

http://www.pravmir.com/article_408.html
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on November 01, 2008, 11:40:34 AM
One of the best pieces on this issue I've read:
"Halloween Orthodoxy and Secular Culture"
By Fr. John Moses
Nov 1, 2008, 10:00
http://www.pravmir.com/article_408.html

I am not competent to address the spiritual issues raised in this article, but the parts of the article claiming to give the history of Halloween are just plain silly.
Please note that I do not label my statements rebuttals but counter-claims.  A rebuttal would require source citation, which I cannot afford to do, since I live a long ways from a proper library.

Claim 1.  "The feast of Halloween began among the Celtic peoples of Britain, Ireland, and northern France."
Counter-claim 1.  The feast of Halloween takes its origins from the dedication of a chapel in St. Peter's which was specially dedicated to ALL SAINTS.  The dedication date of that chapel was 1 November (8th century, year unknown).  Pope Gregory transferred the older feast of all martyrs from 13 May 609/610, which had been established by the dedication of the Pantheon by Pope Boniface IV.  It boggles my mind that Pope Gregory would have known or cared that 1 November was Samhein among the Picts in the sticks. 

Claim 2.  "These pagan peoples believed that physical life was born from death."
Counter-claim 2.  Maybe they did, but the Druids never wrote down what they believed, so we are not free to speculate.

Claim 3.  Therefore, they celebrated the beginning of the "new year" in the fall (on the eve of October 31 and into the day of November 1), when they believed, the season of cold, darkness, decay and death began.
Counter-claim 3.  Most people in the northern hemisphere do believe that cold, darkness, decay and death begin in the fall.  It's the time when things die.

Claim 4.  The Celts believed that a certain deity, whom they called Samhain, was the Lord of Death. To him they gave honor at their New Year's festival.
Counter-claim 4.  This is sheer nonsense.  Scholars are not in agreement with what Samhein means--beyond the reference to a minor hero whose magical cow was stolen--but there is no Lord of the Dead if you look for him beyond Chick publications or Internet resources.

Claim 5.  Many beliefs and practices were associated with this feast, which have endured to this current time.
Counter-claim 5.  The efforts of people to debunk Halloween and Christmas by connecting them with ancient pagan practices does not merely race ahead of the evidence, but soars into the the farthest reaches of Internet legend.  It takes a great deal of painstaking research to connect even fairly recent customs; the facile assumption that we are doing something just so because the Druids did it one, two or three thousand years ago is arrogant.

Claim 6.  On the eve of the New Year's festival, the Druids, who were the priests of the Celtic cult, instructed their people to extinguish all hearth fires and lights. On the evening of the festival they ignited a huge bonfire built from oak branches, which they believed to be sacred.
Non-rebuttal 6.  No idea.  This could be.

Claim 7.  Upon this fire, they offered burnt sacrifices of crops, animals,
Counter-claim 7.  Animals were in fact slaughtered and feasted on, if they were judged to be unable to survive the winter on meager rations.

Claim 8.  and even human beings
Rebuttal 8.  The Druids seem to have performed human sacrifice, if Caesar is to be believed (although he also reported that elk had no joints in their legs, so that the hunter need only saw most of the way through a tree against which his prey was known to sleep standing up; it was a matter of time before the tree fell down and the poor beast, like an unhorsed knight, could not get up and run away), but no evidence gathered by someone hardy enough to gather information beyond the confines of the Internet supports the contention that human sacrifice was specially done on Halloween.

Claim 9.  to appease and cajole Samhain, the lord of Death. They also believed that Samhain, being pleased by their faithful offerings, allowed the souls of the dead to return to homes for a festal visit on this day.
Counter-claim 9.  This is sheer stuff and nonsense. 

Claim 10.  This belief led to the ritual practice of wandering about in the dark dressed in costumes indicating ghosts, witches, hobgoblins, fairies and demons.
Counter-claim 10.  This is folk-etiology.

Claim 11.  The living entered into fellowship and communion with their dead by this ritual act of imitation, through costume and the wandering about in the darkness, even as the souls of the dead were believed to wander.
Counter-claim 11.  More folk-etiology.

Claim 12.  The dialogue of "trick or treat" is integral to Halloween beliefs and practices. The souls of the dead had--by Celtic tradition--entered into the world of darkness, decay, and death. They bore the affliction of great hunger on their festal visit. This belief brought about the practice of begging as another Celtic ritual imitation of the dead. The implication was that any souls of the dead and their imitators who are not appeased with "treats", i.e. offerings, will provoke the wrath of Samhain, whose angels and servants (the souls and human imitators) could retaliate through a system of "tricks" or curses. One radio commentator takes great fun in calling Halloween, "Begoween."
Rebuttal 12.  Loads more folk-etiology.

Claim 13.  The sacred fire was the fire of the New Year was taken home to rekindle lights and hearth fires.
Counter-claim 13.  This sounds more like the ROman custom.

Claim 14.  This developed into the practice of the Jack O Lantern (in the U.S.A.; a pumpkin, in older days other vegetables were used), which was carved in imitation of the dead and used to convey the new light and fire to the home, where the lantern was left burning throughout the night.
Counter-claim 14.  Even more folk-etiology.

Claim 15.  Divination was also part of this ancient Celtic festival. After the fire had died out the Druids examined the remains of the main sacrifices, hoping to foretell the coming year's events.
Counter-claim 15.  Divination was important in pagan society.  I would not be surprised if the Irish used Samhein the way that the English used Christmas--to tell the future.

Claim 16.  The Halloween festival was the proper night for sorcery, fortune telling, divination, games of chance, and Satan worship and witchcraft in the later Middle Ages.
Counter-claim 16.  Not that I can tell.

Let me sum things up. 
It is fun and easy to demonize things; it is very hard to do the kind of research necessary to support extravagant theses.  Most opponents of Halloween simply cite Internet sources; they do not go to a nice research library and do the incredibly hard work of finding evidence that is generally acceptable and piecing it together convincingly.  I have never known any opponent of Halloween refer to the standard sources of history, archeology or linguistics.  Nor will I ever, since the instant such an opponent turns to the cold, indifferent facts of history for support, he will be thrust back like a rejected suitor.  The assumption seems to be that by being on the side of the angels, one need not play by the rules.  I do not accept this.  If I am on the side of the angels, playing by the rules is all that matters; my shoddy scholarship or appeal to ignorance will discredit the angels if I do not play by the rules. 
DanM

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ebor on November 01, 2008, 01:07:47 PM
One of the best pieces on this issue I've read:
"Halloween Orthodoxy and Secular Culture"
By Fr. John Moses
Nov 1, 2008, 10:00
http://www.pravmir.com/article_408.html

Claim 2.  "These pagan peoples believed that physical life was born from death."
Counter-claim 2.  Maybe they did, but the Druids never wrote down what they believed, so we are not free to speculate.

You are correct, DanM, we do not have solid information on what druids and other non-Christian peoples of Ireland and the British isles believed.  For a scholarly look at this there is Ronald Hutton's book The Pagan Religions of the Ancient British Isles

Quote
Claim 4.  The Celts believed that a certain deity, whom they called Samhain, was the Lord of Death. To him they gave honor at their New Year's festival.
Counter-claim 4.  This is sheer nonsense.  Scholars are not in agreement with what Samhein means--beyond the reference to a minor hero whose magical cow was stolen--but there is no Lord of the Dead if you look for him beyond Chick publications or Internet resources.

Quite so. There is no such a being/deity as "Samhain"/"Sowin" or however else it may be spelled. The word has a meaning along the lines of "summer's end" and varients of it mean "November" in Irish and Scots Gaelic.

http://www.savegaelic.org/gaelic/basic-scottish-gaelic.php
http://www.irish-sayings.com/cats/days/months/

Quote
Claim 5.  Many beliefs and practices were associated with this feast, which have endured to this current time.
Counter-claim 5.  The efforts of people to debunk Halloween and Christmas by connecting them with ancient pagan practices does not merely race ahead of the evidence, but soars into the the farthest reaches of Internet legend.  It takes a great deal of painstaking research to connect even fairly recent customs; the facile assumption that we are doing something just so because the Druids did it one, two or three thousand years ago is arrogant.

I have a post earlier in this thread that notes that some "practices" are only from the 1930's

Quote
Claim 6.  On the eve of the New Year's festival, the Druids, who were the priests of the Celtic cult, instructed their people to extinguish all hearth fires and lights. On the evening of the festival they ignited a huge bonfire built from oak branches, which they believed to be sacred.
Non-rebuttal 6.  No idea.  This could be.

The dousing of all fires and the kindling of one by "druids" occurs in the Spring, not the Fall.  This was the case when St. Patrick kindled the Easter fire which can be read in the Life of St. Patrick, section XL: 
http://www.gutenberg.org/files/18482/18482-8.txt

Quote
Claim 7.  Upon this fire, they offered burnt sacrifices of crops, animals,
Counter-claim 7.  Animals were in fact slaughtered and feasted on, if they were judged to be unable to survive the winter on meager rations.

Indeed, it's common in agricultural societies to slaughter some animals and salt/smoke/dry the meat to feed the people as well.  Nothing 'spooky' or satanic about that at all.

Quote
Claim 8.  and even human beings
Rebuttal 8.  The Druids seem to have performed human sacrifice, if Caesar is to be believed (although he also reported that elk had no joints in their legs, so that the hunter need only saw most of the way through a tree against which his prey was known to sleep standing up; it was a matter of time before the tree fell down and the poor beast, like an unhorsed knight, could not get up and run away), but no evidence gathered by someone hardy enough to gather information beyond the confines of the Internet supports the contention that human sacrifice was specially done on Halloween.

Caesar and the Romans were, shall we say, not unbiased in how they would depict 'enemies'.  And again, we don't know what they did from their own words (Hutton)

Quote
Claim 9.  to appease and cajole Samhain, the lord of Death. They also believed that Samhain, being pleased by their faithful offerings, allowed the souls of the dead to return to homes for a festal visit on this day.
Counter-claim 9.  This is sheer stuff and nonsense. 

No such "god" and it occurs to me that there are similar feelings and beliefs about one's passed away loved ones in the Día de los Muertos celebrations in Mexico or the O-Bon in Japan and such days in other cultures.

Quote
Claim 13.  The sacred fire was the fire of the New Year was taken home to rekindle lights and hearth fires.
Counter-claim 13.  This sounds more like the ROman custom.

Spring time, see above and St. Patrick.

That's all I have time for, but DanM is correct.

Ebor
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Αριστοκλής on November 01, 2008, 04:12:07 PM
Tee-hee, this is fun.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on November 02, 2008, 02:28:51 AM
I'm surprised that Fr John Moses would repeat such twaddle. Clearly he lacks any scholarship in Celtic history and has fallen for fanciful reconstruction. I suppose these lies are titilating and much more fun than what we know of the truth, and no doubt the early Christians were bursting their sides laughing at the accusation that they were baby-murderers. Of course, modern Greeks I have spoken to do get somewhat irked that modern "history" suggests that the males of ancient Greece had wives to reproduce but preferred sexual intimacy with their own sex. Which, of course, is as much twaddle as Fr John's essay.

We are Christians; we should abhor lies and overturn them wherever we find them. Falsehood, isn't an innocent source for sport, even if such merely affects the long dead. Thank goodness there are those who still have the moral fortitude to defend a people long gone from the slander of this modern age. I thank both Dan and Ebor on behalf of my Celtic ancestors. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Αριστοκλής on November 02, 2008, 02:51:48 AM
Guess you guys and gals don't like the piece, huh?  ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on November 02, 2008, 03:10:14 AM
Guess you guys and gals don't like the piece, huh?  ;)

Personally, my Celtic ancestors don't let me get any sleep. They are real sticklers for the Toulmin argument model.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on November 02, 2008, 05:29:00 PM
Yes, please someone write a full rebuttal of these ridiculous claims.

But even if true, it has no relevance to todays culture.  For example, it seems that Christmas trees also had a dark past apparently (according to Wikipedia though, so I don't know).  Apparently, trees were used as a sacrifice shrine for the gods, where every ninth year, males of all species including men would be sacrificed.  When a Swedish Christian king refused to take part, after being deposed, he was happy to be among suffering in Christ's name.

Later St. Boniface dubbed the Christmas tree, which is in use till today.

And how relevant is this with today's culture?  Nothing but an extra piece of knowledge.  Just as no one today tricks and treats for the sake of Samhein, no one uses the trees we have as sacrifices.

Just one of the many reasons why we as Christians are laughed at as ignorant, not as the intellectual, practical, and understanding people of the past.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on November 02, 2008, 10:24:45 PM
Yes, please someone write a full rebuttal of these ridiculous claims.

But even if true, it has no relevance to todays culture.  For example, it seems that Christmas trees also had a dark past apparently (according to Wikipedia though, so I don't know).  Apparently, trees were used as a sacrifice shrine for the gods, where every ninth year, males of all species including men would be sacrificed.  When a Swedish Christian king refused to take part, after being deposed, he was happy to be among suffering in Christ's name.

Later St. Boniface dubbed the Christmas tree, which is in use till today.

And how relevant is this with today's culture?  Nothing but an extra piece of knowledge.  Just as no one today tricks and treats for the sake of Samhein, no one uses the trees we have as sacrifices.

Just one of the many reasons why we as Christians are laughed at as ignorant, not as the intellectual, practical, and understanding people of the past.

^Excellent post. But I, for one, am simply fed up of repeatedly refuting stupid claims by willfully stupid people. As the axiom goes; "one can take a horse to water, but one can't make it drink". This nonsense about connections to pagan rituals (true or false) is simply the replaying of the guilt by association nonsense. It's fear mongering and I'm surprised by how many Christians fall for it. It's simple enough to check such claims before one repeats them as if it is the gospel truth, but it's almost as if such people rejoice in ignorance.

Anyway, I hope everyone who celebrates had a HAPPY HALLOWEEN!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: DanM on November 02, 2008, 10:26:52 PM
DIXIT  Yes, please someone write a full rebuttal of these ridiculous claims.
DICO  Not necessary.  How often do you accept an article in a journal at face value which demonizes without sources?  The difficulty of Halloween controversies is that demonization and poverty of citation are acceptable.  Even with the most carefully pieced together theses one often has to succumb to skepticism.

DIXIT  But even if true, it has no relevance to todays culture. 
DICO  This I believe was the reason St. Augustine claimed one had to tolerate the continuing celebration of the Lupercalia.

DIXIT  For example, it seems that Christmas trees also had a dark past apparently (according to Wikipedia though, so I don't know). 
DICO  Nego.  To the best of my knowledge, Christmas trees have never been more than stage-props for the re-enactment of the expulsion of Adam and Eve, which in the West was celebrated on December 24.  The earliest references to them are terribly late--I want to say 16th cent.  This is not to say that trees have been unimportant in pagan Europe.  Nor is this to deny that certain customs appear to descend from a benighted--or beforested--era.  It can also work the other way round:  I have heard that certain "witches" had "spells" which were really medieval blessings for various occasions (in Latin).

DIXIT  Just one of the many reasons why we as Christians are laughed at as ignorant, not as the intellectual, practical, and understanding people of the past.
DICO  If we can approach our flashes in the pan with the same erudition and consideration as our Fathers have always done, we would have nothing to be ashamed of.
DanM
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on November 02, 2008, 10:52:39 PM
It's simple enough to check such claims before one repeats them as if it is the gospel truth, but it's almost as if such people rejoice in ignorance.

I think a major contributing factor is the "speed of information" these days, which is really the "speed of rumour". The internet is a great tool, but it's also a soapbox which amplifies the voice of every crack-pot, and will be of little use if we don't upload much more of the historical knowledge we have accrued through the ages (much like how ancient knowledge was kept alive in the Scriptoria of Western monasteries during the Dark Ages). At the moment, the internet is, for the most part a collection of editorials and "infotainment". Robert Wilensky once said "We've all heard that a million monkeys banging on a million typewriters will eventually reproduce the entire works of Shakespeare. Now, thanks to the Internet, we know this is not true."
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on November 02, 2008, 11:00:21 PM
Robert Wilensky once said "We've all heard that a million monkeys banging on a million typewriters will eventually reproduce the entire works of Shakespeare. Now, thanks to the Internet, we know this is not true."

 :laugh:
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on November 02, 2008, 11:32:11 PM
Robert Wilensky once said "We've all heard that a million monkeys banging on a million typewriters will eventually reproduce the entire works of Shakespeare. Now, thanks to the Internet, we know this is not true."
I love it!  :laugh:
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ebor on November 05, 2008, 12:56:35 PM
Guess you guys and gals don't like the piece, huh?  ;)

 ???  I'm a bit puzzled.  There are factual and historic errors in the piece.  Like or dislike may not apply at all when giving correct information.  May one ask why you thought it was such "one of the best pieces" please?

Ebor
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Asteriktos on October 29, 2009, 01:02:47 AM
*bump*
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 29, 2009, 01:05:08 AM
^Stirrer!!  :laugh:
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on October 29, 2009, 01:14:42 AM
^Stirrer!!  :laugh:
Clever! I love the use of the cloak of invisibility.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on October 29, 2009, 01:16:15 AM
(http://images.southparkstudios.com/crap/downloads/preview_image_thumbnail.php?id=1847)

Rabble, rabble, rabble!


Looks like swine flu hysteria will likely put a halt to more Halloween festivities than religious convictions would.  :P
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on October 29, 2009, 02:22:55 AM
Personally, I always disagreed with the idea of Christians keeping their doors closed on Halloween or segregating themselves from the world in order to have "Fall Festival" parties at their Churches on the same night. The way I see it, there is one day out of the year when strangers actually come to our houses and ask us for something. What a great opportunity that is for us to shine the Light of of Christ by:

1. Giving generously (even handing out candy or preferably healthy goodies is an act of generosity and kindness.)

2. Showing hospitality and demonstrating friendliness to our neighbors.

3. Handing out information about our Faith and inviting people to our Churches.

     For the past few Halloweens, our family has given out candy and treats along with small tracts I had printed with some Christian quotations from the great Emperor Haile Selassie. This year I might have some tracts printed up with an icon and the story of my Patron Saint. I just do these in black and white, and get them made at the local Kinkos. It's not expensive at all.

Anyway, I think Halloween affords us an opportunity to engage the world without being of the world. My children always enjoy giving out candy and tracts to the neighbors, and they never feel disadvantaged because they can't "trick or treat." We make some popcorn, watch some wholesome movies, and look forward to people coming to our door.

OK, that's my two cents on how to do things. :)

Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 29, 2009, 03:59:15 AM
^Stirrer!!  :laugh:
Clever! I love the use of the cloak of invisibility.

Yes! Get thee gone, O wicked practitioner of technological magic!! :laugh:
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Asteriktos on October 29, 2009, 04:07:36 AM
 ;D  Hey, it's not my fault, I was forced into doing it. I was minding my own business on the "Who's Online" part of the forum, and saw a Guest/bot/whatever viewing this thread, and suddenly felt compelled--as though through some evil sorcery--to resurrect the thread.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 29, 2009, 05:01:13 AM
Right.... you felt compelled!  :laugh:
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on October 29, 2009, 05:33:06 AM
Lets see how many people we can get roped in to this thread by keeping it bumped up during this season.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on October 29, 2009, 05:36:03 AM
This issue came up this year, as my daughter is now of an age that she can actually participate. We were talking about how, in creating these Fall Festivals that follow all the same traditions of Halloween (games, candy, costumes), churches actually celebrate Halloween more than perhaps any other institution. It seems Protestant churches especially, though many of our Catholic churches locally as well, celebrate all of the civic holidays while neglecting the Christian holidays--including the ones Protestants normally celebrate. The Assemblies church I used to attend wouldn't even celebrate Christmas, "to give the pastor a day off with his family." I see something very hypocritical in a church that gets all worked up about people celebrating a civic holiday yet neglects to celebrate most of the Christian holidays. First focus on doing what's right yourself, and then you can preach to others against doing what's wrong.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Tallitot on October 29, 2009, 07:00:47 AM
Lets see how many people we can get roped in to this thread by keeping it bumped up during this season.


White on white..neat trick
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Asteriktos on October 29, 2009, 07:06:54 AM
My daughter, the trick-or-treatin' princess  ;D
(http://c3.ac-images.myspacecdn.com/images02/73/l_6a3a4d6620e34718805f533f970b78ba.jpg)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ms.hoorah on October 29, 2009, 07:32:00 AM
^She is precious! 

My parents never let me celebrate Halloween. (This is the root of all my problems.)   
I told my kids that they were celebrating All Saints' Day with the Catholics (Nov 1).  ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: pensateomnia on October 29, 2009, 08:05:38 AM
*bump*

Shine a light (or in this case darker color) on it, and the vampire post is revealed!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 29, 2009, 08:20:51 AM
My daughter, the trick-or-treatin' princess  ;D
(http://c3.ac-images.myspacecdn.com/images02/73/l_6a3a4d6620e34718805f533f970b78ba.jpg)

She is gorgeous!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Tallitot on October 29, 2009, 10:49:27 AM
*bump*

Shine a light (or in this case darker color) on it, and the vampire post is revealed!

Ah but many will not solve the riddle of the blank post!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: HandmaidenofGod on October 29, 2009, 11:07:34 AM
My daughter, the trick-or-treatin' princess  ;D
(http://c3.ac-images.myspacecdn.com/images02/73/l_6a3a4d6620e34718805f533f970b78ba.jpg)

Adorable!!  ;D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Asteriktos on October 29, 2009, 07:24:01 PM
I will celebrate
Halloween in a haiku
And with some candy
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ms.hoorah on October 29, 2009, 07:46:46 PM
Before being consumed by a candy-eating, demonic wizard, perhaps you should seek guidance from Samurai Jack and the Scottsman.  :D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Jetavan on October 29, 2009, 07:54:50 PM
Go see "This is it", instead.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Asteriktos on October 29, 2009, 08:02:34 PM
Actually I've been thinking about going to see Saw VI in the theater either tomorrow or Saturday. I've never seen one of the Saw movies in the theater, though I have them all on DVD. I don't consider them good movies per se, but I think most of them are fine as far as this type of horror movie goes.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Orthodoc on October 29, 2009, 08:32:05 PM


http://www.interfax-religion.com/?act=news&div=6595



Russians are not interested to celebrate Halloween – poll

Moscow, October 29, Interfax - Only 4% of Russian citizens are going to celebrate Halloween, sociologists have found out.

Regardless of the fact that this holiday is celebrated in many countries, Russia has not added any more Halloween fans recently, the Levada-Center sociologists told Interfax Thursday based on the results of the all-Russian opinion poll.

According to them, 61% of Russians know that such holiday exists, but are not going to celebrate it. About 35% of citizens have not even heard about it, although this number was 10% larger as long as four years ago.

The survey results show that the most enthusiastic to celebrate the holiday are students (18%), all other surveyed young citizens under 25 (14%), people with higher education (5%), and Moscow citizens (12%).

Halloween is celebrated on October 31. The Russian Orthodox Church has meanwhile repeatedly said that this holiday is alien to the traditions of Russian culture.


Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on October 30, 2009, 01:46:15 PM
^^  Well, that is no fun.  Hallowe'en is one of the few holidays I truly look forward to throughout the year.  :P
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Marc1152 on October 30, 2009, 01:51:23 PM
Uh oh...I just bought five bags of candy for the neighborhood kids... I'm going for it !
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: AlexanderOfBergamo on October 30, 2009, 04:19:29 PM


http://www.interfax-religion.com/?act=news&div=6595



Russians are not interested to celebrate Halloween – poll

Moscow, October 29, Interfax - Only 4% of Russian citizens are going to celebrate Halloween, sociologists have found out.

Regardless of the fact that this holiday is celebrated in many countries, Russia has not added any more Halloween fans recently, the Levada-Center sociologists told Interfax Thursday based on the results of the all-Russian opinion poll.

According to them, 61% of Russians know that such holiday exists, but are not going to celebrate it. About 35% of citizens have not even heard about it, although this number was 10% larger as long as four years ago.

The survey results show that the most enthusiastic to celebrate the holiday are students (18%), all other surveyed young citizens under 25 (14%), people with higher education (5%), and Moscow citizens (12%).

Halloween is celebrated on October 31. The Russian Orthodox Church has meanwhile repeatedly said that this holiday is alien to the traditions of Russian culture.



This is the same here in Italy. In truth I don't see any difference WITH or WITHOUT it. Except for alot of teens and of metalheads, this feast is not so appreciated. Or at least, Italians prefer Carnival which is more in our spirit. This feast anyway is losing grip on the appreciation of Italians in the period when an Anglo-American influence is getting stronger in our nation. As for me, I'll spend my October 31 night reading a book in tranquillity while others are outside for a "Trick or Treat" walk-around LOL
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ms.hoorah on October 30, 2009, 06:24:40 PM
Uh oh...I just bought five bags of candy for the neighborhood kids... I'm going for it !
Haha.....I already finished an entire bag of peanut M&Ms.  I put the other bags in the freezer so I would be deterred by the possibility of breaking my teeth, but even that may not work.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on October 30, 2009, 10:57:36 PM
*bump*

Shine a light (or in this case darker color) on it, and the vampire post is revealed!

Ah but many will not solve the riddle of the blank post!

Except that your post isn't blank because the colour ffffff is white, and OCnet posts alternate between white and pale-blue backgrounds in threads.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Asteriktos on October 30, 2009, 11:24:35 PM
Quote
Haha.....I already finished an entire bag of peanut M&Ms.  I put the other bags in the freezer so I would be deterred by the possibility of breaking my teeth, but even that may not work.

I know where you're coming from. :)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GabrieltheCelt on October 30, 2009, 11:37:16 PM
Quote
Haha.....I already finished an entire bag of peanut M&Ms.  I put the other bags in the freezer so I would be deterred by the possibility of breaking my teeth, but even that may not work.

I know where you're coming from. :)

Butterfingers, Junior Mints, peanut M&M's... I'm telling y'all- the devil's working overtime!!!  :D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on October 30, 2009, 11:39:15 PM
Mmmmm...  Reese's Peanut Butter Cups.  How I pity those with peanut allergies.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ebor on November 14, 2009, 02:16:46 PM
This year our eldest as Harry Dresden (his own idea and he did his own costuming, borrowing a duster from a friend and having his own fedora) took his little brother, who was an elephant around the neighborhood for a little while.  Mr. Pachyderm doesn't care much for sweets besides vanilla ice cream but he does love to ring doorbells and then say "Trick or Treat!" with a big grin.

Our daughter dolled herself up as a kind of gypsy, glamourous but decent and went by herself rather then accompanie her brothers.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: simplygermain on November 14, 2009, 04:44:26 PM
From a background of having pagan and wiccan friends growing up, I have to strongly oppose Halloween. If you knew the rituals, you might too. Especially if you knew how many devout Wiccans are out there which take it seriously enough to perform these rituals. As a night which the world glorifies and revels in wicked behavior with candy to sweeten it all up so its easier to swallow, it has roots and followers.
The celebration taking place in Haunted Houses is simply a re-enactment of devlish deeds.
Ritual in the Occult is more about re-enactment than canting. No words have to be spoken. Free-Masonry, which the church openly opposes in some jurisdictions, holds its rituals in the same manner. Silent acting and symbolism are two key components to real Occult rituals.
Kids running from door-to-door to get some candy...all in good fun - just a commercialized encouragement to keep this evil holiday in style.

I I teach my kids that they are different from the world.They are different because they are Christians, not of this world and preparing for the next. I hope they will understand as they mature, the gravity of this understanding. We should not participate in worldly things. We are supposed to be working our our salvation here. Let's ask for God's strength, especially me, because I am too weak to do it on my own.   
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on November 15, 2009, 02:38:54 AM
From a background of having pagan and wiccan friends growing up, I have to strongly oppose Halloween. If you knew the rituals, you might too. Especially if you knew how many devout Wiccans are out there which take it seriously enough to perform these rituals. As a night which the world glorifies and revels in wicked behavior with candy to sweeten it all up so its easier to swallow, it has roots and followers.
The celebration taking place in Haunted Houses is simply a re-enactment of devlish deeds.
Ritual in the Occult is more about re-enactment than canting. No words have to be spoken. Free-Masonry, which the church openly opposes in some jurisdictions, holds its rituals in the same manner. Silent acting and symbolism are two key components to real Occult rituals.
Kids running from door-to-door to get some candy...all in good fun - just a commercialized encouragement to keep this evil holiday in style.

I I teach my kids that they are different from the world.They are different because they are Christians, not of this world and preparing for the next. I hope they will understand as they mature, the gravity of this understanding. We should not participate in worldly things. We are supposed to be working our our salvation here. Let's ask for God's strength, especially me, because I am too weak to do it on my own.   

I totally respect your position. What do you think about my approach as described in reply #437?

Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: simplygermain on November 15, 2009, 05:16:14 PM
Gebre Menfus Kidus - In Peace,

I have never given a second thought until now, regarding doing anything for Halloween. But your statement is of a different sort. I tend to think the Cheesey Christian approach to "Harvest Festivals" vs. Haunted Houses is a bad Idea. But you sir, have gotten creative. And what did our Church Fathers teach us, if not to respond to people with love. These days, if it makes me look like a dork to take that time to confess my faith on Halloween- that's about the most persecution a Christian in America sees from it - than I'm all for Dorkyness.
You say your children don't feel left out by handing out tracts instead of candy? I think I may be o.k. with having a little candy feast next year to celebrate St. John of Krondstadt's Feast Day and focus on that particular aspect of the day instead. When children come to the door, We will hand out candy and maby some little tid-bit of the treasures of Christ's witness as well.
Thanks to you, my kids may feel that they are as important as the children who do get to ding-dong for candy on that day. Better yet, thay will be taught to give rather than recieve. And my wife and I will give to them as well.
Thank You. In Christ's love - Germanus
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on November 16, 2009, 03:42:03 AM
Gebre Menfus Kidus - In Peace,

I have never given a second thought until now, regarding doing anything for Halloween. But your statement is of a different sort. I tend to think the Cheesey Christian approach to "Harvest Festivals" vs. Haunted Houses is a bad Idea. But you sir, have gotten creative. And what did our Church Fathers teach us, if not to respond to people with love. These days, if it makes me look like a dork to take that time to confess my faith on Halloween- that's about the most persecution a Christian in America sees from it - than I'm all for Dorkyness.
You say your children don't feel left out by handing out tracts instead of candy? I think I may be o.k. with having a little candy feast next year to celebrate St. John of Krondstadt's Feast Day and focus on that particular aspect of the day instead. When children come to the door, We will hand out candy and maby some little tid-bit of the treasures of Christ's witness as well.
Thanks to you, my kids may feel that they are as important as the children who do get to ding-dong for candy on that day. Better yet, thay will be taught to give rather than recieve. And my wife and I will give to them as well.
Thank You. In Christ's love - Germanus

Cool! I think your family will enjoy the experience, and the Light of Our Lord will go forth from your home.

Thank you for the encouraging words. I am always grateful to God when something I do or say inspires others in a positive way.

Peace to you. :) :) :)

Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Liz on November 16, 2009, 07:23:24 AM
From a background of having pagan and wiccan friends growing up, I have to strongly oppose Halloween. If you knew the rituals, you might too. Especially if you knew how many devout Wiccans are out there which take it seriously enough to perform these rituals. As a night which the world glorifies and revels in wicked behavior with candy to sweeten it all up so its easier to swallow, it has roots and followers.
The celebration taking place in Haunted Houses is simply a re-enactment of devlish deeds.
Ritual in the Occult is more about re-enactment than canting. No words have to be spoken. Free-Masonry, which the church openly opposes in some jurisdictions, holds its rituals in the same manner. Silent acting and symbolism are two key components to real Occult rituals.
Kids running from door-to-door to get some candy...all in good fun - just a commercialized encouragement to keep this evil holiday in style.

I I teach my kids that they are different from the world.They are different because they are Christians, not of this world and preparing for the next. I hope they will understand as they mature, the gravity of this understanding. We should not participate in worldly things. We are supposed to be working our our salvation here. Let's ask for God's strength, especially me, because I am too weak to do it on my own.   

Hmm. I could be wrong, but from what I've seen (I know some people who claim to be 'Pagan'), these so-called rituals are ersatz attempts to reconnect with some kind of 'folk culture' that precedes Christianity. I am dubious about them, and I very much doubt that they are any kind of genuine survival from a pre-Christian past. To me, Halloween is All Hallows Eve - the clue is in the name. It is the day before the Christian festival for all holy souls, and at least in my part of the world, the time when we remember the dead. Customs like carving pumpkins and so on certainly are part of a folk tradition (as is holly at Christmas time - and, indeed, the date of Christmas!). But they have been part of the Christian celebration for a very long time, and it's only relatively recently that new-age Pagans have decided to 'reclaim' this festival.

Anyway, that's how it seems to me. Maybe I know the wrong kind of Pagans, but ...
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on November 16, 2009, 07:50:52 AM
From a background of having pagan and wiccan friends growing up, I have to strongly oppose Halloween. If you knew the rituals, you might too. Especially if you knew how many devout Wiccans are out there which take it seriously enough to perform these rituals. As a night which the world glorifies and revels in wicked behavior with candy to sweeten it all up so its easier to swallow, it has roots and followers.
The celebration taking place in Haunted Houses is simply a re-enactment of devlish deeds.
Ritual in the Occult is more about re-enactment than canting. No words have to be spoken. Free-Masonry, which the church openly opposes in some jurisdictions, holds its rituals in the same manner. Silent acting and symbolism are two key components to real Occult rituals.
Kids running from door-to-door to get some candy...all in good fun - just a commercialized encouragement to keep this evil holiday in style.

I I teach my kids that they are different from the world.They are different because they are Christians, not of this world and preparing for the next. I hope they will understand as they mature, the gravity of this understanding. We should not participate in worldly things. We are supposed to be working our our salvation here. Let's ask for God's strength, especially me, because I am too weak to do it on my own.   

Hmm. I could be wrong, but from what I've seen (I know some people who claim to be 'Pagan'), these so-called rituals are ersatz attempts to reconnect with some kind of 'folk culture' that precedes Christianity. I am dubious about them, and I very much doubt that they are any kind of genuine survival from a pre-Christian past. To me, Halloween is All Hallows Eve - the clue is in the name. It is the day before the Christian festival for all holy souls, and at least in my part of the world, the time when we remember the dead. Customs like carving pumpkins and so on certainly are part of a folk tradition (as is holly at Christmas time - and, indeed, the date of Christmas!). But they have been part of the Christian celebration for a very long time, and it's only relatively recently that new-age Pagans have decided to 'reclaim' this festival.

Anyway, that's how it seems to me. Maybe I know the wrong kind of Pagans, but ...

I agree, Liz. I'm wondering what evil pagan rituals Americans are up to during Halloween; along with their candy collecting and dressing up.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Liz on November 16, 2009, 08:17:13 AM
From a background of having pagan and wiccan friends growing up, I have to strongly oppose Halloween. If you knew the rituals, you might too. Especially if you knew how many devout Wiccans are out there which take it seriously enough to perform these rituals. As a night which the world glorifies and revels in wicked behavior with candy to sweeten it all up so its easier to swallow, it has roots and followers.
The celebration taking place in Haunted Houses is simply a re-enactment of devlish deeds.
Ritual in the Occult is more about re-enactment than canting. No words have to be spoken. Free-Masonry, which the church openly opposes in some jurisdictions, holds its rituals in the same manner. Silent acting and symbolism are two key components to real Occult rituals.
Kids running from door-to-door to get some candy...all in good fun - just a commercialized encouragement to keep this evil holiday in style.

I I teach my kids that they are different from the world.They are different because they are Christians, not of this world and preparing for the next. I hope they will understand as they mature, the gravity of this understanding. We should not participate in worldly things. We are supposed to be working our our salvation here. Let's ask for God's strength, especially me, because I am too weak to do it on my own.   

Hmm. I could be wrong, but from what I've seen (I know some people who claim to be 'Pagan'), these so-called rituals are ersatz attempts to reconnect with some kind of 'folk culture' that precedes Christianity. I am dubious about them, and I very much doubt that they are any kind of genuine survival from a pre-Christian past. To me, Halloween is All Hallows Eve - the clue is in the name. It is the day before the Christian festival for all holy souls, and at least in my part of the world, the time when we remember the dead. Customs like carving pumpkins and so on certainly are part of a folk tradition (as is holly at Christmas time - and, indeed, the date of Christmas!). But they have been part of the Christian celebration for a very long time, and it's only relatively recently that new-age Pagans have decided to 'reclaim' this festival.

Anyway, that's how it seems to me. Maybe I know the wrong kind of Pagans, but ...

I agree, Liz. I'm wondering what evil pagan rituals Americans are up to during Halloween; along with their candy collecting and dressing up.

Well, chatting on msn to one of the aforementioned Pagans I know, apparently Halloween is an ancient Celtic festival, celebrated by many devout Pagans through the ages - who, strangely, forgot to leave any trace whatsoever of their part in the recorded customs surrounding the day, except, of course, to those who know. Apparently if you are sufficiently 'spiritually receptive', you can 'sense' the presence of elemental forces when you venture into the darkness of the night.

I am really not making this up.

When we were children, my parents used to make a competition for us, bobbing for apples. They made it quite clear that this was a folk custom - a game - and in fact, as far as I know it's not something that has a particularly long history. I think folk customs, and indeed pre-Christian rituals, are fascinating. But we have to accept that evidence for most of these things is sketchy at best, and people usually make up something plausible as a mish-mash of make-believe and anthropological plausibility. So, I was told that apple bobbing has to do with the apple as a symbol of magic (guess where that might come from?), and the water as one of the core elemental forces (again, the symbolic potency of water is pretty well attested throughout the Bible).

There is this argument I have heard, that the pagan religion must be much older than Christianity (and indeed, than the Bible), and that the Christians came along, bowdlerizing and masculinizing the old culture. The 'proof' that the pagan religion is older is based on the fact that when Christianity came to the West, and Britain, there were 'pagans' to be converted. Therefore, so the argument goes, we must see Christianity as a palimpsest, and we must re-interpret its text to recover the pagan religion. Thus, completely disregarding the fact that the Bible had been around for hundreds of years before it came to Britain and might well precede the Celtic culture found there.

Educate your children to recongize Halloween as a Christian festival with some harmless, relatively modern, and pretty secular games added in, and they won't be taken in.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on November 16, 2009, 08:38:51 AM
From a background of having pagan and wiccan friends growing up, I have to strongly oppose Halloween. If you knew the rituals, you might too. Especially if you knew how many devout Wiccans are out there which take it seriously enough to perform these rituals. As a night which the world glorifies and revels in wicked behavior with candy to sweeten it all up so its easier to swallow, it has roots and followers.
The celebration taking place in Haunted Houses is simply a re-enactment of devlish deeds.
Ritual in the Occult is more about re-enactment than canting. No words have to be spoken. Free-Masonry, which the church openly opposes in some jurisdictions, holds its rituals in the same manner. Silent acting and symbolism are two key components to real Occult rituals.
Kids running from door-to-door to get some candy...all in good fun - just a commercialized encouragement to keep this evil holiday in style.

I I teach my kids that they are different from the world.They are different because they are Christians, not of this world and preparing for the next. I hope they will understand as they mature, the gravity of this understanding. We should not participate in worldly things. We are supposed to be working our our salvation here. Let's ask for God's strength, especially me, because I am too weak to do it on my own.   

Hmm. I could be wrong, but from what I've seen (I know some people who claim to be 'Pagan'), these so-called rituals are ersatz attempts to reconnect with some kind of 'folk culture' that precedes Christianity. I am dubious about them, and I very much doubt that they are any kind of genuine survival from a pre-Christian past. To me, Halloween is All Hallows Eve - the clue is in the name. It is the day before the Christian festival for all holy souls, and at least in my part of the world, the time when we remember the dead. Customs like carving pumpkins and so on certainly are part of a folk tradition (as is holly at Christmas time - and, indeed, the date of Christmas!). But they have been part of the Christian celebration for a very long time, and it's only relatively recently that new-age Pagans have decided to 'reclaim' this festival.

Anyway, that's how it seems to me. Maybe I know the wrong kind of Pagans, but ...

I agree, Liz. I'm wondering what evil pagan rituals Americans are up to during Halloween; along with their candy collecting and dressing up.

Well, chatting on msn to one of the aforementioned Pagans I know, apparently Halloween is an ancient Celtic festival, celebrated by many devout Pagans through the ages - who, strangely, forgot to leave any trace whatsoever of their part in the recorded customs surrounding the day, except, of course, to those who know. Apparently if you are sufficiently 'spiritually receptive', you can 'sense' the presence of elemental forces when you venture into the darkness of the night.

I am really not making this up.

When we were children, my parents used to make a competition for us, bobbing for apples. They made it quite clear that this was a folk custom - a game - and in fact, as far as I know it's not something that has a particularly long history. I think folk customs, and indeed pre-Christian rituals, are fascinating. But we have to accept that evidence for most of these things is sketchy at best, and people usually make up something plausible as a mish-mash of make-believe and anthropological plausibility. So, I was told that apple bobbing has to do with the apple as a symbol of magic (guess where that might come from?), and the water as one of the core elemental forces (again, the symbolic potency of water is pretty well attested throughout the Bible).

There is this argument I have heard, that the pagan religion must be much older than Christianity (and indeed, than the Bible), and that the Christians came along, bowdlerizing and masculinizing the old culture. The 'proof' that the pagan religion is older is based on the fact that when Christianity came to the West, and Britain, there were 'pagans' to be converted. Therefore, so the argument goes, we must see Christianity as a palimpsest, and we must re-interpret its text to recover the pagan religion. Thus, completely disregarding the fact that the Bible had been around for hundreds of years before it came to Britain and might well precede the Celtic culture found there.

Educate your children to recongize Halloween as a Christian festival with some harmless, relatively modern, and pretty secular games added in, and they won't be taken in.

The Celtic pre-Christian rituals have long died out and though we have little written history regarding Celtic pagan traditions to base any neo-pagan claims upon, we are left with a Christian observance, a Holy Day to remember our dead. Interesting article at http://allsaintsbrookline.org/celtic/samhain.html

With the rise of Christianity, Samhain was changed to Hallowmas, or All Saints' Day, to commemorate the souls of the blessed dead who had been canonized that year. The night before became popularly known as Halloween, or All Hallows Eve. In Scotland and Ireland, Halloween is known as Oíche Shamhna, while in Wales it is Nos Calan Gaeaf, the eve of the winter's calend, or first. November 2nd became All Souls Day, when prayers were to be offered to the souls of all who the departed and those who were waiting in Purgatory for entry into Heaven.

Many ancient Celtic customs proved compatible with the new Christian religion. Christianity embraced the Celtic notions of family, community, the bond among all people, and respect for the dead. Throughout the centuries, pagan and Christian beliefs intertwine in a gallimaufry (hodgepodge) of celebrations from October 31st through November 5th, all of which appear both to challenge the ascendancy of the dark and to revel in its mystery.

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Liz on November 16, 2009, 09:06:49 AM
From a background of having pagan and wiccan friends growing up, I have to strongly oppose Halloween. If you knew the rituals, you might too. Especially if you knew how many devout Wiccans are out there which take it seriously enough to perform these rituals. As a night which the world glorifies and revels in wicked behavior with candy to sweeten it all up so its easier to swallow, it has roots and followers.
The celebration taking place in Haunted Houses is simply a re-enactment of devlish deeds.
Ritual in the Occult is more about re-enactment than canting. No words have to be spoken. Free-Masonry, which the church openly opposes in some jurisdictions, holds its rituals in the same manner. Silent acting and symbolism are two key components to real Occult rituals.
Kids running from door-to-door to get some candy...all in good fun - just a commercialized encouragement to keep this evil holiday in style.

I I teach my kids that they are different from the world.They are different because they are Christians, not of this world and preparing for the next. I hope they will understand as they mature, the gravity of this understanding. We should not participate in worldly things. We are supposed to be working our our salvation here. Let's ask for God's strength, especially me, because I am too weak to do it on my own.   

Hmm. I could be wrong, but from what I've seen (I know some people who claim to be 'Pagan'), these so-called rituals are ersatz attempts to reconnect with some kind of 'folk culture' that precedes Christianity. I am dubious about them, and I very much doubt that they are any kind of genuine survival from a pre-Christian past. To me, Halloween is All Hallows Eve - the clue is in the name. It is the day before the Christian festival for all holy souls, and at least in my part of the world, the time when we remember the dead. Customs like carving pumpkins and so on certainly are part of a folk tradition (as is holly at Christmas time - and, indeed, the date of Christmas!). But they have been part of the Christian celebration for a very long time, and it's only relatively recently that new-age Pagans have decided to 'reclaim' this festival.

Anyway, that's how it seems to me. Maybe I know the wrong kind of Pagans, but ...

I agree, Liz. I'm wondering what evil pagan rituals Americans are up to during Halloween; along with their candy collecting and dressing up.

Well, chatting on msn to one of the aforementioned Pagans I know, apparently Halloween is an ancient Celtic festival, celebrated by many devout Pagans through the ages - who, strangely, forgot to leave any trace whatsoever of their part in the recorded customs surrounding the day, except, of course, to those who know. Apparently if you are sufficiently 'spiritually receptive', you can 'sense' the presence of elemental forces when you venture into the darkness of the night.

I am really not making this up.

When we were children, my parents used to make a competition for us, bobbing for apples. They made it quite clear that this was a folk custom - a game - and in fact, as far as I know it's not something that has a particularly long history. I think folk customs, and indeed pre-Christian rituals, are fascinating. But we have to accept that evidence for most of these things is sketchy at best, and people usually make up something plausible as a mish-mash of make-believe and anthropological plausibility. So, I was told that apple bobbing has to do with the apple as a symbol of magic (guess where that might come from?), and the water as one of the core elemental forces (again, the symbolic potency of water is pretty well attested throughout the Bible).

There is this argument I have heard, that the pagan religion must be much older than Christianity (and indeed, than the Bible), and that the Christians came along, bowdlerizing and masculinizing the old culture. The 'proof' that the pagan religion is older is based on the fact that when Christianity came to the West, and Britain, there were 'pagans' to be converted. Therefore, so the argument goes, we must see Christianity as a palimpsest, and we must re-interpret its text to recover the pagan religion. Thus, completely disregarding the fact that the Bible had been around for hundreds of years before it came to Britain and might well precede the Celtic culture found there.

Educate your children to recongize Halloween as a Christian festival with some harmless, relatively modern, and pretty secular games added in, and they won't be taken in.

The Celtic pre-Christian rituals have long died out and though we have little written history regarding Celtic pagan traditions to base any neo-pagan claims upon, we are left with a Christian observance, a Holy Day to remember our dead. Interesting article at http://allsaintsbrookline.org/celtic/samhain.html

With the rise of Christianity, Samhain was changed to Hallowmas, or All Saints' Day, to commemorate the souls of the blessed dead who had been canonized that year. The night before became popularly known as Halloween, or All Hallows Eve. In Scotland and Ireland, Halloween is known as Oíche Shamhna, while in Wales it is Nos Calan Gaeaf, the eve of the winter's calend, or first. November 2nd became All Souls Day, when prayers were to be offered to the souls of all who the departed and those who were waiting in Purgatory for entry into Heaven.

Many ancient Celtic customs proved compatible with the new Christian religion. Christianity embraced the Celtic notions of family, community, the bond among all people, and respect for the dead. Throughout the centuries, pagan and Christian beliefs intertwine in a gallimaufry (hodgepodge) of celebrations from October 31st through November 5th, all of which appear both to challenge the ascendancy of the dark and to revel in its mystery.



The problem I have with this article (and others like it) is that it cites no sources other than those that refer to the Christian celebration of the festival. I can't tell what of the rest is attested, the best-guess of anthropology, wishful thinking or sheer make-believe.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: 88Devin12 on November 16, 2009, 11:27:54 AM
I don't believe Orthodox Christians should celebrate it as some do with skeletons, demons, witches etc...

I think though it may be ok to dress up as a hero of yours or something else non-demonic like a doctor, princess, king, etc... This year I dressed up as a rock star (that is, with Slash's hat, a leather jacket and an AC/DC shirt)... My friends (though not Orthodox) dressed up as a Native American and a Cowboy, and my friend from Germany wore lederhosen (of course, as a joke).

However I don't like the idea of people dressing up as things like serial killers, demons, witches, dead people etc...
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ebor on November 16, 2009, 12:15:38 PM
Liz- have you read Ronald Hutton's The Pagan Religions of Ancient Britain: Their Nature and Legacy and Stations of the Sun: A History of the Ritual Year in Britain  He is a scholar and professor at Bristol.  He looks at what can actually be known and at folk customs and such.

I know you're not "making it up" with the people who think that Halloween is so ancient and the customs lasted for thousands of years.  I've read that sort of thing, too.  Sigh.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on November 16, 2009, 06:14:39 PM
From a background of having pagan and wiccan friends growing up, I have to strongly oppose Halloween. If you knew the rituals, you might too. Especially if you knew how many devout Wiccans are out there which take it seriously enough to perform these rituals. As a night which the world glorifies and revels in wicked behavior with candy to sweeten it all up so its easier to swallow, it has roots and followers.
The celebration taking place in Haunted Houses is simply a re-enactment of devlish deeds.
Ritual in the Occult is more about re-enactment than canting. No words have to be spoken. Free-Masonry, which the church openly opposes in some jurisdictions, holds its rituals in the same manner. Silent acting and symbolism are two key components to real Occult rituals.
Kids running from door-to-door to get some candy...all in good fun - just a commercialized encouragement to keep this evil holiday in style.

I I teach my kids that they are different from the world.They are different because they are Christians, not of this world and preparing for the next. I hope they will understand as they mature, the gravity of this understanding. We should not participate in worldly things. We are supposed to be working our our salvation here. Let's ask for God's strength, especially me, because I am too weak to do it on my own.   

Hmm. I could be wrong, but from what I've seen (I know some people who claim to be 'Pagan'), these so-called rituals are ersatz attempts to reconnect with some kind of 'folk culture' that precedes Christianity. I am dubious about them, and I very much doubt that they are any kind of genuine survival from a pre-Christian past. To me, Halloween is All Hallows Eve - the clue is in the name. It is the day before the Christian festival for all holy souls, and at least in my part of the world, the time when we remember the dead. Customs like carving pumpkins and so on certainly are part of a folk tradition (as is holly at Christmas time - and, indeed, the date of Christmas!). But they have been part of the Christian celebration for a very long time, and it's only relatively recently that new-age Pagans have decided to 'reclaim' this festival.

Anyway, that's how it seems to me. Maybe I know the wrong kind of Pagans, but ...

I agree, Liz. I'm wondering what evil pagan rituals Americans are up to during Halloween; along with their candy collecting and dressing up.

Well, chatting on msn to one of the aforementioned Pagans I know, apparently Halloween is an ancient Celtic festival, celebrated by many devout Pagans through the ages - who, strangely, forgot to leave any trace whatsoever of their part in the recorded customs surrounding the day, except, of course, to those who know. Apparently if you are sufficiently 'spiritually receptive', you can 'sense' the presence of elemental forces when you venture into the darkness of the night.

I am really not making this up.

When we were children, my parents used to make a competition for us, bobbing for apples. They made it quite clear that this was a folk custom - a game - and in fact, as far as I know it's not something that has a particularly long history. I think folk customs, and indeed pre-Christian rituals, are fascinating. But we have to accept that evidence for most of these things is sketchy at best, and people usually make up something plausible as a mish-mash of make-believe and anthropological plausibility. So, I was told that apple bobbing has to do with the apple as a symbol of magic (guess where that might come from?), and the water as one of the core elemental forces (again, the symbolic potency of water is pretty well attested throughout the Bible).

There is this argument I have heard, that the pagan religion must be much older than Christianity (and indeed, than the Bible), and that the Christians came along, bowdlerizing and masculinizing the old culture. The 'proof' that the pagan religion is older is based on the fact that when Christianity came to the West, and Britain, there were 'pagans' to be converted. Therefore, so the argument goes, we must see Christianity as a palimpsest, and we must re-interpret its text to recover the pagan religion. Thus, completely disregarding the fact that the Bible had been around for hundreds of years before it came to Britain and might well precede the Celtic culture found there.

Educate your children to recongize Halloween as a Christian festival with some harmless, relatively modern, and pretty secular games added in, and they won't be taken in.

The Celtic pre-Christian rituals have long died out and though we have little written history regarding Celtic pagan traditions to base any neo-pagan claims upon, we are left with a Christian observance, a Holy Day to remember our dead. Interesting article at http://allsaintsbrookline.org/celtic/samhain.html

With the rise of Christianity, Samhain was changed to Hallowmas, or All Saints' Day, to commemorate the souls of the blessed dead who had been canonized that year. The night before became popularly known as Halloween, or All Hallows Eve. In Scotland and Ireland, Halloween is known as Oíche Shamhna, while in Wales it is Nos Calan Gaeaf, the eve of the winter's calend, or first. November 2nd became All Souls Day, when prayers were to be offered to the souls of all who the departed and those who were waiting in Purgatory for entry into Heaven.

Many ancient Celtic customs proved compatible with the new Christian religion. Christianity embraced the Celtic notions of family, community, the bond among all people, and respect for the dead. Throughout the centuries, pagan and Christian beliefs intertwine in a gallimaufry (hodgepodge) of celebrations from October 31st through November 5th, all of which appear both to challenge the ascendancy of the dark and to revel in its mystery.



The problem I have with this article (and others like it) is that it cites no sources other than those that refer to the Christian celebration of the festival. I can't tell what of the rest is attested, the best-guess of anthropology, wishful thinking or sheer make-believe.

It pretty much gels with what I have read. Unfortunately, Granddaughter #1 has commandeered my Celtic history books, so I can't actually confirm sources. Although, in The Ancient Celts, Barry Cunliffe pretty much confirms Samain as this site claims. The Christian adoption of the date to commemorate the dead is well-known; some historians claim that it was because the Church couldn't stamp out the pagan celebration of the festival; in all cases that I have read Pope Gregory IV as being credited with the augmentation.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on November 16, 2009, 06:46:36 PM
Why are we discussing this now? We've got another 49 weeks before it's relevant. Nativity ought to be our focus during this season.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Robb on November 19, 2009, 09:25:41 PM
Halloween is the American version of Carnival.  It has become a time when even adults can get dressed up and have some fun.  People need these things in order to relax and have some fun.  America's puritanical past prevented her from either adopting the European carnival or developing her own version of it.  Now that things around here are more secular, people can feel free to have some fun.

Also, about religion not liking Halloween, what do European Christians generally think of the Carnival?  I bet you'd find similar responses among Euro religious leaders about celebrating that holiday as you would among America's religious people when it comes to Halloween time?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on November 20, 2009, 04:25:58 AM
Now that things around here are more secular, people can feel free to have some fun.

Wow.

Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Entscheidungsproblem on November 20, 2009, 11:28:18 AM
Now that things around here are more secular, people can feel free to have some fun.

Wow.

Selam

Fun is anti-Christian.  :laugh:
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: simplygermain on November 20, 2009, 02:01:39 PM
Now that things around here are more secular, people can feel free to have some fun.

Wow.

Selam

Fun is anti-Christian.  :laugh:
depending on if by "fun", you mean debautchery or , hanging out with your family and going to church.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Schultz on November 20, 2009, 02:11:53 PM
Now that things around here are more secular, people can feel free to have some fun.

Wow.

Selam

Fun is anti-Christian.  :laugh:
depending on if by "fun", you mean debautchery or , hanging out with your family and going to church.

What about something in the middle, such as taking in an opera and splitting a bottle of wine over a nice dinner with a few people?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on November 20, 2009, 02:16:19 PM
Now that things around here are more secular, people can feel free to have some fun.

Wow.

Selam

Fun is anti-Christian.  :laugh:
depending on if by "fun", you mean debautchery or , hanging out with your family and going to church.

What about something in the middle, such as taking in an opera and splitting a bottle of wine over a nice dinner with a few people?
Oh, now that sounds like fun. 8)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Asteriktos on November 20, 2009, 02:21:58 PM
Now that things around here are more secular, people can feel free to have some fun.

Wow.

Selam

Fun is anti-Christian.  :laugh:
depending on if by "fun", you mean debautchery or , hanging out with your family and going to church.

"Daddy! We had fun! Not church fun, but real fun!" - Todd Flanders
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Schultz on November 20, 2009, 02:29:19 PM
Now that things around here are more secular, people can feel free to have some fun.

Wow.

Selam

Fun is anti-Christian.  :laugh:
depending on if by "fun", you mean debautchery or , hanging out with your family and going to church.

What about something in the middle, such as taking in an opera and splitting a bottle of wine over a nice dinner with a few people?
Oh, now that sounds like fun. 8)

Of course it is, but we're just a bunch of bourgoise wannabe Christians ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: simplygermain on November 20, 2009, 03:16:30 PM
I heard somewhere that the word "fun" or anything resembling denoting the concept, did not exist in any language until aroung 300 yrs. ago.
BTW - my idea of fun includes clamming, searching for shells and poking at jellyfish at the beach, wild mushroom and edibles foraging, hiking, hunting, camping, sushi-night with my wife, butchering a nice piece of meat,a killer restaurant night with a few nips of good liquory cocktails, listening to a jazz set at a local venue, tickling the kids, frisbee-golfing at the park, and other such activities...none of which include "sin-ful" behavior. So I wouldn't exaclty include myself in the "Stick-In-The-Mud Club".
....But maybe Asteriktos and GiC would. ::)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Asteriktos on November 20, 2009, 06:05:23 PM
I heard somewhere that the word "fun" or anything resembling denoting the concept, did not exist in any language until aroung 300 yrs. ago.
BTW - my idea of fun includes clamming, searching for shells and poking at jellyfish at the beach, wild mushroom and edibles foraging, hiking, hunting, camping, sushi-night with my wife, butchering a nice piece of meat,a killer restaurant night with a few nips of good liquory cocktails, listening to a jazz set at a local venue, tickling the kids, frisbee-golfing at the park, and other such activities...none of which include "sin-ful" behavior. So I wouldn't exaclty include myself in the "Stick-In-The-Mud Club".
....But maybe Asteriktos and GiC would. ::)

Stick in the mud? Nah. Missing out? Sounds like it. But it's your life. :) I hope that, at the end of my life, good Christian folk will condemn me in a similar manner to how Irenaeus condemned the Carpocratians:

"So unbridled is their madness, that they declare they have in their power all things which are irreligious and impious, and are at liberty to practise them... They deem it necessary, therefore, that... [people] should have experience of every kind of life as well as every kind of action... in order that, as their writings express it, having made trial of every kind of life, [they] may, at their departure, not be wanting in any particular."
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Schultz on November 20, 2009, 06:27:09 PM
I heard somewhere that the word "fun" or anything resembling denoting the concept, did not exist in any language until aroung 300 yrs. ago.
BTW - my idea of fun includes clamming, searching for shells and poking at jellyfish at the beach, wild mushroom and edibles foraging, hiking, hunting, camping, sushi-night with my wife, butchering a nice piece of meat,a killer restaurant night with a few nips of good liquory cocktails, listening to a jazz set at a local venue, tickling the kids, frisbee-golfing at the park, and other such activities...none of which include "sin-ful" behavior. So I wouldn't exaclty include myself in the "Stick-In-The-Mud Club".
....But maybe Asteriktos and GiC would. ::)

Psalm 103:15 : ...and that wine may cheer the heart of man.

Sounds like fun to me!  What is fun but the cheering of the heart by engaging in some activity?

By the way, all of those activities could most definitely be "sin-ful" behavior if that behavior interrupts your relationship with God in some way. 

In other words, get off your high horse.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: simplygermain on November 20, 2009, 09:15:58 PM
Alright, you got me Schultzy! ;D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ebor on November 24, 2009, 09:58:13 PM
I heard somewhere that the word "fun" or anything resembling denoting the concept, did not exist in any language until aroung 300 yrs. ago.

Fun in the English language: "1685, v., "to cheat, hoax," probably a variant of M.E. fon "befool" (c.1400), later "trick, hoax, practical joke," of uncertain origin. Stigmatized by Johnson as "a low cant word." Older sense is preserved in phrase to make fun of and funny money "counterfeit bills" (1938, though this may be more for the sake of the rhyme); sense of "amusement" is 1727. See also funny."

From http://www.etymonline.com/index.php

However there are other words that fit the concept such as amusement, merry/merriment, pleasant, enjoy/enjoyable for example.  Reading histories and literature from centuries and millenia past and from many cultures also show that there was plenty of the "concept" of fun, with feasts, stories, celebrations and more.  The Ramayana, The Canterbury Tales, The Tale of Genji are just some examples.

 The human race was not some dour, sober and grim group of people until three hundred years ago.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on November 24, 2009, 10:30:19 PM
I heard somewhere that the word "fun" or anything resembling denoting the concept, did not exist in any language until aroung 300 yrs. ago.

Fun in the English language: "1685, v., "to cheat, hoax," probably a variant of M.E. fon "befool" (c.1400), later "trick, hoax, practical joke," of uncertain origin. Stigmatized by Johnson as "a low cant word." Older sense is preserved in phrase to make fun of and funny money "counterfeit bills" (1938, though this may be more for the sake of the rhyme); sense of "amusement" is 1727. See also funny."

From http://www.etymonline.com/index.php

However there are other words that fit the concept such as amusement, merry/merriment, pleasant, enjoy/enjoyable for example.  Reading histories and literature from centuries and millenia past and from many cultures also show that there was plenty of the "concept" of fun, with feasts, stories, celebrations and more.  The Ramayana, The Canterbury Tales, The Tale of Genji are just some examples.

 The human race was not some dour, sober and grim group of people until three hundred years ago.
The ancient Vesperal Hymn of the Church, "O Gladsome Light", is "Fos Ilaron" in Greek, and "ilaron" is where we get the English word "hilarious" from. Also "St. Euphrosyne" and "St. Euphrosynos", derive their names from "evfroseni" meanining "cheerfulness".
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Asteriktos on November 25, 2009, 01:22:26 AM
. Also "St. Euphrosyne" and "St. Euphrosynos", derive their names from "evfroseni" meanining "cheerfulness".

Now that is funny. ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on November 25, 2009, 03:00:56 AM
. Also "St. Euphrosyne" and "St. Euphrosynos", derive their names from "evfroseni" meanining "cheerfulness".

Now that is funny. ;)
Lost in translation perhaps? ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GabrieltheCelt on November 25, 2009, 03:04:19 AM
I heard somewhere that the word "fun" or anything resembling denoting the concept, did not exist in any language until aroung 300 yrs. ago.

Fun in the English language: "1685, v., "to cheat, hoax," probably a variant of M.E. fon "befool" (c.1400), later "trick, hoax, practical joke," of uncertain origin. Stigmatized by Johnson as "a low cant word." Older sense is preserved in phrase to make fun of and funny money "counterfeit bills" (1938, though this may be more for the sake of the rhyme); sense of "amusement" is 1727. See also funny."

From http://www.etymonline.com/index.php

However there are other words that fit the concept such as amusement, merry/merriment, pleasant, enjoy/enjoyable for example.  Reading histories and literature from centuries and millenia past and from many cultures also show that there was plenty of the "concept" of fun, with feasts, stories, celebrations and more.  The Ramayana, The Canterbury Tales, The Tale of Genji are just some examples.

 The human race was not some dour, sober and grim group of people until three hundred years ago.
The ancient Vesperal Hymn of the Church, "O Gladsome Light", is "Fos Ilaron" in Greek, and "ilaron" is where we get the English word "hilarious" from. Also "St. Euphrosyne" and "St. Euphrosynos", derive their names from "evfroseni" meanining "cheerfulness".

ozgeorge, I almost always learn something cool everyday from you.   :)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ebor on November 28, 2009, 03:34:43 PM
The ancient Vesperal Hymn of the Church, "O Gladsome Light", is "Fos Ilaron" in Greek, and "ilaron" is where we get the English word "hilarious" from.

Yes, indeed.  We have that in the BCP and I have sung various arrangements of the "Phos Hilaron" too.  Thank you for reminding me of this.  :)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Alveus Lacuna on November 28, 2009, 03:41:18 PM
The ancient Vesperal Hymn of the Church, "O Gladsome Light", is "Fos Ilaron" in Greek, and "ilaron" is where we get the English word "hilarious" from. Also "St. Euphrosyne" and "St. Euphrosynos", derive their names from "evfroseni" meanining "cheerfulness".

But neither of these point toward any kind of trite amusements.  Gladness, cheerfulness and hilarity are all wonderful emotions from God, but often with "fun" people are referring to distractions or activities which arouse the passions.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: simplygermain on November 28, 2009, 03:54:05 PM
The ancient Vesperal Hymn of the Church, "O Gladsome Light", is "Fos Ilaron" in Greek, and "ilaron" is where we get the English word "hilarious" from. Also "St. Euphrosyne" and "St. Euphrosynos", derive their names from "evfroseni" meanining "cheerfulness".

But neither of these point toward any kind of trite amusements.  Gladness, cheerfulness and hilarity are all wonderful emotions from God, but often with "fun" people are referring to distractions or activities which arouse the passions.
What He Said!  ;D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ebor on November 28, 2009, 04:08:55 PM
Well, "trite amusements" is rather a value judgement, maybe.  A small child, happy with his/her costume and being an elephant or a princess or a rocketship or a hobbit or elf or ear-of-corn or any of a myriad of dress-up outfits would be to me, glad and cheerful. 

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Schultz on November 28, 2009, 05:43:47 PM
The ancient Vesperal Hymn of the Church, "O Gladsome Light", is "Fos Ilaron" in Greek, and "ilaron" is where we get the English word "hilarious" from. Also "St. Euphrosyne" and "St. Euphrosynos", derive their names from "evfroseni" meanining "cheerfulness".

But neither of these point toward any kind of trite amusements.  Gladness, cheerfulness and hilarity are all wonderful emotions from God, but often with "fun" people are referring to distractions or activities which arouse the passions.

Kind of like anonymous internet messageboards where it's incredibly easy to hop on one's high horse and act like you're so far above the rabble who indulge in petty internet arguments because one knows that one is here for purely dispassionate reasons.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on November 28, 2009, 09:36:53 PM
The ancient Vesperal Hymn of the Church, "O Gladsome Light", is "Fos Ilaron" in Greek, and "ilaron" is where we get the English word "hilarious" from. Also "St. Euphrosyne" and "St. Euphrosynos", derive their names from "evfroseni" meanining "cheerfulness".

But neither of these point toward any kind of trite amusements.  Gladness, cheerfulness and hilarity are all wonderful emotions from God, but often with "fun" people are referring to distractions or activities which arouse the passions.
You mean like drinking alcohol?
Because thats what Psalm 103:15 in the LXX says when it ususes the word "euphraine" from which we get "euphrosynos":
"And wine which gladdens (euphraine) the heart of man".
So this pious, God-given, gladness of heart of which you speak comes to us through wine.
 
Kind of like anonymous internet messageboards where it's incredibly easy to hop on one's high horse and act like you're so far above the rabble who indulge in petty internet arguments because one knows that one is here for purely dispassionate reasons.

LOL!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: simplygermain on November 28, 2009, 09:55:04 PM
^ You got me there, sir. I submit to your irrefutably, indefineable reasoning. I shall post no more. :P
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Alveus Lacuna on November 28, 2009, 10:19:35 PM
Kind of like anonymous internet messageboards where it's incredibly easy to hop on one's high horse and act like you're so far above the rabble who indulge in petty internet arguments because one knows that one is here for purely dispassionate reasons.

Well it's not very fun climbing on a high horse when people just knock you down!   :D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Robb on November 29, 2009, 03:36:59 AM
Just so everybody knows, I was talking about "puritanical" in regards to Americas religious past, not Christianity in general.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on November 29, 2009, 04:01:10 AM
Just so everybody knows, I was talking about "puritanical" in regards to Americas religious past, not Christianity in general.

It appears to me that though the West might be the source of "puritanical" rules and external correctness within Christianity this attitude is not absent from some Orthodox circles. The more I understand Orthodoxy (and I'm no expert), the more I think of this as being something superimposed and foreign to Orthodoxy. On the other hand, I could be completely wrong.   :-\  ???
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Robb on November 30, 2009, 05:31:58 PM
All religions have groups of people within them who are very legalistic and "Puritanical".  Just loo at the Hasidim Jews or Wahhabi Muslims.  I'm sure even a group as far out as the Unitarians have some type of "inner circle" of strict adherent's to whatever it is they exactly believe these days.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: simplygermain on December 01, 2009, 03:39:22 PM
All religions have groups of people within them who are very legalistic and "Puritanical".  Just loo at the Hasidim Jews or Wahhabi Muslims.  I'm sure even a group as far out as the Unitarians have some type of "inner circle" of strict adherent's to whatever it is they exactly believe these days.
Just look at B'Hai! ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: sprtslvr1973 on December 08, 2009, 09:43:22 AM
I posted a thread asking if anyone around here ever questioned the celebration of Christmas as some Protestants regard it as a continuation of pre-Christian pagan holiday. Anyone want to share?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Vladik on December 08, 2009, 12:14:48 PM
Of course "No"
It's foolishly
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ytterbiumanalyst on December 08, 2009, 05:56:15 PM
I posted a thread asking if anyone around here ever questioned the celebration of Christmas as some Protestants regard it as a continuation of pre-Christian pagan holiday. Anyone want to share?
On this thread, no. I will share what I have to say about that subject on that thread, so as to keep this one about Halloween.

Anyone interested in that thread should follow this link:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,24745.0.html
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: ozgeorge on February 11, 2010, 09:18:32 PM
Here's a pumpkin carving idea for this year:

(http://www.sthermanseminary.org/images/AllSaintsParty2009/01Pumpkin.jpg)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Tikhon.of.Colorado on July 25, 2010, 03:09:24 PM
I personally hate the holiday.  kids dress up as monsters and parade around, asking for candy?  I think it's a bit dangerous, for starters, for children to go door-to-door for treats.  who knows if their tampered with?  what if the child is stolen from the porch by the homeowner?  also, I know it's a Pagan holiday, so I don't see why any Christian, Jew or Muslim should celebrate it.  I think it's OK to add some superstition and cultural trends to Church feast days, such as Christmas (Santa, elves, presents, etc.) 

and this is just a personal one.  But every Holloween, my sister goes with her friends, my mother goes to bed early, and I'm left to hand out candy!  last year, I just wanted to read a good book, and I kept getting interrupted by "trick or treat". 

for religous reasons, I don't think it's apropreate for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween.  it's interesting the way our culture is... we get 2 weeks off for Christmas, but, at school, nobody has ever even heard of Holy Theophany!  and my priest says that we should try to take time off of school and work to come to Church on this day.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: rakovsky on July 25, 2010, 04:28:55 PM
Just so everybody knows, I was talking about "puritanical" in regards to Americas religious past, not Christianity in general.

Popularity of Halloween might have to do with puritannicalism of widespread Calvinism (ie. the funamentalists see the world in absolutes- 100% assurance of being saved, etc), and also lack of the mystical in mainstream/Calvinist/agnostic America. It's a combined reaction against those two.

The reaction might be natural, but could be sign of illness.

Pagan holiday like jumping over fires that still happens in Russia. At least we don't dress up as monsters around Christmas and Easter like some European countries. (eg. French Christmas where demon whupped little kids unfortunate enough to have violent, antagonistic parents instead of Santa bringing presents, or Austria where they have a holiday where big bullies dress up as monsters, even today, and whoop young people.) Much much worse sign of illness IMO.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Irish Hermit on July 25, 2010, 08:33:41 PM
Halloween!

Be pro-active!

Reclaim the night!



Icons and candles on your porch!    If you have the opportunity and a front porch, set up some icons.  Have candles burning.  Christmas lights twinkling if you like.   Invite the little Halloween boys and girls to light a candle themselves.  Give them the sweets and also small paper icons.   The ones from Russia these days are very attractive to children.


Open your church!   For many years as a parish priest I opened the church on the night of Halloween after Vespers.  I lit every lamp and every candle and made it a magic place of God's presence.  I had every outside light burning to make it a welcoming place.    And people would come in.....  with their children dressed as ghosties and ghoulies.  Who knows what impact that special night and a visit to a beautiful and mysterious Christian church will have in the years to come.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on July 25, 2010, 08:36:34 PM
Halloween!

Be pro-active!

Reclaim the night!



Icons and candles on your porch!    If you have the opportunity and a front porch, set up some icons.  Have candles burning.  Christmas lights twinkling if you like.   Invite the little Halloween boys and girls to light a candle themselves.  Give them the sweets and also small paper icons.   The ones from Russia these days are very attractive to children.


Open your church!   For many years as a parish priest I opened the church on the night of Halloween after Vespers.  I lit every lamp and every candle and made it a magic place of God's presence.  I had every outside light burning to make it a welcoming place.    And people would come in.....  with their children dressed as ghosties and ghoulies.  Who knows what impact that special night and a visit to a beautiful and mysterious Christian church will have in the years to come.


AMEN!



Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ionnis on July 25, 2010, 11:26:13 PM
Thank you Father Ambrose for that post!  Wonderful! 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Asteriktos on October 28, 2010, 10:42:14 AM
(http://www.gobankingrates.com/system/wp/blogs/gobankingrates/bump1.jpg)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: genesisone on October 28, 2010, 11:11:49 AM
About an hour ago, I emailed my priest (yes, he will see it) to ask if we should come in costume on Sunday  :D. I suggested we could all come dressed as our patron saints.

(I don't usually pull his leg like that, so I'm a bit fearful he will spend an hour or two wondering if I'm serious!)

If Halloween is a fun time for kids, it can be quite harmless. Certainly in my neighbourhood, it's an occasion for parents and kids to be out together where they meet and make friends.

Like just about anything else, moderation is the key. It can easily get out of hand. Lots of things happen that the non-Orthodox (even non-Christians) don't approve of.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Schultz on October 28, 2010, 11:15:19 AM
(http://www.gobankingrates.com/system/wp/blogs/gobankingrates/bump1.jpg)

we hates you! ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Papist on October 28, 2010, 12:22:54 PM
Yeah, I had a feeling that this thread would be coming back.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Tikhon.of.Colorado on November 02, 2010, 12:52:59 PM
(I may have already posted, but I'd like to do so again).

Halloween, for me, was never a big deal.  I loathed buying costumes which I'd decide I hated half-way out of the store.  I got SO COLD trick-or-treating, but it was a bit fun. 

now, I just give the rugrats candy, and then say my prayers and go to bed.  I only do this because my mother celebrates it, and probably won't once I'm on my own.

religously, no, I don't think we should celebrate a pagan holiday that has NOTHING to do with Christianity, what-so-ever.

(well, perhapse if I do whar Fr. Ambrose suggests with the icons on the porch!)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Marc1152 on November 02, 2010, 02:18:22 PM
My wife, now reposed loved Halloween. She dressed up like a witch and played spooky music out the window and decorated the outside of the house. Halloween makes me a little sad remembering all that.

Something strange happend this year. She used make a neclace for her costume out of chicken bones. She would collect a few and put them in the diswasher with the silverware to get them clean enough to wear.

I found a chicken bone Saturday in the silverware tray of the dishwasher. I asked the family if anyone put it there. They looked at me like I was crazy. No one had. I went ahead and washed it.

The funny thing is that I was to attend a funeral Sunday ( Halloween) for a friend's Dad who just passed. Same cemetery as where my wife is.  I dont go there often. I'm not one for visiting her grave.

Anyway. Just thought I'd share this for what it's worth.   
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on November 02, 2010, 03:27:13 PM
This is what I did for Halloween this year:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,30894.0.html



Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Tikhon.of.Colorado on November 02, 2010, 05:55:06 PM
My wife, now reposed loved Halloween. She dressed up like a witch and played spooky music out the window and decorated the outside of the house. Halloween makes me a little sad remembering all that.

Something strange happend this year. She used make a neclace for her costume out of chicken bones. She would collect a few and put them in the diswasher with the silverware to get them clean enough to wear.

I found a chicken bone Saturday in the silverware tray of the dishwasher. I asked the family if anyone put it there. They looked at me like I was crazy. No one had. I went ahead and washed it.

The funny thing is that I was to attend a funeral Sunday ( Halloween) for a friend's Dad who just passed. Same cemetery as where my wife is.  I dont go there often. I'm not one for visiting her grave.

Anyway. Just thought I'd share this for what it's worth.   
memory eternal!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on November 02, 2010, 06:06:25 PM
My wife, now reposed loved Halloween. She dressed up like a witch and played spooky music out the window and decorated the outside of the house. Halloween makes me a little sad remembering all that.

Something strange happend this year. She used make a neclace for her costume out of chicken bones. She would collect a few and put them in the diswasher with the silverware to get them clean enough to wear.

I found a chicken bone Saturday in the silverware tray of the dishwasher. I asked the family if anyone put it there. They looked at me like I was crazy. No one had. I went ahead and washed it.

The funny thing is that I was to attend a funeral Sunday ( Halloween) for a friend's Dad who just passed. Same cemetery as where my wife is.  I dont go there often. I'm not one for visiting her grave.

Anyway. Just thought I'd share this for what it's worth.   
memory eternal!

Amen. Memory Eternal!

A very interesting story. You should call up George Noory or Art Bell on Coast to Coast AM and share this story!


Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Tikhon.of.Colorado on November 02, 2010, 06:20:20 PM
My wife, now reposed loved Halloween. She dressed up like a witch and played spooky music out the window and decorated the outside of the house. Halloween makes me a little sad remembering all that.

Something strange happend this year. She used make a neclace for her costume out of chicken bones. She would collect a few and put them in the diswasher with the silverware to get them clean enough to wear.

I found a chicken bone Saturday in the silverware tray of the dishwasher. I asked the family if anyone put it there. They looked at me like I was crazy. No one had. I went ahead and washed it.

The funny thing is that I was to attend a funeral Sunday ( Halloween) for a friend's Dad who just passed. Same cemetery as where my wife is.  I dont go there often. I'm not one for visiting her grave.

Anyway. Just thought I'd share this for what it's worth.   
memory eternal!

Amen. Memory Eternal!

A very interesting story. You should call up George Noory or Art Bell on Coast to Coast AM and share this story!


Selam
ah, yes! just stay away from those Sylvia Brown types....shell probably say that your wife is moving things around your home to get some gruesome message to you!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on November 02, 2010, 06:42:12 PM
My wife, now reposed loved Halloween. She dressed up like a witch and played spooky music out the window and decorated the outside of the house. Halloween makes me a little sad remembering all that.

Something strange happend this year. She used make a neclace for her costume out of chicken bones. She would collect a few and put them in the diswasher with the silverware to get them clean enough to wear.

I found a chicken bone Saturday in the silverware tray of the dishwasher. I asked the family if anyone put it there. They looked at me like I was crazy. No one had. I went ahead and washed it.

The funny thing is that I was to attend a funeral Sunday ( Halloween) for a friend's Dad who just passed. Same cemetery as where my wife is.  I dont go there often. I'm not one for visiting her grave.

Anyway. Just thought I'd share this for what it's worth.   
memory eternal!

Amen. Memory Eternal!

A very interesting story. You should call up George Noory or Art Bell on Coast to Coast AM and share this story!


Selam
ah, yes! just stay away from those Sylvia Brown types....shell probably say that your wife is moving things around your home to get some gruesome message to you!

Exactly. Call up Coast to Coast, share this remarkable story, but make sure to end it with Orthodox Truth! ;)


Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: GabrieltheCelt on November 02, 2010, 07:05:59 PM
Yeah, I had a feeling that this thread would be coming back.

It's my gift to the community that keeps on giving.  Ha ha!  :D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Nigula Qian Zishi on November 05, 2010, 06:16:22 PM
Here is a pretty balanced and factual take on the holiday(s) of this time. http://ecumenicalbuddhism.blogspot.com/2010/11/all-saints-day-all-souls-day-lemuria.html (http://ecumenicalbuddhism.blogspot.com/2010/11/all-saints-day-all-souls-day-lemuria.html)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Asteriktos on October 01, 2011, 09:47:50 AM
It's about that time of year again...

(http://imgon.net/di-3DX4.gif)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: William on October 26, 2011, 09:14:39 PM
I signed up to volunteer at the Zoo for their Halloween party (kids trick or treat outside the animal exhibits) before I found out that Orthodoxy generally frowns on Halloween. Should I cancel?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: NicholasMyra on October 26, 2011, 09:24:47 PM
One of the litmus tests I gave my priest was asking him whether or not he let his children trick-or-treat when they were young.

He answered rightly.  ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ionnis on October 26, 2011, 09:42:53 PM
I have never celebrated Halloween.  I went to a Halloween party once when I was 23 or so, but I didn't dress up.  I'm kind of indifferent to the holiday.  I prefer to celebrate All Saints Day the next day.  We have a large Hispanic population where I live, so there are a lot of celebrations for the dead on that day or the weekend preceding the actual holiday which are fun and generally respectful. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 26, 2011, 10:12:23 PM
One of the litmus tests I gave my priest was asking him whether or not he let his children trick-or-treat when they were young.

He answered rightly.  ;)

My priest disagrees with me on this one, but he is still amazing in that he loves me.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 26, 2011, 10:17:20 PM
I signed up to volunteer at the Zoo for their Halloween party (kids trick or treat outside the animal exhibits) before I found out that Orthodoxy generally frowns on Halloween. Should I cancel?

 ::) There is Jack Chick brouhaha surrounding this event every year, even though the holiday has Christian connections. Nevermind, what some people within Orthodoxy frown upon. What do you think?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: orthonorm on October 26, 2011, 10:32:45 PM
This is what I did for Halloween this year:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,30894.0.html



Selam

Stand guard vigilantly for toilet paper being thrown amongst the branches of your trees.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: William on October 26, 2011, 10:36:59 PM
I signed up to volunteer at the Zoo for their Halloween party (kids trick or treat outside the animal exhibits) before I found out that Orthodoxy generally frowns on Halloween. Should I cancel?

 ::) There is Jack Chick brouhaha surrounding this event every year, even though the holiday has Christian connections. Nevermind, what some people within Orthodoxy frown upon. What do you think?

Why would I disregard what my future coreligionists think?

I'll tell you what I think. I think that the consensus amongst the Orthodox (besides the people who make fun of 'hyperdox' and 'LARPers' on this forum) that I've seen is that Halloween is not something that an Orthodox Christian should participate in. I'm trying to see if economy could be applied in my case since I obliged myself to be involved before I knew that I shouldn't be.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: orthonorm on October 26, 2011, 10:37:37 PM
I have never celebrated Halloween.  I went to a Halloween party once when I was 23 or so, but I didn't dress up.  I'm kind of indifferent to the holiday.  I prefer to celebrate All Saints Day the next day.  We have a large Hispanic population where I live, so there are a lot of celebrations for the dead on that day or the weekend preceding the actual holiday which are fun and generally respectful. 

Sorta embarrassing to see adults dressing up for Halloween. Halloween is hitting Europe hard. Just the sexy adult variety. Nothing for the kids.

But I can bob for apples like no one else.

I was drugged to a Halloween party / concert once. You had to dress up to get in. But they didn't seem to really care.

Ended up meeting a long term GF there. All because of bobbing for apples.

Boy do I wish I had stayed home, like I usually do.

But it would be cool to have the parish open as Father suggested above. I would definitely hang.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: IsmiLiora on October 26, 2011, 10:38:51 PM
I prefer to celebrate All Saints Day the next day.  We have a large Hispanic population where I live, so there are a lot of celebrations for the dead on that day or the weekend preceding the actual holiday which are fun and generally respectful. 
We do the same thing!

I don't quite know when I have kids. I went trick-or-treating myself as a child, and didn't ascribe anything religious to it. I just wanted candy. For right now, I'm thinking about drawing the line at holding any parties for the kids at the house or such, but if they are having a party at school, they can dress up. I love dressing up and I know how exciting it was to wear a costume during classes all day.

Ahh, such a hard line to draw. I don't feel militant enough about Halloween, I guess. I'm ambivalent. But I am not a big fan of the day either.

I want to ask my priest now, just to see what he thinks. I have a sneaking suspicion that his kids went out trick-or-treating, but that's just a guess.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ionnis on October 26, 2011, 10:42:11 PM
I have never celebrated Halloween.  I went to a Halloween party once when I was 23 or so, but I didn't dress up.  I'm kind of indifferent to the holiday.  I prefer to celebrate All Saints Day the next day.  We have a large Hispanic population where I live, so there are a lot of celebrations for the dead on that day or the weekend preceding the actual holiday which are fun and generally respectful. 

Sorta embarrassing to see adults dressing up for Halloween.


Sorta (very) embarrassing to see adults bobbing for apples. ;-)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: orthonorm on October 26, 2011, 10:42:55 PM
I signed up to volunteer at the Zoo for their Halloween party (kids trick or treat outside the animal exhibits) before I found out that Orthodoxy generally frowns on Halloween. Should I cancel?

 ::) There is Jack Chick brouhaha surrounding this event every year, even though the holiday has Christian connections. Nevermind, what some people within Orthodoxy frown upon. What do you think?

Why would I disregard what my future coreligionists think?

I'll tell you what I think. I think that the consensus amongst the Orthodox (besides the people who make fun of 'hyperdox' and 'LARPers' on this forum) that I've seen is that Halloween is not something that an Orthodox Christian should participate in. I'm trying to see if economy could be applied in my case since I obliged myself to be involved before I knew that I shouldn't be.

At least knowing is half the battle.

I bet nearly every kid at my parish will somehow be involved in Halloween to one degree or another.

Yeah. OC.net is where you are going to find the "typical" Orthodox.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: IsmiLiora on October 26, 2011, 10:43:40 PM
After hitting submit, I JUST got an e-mail from my priest. There will be festivities at the church for the kiddies. That's pretty neat. Like they need an excuse to get more sugar. ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: orthonorm on October 26, 2011, 10:47:19 PM
I have never celebrated Halloween.  I went to a Halloween party once when I was 23 or so, but I didn't dress up.  I'm kind of indifferent to the holiday.  I prefer to celebrate All Saints Day the next day.  We have a large Hispanic population where I live, so there are a lot of celebrations for the dead on that day or the weekend preceding the actual holiday which are fun and generally respectful. 

Sorta embarrassing to see adults dressing up for Halloween.


Sorta (very) embarrassing to see adults bobbing for apples. ;-)

Hey, it made sense under the circumstances. Actually under the circumstances pretty much anything made sense.

I can hold my breath for forever, being filled with hot air has its advantages, and I have some serious teeth with a slight over bite. How often do you get to flaunt that AWESOME combo?

And I got a girl! Of course that was the beginning of another disastrous few years of my life. But I got a girl!

If it were in a movie, it would have been totally quirky and romantic and ended happily ever after.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ionnis on October 26, 2011, 10:48:40 PM
I prefer to celebrate All Saints Day the next day.  We have a large Hispanic population where I live, so there are a lot of celebrations for the dead on that day or the weekend preceding the actual holiday which are fun and generally respectful. 
We do the same thing!

I don't quite know when I have kids. I went trick-or-treating myself as a child, and didn't ascribe anything religious to it. I just wanted candy. For right now, I'm thinking about drawing the line at holding any parties for the kids at the house or such, but if they are having a party at school, they can dress up. I love dressing up and I know how exciting it was to wear a costume during classes all day.

Ahh, such a hard line to draw. I don't feel militant enough about Halloween, I guess. I'm ambivalent. But I am not a big fan of the day either.

I want to ask my priest now, just to see what he thinks. I have a sneaking suspicion that his kids went out trick-or-treating, but that's just a guess.

I probably need to read through this thread, but I don't understand why people are against it.  I'm not saying that they shouldn't be against it, I just know next to nothing about the holiday.  I don't like the whole fixation on witches and gore, but I don't know what is wrong with a little girl dressing up as Cinderella and going to get some candy.  My nephew is dressing up as a transformer this year. He is only two, but we cannot even call him by his name.  He only goes by "Robot".  How can you not love that?! :)  

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ionnis on October 26, 2011, 10:50:22 PM
I have never celebrated Halloween.  I went to a Halloween party once when I was 23 or so, but I didn't dress up.  I'm kind of indifferent to the holiday.  I prefer to celebrate All Saints Day the next day.  We have a large Hispanic population where I live, so there are a lot of celebrations for the dead on that day or the weekend preceding the actual holiday which are fun and generally respectful. 

Sorta embarrassing to see adults dressing up for Halloween.


Sorta (very) embarrassing to see adults bobbing for apples. ;-)

Hey, it made sense under the circumstances. Actually under the circumstances pretty much anything made sense.

I can hold my breath for forever, being filled with hot air has its advantages, and I have some serious teeth with a slight over bite. How often do you get to flaunt that AWESOME combo?

And I got a girl! Of course that was the beginning of another disastrous few years of my life. But I got a girl!

If it were in a movie, it would have been totally quirky and romantic and ended happily ever after.

How dreamy. :P
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 26, 2011, 10:50:50 PM
I signed up to volunteer at the Zoo for their Halloween party (kids trick or treat outside the animal exhibits) before I found out that Orthodoxy generally frowns on Halloween. Should I cancel?

 ::) There is Jack Chick brouhaha surrounding this event every year, even though the holiday has Christian connections. Nevermind, what some people within Orthodoxy frown upon. What do you think?

Why would I disregard what my future coreligionists think?



Your sanity is at stake.

Quote
I'll tell you what I think. I think that the consensus amongst the Orthodox (besides the people who make fun of 'hyperdox' and 'LARPers' on this forum) that I've seen is that Halloween is not something that an Orthodox Christian should participate in. I'm trying to see if economy could be applied in my case since I obliged myself to be involved before I knew that I shouldn't be.

Do what you feel right in doing.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: orthonorm on October 26, 2011, 10:50:58 PM
I prefer to celebrate All Saints Day the next day.  We have a large Hispanic population where I live, so there are a lot of celebrations for the dead on that day or the weekend preceding the actual holiday which are fun and generally respectful. 
We do the same thing!

I don't quite know when I have kids. I went trick-or-treating myself as a child, and didn't ascribe anything religious to it. I just wanted candy. For right now, I'm thinking about drawing the line at holding any parties for the kids at the house or such, but if they are having a party at school, they can dress up. I love dressing up and I know how exciting it was to wear a costume during classes all day.

Ahh, such a hard line to draw. I don't feel militant enough about Halloween, I guess. I'm ambivalent. But I am not a big fan of the day either.

I want to ask my priest now, just to see what he thinks. I have a sneaking suspicion that his kids went out trick-or-treating, but that's just a guess.

I probably need to read through this thread, but I don't understand why people are against it.  I'm not saying that they shouldn't be against it, I just know next to nothing about the holiday.  I don't like the whole fixation on witches and gore, but I don't know what is wrong with a little girl dressing up as Cinderella and going to get some candy.  My nephew is dressing up as a transformer this year. He is only two, but we cannot even call him by his name.  He only goes by "Robot".  How can you not love that?! :)  



That's awesome. And no Halloween would have robbed us of the iconic sequence in E.T.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: IsmiLiora on October 26, 2011, 10:55:44 PM
I prefer to celebrate All Saints Day the next day.  We have a large Hispanic population where I live, so there are a lot of celebrations for the dead on that day or the weekend preceding the actual holiday which are fun and generally respectful. 
We do the same thing!

I don't quite know when I have kids. I went trick-or-treating myself as a child, and didn't ascribe anything religious to it. I just wanted candy. For right now, I'm thinking about drawing the line at holding any parties for the kids at the house or such, but if they are having a party at school, they can dress up. I love dressing up and I know how exciting it was to wear a costume during classes all day.

Ahh, such a hard line to draw. I don't feel militant enough about Halloween, I guess. I'm ambivalent. But I am not a big fan of the day either.

I want to ask my priest now, just to see what he thinks. I have a sneaking suspicion that his kids went out trick-or-treating, but that's just a guess.

I probably need to read through this thread, but I don't understand why people are against it.  I'm not saying that they shouldn't be against it, I just know next to nothing about the holiday.  I don't like the whole fixation on witches and gore, but I don't know what is wrong with a little girl dressing up as Cinderella and going to get some candy.  My nephew is dressing up as a transformer this year. He is only two, but we cannot even call him by his name.  He only goes by "Robot".  How can you not love that?! :)  


Robot! That's SO cute! :)

I guess for myself I don't like the sort of darker tones of the holiday. Plus, it's not explicitly Christian and/or there is no real meaning celebrated now, except for "dress up and get candy." Or if it's high school and older, an excuse to dress like a sloot.

We would have high schoolers coming to our door with ratty pillowcases and regular clothes. I wanted to tell them to go home and get a costume on before I gave them any candy.

There's just no REASON.

But like I said, I totally get in the spirit of dressing up and I get why that is fun.

Ambivalence at its finest.

And sorry, I could NOT hand out tracts to the kids coming to the door. I'd rather get a hotel room in town or stay out of the house for a night. It is fully within someone's right to, but I could never do it.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Shiny on October 26, 2011, 11:06:36 PM
I'd rather watch Christmas movies with hot cocoa on Halloween.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 27, 2011, 01:40:03 AM
I'm going to dress as a nerd for Halloween. Of course, I dress as a nerd every day of the year, so why should Halloween be any different. ;D
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Shiny on October 27, 2011, 01:40:54 AM
I'm going to dress as a nerd for Halloween. Of course, I dress as a nerd every day of the year, so why should Halloween be any different. ;D

40 Year Old Virgin.

Sike. ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: IsmiLiora on October 27, 2011, 07:45:52 AM
When I was about 9 or so, I dressed up as a mobile phone. It wasn't a household thing where I lived at that time, only for businessmen or people in certain professions, and they were big, had antennas, and came with a shoulder bag.

I remember walking around my school at the Halloween parade and hearing the mothers say, "Oh, what a cute calculator!"

 ::)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: podkarpatska on October 27, 2011, 11:44:56 AM
I prefer to celebrate All Saints Day the next day.  We have a large Hispanic population where I live, so there are a lot of celebrations for the dead on that day or the weekend preceding the actual holiday which are fun and generally respectful. 
We do the same thing!

I don't quite know when I have kids. I went trick-or-treating myself as a child, and didn't ascribe anything religious to it. I just wanted candy. For right now, I'm thinking about drawing the line at holding any parties for the kids at the house or such, but if they are having a party at school, they can dress up. I love dressing up and I know how exciting it was to wear a costume during classes all day.

Ahh, such a hard line to draw. I don't feel militant enough about Halloween, I guess. I'm ambivalent. But I am not a big fan of the day either.

I want to ask my priest now, just to see what he thinks. I have a sneaking suspicion that his kids went out trick-or-treating, but that's just a guess.

I probably need to read through this thread, but I don't understand why people are against it.  I'm not saying that they shouldn't be against it, I just know next to nothing about the holiday.  I don't like the whole fixation on witches and gore, but I don't know what is wrong with a little girl dressing up as Cinderella and going to get some candy.  My nephew is dressing up as a transformer this year. He is only two, but we cannot even call him by his name.  He only goes by "Robot".  How can you not love that?! :)  



Agreed, the stupid take young 'adult's take on it as an excuse for gory excess and partying is one thing, but for little kids, I agree, how can you not love that. If you profess to be Christian (I will go beyond just us Orthodox) and get 'into' the ghost, spirits and witches nonsense, you have a problem - fortunately, most are not of that mindset.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: dcommini on October 27, 2011, 01:58:02 PM
i'm not going to lie; i'm apathetic towards Halloween. I used to enjoy dressing up when I was younger, but I rarely got to go trick-or-treating as my mother forbade my siblings and me to do so - but we would go to church functions (most times called "harvest festivals"). Once church I attended when I lived in Florida had the youths dress up as a Bible character (sans Satan) and I dressed up as Samuel come back from the dead... I won a prize for best costume but made a lot of people mad.

Another time at another church I dressed up as a hobo. I put some of my military face paint on and made it look like i had not shaved in a while and was dirty, carried my harmonica, "will work 4 food" sign, and the change cup from my car for donations. That and a slight limp and I had church security coming up to me all night asking if I was for real or just dressed up for the night... I had attended that church for over a year and knew most of the people  ::)

Personally I see no harm in letting children dress up and go get candy as long as we as parents are careful to the exposure of the darker side of Halloween and stress the importance of not celebrating the night as some kind of dark religious thing. I like the idea of having the icons and the candles on the porch, and if I were home for Halloween this year I would do that if my apartment complex allows us to have lit flames outside...

Also, this: http://raphael.doxos.com/2011/10/all-saints-day-2/#hide (http://raphael.doxos.com/2011/10/all-saints-day-2/#hide)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: LizaSymonenko on October 27, 2011, 02:23:59 PM

The thing with Halloween is that it DOES celebrate evil, gore, witches, demons, etc.  Even if we dress as princesses we are still out there yelling "Trick or Treat"!  Yes, we may not ever "trick" anyone, but, we are threatening to do so.

...and yet, I can see the fun in it.  My mother was always worried about letting us "celebrate" the day.  She would only dress us as angels or princesses and we would then run around the neighborhood....however, it always bothered her that she may be allowing her kids to take part in a "pagan" ritual, etc.

As an adult, I now share her concerns. ...and yet, I remember the fun I had dressing up.

Halloween IS not a good thing to "celebrate"....I teach that to my students, however, in all my years I have yet been able to convince even from going out that night.

A few weeks ago, our bishop was visiting and we asked him this same question.  He said it was not a good idea.  Threatening to trick someone, to dress in evil costumes, to throw eggs at houses, set fires, etc...is never good.  ...and while not everyone does this, we do support the evenings festivities by going out, or handing out candy....we perpetuate the evil.

However, when the kids were whining and disappointed, he did say that if you were to dress in non-evil costumes and go out to do good to your neighbors that would be okay.

Thinking long and hard on this....I decided to have our youth group go out and collect cans/dry goods that evening.

I made a flyer and bought plastic bags.  Each child than circulated these to the houses they will hit on Halloween.  The resident is instructed to have a few cans handy to donate to the kids.  I have contacted "the Forgotten Harvest" and they will happily accept any food that is collected and donated to the needy in our area.

This way the kids get to dress up, go out with their friends, and do a good deed at the same time.  They have been forbidden from dressing as witches, ghosts, etc...and they are not to yell "Trick or Treat".  It is a win-win situation.

We'll see how many items they end up collecting.

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: orthonorm on October 27, 2011, 03:12:26 PM
But Harry Potter is OK? And so is Narnia and LotR?

Sheesh.

What is more awesomer than Halloween?

(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/2/22/Krampus_at_Perchtenlauf_Klagenfurt.jpg/220px-Krampus_at_Perchtenlauf_Klagenfurt.jpg)

(http://imgs.sfgate.com/blogs/images/sfgate/culture/2009/12/03/krampus300%5Cx348.jpg)

(http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_LdYrmyPo924/SxSWRNLfAbI/AAAAAAAAAYw/CXvFkuo12u8/s1600/krampus3.jpg)

(http://morepop.rowthree.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/12/krampus3.jpg)

The English wiki is weak on the explain:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Krampus

But I can say I was skeptical . . . from the drums to the bells in the distance descending upon the city or village to the actual "whipping" of young women with the "phallic" roots as punishment for not bringing forth a bountiful harvest.

Scary.

My GF, flew into a doorway. Big mistake. One of the guys simply stopping and rattling his bells looming over her drove her to tears. We were in the city that year and and I said it is pretty tame. The whipping is rather lame. But the masks and drums and bells . . .

It was pretty awesome. I was a bit freaked myself. And we all "knew" it was pretend.

In villages, it gets outsane.

Forget Oktoberfest, go a little more south and right before St. Nicholas' Day for some real Teutonic tradition.

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 27, 2011, 05:06:40 PM
The Celts celebrated Halloween, though not by that name, and they converted to Christianity. Really dangerous celebration by the sound of it.  ;)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Tikhon.of.Colorado on October 27, 2011, 05:12:12 PM
Sure it's ok!!!!!  My priest's wife even takes their children trick-or-treating.

There really aren't any pagan traditions that would be immoral for a Christian still practiced.

EDIT:  I'd like to add that, as said above (a few years ago) that it really is a cultural thing.  I've had so much fun putting up festive decorations, carving pumpkins, and taking my sister (or going myself a few years ago) trick-or-treating.  It's really just a fun holiday and an excuse for us to all have fun together at my home. :)

(http://clipartspot.net/clipart-pics/happy-halloween-5.jpg)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 27, 2011, 05:14:59 PM
Sure it's ok!!!!!  My priest's wife even takes their children trick-or-treating.

There really aren't any pagan traditions that would be immoral for a Christian still practiced.

(http://clipartspot.net/clipart-pics/happy-halloween-5.jpg)

Happy Halloween right back at you, Trevor!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Tikhon.of.Colorado on October 27, 2011, 05:20:29 PM
Sure it's ok!!!!!  My priest's wife even takes their children trick-or-treating.

There really aren't any pagan traditions that would be immoral for a Christian still practiced.

(http://clipartspot.net/clipart-pics/happy-halloween-5.jpg)

Happy Halloween right back at you, Trevor!

Thank you!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Ionnis on October 27, 2011, 09:22:45 PM
Orthonorm, that is just plain disturbing.  I'd scream like a baby, cry, and run if something like that came at me, even if it was fake.  Ew. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: orthonorm on October 27, 2011, 09:37:17 PM
Orthonorm, that is just plain disturbing.  I'd scream like a baby, cry, and run if something like that came at me, even if it was fake.  Ew. 

I am telling you, I thought it would be a buncha nonsense.

Something primordial going on there.

The Christened Kiddy version happens during the day with more stuffed animal versions who are there to "punish" any "bad" kids before they get something from St. Nicholas.

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Shiny on October 27, 2011, 09:41:18 PM
Can I go as Zombie Jesus?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Tikhon.of.Colorado on October 27, 2011, 09:42:08 PM
Can I go as Zombie Jesus?

This is exactly where I draw the line with Halloween, though.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: William on October 27, 2011, 09:54:45 PM
Speaking of drawing the line with Halloween, where do those of you who don't celebrate it draw the line with horror stuff? Would you watch a scary movie?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: IsmiLiora on October 27, 2011, 10:15:35 PM
^ I draw the line at watching historical documentaries about human atrocities, rather than horror/gory movies that are exploitative about human violence (although I am fully aware of documentaries also being exploitative...but at least there is usually some sort of meaning behind it or a true story being told). Hostel, anyone?

I am inconsistent with a lot of things, but not with this. I don't watch horror movies. I watch the occasional zombie movie, but that's it. No Saw, nothing like that.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Tikhon.of.Colorado on October 27, 2011, 10:19:33 PM
I agree with Ismi, 100%.  I do not watch horror movies since age 14, because I just get too worked up.  There is enough violence in the world, I don't need to see it when I sit down to relax and watch a movie.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Timon on October 27, 2011, 10:23:34 PM
I dont like horror movies either, but its mainly just because Im a big ole wimp!

As far as halloween goes, I dont see anything wrong with kids putting on goofy costumes to go score a bunch of candy...

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Shiny on October 27, 2011, 10:44:51 PM
I've never been a horror fan but if I had to choose one it would be Carpenter's The Thing.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Tikhon.of.Colorado on October 27, 2011, 10:48:34 PM
http://ancientfaith.com/podcasts/orthodixie/halloween_._._._again

This seems good for this thread.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Maximum Bob on October 27, 2011, 11:26:54 PM
We don't do Halloween, more because of my wife than myself. I do back her up in this I'm just not as adamant about it as she is. I understand the nastiness of the Celtic orgins and the glorification of evil that has been promoted recently but, I also remember the more innocent fun I had as a kid. We won't give out candy that night, I wouldn't impose this view on anyone who disagreed though.

As to horror movies, don't do that, not at all, don't see anything good in them.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Shiny on October 27, 2011, 11:36:40 PM
If dressing up has nothing to do with occult practices and pagan beliefs, what is the problem?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Tikhon.of.Colorado on October 27, 2011, 11:38:43 PM
If dressing up has nothing to do with occult practices and pagan beliefs, what is the problem?

If your referring to my comment on your post, it's because there's no harm in dressing up.  But there is harm when someone mocks something important (like Christ) and thinks it's funny. 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 28, 2011, 03:29:13 AM
We don't do Halloween, more because of my wife than myself. I do back her up in this I'm just not as adamant about it as she is. I understand the nastiness of the Celtic orgins and the glorification of evil that has been promoted recently but, I also remember the more innocent fun I had as a kid. We won't give out candy that night, I wouldn't impose this view on anyone who disagreed though.

As to horror movies, don't do that, not at all, don't see anything good in them.

I'm just going to pretend I didn't see this.  ::) I'll be much happier in the long run!

Hell, no I'm not.  >:(

Strange how the nasty Celts managed to bring these traditions into Christianity with them and the holiday was even recognised by the Church and made official with the all the tidbits that go along with it.

This sounds like the kind of argument you get against Christmas trees; because pagans displayed the heads of their enemies on trees.

<sigh>
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Shiny on October 28, 2011, 03:34:20 AM
Didn't Christmas Trees originate from Luther?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 28, 2011, 03:40:05 AM
Didn't Christmas Trees originate from Luther?

It originated with the Germans, I believe. St Boniface in the 7th Century?? Not entirely sure, really. It became popular in England sometime after Queen Victoria's marriage to Prince Albert.

Edited to add:

You got me curious!  Please stop that!  >:(  :angel:

Legend associates the first Christmas tree with St. Boniface and the German town of Geismar. Sometime in Boniface's lifetime (c. 672-754) he is said to have cut down the sacred tree of Thor in Geismar, replacing it with a fir tree which has been said to have been the first Christmas tree.[4] The word Tannenbaum, a German word for "fir tree", can be understood to be a "Christmas tree" although the literal meaning of "Christmas tree" is encapsulated in the word "Weihnachtsbaum."
 
The custom of erecting a Christmas tree can be historically traced to 15th century Livonia (present-day Estonia and Latvia) and 16th century Northern Germany. According to the first documented uses of a Christmas tree in Estonia, in 1441, 1442, and 1514 the Brotherhood of Blackheads erected a tree for the holidays in their brotherhood house in Reval (now Tallinn). At the last night of the celebrations leading up to the holidays, the tree was taken to the Town Hall Square where the members of the brotherhood danced around it.[5] In 1584, the pastor and chronicler Balthasar Russow wrote of an established tradition of setting up a decorated spruce at the market square where the young men “went with a flock of maidens and women, first sang and danced there and then set the tree aflame”.[2] In that period, the guilds started erecting Christmas trees in front of their guildhalls: Ingeborg Weber-Kellermann (Marburg professor of European ethnology) found a Bremen guild chronicle of 1570 which reports how a small tree was decorated with "apples, nuts, dates, pretzels and paper flowers" and erected in the guild-house, for the benefit of the guild members' children, who collected the dainties on Christmas Day.[3]
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christmas_tree#Origin
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: FountainPen on October 28, 2011, 03:47:42 AM
I seem to remember that Halloween is also the anniversary of an event that shattered the Western Christian world.  Does anyone remember Wittenberg?

What a great cause for celebration that the 95 theses were declared this day and helped shatter delusion. We should celebrate it every year by dressing up in costume and playing tricks on those still in delusion if they don't give us a treat.

Now this i'd like to see #laughs
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Maximum Bob on October 28, 2011, 09:06:15 AM
We don't do Halloween, more because of my wife than myself. I do back her up in this I'm just not as adamant about it as she is. I understand the nastiness of the Celtic orgins and the glorification of evil that has been promoted recently but, I also remember the more innocent fun I had as a kid. We won't give out candy that night, I wouldn't impose this view on anyone who disagreed though.

As to horror movies, don't do that, not at all, don't see anything good in them.

I'm just going to pretend I didn't see this.  ::) I'll be much happier in the long run!

Hell, no I'm not.  >:(

Strange how the nasty Celts managed to bring these traditions into Christianity with them and the holiday was even recognised by the Church and made official with the all the tidbits that go along with it.

This sounds like the kind of argument you get against Christmas trees; because pagans displayed the heads of their enemies on trees.

<sigh>

Okay, I love learning, and I'm willing (genuinely) to stand corrected if need be. Educate me. What am I misunderstanding a bout the practices of my Celtic ancestors?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: vamrat on October 28, 2011, 09:35:50 AM
^ I draw the line at watching historical documentaries about human atrocities, rather than horror/gory movies that are exploitative about human violence (although I am fully aware of documentaries also being exploitative...but at least there is usually some sort of meaning behind it or a true story being told). Hostel, anyone?

I am inconsistent with a lot of things, but not with this. I don't watch horror movies. I watch the occasional zombie movie, but that's it. No Saw, nothing like that.

Seen Hostel.  Ugh.  Saw Saw.  You're not missing much.  Now, if you skip on Walking Dead and The Rocky Horror Picture Show, you're missing something!

Horror movies generally don't get to me.  This is a real conversation:
GF: So what would you do, Mr. Fearless, if someone in a mask came at you with a machete?
Me: [Points to loaded firearm on coffee table]
GF: But, but...wait.  Why don't they ever have guns in horror movies?
Me: Liberals.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: NicholasMyra on October 28, 2011, 09:39:45 AM
And sorry, I could NOT hand out tracts to the kids coming to the door. I'd rather get a hotel room in town or stay out of the house for a night. It is fully within someone's right to, but I could never do it.
Panel 1: Halloween children being cast into the lake of fire.

Panel 2: "THIS COULD BE YOUR NIGHT!"

Panel 3: Kids crying while receiving crowns of candyless martyrdom in an Orthodox church.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: HabteSelassie on October 28, 2011, 11:12:07 AM
Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

My two cents:

We are not prudes, like I said in the Premarital Sex thread, and so we in Orthodox do not need to be prudish about kiddy celebrations like Halloween.  It is an opportunity for us to have fun with our kids, to have fun with our neighbors and community, and to poke a little fun at the Devil.  After all, with everyone parading around as demons, devils, monsters, and ghosts, if anything, we are poking fun at Evil, pointing out that through Christ such things can become almost a novelty!  Imagine the glory of that! Ancient and "pagan" celebrations around demons and monsters were to acknowledge with reverent fear the power of negative forces, to remind children and adults alike of the boogie man, where as in the American celebration of Halloween, we seem to be having a blast at the Devil's expense.  We are so not afraid of Evil that we mock and jest in fun and play, pretending to "scare" each other in the guise and costumes of Evil. It is a big pageant, where we poke fun at old powers of Evil, which in Christ can be abolished from our lives.  So as long as we remain Christian about it, I say we should embrace celebrating Halloween, so long as we remind ourselves that it is Christ that allows us to trample on the serpent forces of Darkness, and it is only through Christ that we can make Evil out to be a jest, make the Devil out to be merely a costume pageant, and instead of quivering with fear spend the night with our neighbors and children making merry and laughing.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Marc1152 on October 28, 2011, 11:17:31 AM
It is also the commemoration of St. John of Kronstadt on Oct. 30 (Church Calendar) so we are holding vigil and then Liturgy the next day so people can avoid Halloween if they wish to.

 St. John is a great Saint of the Church and worth giving up candy for IMHO.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_of_Kronstadt

  
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: PeterTheAleut on October 28, 2011, 02:30:38 PM
Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

My two cents:

We are not prudes, like I said in the Premarital Sex thread, and so we in Orthodox do not need to be prudish about kiddy celebrations like Halloween.  It is an opportunity for us to have fun with our kids, to have fun with our neighbors and community, and to poke a little fun at the Devil.  After all, with everyone parading around as demons, devils, monsters, and ghosts, if anything, we are poking fun at Evil, pointing out that through Christ such things can become almost a novelty!  Imagine the glory of that! Ancient and "pagan" celebrations around demons and monsters were to acknowledge with reverent fear the power of negative forces, to remind children and adults alike of the boogie man, where as in the American celebration of Halloween, we seem to be having a blast at the Devil's expense.  We are so not afraid of Evil that we mock and jest in fun and play, pretending to "scare" each other in the guise and costumes of Evil. It is a big pageant, where we poke fun at old powers of Evil, which in Christ can be abolished from our lives.  So as long as we remain Christian about it, I say we should embrace celebrating Halloween, so long as we remind ourselves that it is Christ that allows us to trample on the serpent forces of Darkness, and it is only through Christ that we can make Evil out to be a jest, make the Devil out to be merely a costume pageant, and instead of quivering with fear spend the night with our neighbors and children making merry and laughing.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
Somehow, though, I don't think 90% of the people who dress up in these "costumes of Evil" have your Christian motivation in mind.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: IsmiLiora on October 28, 2011, 02:36:10 PM
^ I draw the line at watching historical documentaries about human atrocities, rather than horror/gory movies that are exploitative about human violence (although I am fully aware of documentaries also being exploitative...but at least there is usually some sort of meaning behind it or a true story being told). Hostel, anyone?

I am inconsistent with a lot of things, but not with this. I don't watch horror movies. I watch the occasional zombie movie, but that's it. No Saw, nothing like that.

Seen Hostel.  Ugh.  Saw Saw.  You're not missing much.  Now, if you skip on Walking Dead and The Rocky Horror Picture Show, you're missing something!

Horror movies generally don't get to me.  This is a real conversation:
GF: So what would you do, Mr. Fearless, if someone in a mask came at you with a machete?
Me: [Points to loaded firearm on coffee table]
GF: But, but...wait.  Why don't they ever have guns in horror movies?
Me: Liberals.
Have you two watched Zombieland yet?  :P LOL though.

And I don't like the Walking Dead very much. The plot line is interesting but the zombies are just too gory for me. I know.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Tikhon.of.Colorado on October 28, 2011, 02:44:33 PM
^ I draw the line at watching historical documentaries about human atrocities, rather than horror/gory movies that are exploitative about human violence (although I am fully aware of documentaries also being exploitative...but at least there is usually some sort of meaning behind it or a true story being told). Hostel, anyone?

I am inconsistent with a lot of things, but not with this. I don't watch horror movies. I watch the occasional zombie movie, but that's it. No Saw, nothing like that.

Seen Hostel.  Ugh.  Saw Saw.  You're not missing much.  Now, if you skip on Walking Dead and The Rocky Horror Picture Show, you're missing something!

Horror movies generally don't get to me.  This is a real conversation:
GF: So what would you do, Mr. Fearless, if someone in a mask came at you with a machete?
Me: [Points to loaded firearm on coffee table]
GF: But, but...wait.  Why don't they ever have guns in horror movies?
Me: Liberals.
Have you two watched Zombieland yet?  :P LOL though.

And I don't like the Walking Dead very much. The plot line is interesting but the zombies are just too gory for me. I know.

I have to say, I like that movie very much :) 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 28, 2011, 07:04:38 PM
We don't do Halloween, more because of my wife than myself. I do back her up in this I'm just not as adamant about it as she is. I understand the nastiness of the Celtic orgins and the glorification of evil that has been promoted recently but, I also remember the more innocent fun I had as a kid. We won't give out candy that night, I wouldn't impose this view on anyone who disagreed though.

As to horror movies, don't do that, not at all, don't see anything good in them.

I'm just going to pretend I didn't see this.  ::) I'll be much happier in the long run!

Hell, no I'm not.  >:(

Strange how the nasty Celts managed to bring these traditions into Christianity with them and the holiday was even recognised by the Church and made official with the all the tidbits that go along with it.

This sounds like the kind of argument you get against Christmas trees; because pagans displayed the heads of their enemies on trees.

<sigh>

Okay, I love learning, and I'm willing (genuinely) to stand corrected if need be. Educate me. What am I misunderstanding a bout the practices of my Celtic ancestors?

Not being psychic, I don't know exactly what you are misunderstanding. ;) I don't know what you think are the nasty Celtic practices behind Samhain. Love to chat about this, actually, because I'm fascinated by the little we know about preChristian Celts. But my point is that the preChristian aspects of Samhain were carried into the lives of Christian Celts and are present in Halloween celebrations, without being perceived as nasty, evil, or spiritually damaging by those early Christians. Halloween being a Christian redesignation of the holy day of Samhain seems no different to me than the Christian redesignation of the the winter solstice, the natalis invicti, the feast of the invicible sun, on the 25th December, to the Birth of Christ.

Personally, I think that you guys in America have the opportunity to return this holiday to Christendom, to take advantage of its Christian heritage. So stop being such wimps and bring it on back to us, instead of shunning it like it's something of the devil!  :angel: :laugh:  

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: podkarpatska on October 28, 2011, 07:27:11 PM
We don't do Halloween, more because of my wife than myself. I do back her up in this I'm just not as adamant about it as she is. I understand the nastiness of the Celtic orgins and the glorification of evil that has been promoted recently but, I also remember the more innocent fun I had as a kid. We won't give out candy that night, I wouldn't impose this view on anyone who disagreed though.

As to horror movies, don't do that, not at all, don't see anything good in them.

I'm just going to pretend I didn't see this.  ::) I'll be much happier in the long run!

Hell, no I'm not.  >:(

Strange how the nasty Celts managed to bring these traditions into Christianity with them and the holiday was even recognised by the Church and made official with the all the tidbits that go along with it.

This sounds like the kind of argument you get against Christmas trees; because pagans displayed the heads of their enemies on trees.

<sigh>

Okay, I love learning, and I'm willing (genuinely) to stand corrected if need be. Educate me. What am I misunderstanding a bout the practices of my Celtic ancestors?

Not being psychic, I don't know exactly what you are misunderstanding. ;) I don't know what you think are the nasty Celtic practices behind Samhain. Love to chat about this, actually, because I'm fascinated by the little we know about preChristian Celts. But my point is that the preChristian aspects of Samhain were carried into the lives of Christian Celts and are present in Halloween celebrations, without being perceived as nasty, evil, or spiritually damaging by those early Christians. Halloween being a Christian redesignation of the holy day of Samhain seems no different to me than the Christian redesignation of the the winter solstice, the natalis invicti, the feast of the invicible sun, on the 25th December, to the Birth of Christ.

Personally, I think that you guys in America have the opportunity to return this holiday to Christendom, to take advantage of its Christian heritage. So stop being such wimps and bring it on back to us, instead of shunning it like it's something of the devil!  :angel: :laugh:  



And such was so with the pre-Christian culture of the Slavs, the Hellenes, the Norse, the Saxons, the Burgundians and so on and so on - each had many aspects of pagan tradition incorporated into and made a part of Christian tradition. Leave it to the 16th and 17th century Anglos who concocted the Puritan mentality to 'purge' things. If I recall correctly, during the reign of the great Lord Protector Cromwell, England banned the celebration of Christmas.  Bah, humbug!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 28, 2011, 07:32:55 PM
We don't do Halloween, more because of my wife than myself. I do back her up in this I'm just not as adamant about it as she is. I understand the nastiness of the Celtic orgins and the glorification of evil that has been promoted recently but, I also remember the more innocent fun I had as a kid. We won't give out candy that night, I wouldn't impose this view on anyone who disagreed though.

As to horror movies, don't do that, not at all, don't see anything good in them.

I'm just going to pretend I didn't see this.  ::) I'll be much happier in the long run!

Hell, no I'm not.  >:(

Strange how the nasty Celts managed to bring these traditions into Christianity with them and the holiday was even recognised by the Church and made official with the all the tidbits that go along with it.

This sounds like the kind of argument you get against Christmas trees; because pagans displayed the heads of their enemies on trees.

<sigh>

Okay, I love learning, and I'm willing (genuinely) to stand corrected if need be. Educate me. What am I misunderstanding a bout the practices of my Celtic ancestors?

Not being psychic, I don't know exactly what you are misunderstanding. ;) I don't know what you think are the nasty Celtic practices behind Samhain. Love to chat about this, actually, because I'm fascinated by the little we know about preChristian Celts. But my point is that the preChristian aspects of Samhain were carried into the lives of Christian Celts and are present in Halloween celebrations, without being perceived as nasty, evil, or spiritually damaging by those early Christians. Halloween being a Christian redesignation of the holy day of Samhain seems no different to me than the Christian redesignation of the the winter solstice, the natalis invicti, the feast of the invicible sun, on the 25th December, to the Birth of Christ.

Personally, I think that you guys in America have the opportunity to return this holiday to Christendom, to take advantage of its Christian heritage. So stop being such wimps and bring it on back to us, instead of shunning it like it's something of the devil!  :angel: :laugh:  



And such was so with the pre-Christian culture of the Slavs, the Hellenes, the Norse, the Saxons, the Burgundians and so on and so on - each had many aspects of pagan tradition incorporated into and made a part of Christian tradition. Leave it to the 16th and 17th century Anglos who concocted the Puritan mentality to 'purge' things. If I recall correctly, during the reign of the great Lord Protector Cromwell, England banned the celebration of Christmas.  Bah, humbug!

Indeed!! But this puritanical stuff came from Europe with the import of Calvinism. The likes of Cromwell merely jumped on the bandwagon to use it to bend people to his fundamentalist will, and I'm afraid this mindset found fertile soil in the USA.

Join the revolution! Bring back our cultural festivals. Make a stand against puritanical bs!!!  (I'm all excited, now! ) :laugh:
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: orthonorm on October 28, 2011, 07:40:49 PM
Indeed!! But this puritanical stuff came from Europe with the import of Calvinism. The likes of Cromwell merely jumped on the bandwagon to use it to bend people to his fundamentalist will, and I'm afraid this mindset found fertile soil in the USA.

Join the revolution! Bring back our cultural festivals. Make a stand against puritanical bs!!!  (I'm all excited, now! ) :laugh:

Good for you. Glad to see you have some chutzpah!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 28, 2011, 07:43:40 PM
An additional thought to what I said before.

Wiccans and alternative, reconstruction groups are using this Christian festivital and claiming it as their own, but with warped and disingenuous religious meaning. We have lost a voice in what was once ours, because we wimped out and let it happen. Because of puritanical fear. Can you imagine what the early Christians had to face in their day to day life? No sanitising for them. They lived with the bloody rites of Mithras going on next door and made it useful for the Gospel. What was obscene was finally dropped, what was harmless was continued with its new meanings.

So many of us hide in our houses refusing to join with our neighbours in this harmless activity, and let the opportunity to spread the love of Christ pass us by.  Instead, we stand on our laurels and distance ourselves more and more from the very people who need us.

OK - soap box put away.  :-[
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 28, 2011, 07:44:46 PM
Indeed!! But this puritanical stuff came from Europe with the import of Calvinism. The likes of Cromwell merely jumped on the bandwagon to use it to bend people to his fundamentalist will, and I'm afraid this mindset found fertile soil in the USA.

Join the revolution! Bring back our cultural festivals. Make a stand against puritanical bs!!!  (I'm all excited, now! ) :laugh:

Good for you. Glad to see you have some chutzpah!

 :laugh: I have lots of that! Ask my hubby!  :laugh:
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: orthonorm on October 28, 2011, 08:59:21 PM
An additional thought to what I said before.

Wiccans and alternative, reconstruction groups are using this Christian festivital and claiming it as their own, but with warped and disingenuous religious meaning. We have lost a voice in what was once ours, because we wimped out and let it happen. Because of puritanical fear. Can you imagine what the early Christians had to face in their day to day life? No sanitising for them. They lived with the bloody rites of Mithras going on next door and made it useful for the Gospel. What was obscene was finally dropped, what was harmless was continued with its new meanings.

So many of us hide in our houses refusing to join with our neighbours in this harmless activity, and let the opportunity to spread the love of Christ pass us by.  Instead, we stand on our laurels and distance ourselves more and more from the very people who need us.

OK - soap box put away.  :-[

Don't frown. I like the fire in the belly. And good for you about Mithras. I love reality and especially Christians who ain't afraid of it.

The reactions I've seen Christians have when learning of such stuff like Mithras is oft embarrassing.

This is emboldening!

Erase that frown I might nominate a post for PotM that is not mine for once. //:=)

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 28, 2011, 09:02:54 PM
An additional thought to what I said before.

Wiccans and alternative, reconstruction groups are using this Christian festivital and claiming it as their own, but with warped and disingenuous religious meaning. We have lost a voice in what was once ours, because we wimped out and let it happen. Because of puritanical fear. Can you imagine what the early Christians had to face in their day to day life? No sanitising for them. They lived with the bloody rites of Mithras going on next door and made it useful for the Gospel. What was obscene was finally dropped, what was harmless was continued with its new meanings.

So many of us hide in our houses refusing to join with our neighbours in this harmless activity, and let the opportunity to spread the love of Christ pass us by.  Instead, we stand on our laurels and distance ourselves more and more from the very people who need us.

OK - soap box put away.  :-[

Don't frown. I like the fire in the belly. And good for you about Mithras. I love reality and especially Christians who ain't afraid of it.

The reactions I've seen Christians have when learning of such stuff like Mithras is oft embarrassing.

This is emboldening!

Erase that frown I might nominate a post for PotM that is not mine for once. //:=)



 :laugh: Thanks, orthnorm. Too late to erase the frown. Your comments are appreciated, anyway. (Oh, just realised, it's an embarrassed face!)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Maximum Bob on October 29, 2011, 12:45:11 AM
We don't do Halloween, more because of my wife than myself. I do back her up in this I'm just not as adamant about it as she is. I understand the nastiness of the Celtic orgins and the glorification of evil that has been promoted recently but, I also remember the more innocent fun I had as a kid. We won't give out candy that night, I wouldn't impose this view on anyone who disagreed though.

As to horror movies, don't do that, not at all, don't see anything good in them.

I'm just going to pretend I didn't see this.  ::) I'll be much happier in the long run!

Hell, no I'm not.  >:(

Strange how the nasty Celts managed to bring these traditions into Christianity with them and the holiday was even recognised by the Church and made official with the all the tidbits that go along with it.

This sounds like the kind of argument you get against Christmas trees; because pagans displayed the heads of their enemies on trees.

<sigh>

Okay, I love learning, and I'm willing (genuinely) to stand corrected if need be. Educate me. What am I misunderstanding a bout the practices of my Celtic ancestors?

Not being psychic, I don't know exactly what you are misunderstanding. ;) I don't know what you think are the nasty Celtic practices behind Samhain. Love to chat about this, actually, because I'm fascinated by the little we know about preChristian Celts. But my point is that the preChristian aspects of Samhain were carried into the lives of Christian Celts and are present in Halloween celebrations, without being perceived as nasty, evil, or spiritually damaging by those early Christians. Halloween being a Christian redesignation of the holy day of Samhain seems no different to me than the Christian redesignation of the the winter solstice, the natalis invicti, the feast of the invicible sun, on the 25th December, to the Birth of Christ.

Personally, I think that you guys in America have the opportunity to return this holiday to Christendom, to take advantage of its Christian heritage. So stop being such wimps and bring it on back to us, instead of shunning it like it's something of the devil!  :angel: :laugh:  


Ah, now this seems more like a discussion. As to my misunderstandings I don't know that I have any regarding the topic, but I'm open to the potentiality. ;D

Regarding nasty practices I'm referring to practices such as divinations and interaction with the dead, which is an entirely different thing to me in Orthodoxy than it is in the ancient pre-Christian Celtic religions. It is believed by many that the Celtic religion included such things as head hunting and human sacrifice. I know, not all the experts agree on this, but for my part given what I've read of ancient accounts and modern archeology, and the idea that many early cultures had such practices I believe it to be more likely these things were done than that they weren't. So that then is the context in to which I put Celtic practices that gave birth to the modern holiday of Halloween. Mind I'm not saying that Samhain itself was a celebration that included these practices just that to me they're part of the overarching context.

About pagan practices carried over into Christianity my initial reaction is that I'm not sure that was good in either situation. But I had always attributed that to the Western Church and my Protestant background, not Calvinist was still always at least, suspicious of Rome. I'm new enough to the Eastern Church that this may change. I'm still working on major doctrinal mind shifts at this point and haven't had time to get into things like, should my outlook on holidays change. Of course that could be part of what being on this thread is about. :laugh:

So do we have an opportunity to return this holiday to Christendom? You know, I really don't feel strongly one way or the other and could be persuaded to go the direction you suggest if my wife didn't feel as strongly about it as she does. For example the Orthodox Church we were at last Sunday had a Fall Festival with Pumpkin carving and apple bobbing for the kids, which I thought was kinda cool and would likely be the sort of thing you're talking about. Yeah, running from the world around us isn't good, and I could tell as a few interesting stories about things I've done as a biker with Christian colors, but again some things we feel strongly about and have the time and energy to feel strongly about and some things we don't. :)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Alveus Lacuna on October 29, 2011, 01:26:26 AM
For example the Orthodox Church we were at last Sunday had a Fall Festival with Pumpkin carving and apple bobbing for the kids, which I thought was kinda cool and would likely be the sort of thing you're talking about.

Apple bobbing was originally a form of divination. Seriously. Just an interesting side note.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 29, 2011, 02:33:18 AM
For example the Orthodox Church we were at last Sunday had a Fall Festival with Pumpkin carving and apple bobbing for the kids, which I thought was kinda cool and would likely be the sort of thing you're talking about.

Apple bobbing was originally a form of divination. Seriously. Just an interesting side note.

Yes, that's correct.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 29, 2011, 03:10:36 AM
We don't do Halloween, more because of my wife than myself. I do back her up in this I'm just not as adamant about it as she is. I understand the nastiness of the Celtic orgins and the glorification of evil that has been promoted recently but, I also remember the more innocent fun I had as a kid. We won't give out candy that night, I wouldn't impose this view on anyone who disagreed though.

As to horror movies, don't do that, not at all, don't see anything good in them.

I'm just going to pretend I didn't see this.  ::) I'll be much happier in the long run!

Hell, no I'm not.  >:(

Strange how the nasty Celts managed to bring these traditions into Christianity with them and the holiday was even recognised by the Church and made official with the all the tidbits that go along with it.

This sounds like the kind of argument you get against Christmas trees; because pagans displayed the heads of their enemies on trees.

<sigh>

Okay, I love learning, and I'm willing (genuinely) to stand corrected if need be. Educate me. What am I misunderstanding a bout the practices of my Celtic ancestors?

Not being psychic, I don't know exactly what you are misunderstanding. ;) I don't know what you think are the nasty Celtic practices behind Samhain. Love to chat about this, actually, because I'm fascinated by the little we know about preChristian Celts. But my point is that the preChristian aspects of Samhain were carried into the lives of Christian Celts and are present in Halloween celebrations, without being perceived as nasty, evil, or spiritually damaging by those early Christians. Halloween being a Christian redesignation of the holy day of Samhain seems no different to me than the Christian redesignation of the the winter solstice, the natalis invicti, the feast of the invicible sun, on the 25th December, to the Birth of Christ.

Personally, I think that you guys in America have the opportunity to return this holiday to Christendom, to take advantage of its Christian heritage. So stop being such wimps and bring it on back to us, instead of shunning it like it's something of the devil!  :angel: :laugh:  


Ah, now this seems more like a discussion. As to my misunderstandings I don't know that I have any regarding the topic, but I'm open to the potentiality. ;D

Regarding nasty practices I'm referring to practices such as divinations and interaction with the dead, which is an entirely different thing to me in Orthodoxy than it is in the ancient pre-Christian Celtic religions. It is believed by many that the Celtic religion included such things as head hunting and human sacrifice. I know, not all the experts agree on this, but for my part given what I've read of ancient accounts and modern archeology, and the idea that many early cultures had such practices I believe it to be more likely these things were done than that they weren't. So that then is the context in to which I put Celtic practices that gave birth to the modern holiday of Halloween. Mind I'm not saying that Samhain itself was a celebration that included these practices just that to me they're part of the overarching context.

Sure, no one who had celebrated Halloween ever wanted to have contact with the dead. Remember Halloween is the cleaned up version of the ancient holy day. It is a time of remembering the dead; praying for them. The pre-Christian aspects of opening one's hope for the dead, putting out food and drink for them is dropped in favour of "party time" with the living. (Though, the Celts did that, too!)

Head hunting and human sacrifice was common from what I have read, too. The Celts considered it a great honour to take the head of their dead opponent; honouring the dead opponent, I mean. Nasty things happen in war to this day. The pre-Christian Sarmations took scalps! Human beings are odd critters. But with regard to human sacrifice, I doubt that at the time there were any more proficient than the Romans at human sacrifice, whose games were in honour of the gods and thousands died in a sitting. Of course, they might have called it something else, but it was still human sacrifice.

The Romans practised various forms of human sacrifice; from Etruscans (or, according to other sources, Sabellians), they adopted the original form of gladiatorial combat where the victim was slain in a ritual battle. During the early republic, criminals who had broken their oaths or defrauded others were sometimes "given to the gods" (that is, executed as a human sacrifice). The Rex Nemorensis was an escaped slave who became priest of the goddess Diana at Nemi by killing his predecessor. Prisoners of war were buried alive as offerings to Manes and Di Inferi (gods of the underworld). Archaeologists have found sacrificial victims buried in building foundations. Ordinarily, deceased Romans were cremated rather than buried. Captured enemy leaders, after the victorious general's triumph, would be ritually strangled in front of a statue of Mars, the war god. Dionysius of Halicarnassus[27] refers to a sacrifice of Argei in the Vestal ritual that might have originally included sacrifice of old men. According to Pliny the Elder, human sacrifice was formally banned during the consulship of Publius Licinius Crassus and Gnaeus Cornelius Lentulus in 97 BCE, although by this time it was so rare that the decree was largely symbolic.[28] Most of the rituals turned to animal sacrifice like taurobolium or became merely symbolic. A Roman general might bury a statue of his likeness to thank the gods for victory. However, activities with a ritual origin and similarities to human sacrifice, such as the gladiatorial games and some forms of execution, continued for many years, and grew in popularity. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_sacrifice

Once the Celts became Christian, of course the ghastly things were curtailed, their more innocuous traditions added where the symbolism fitted. The Church saw no problem in adding them to the pile. It's the same with any culture touched by Christianity.

Quote
About pagan practices carried over into Christianity my initial reaction is that I'm not sure that was good in either situation. But I had always attributed that to the Western Church and my Protestant background, not Calvinist was still always at least, suspicious of Rome. I'm new enough to the Eastern Church that this may change. I'm still working on major doctrinal mind shifts at this point and haven't had time to get into things like, should my outlook on holidays change. Of course that could be part of what being on this thread is about. :laugh:

But remember they are no longer pagan practices, once they become identified with Christ. We have been always able to accept traditions without them being explicitly Christian; it's part of our history. Symbolism was very strong in the ancient world. It didn't stop with one becoming Christian. If one saw eternal life in the everlasting green decorations of Saturnalia, or the circle of Celtic Druidism it was included for its reference to a belief in Christ. There's a story of St Patrick drawing a cross through the Celtic circle and making the first Celtic Cross. Supposedly, the Druids he was speaking to converted on the spot. Not sure how true that is, but it does seem to be quite a strong legend, so one is given to wonder.

Quote
So do we have an opportunity to return this holiday to Christendom? You know, I really don't feel strongly one way or the other and could be persuaded to go the direction you suggest if my wife didn't feel as strongly about it as she does. For example the Orthodox Church we were at last Sunday had a Fall Festival with Pumpkin carving and apple bobbing for the kids, which I thought was kinda cool and would likely be the sort of thing you're talking about. Yeah, running from the world around us isn't good, and I could tell as a few interesting stories about things I've done as a biker with Christian colors, but again some things we feel strongly about and have the time and energy to feel strongly about and some things we don't. :)

I don't expect there to be a great revival. :) But I do see it as an opportunity, to at least not look like the grumpy people on the block, to be in touch with our neighbour in the spirit of love.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Cognomen on October 29, 2011, 03:23:14 AM
To be fair, Cromwell and his ilk banned Christmas and other holidays because they became festivals of drunkenness and perceived debauchery. 
The evil eye stuff and divination games are all fun and nifty too, but my priest, who I can assure you is not influenced by Calvin or any Western European puritanical thought, strongly believes  they don't belong. 

I'm not taking a stand, and I find a lot of traditions to be fascinating, but let's not imagine up some era of ideal, pre-puritanical religious celebration.  Sure, many Christians adopted pagan practices, but that doesn't mean they were right in doing so.

So many of us hide in our houses refusing to join with our neighbours in this harmless activity, and let the opportunity to spread the love of Christ pass us by.  Instead, we stand on our laurels and distance ourselves more and more from the very people who need us.
Providing it is a harmless activity, which it can probably be crafted to be, I believe you are right though.  It's a good time for parents to have fun with their children.  But some of the nasty elements should be avoided or at least tempered, methinks.


Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 29, 2011, 03:39:40 AM
To be fair, Cromwell and his ilk banned Christmas and other holidays because they became festivals of drunkenness and perceived debauchery. 
The evil eye stuff and divination games are all fun and nifty too, but my priest, who I can assure you is not influenced by Calvin or any Western European puritanical thought, strongly believes  they don't belong. 

I'm not taking a stand, and I find a lot of traditions to be fascinating, but let's not imagine up some era of ideal, pre-puritanical religious celebration.  Sure, many Christians adopted pagan practices, but that doesn't mean they were right in doing so.

Never imagined such a thing. But objections should be based in fact, not fantasy that somehow in celebrating Halloween one is partaking in a pagan Samhain. It just ain't so. (I've stuffed up the quotes again.) :(

So many of us hide in our houses refusing to join with our neighbours in this harmless activity, and let the opportunity to spread the love of Christ pass us by.  Instead, we stand on our laurels and distance ourselves more and more from the very people who need us.

Providing it is a harmless activity, which it can probably be crafted to be, I believe you are right though.  It's a good time for parents to have fun with their children.  But some of the nasty elements should be avoided or at least tempered, methinks.


I don't live in the States. I don't know what you have done to this holiday day over there! But because some people abuse Christmas celebrations, I wouldn't call for the cancelling of same.

As an Anglican, I was more focused on All Saints' Day. We had bobbing apples on Guy Fawkes in my childhood. 

Mod help! Quotes have gone haywire, but to my ineptitude.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Cognomen on October 29, 2011, 03:54:50 AM
I don't live in the States. I don't know what you have done to this holiday day over there! But because some people abuse Christmas celebrations, I wouldn't call for the cancelling of same.

As an Anglican, I was more focused on All Saints' Day. We had bobbing apples on Guy Fawkes in my childhood.  

Mod help! Quotes have gone haywire, but to my ineptitude.

I've lived in both, and Halloween is pretty silly on this side.  For kids, I think it's more about getting loads of candy and dressing up rather than human sacrifice though.  At this point it's difficult to see many connections with All Saints Day, Hallows Eve, and such.  Shocking, but a "healthy" dose of consumer driven mania is present, along with a good bit of violence and other odd stuff.  Taking the day back would seem more of a stretch in the States.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 29, 2011, 03:57:49 AM
I don't live in the States. I don't know what you have done to this holiday day over there! But because some people abuse Christmas celebrations, I wouldn't call for the cancelling of same.

As an Anglican, I was more focused on All Saints' Day. We had bobbing apples on Guy Fawkes in my childhood. 

Mod help! Quotes have gone haywire, but to my ineptitude.

I've lived in both, and Halloween is pretty silly on this side.  For kids, I think it's more about getting loads of candy and dressing up rather than human sacrifice though.  At this point it's difficult to see many connections with All Saints Day, Hallows Eve, and such.  Shocking, but a healthy dose of consumer driven mania is present, along with a pretty "healthy" dose of violence and odd stuff.  Taking the day back would seem more of a stretch in the States.

You think it's lost its innocence for all time? I can understand that kind of objection, but not the silly "it's pagan and evil" claims.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Cognomen on October 29, 2011, 04:05:25 AM
You think it's lost its innocence for all time? I can understand that kind of objection, but not the silly "it's pagan and evil" claims.

For all time, may a bit pessimistic.  It has almost become more random than anything else.  While there are pretty close ties to ghosts, ghouls, zombies, vampires, and such, there are also tons of princesses, sports figures, and ninjas walking around.  I think it's more in danger of losing all connection to the intended holiday than becoming outright evil.  I still love the Sleepy Hollow (I saw where the movie version was filmed near Watford  :)) type legends though.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: biro on October 29, 2011, 08:58:00 AM
There's nothing wrong with the Eve of the Feast of All Saints.  :angel: I guess people got used to celebrating it on this day because of the RCC calendar and its influence on other churches. If you're worried about kids not understanding the holiday, perhaps the local parish could give a talk for them about the lives of the saints, followed by a costume party and refreshments. It would be fun and the kids would be doing something that also informs them about the faith. Just a thought.  :)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Maximum Bob on October 29, 2011, 10:47:10 AM
For example the Orthodox Church we were at last Sunday had a Fall Festival with Pumpkin carving and apple bobbing for the kids, which I thought was kinda cool and would likely be the sort of thing you're talking about.

Apple bobbing was originally a form of divination. Seriously. Just an interesting side note.

See now that's a great example of both how wishy-washy I can be and of how something can be sanitized by loosing all connection to it's original context.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on October 30, 2011, 12:59:50 AM
I think I'll dress up as Martin Luther for Halloween. What could be scarrier than the heresies he gave birth to on October 31, 1517?



Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: augustin717 on October 30, 2011, 02:13:54 AM
only if you dress up as st. mary of egypt
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on October 30, 2011, 07:37:51 PM

HALLOWEEN 
By His Grace Bishop Youssef of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States


http://suscopts.org/literature/print.php?id=1076781490&archive



Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 30, 2011, 08:32:35 PM

HALLOWEEN 
By His Grace Bishop Youssef of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States


http://suscopts.org/literature/print.php?id=1076781490&archive



Selam
My goodness! I didn't realise how far the USA had slipped. How could you guys turn a Christian holy day into a celebration that pays tribute to Satan? I'll keep praying for you.  ::)  <a jest should anyone have trouble understanding otherwise>



 
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: orthonorm on October 30, 2011, 08:34:42 PM

HALLOWEEN 
By His Grace Bishop Youssef of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States


http://suscopts.org/literature/print.php?id=1076781490&archive



Selam
My goodness! I didn't realise how far the USA had slipped. How could you guys turn a Christian holy day into a celebration that pays tribute to Satan? I'll keep praying for you.  ::)  <a jest should anyone have trouble understanding otherwise>



 

Just another fundie. And no they ain't fun.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: IsmiLiora on October 30, 2011, 08:36:28 PM
I think I'll dress up as Martin Luther for Halloween. What could be scarrier than the heresies he gave birth to on October 31, 1517?



Selam
You'd probably have to explain the costume to everyone you encounter. I advise writing out the theses on a big sandwich board and holding a "down with the Pope" sign in your other hand.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 30, 2011, 08:40:29 PM

HALLOWEEN 
By His Grace Bishop Youssef of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States


http://suscopts.org/literature/print.php?id=1076781490&archive



Selam
My goodness! I didn't realise how far the USA had slipped. How could you guys turn a Christian holy day into a celebration that pays tribute to Satan? I'll keep praying for you.  ::)  <a jest should anyone have trouble understanding otherwise>



 

Just another fundie. And no they ain't fun.

Dear me, orthonorm! Don't you realise that fun is satanic!  :P
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 30, 2011, 08:43:26 PM

HALLOWEEN 
By His Grace Bishop Youssef of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States


http://suscopts.org/literature/print.php?id=1076781490&archive



Selam

I honestly love His Grace and the service he does for the Southern diocese, but once you already say that "Halloween" comes from "Saween" to show that it's Satanic, then you have to wonder, where does HG get his information from?  He's an Egyptian who came to the US seeing all these ghouls and monsters and probably a fan of chick.com gave him some info to use for this essay.  In Egypt, there used to be sub-cults of witches and sooth-sayers, who are more thieves than anything, playing with people's emotions and money (which is no different to the psychics here if you think about it).  You can imagine the same perception here.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Shlomlokh on October 30, 2011, 08:44:07 PM

HALLOWEEN 
By His Grace Bishop Youssef of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States


http://suscopts.org/literature/print.php?id=1076781490&archive



Selam
A good priest friend of mine wrote this (http://www.pravoslavie.ru/english/49484.htm), which I thought was worth sharing. :)

In Christ,
Andrew
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Cognomen on October 30, 2011, 08:44:19 PM
HALLOWEEN 
By His Grace Bishop Youssef of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States

http://suscopts.org/literature/print.php?id=1076781490&archive
My goodness! I didn't realise how far the USA had slipped. How could you guys turn a Christian holy day into a celebration that pays tribute to Satan? I'll keep praying for you.  ::)  <a jest should anyone have trouble understanding otherwise>

Just another fundie. And no they ain't fun.

I'm not following here.  The Coptic bishop is 'just another fundie'?

Riddikulus, don't single out your cousins across the pond.   :)  Take a look at the Wikipedia page for Halloween (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halloween).  Witch/ghoul related costumes and decorations shown from Sweden, Ireland, Japan, etc.  It may be worse over here, but I don't exactly recall little ones running around with Anglican hymn books when I was over there either.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on October 30, 2011, 08:45:44 PM
I think I'll dress up as Martin Luther for Halloween. What could be scarrier than the heresies he gave birth to on October 31, 1517?



Selam
You'd probably have to explain the costume to everyone you encounter. I advise writing out the theses on a big sandwich board and holding a "down with the Pope" sign in your other hand.


 ;D



Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 30, 2011, 08:52:06 PM

HALLOWEEN 
By His Grace Bishop Youssef of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States


http://suscopts.org/literature/print.php?id=1076781490&archive



Selam

I honestly love His Grace and the service he does for the Southern diocese, but once you already say that "Halloween" comes from "Saween" to show that it's Satanic, then you have to wonder, where does HG get his information from?  He's an Egyptian who came to the US seeing all these ghouls and monsters and probably a fan of chick.com gave him some info to use for this essay.  In Egypt, there used to be sub-cults of witches and sooth-sayers, who are more thieves than anything, playing with people's emotions and money (which is no different to the psychics here if you think about it).  You can imagine the same perception here.

I have no doubt that he is a delightful man. And don't feel bad, we have this kind of misinformation amongst EOs, too. I was actually wondering how much of this Halloween = Samhain argument (if it can be raised to that level) centres on misunderstandings between West and East. The "it's not ours, so it must be satanic" mindset. I also get the feeling history isn't a subject many people have a passion for, so they simply take whatever information is handed to them as the gospel truth without really digging further.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on October 30, 2011, 08:53:34 PM
BTW, I posted the link to the article by His Grace Bishop Youssef simply because I think it is good to hear what our Spiritual leaders say on the matter. I'm not saying that I agree with every point he makes, but I continue to maintain the basic principle that it is better to err on the side of holiness and caution rather than risk causing offense or perhaps becoming ensnared in one of satan's many traps.

As for my own personal approach to Halloween, this is what I posted last year:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,30894.0.html


Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 30, 2011, 08:54:44 PM
HALLOWEEN  
By His Grace Bishop Youssef of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States

http://suscopts.org/literature/print.php?id=1076781490&archive
My goodness! I didn't realise how far the USA had slipped. How could you guys turn a Christian holy day into a celebration that pays tribute to Satan? I'll keep praying for you.  ::)  <a jest should anyone have trouble understanding otherwise>

Just another fundie. And no they ain't fun.

I'm not following here.  The Coptic bishop is 'just another fundie'?

Riddikulus, don't single out your cousins across the pond.   :)  Take a look at the Wikipedia page for Halloween (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halloween).  Witch/ghoul related costumes and decorations shown from Sweden, Ireland, Japan, etc.  It may be worse over here, but I don't exactly recall little ones running around with Anglican hymn books when I was over there either.

The Bishop has singled out Americans, not me! And didn't you see that I tagged my post with "it's a jest!"?

Edited to add.   ;D Sorry, I was distracted with a chat elsewhere and left that post looking too humourless!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: orthonorm on October 30, 2011, 08:59:09 PM
HALLOWEEN 
By His Grace Bishop Youssef of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States

http://suscopts.org/literature/print.php?id=1076781490&archive
My goodness! I didn't realise how far the USA had slipped. How could you guys turn a Christian holy day into a celebration that pays tribute to Satan? I'll keep praying for you.  ::)  <a jest should anyone have trouble understanding otherwise>

Just another fundie. And no they ain't fun.

I'm not following here.  The Coptic bishop is 'just another fundie'?

Riddikulus, don't single out your cousins across the pond.   :)  Take a look at the Wikipedia page for Halloween (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halloween).  Witch/ghoul related costumes and decorations shown from Sweden, Ireland, Japan, etc.  It may be worse over here, but I don't exactly recall little ones running around with Anglican hymn books when I was over there either.

He really he is a puritan, but I wanted to make fun of him by not being a fun person so went for fundie, although I could make that argument because his applying a fundamentalist hermeneutic to Halloween.

He is proof texting something that doesn't exist. His Halloween never was and is not.

So in that case he is a fundamentalist. He has his sources and doesn't put much thought in the subject matter and that's that. He basically is begging the question writ large.

Halloween is evil, therefore it is evil.

Guess though I have to come up with a puritanical pun. This ain't coming to me . . .

Oh he is just another Wigglesworth, but he's probably never found much worth to wiggle for . . .

Uncle.

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 30, 2011, 09:07:14 PM
HALLOWEEN 
By His Grace Bishop Youssef of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States

http://suscopts.org/literature/print.php?id=1076781490&archive
My goodness! I didn't realise how far the USA had slipped. How could you guys turn a Christian holy day into a celebration that pays tribute to Satan? I'll keep praying for you.  ::)  <a jest should anyone have trouble understanding otherwise>

Just another fundie. And no they ain't fun.

I'm not following here.  The Coptic bishop is 'just another fundie'?

Riddikulus, don't single out your cousins across the pond.   :)  Take a look at the Wikipedia page for Halloween (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halloween).  Witch/ghoul related costumes and decorations shown from Sweden, Ireland, Japan, etc.  It may be worse over here, but I don't exactly recall little ones running around with Anglican hymn books when I was over there either.

He really he is a puritan, but I wanted to make fun of him by not being a fun person so went for fundie, although I could make that argument because his applying a fundamentalist hermeneutic to Halloween.

He is proof texting something that doesn't exist. His Halloween never was and is not.


That's how I read it! And then it supposedly has clout because it's written by a Bishop and to be taken as spiritual advice, even though the scholarship is lacking. It's like saying that in celebrating Christmas one celebrating Saturnalia, worshipping the sun. (Which is what so many fundamentalists do claim.) Then construct a kind of Christmas that no one actually celebrates to prove the point.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: orthonorm on October 30, 2011, 09:17:25 PM
HALLOWEEN 
By His Grace Bishop Youssef of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States

http://suscopts.org/literature/print.php?id=1076781490&archive
My goodness! I didn't realise how far the USA had slipped. How could you guys turn a Christian holy day into a celebration that pays tribute to Satan? I'll keep praying for you.  ::)  <a jest should anyone have trouble understanding otherwise>

Just another fundie. And no they ain't fun.

I'm not following here.  The Coptic bishop is 'just another fundie'?

Riddikulus, don't single out your cousins across the pond.   :)  Take a look at the Wikipedia page for Halloween (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halloween).  Witch/ghoul related costumes and decorations shown from Sweden, Ireland, Japan, etc.  It may be worse over here, but I don't exactly recall little ones running around with Anglican hymn books when I was over there either.

He really he is a puritan, but I wanted to make fun of him by not being a fun person so went for fundie, although I could make that argument because his applying a fundamentalist hermeneutic to Halloween.

He is proof texting something that doesn't exist. His Halloween never was and is not.


That's how I read it! And then it supposedly has clout because it's written by a Bishop and to be taken as spiritual advice, even though the scholarship is lacking. It's like saying that in celebrating Christmas one celebrating Saturnalia, worshipping the sun. (Which is what so many fundamentalists do claim.) Then construct a kind of Christmas that no one actually celebrates to prove the point.

Spend more than a few months around some JWs and you will immediately have a knee jerk reaction to anything being written off as "pagan".
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 30, 2011, 09:23:06 PM
HALLOWEEN 
By His Grace Bishop Youssef of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States

http://suscopts.org/literature/print.php?id=1076781490&archive
My goodness! I didn't realise how far the USA had slipped. How could you guys turn a Christian holy day into a celebration that pays tribute to Satan? I'll keep praying for you.  ::)  <a jest should anyone have trouble understanding otherwise>

Just another fundie. And no they ain't fun.

I'm not following here.  The Coptic bishop is 'just another fundie'?

Riddikulus, don't single out your cousins across the pond.   :)  Take a look at the Wikipedia page for Halloween (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halloween).  Witch/ghoul related costumes and decorations shown from Sweden, Ireland, Japan, etc.  It may be worse over here, but I don't exactly recall little ones running around with Anglican hymn books when I was over there either.

He really he is a puritan, but I wanted to make fun of him by not being a fun person so went for fundie, although I could make that argument because his applying a fundamentalist hermeneutic to Halloween.

He is proof texting something that doesn't exist. His Halloween never was and is not.


That's how I read it! And then it supposedly has clout because it's written by a Bishop and to be taken as spiritual advice, even though the scholarship is lacking. It's like saying that in celebrating Christmas one celebrating Saturnalia, worshipping the sun. (Which is what so many fundamentalists do claim.) Then construct a kind of Christmas that no one actually celebrates to prove the point.

you will immediately have a knee jerk reaction to anything being written off as "pagan".


You haven't already seen it? :laugh:
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Cognomen on October 30, 2011, 09:33:40 PM
The Bishop has singled out Americans, not me! And didn't you see that I tagged my post with "it's a jest!"?
Edited to add.   ;D Sorry, I was distracted with a chat elsewhere and left that post looking too humourless!

No need, I was right there with ya.   :)

He really he is a puritan, but I wanted to make fun of him by not being a fun person so went for fundie

Gotcha, thanks.

While he may be using a lousy fundamentalist argument to present his opinion, what about other Orthodox clergy who believe it's wrong to participate?  Let's face it, a lot of the Holy Fathers, Saints, Elders aren't/weren't particularly concerned with having fun or taking part in stuff they felt was spiritually dangerous.  Surely dressing up as witches and ghouls can't be viewed positively.  I personally think the reaction is a bit overkill, but I can understand the reason for their warnings.  Anywho
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Cognomen on October 30, 2011, 09:34:19 PM
Spend more than a few months around some JWs and you will immediately have a knee jerk reaction to anything being written off as "pagan".

I think I'll take your word for it.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Shlomlokh on October 30, 2011, 09:47:19 PM
The Bishop has singled out Americans, not me! And didn't you see that I tagged my post with "it's a jest!"?
Edited to add.   ;D Sorry, I was distracted with a chat elsewhere and left that post looking too humourless!

No need, I was right there with ya.   :)

He really he is a puritan, but I wanted to make fun of him by not being a fun person so went for fundie

Gotcha, thanks.

While he may be using a lousy fundamentalist argument to present his opinion, what about other Orthodox clergy who believe it's wrong to participate?  Let's face it, a lot of the Holy Fathers, Saints, Elders aren't/weren't particularly concerned with having fun or taking part in stuff they felt was spiritually dangerous.  Surely dressing up as witches and ghouls can't be viewed positively.  I personally think the reaction is a bit overkill, but I can understand the reason for their warnings.  Anywho
Those pesky bishops, getting in the way of our fun. Next thing you know they're going to start telling us to fast from meat and dairy on certain days and not eat after midnight before receiving Communion. The horrorrrrrr!!  :o

In Christ,
Andrew
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: orthonorm on October 30, 2011, 09:59:17 PM
Do you want you want. But I love those holiday versions of Reece's Cups. You'll take my greater peanut butter to chocolate ratio beloved, pumpkin-shaped snack from my cold dead hand.

If a few souls must suffer so that I get a chance to enjoy a novelty candy, one of the few candies I enjoy, so be it.

There I've come clean.

Really, who doesn't like those things? Especially the XL ones?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Cognomen on October 30, 2011, 10:01:55 PM
Those pesky bishops, getting in the way of our fun. Next thing you know they're going to start telling us to fast from meat and dairy on certain days and not eat after midnight before receiving Communion. The horrorrrrrr!!  :o

Bunch of internet, hyperdox bishops they are.  Don't get me started on my priest; he's so cliché with his long beard and Greek speaking.  He doesn't even think I should have extramarital sex.  How lame is that?  It's not like I'm worshiping the devil or anything.  Another thing, he doesn't think I should cast spells, venerate statutes of Buddha, or worship the devil.  Again, lame.  

Back to my centering prayer, where I'll be focusing on my holy word: Ganesha!

P.S. Not into sweets myself, especially American ones, but as they go, Reece's are probably the best.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 30, 2011, 10:08:34 PM
The Bishop has singled out Americans, not me! And didn't you see that I tagged my post with "it's a jest!"?
Edited to add.   ;D Sorry, I was distracted with a chat elsewhere and left that post looking too humourless!

No need, I was right there with ya.   :)

He really he is a puritan, but I wanted to make fun of him by not being a fun person so went for fundie

Gotcha, thanks.

While he may be using a lousy fundamentalist argument to present his opinion, what about other Orthodox clergy who believe it's wrong to participate?  Let's face it, a lot of the Holy Fathers, Saints, Elders aren't/weren't particularly concerned with having fun or taking part in stuff they felt was spiritually dangerous.  Surely dressing up as witches and ghouls can't be viewed positively.  I personally think the reaction is a bit overkill, but I can understand the reason for their warnings.  Anywho

I believe that someone has already said it. The Ango-Puritan mindset has infiltrated the Church, more so in the States, I believe. I hear this complaint from Catholics, too. Whereas the cultures of Catholics and Orthodox simply incultrated the non-explicitly Christian practices into their Christian faith, as did the Anglo before the Reformation, the fundamentalist sees it and misunderstands it immediately. Thus, the claims of "satanic" at every turn.  
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Cognomen on October 30, 2011, 10:21:35 PM
Again, is the Anglo-Puritan mindset to blame for the writings and positions taken by the Holy Fathers, living Elders, and countless priests who have very little exposure to this?  I think this causation is exaggerated or only applicable in some cases.  My priest, for instance, is from Greece not America, knows next to nothing about Protestantism, and is simply going by his traditional understanding.

I'm not disagreeing with your overall point, but sometimes Orthodox positions are, well, Orthodox.  I completely agree, however, that we should guard against excessive influence from faiths outside of the Orthodox ones.  I'd love to continue, but I've honestly got to run.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 30, 2011, 10:25:01 PM
Didn't someone post earlier that Christmas trees originated from a tradition where they burn a tree and make sacrifices, sometimes human sacrifices, on that tree?  Or something pagan like that?

Today, I heard a sermon that there are Wiccans or Satanists here that do human sacrifice, and that this information he got from the police, especially on Halloween.  Would anyone venture to help me on this one?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 30, 2011, 10:26:51 PM
Again, is the Anglo-Puritan mindset to blame for the writings and positions taken by the Holy Fathers, living Elders, and countless priests who have very little exposure to this?  I think this causation is exaggerated or only applicable in some cases.  My priest, for instance, is from Greece not America, knows next to nothing about Protestantism, and is simply going by his traditional understanding.

I'm not disagreeing with your overall point, but sometimes Orthodox positions are, well, Orthodox.  I completely agree, however, that we should guard against excessive influence from faiths outside of the Orthodox ones.  I'd love to continue, but I've honestly got to run.

Well, again. Who objected to All Hallow's and its accompanying festivities in the first place? Since it became part of an official celebration in the 8th Century?
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: orthonorm on October 30, 2011, 10:28:20 PM
Didn't someone post earlier that Christmas trees originated from a tradition where they burn a tree and make sacrifices, sometimes human sacrifices, on that tree?  Or something pagan like that?

Yes. And the cross is a pagan symbol used throughout time and the world for all sortsa crazy stuff. The neo-pagan place I was in today had all kindsa crosses for use in ritual.

And consuming the flesh and blood of a god is also pagan.

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: zekarja on October 30, 2011, 10:36:38 PM
We should obey our bishops unless they want us to sin against God. HG Bishop Youssef is my bishop and I should obey him in the matter of Halloween. If your bishop has advised against Halloween you should obey. Obedience doesn't have to make any sense.

As a classic example, there is the story in the Sayings of the Desert Fathers about the monk who was told to plant a dry stick in the sand and to water it daily. So distant was the spring from his cell that he had to leave in the evening to fetch the water and he only returned in the following morning. For three years he patiently fulfilled his abba's command. At the end of this period, the stick suddenly put forth leaves and bore fruit. The abba picked the fruit, took it to the church, and invited the monks to eat, saying, "Take and eat the fruit of obedience."

Source: http://www.pravmir.com/article_647.html
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 30, 2011, 10:42:16 PM
We should obey our bishops unless they want us to sin against God. HG Bishop Youssef is my bishop and I should obey him in the matter of Halloween. If your bishop has advised against Halloween you should obey. Obedience doesn't have to make any sense.

As a classic example, there is the story in the Sayings of the Desert Fathers about the monk who was told to plant a dry stick in the sand and to water it daily. So distant was the spring from his cell that he had to leave in the evening to fetch the water and he only returned in the following morning. For three years he patiently fulfilled his abba's command. At the end of this period, the stick suddenly put forth leaves and bore fruit. The abba picked the fruit, took it to the church, and invited the monks to eat, saying, "Take and eat the fruit of obedience."

Source: http://www.pravmir.com/article_647.html

That's wonderful.  I think that's a good virtue to follow.  But it doesn't hurt to question exactly what's going on here.  Logically speaking, we shouldn't have Christmas trees, we shouldn't sing Coptic music, we shouldn't use incense in the Church, all because sometime in the past, they were used for evil pagan practices. (incense still is actually...I've seen in Egypt it's quite popular with the ignorant minded superstitious folk)

I remember a Jehovah's Witness was telling me that iconography in our churches were pagan.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: zekarja on October 30, 2011, 10:43:42 PM
We should obey our bishops unless they want us to sin against God. HG Bishop Youssef is my bishop and I should obey him in the matter of Halloween. If your bishop has advised against Halloween you should obey. Obedience doesn't have to make any sense.

As a classic example, there is the story in the Sayings of the Desert Fathers about the monk who was told to plant a dry stick in the sand and to water it daily. So distant was the spring from his cell that he had to leave in the evening to fetch the water and he only returned in the following morning. For three years he patiently fulfilled his abba's command. At the end of this period, the stick suddenly put forth leaves and bore fruit. The abba picked the fruit, took it to the church, and invited the monks to eat, saying, "Take and eat the fruit of obedience."

Source: http://www.pravmir.com/article_647.html

That's wonderful.  I think that's a good virtue to follow.  But it doesn't hurt to question exactly what's going on here.

I agree. :)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: orthonorm on October 30, 2011, 10:46:33 PM
I remember a Jehovah's Witness was telling me that iconography in our churches were pagan.

For JWs just about EVERYTHING in your Church and our Church is pagan. Including the cross. Jesus did not die on a cross.

Srsly.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Shiny on October 30, 2011, 10:48:38 PM
I remember a Jehovah's Witness was telling me that iconography in our churches were pagan.

For JWs just about EVERYTHING in your Church and our Church is pagan. Including the cross. Jesus did not die on a cross.

Srsly.
Gotta love the stake theory, so retarded.

Oh and their NT "translation" too.

Im going as Hellraiser this year.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on October 30, 2011, 10:56:16 PM
I remember a Jehovah's Witness was telling me that iconography in our churches were pagan.

For JWs just about EVERYTHING in your Church and our Church is pagan. Including the cross. Jesus did not die on a cross.

Srsly.

Ya, I got frustrated in trying to get into a discussion with them.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Shiny on October 30, 2011, 11:04:16 PM
I remember a Jehovah's Witness was telling me that iconography in our churches were pagan.

For JWs just about EVERYTHING in your Church and our Church is pagan. Including the cross. Jesus did not die on a cross.

Srsly.

Ya, I got frustrated in trying to get into a discussion with them.
And you think some Prots are fundies, good gracious..
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: LizaSymonenko on October 30, 2011, 11:39:11 PM

So, the consensus of the latest posts seem to favor the celebration of Halloween.

I've had this conversation recently with the youth in our church and their parents....and unfortunately (as I see it) I was on the losing side.

While one may claim that Halloween has innocent roots, and has nothing to do with devil worship, etc.....how does one explain dressing young children as ghosts, demons, vampires, witches, etc.  How is that not evil?

Granted there are also princesses, superheroes and Spongebobs, but, what of the witches?

Why deck out your front yard as a cemetery and hang skeletons from your trees?  Why have goblins jumping out at you from behind bushes.

If death is so much fun, then when faced with an illness.....why bother going to a hospital to get cured?  Remember death is fun and funny!

When I asked my students to dress in decent costumes, nothing evil....because there are thousands of good things to dress as, I was ridiculed, belittled and almost left in tears....because I am a prude and don't know how to have fun.

Dressing as a vampire with dripping teeth, is not my definition of fun.....and as an Orthodox Christian, it is my duty to "suggest" that the children that I teach, mentor, feel responsible for and love, not dress as evil creatures.

Why is that wrong?


Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Alveus Lacuna on October 30, 2011, 11:46:34 PM
Didn't read the whole thread, but Liza I agree with your criteria. In my house my wife likes Halloween and I don't, and she wants the kids to have the fun with it. I am not going to jump in an participate, but I'm not going to make a huge stink about it aside from the things which I feel violate our faith, namely those things which glorify, trivialize or even "mock" death.

No witches, zombies, grotesque gore, spirits and specters, etc. But I'm honestly not going to throw a fit if my wife wants to dress my toddler like a giraffe and let him go get some candy.

People who oppose someone else's fun are always going to get a hard time in this culture.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 31, 2011, 12:00:20 AM

So, the consensus of the latest posts seem to favor the celebration of Halloween.

I've had this conversation recently with the youth in our church and their parents....and unfortunately (as I see it) I was on the losing side.

While one may claim that Halloween has innocent roots, and has nothing to do with devil worship, etc.....how does one explain dressing young children as ghosts, demons, vampires, witches, etc.  How is that not evil?

Granted there are also princesses, superheroes and Spongebobs, but, what of the witches?

Why deck out your front yard as a cemetery and hang skeletons from your trees?  Why have goblins jumping out at you from behind bushes.

If death is so much fun, then when faced with an illness.....why bother going to a hospital to get cured?  Remember death is fun and funny!

When I asked my students to dress in decent costumes, nothing evil....because there are thousands of good things to dress as, I was ridiculed, belittled and almost left in tears....because I am a prude and don't know how to have fun.

Dressing as a vampire with dripping teeth, is not my definition of fun.....and as an Orthodox Christian, it is my duty to "suggest" that the children that I teach, mentor, feel responsible for and love, not dress as evil creatures.

Why is that wrong?



There is absolutely nothing wrong with you being sensitive. One has the right to be senstive to all manner of things, that's not even in question. But dressing up as a witch, does not a witch make. It doesn't make one evil. There are real witches, who don't ride on broomsticks and don't have pointy hats. Why confuse the young with the insistence that something as innocent as dressing as a charicature of a witch makes them evil? Where is the correlation between pretend and real?

For me, emphasising any of this as "evil" overlooks what is, in fact, evil. Overusing the warnings turns ears away from hearing when there is a genuine need for warning; and one is left with egg on one's face; and damaged people one could have helped had one not overplayed the "satanic" card. It's a case of crying "Wolf!" And one shouldn't be surprised if one is seen as a panic merchant.  


Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 31, 2011, 12:03:52 AM
Didn't read the whole thread, but Liza I agree with your criteria. In my house my wife likes Halloween and I don't, and she wants the kids to have the fun with it. I am not going to jump in an participate, but I'm not going to make a huge stink about it aside from the things which I feel violate our faith, namely those things which glorify, trivialize or even "mock" death.

No witches, zombies, grotesque gore, spirits and specters, etc. But I'm honestly not going to throw a fit if my wife wants to dress my toddler like a giraffe and let him go get some candy.

People who oppose someone else's fun are always going to get a hard time in this culture.

I completely respect your sentiment, but I don't think that all the brouhaha is a question of simply opposing someone else's fun. It seems more sinister than that. Labelling people as evil/satanic for dressing up doesn't wash.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 31, 2011, 12:05:18 AM
We should obey our bishops unless they want us to sin against God. HG Bishop Youssef is my bishop and I should obey him in the matter of Halloween. If your bishop has advised against Halloween you should obey. Obedience doesn't have to make any sense.

As a classic example, there is the story in the Sayings of the Desert Fathers about the monk who was told to plant a dry stick in the sand and to water it daily. So distant was the spring from his cell that he had to leave in the evening to fetch the water and he only returned in the following morning. For three years he patiently fulfilled his abba's command. At the end of this period, the stick suddenly put forth leaves and bore fruit. The abba picked the fruit, took it to the church, and invited the monks to eat, saying, "Take and eat the fruit of obedience."

Source: http://www.pravmir.com/article_647.html

That's wonderful.  I think that's a good virtue to follow.  But it doesn't hurt to question exactly what's going on here.  Logically speaking, we shouldn't have Christmas trees, we shouldn't sing Coptic music, we shouldn't use incense in the Church, all because sometime in the past, they were used for evil pagan practices. (incense still is actually...I've seen in Egypt it's quite popular with the ignorant minded superstitious folk)

I remember a Jehovah's Witness was telling me that iconography in our churches were pagan.

Can't even pray because it's what pagans did/do!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: LizaSymonenko on October 31, 2011, 12:10:14 AM
I never tried to ruin anyone's fun.  I simply suggested they not dress up and pretend to be evil characters.

What did Christ do to demons?  He expelled them from their victims.

When their are millions of good and innocent characters to dress as, why trivialize the evil by picking exactly those costumes which Christ would despise?

....And what of erecting cemeteries in your front yard, or worse, right in your house?

Is there something "good" in trivializing death?

The one mom laughed at me, and said she would ask our priest to come over and "bless" the graves.

Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: dcommini on October 31, 2011, 12:19:34 AM

So, the consensus of the latest posts seem to favor the celebration of Halloween.

I've had this conversation recently with the youth in our church and their parents....and unfortunately (as I see it) I was on the losing side.

While one may claim that Halloween has innocent roots, and has nothing to do with devil worship, etc.....how does one explain dressing young children as ghosts, demons, vampires, witches, etc.  How is that not evil?

Granted there are also princesses, superheroes and Spongebobs, but, what of the witches?

Why deck out your front yard as a cemetery and hang skeletons from your trees?  Why have goblins jumping out at you from behind bushes.

If death is so much fun, then when faced with an illness.....why bother going to a hospital to get cured?  Remember death is fun and funny!

When I asked my students to dress in decent costumes, nothing evil....because there are thousands of good things to dress as, I was ridiculed, belittled and almost left in tears....because I am a prude and don't know how to have fun.

Dressing as a vampire with dripping teeth, is not my definition of fun.....and as an Orthodox Christian, it is my duty to "suggest" that the children that I teach, mentor, feel responsible for and love, not dress as evil creatures.

Why is that wrong?



There is absolutely nothing wrong with you being sensitive. One has the right to be senstive to all manner of things, that's not even in question. But dressing up as a witch, does not a witch make. It doesn't make one evil. There are real witches, who don't ride on broomsticks and don't have pointy hats. Why confuse the young with the insistence that something as innocent as dressing as a charicature of a witch makes them evil? Where is the correlation between pretend and real?

For me, emphasising any of this as "evil" overlooks what is, in fact, evil. Overusing the warnings turns ears away from hearing when there is a genuine need for warning; and one is left with egg on one's face; and damaged people one could have helped had one not overplayed the "satanic" card. It's a case of crying "Wolf!" And one shouldn't be surprised if one is seen as a panic merchant.  




To piggy back on this, the act of guising which was popular in Scotland (which was brought to America) was a way to ward off the evil spirits. They didn't dress up to "mock" evil or even poke fun at evil, but to keep evil at bay. Also names were very important to the Celts, when something was perceived as evil or scary the Celts would give it a name - once it had a name you could control it and it was then unable to harm you.

In the US when the Scots and the Irish brought this celebration with them the American people went crazy with it (as they do most things). They started mocking evil and poking fun at death because they didn't understand the culture behind what they were doing. Eventually Halloween became what we have today because stores like Sears started marketing costumes and some preachers started coming up with these stories about how the Druids were evil and Samhain was an evil Celtic festival dedicated to a god of the same name (a god that has never existed in Irish or Scottish folklore and mythology). Of course coming from a culture that hardly wrote anything down it was easy to come up with tidbits here and there to make the holiday something it probably never was.

There is nothing wrong with wanting people to act responsible and not to poke fun at things we consider sacred; but good luck getting them to realize that in this day in age. I am not saying to give up, don't give up, keep going because those who go against the grain and make a stand for what they believe are usually the ones that leave a lasting impression on our lives.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 31, 2011, 12:20:16 AM
I never tried to ruin anyone's fun.  I simply suggested they not dress up and pretend to be evil characters.

What did Christ do to demons?  He expelled them from their victims.

When their are millions of good and innocent characters to dress as, why trivialize the evil by picking exactly those costumes which Christ would despise?

....And what of erecting cemeteries in your front yard, or worse, right in your house?

Is there something "good" in trivializing death?

The one mom laughed at me, and said she would ask our priest to come over and "bless" the graves.


I don't understand the correlation between dressing up, even as something evil, and demonic possession.

How do we know which costumes Christ would despise?

Can't we trivialise death, at least to some degree, when Christ has conquered it? I suspect that some of the elements of costumes that seem to be poking fun at death lie in the Christian's hope regarding eternal life. Death is conquered! Christ is Victor!
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Alveus Lacuna on October 31, 2011, 12:21:50 AM
The one mom laughed at me, and said she would ask our priest to come over and "bless" the graves.

And it's this kind of thing that makes me way to eschew the whole holiday (holy-day?!?!) altogether. But for the sake of peace in our house and picking my battles I find a compromise of sorts.

That kind of response would have honestly had me reacting uncharitably, as I likely would have suggested that I just kill her, bury her in her front yard, and dance on the mound for fun. We could even put a cute ghost of her coming out of the ground that is again getting stabbed by me because of how angry she would have made me.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Luke on October 31, 2011, 12:53:01 AM
My twin brother likes the holiday:  (http://lh6.ggpht.com/_NN3ACenoFWw/TZqcSePufPI/AAAAAAAADj0/fqGAYXvlsNM/winking%20frank%5B3%5D.gif)
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on October 31, 2011, 12:57:24 AM
My twin brother likes the holiday:  (http://lh6.ggpht.com/_NN3ACenoFWw/TZqcSePufPI/AAAAAAAADj0/fqGAYXvlsNM/winking%20frank%5B3%5D.gif)

 :laugh:
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on October 31, 2011, 01:58:56 AM
The Bishop has singled out Americans, not me! And didn't you see that I tagged my post with "it's a jest!"?
Edited to add.   ;D Sorry, I was distracted with a chat elsewhere and left that post looking too humourless!

No need, I was right there with ya.   :)

He really he is a puritan, but I wanted to make fun of him by not being a fun person so went for fundie

Gotcha, thanks.

While he may be using a lousy fundamentalist argument to present his opinion, what about other Orthodox clergy who believe it's wrong to participate?  Let's face it, a lot of the Holy Fathers, Saints, Elders aren't/weren't particularly concerned with having fun or taking part in stuff they felt was spiritually dangerous.  Surely dressing up as witches and ghouls can't be viewed positively.  I personally think the reaction is a bit overkill, but I can understand the reason for their warnings.  Anywho
Those pesky bishops, getting in the way of our fun. Next thing you know they're going to start telling us to fast from meat and dairy on certain days and not eat after midnight before receiving Communion. The horrorrrrrr!!  :o

In Christ,
Andrew

LOL!


Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on October 31, 2011, 02:02:41 AM

So, the consensus of the latest posts seem to favor the celebration of Halloween.

I've had this conversation recently with the youth in our church and their parents....and unfortunately (as I see it) I was on the losing side.

While one may claim that Halloween has innocent roots, and has nothing to do with devil worship, etc.....how does one explain dressing young children as ghosts, demons, vampires, witches, etc.  How is that not evil?

Granted there are also princesses, superheroes and Spongebobs, but, what of the witches?

Why deck out your front yard as a cemetery and hang skeletons from your trees?  Why have goblins jumping out at you from behind bushes.

If death is so much fun, then when faced with an illness.....why bother going to a hospital to get cured?  Remember death is fun and funny!

When I asked my students to dress in decent costumes, nothing evil....because there are thousands of good things to dress as, I was ridiculed, belittled and almost left in tears....because I am a prude and don't know how to have fun.

Dressing as a vampire with dripping teeth, is not my definition of fun.....and as an Orthodox Christian, it is my duty to "suggest" that the children that I teach, mentor, feel responsible for and love, not dress as evil creatures.

Why is that wrong?





You are not wrong Liza. You have a Christian conscience that you follow. The unfortunate consequence of following your conscience is that you will be ridiculed and mocked, sadly even by some who are supposed to be your Orthodox Christian brethren. But stand firm. You are a great encouragement to me and many others! More than you realize!


Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on October 31, 2011, 02:05:59 AM
We should obey our bishops unless they want us to sin against God. HG Bishop Youssef is my bishop and I should obey him in the matter of Halloween. If your bishop has advised against Halloween you should obey. Obedience doesn't have to make any sense.

As a classic example, there is the story in the Sayings of the Desert Fathers about the monk who was told to plant a dry stick in the sand and to water it daily. So distant was the spring from his cell that he had to leave in the evening to fetch the water and he only returned in the following morning. For three years he patiently fulfilled his abba's command. At the end of this period, the stick suddenly put forth leaves and bore fruit. The abba picked the fruit, took it to the church, and invited the monks to eat, saying, "Take and eat the fruit of obedience."

Source: http://www.pravmir.com/article_647.html


Wonderful Orthodox attitude, and a wonderful story as well. Thank you!


Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: NicholasMyra on October 31, 2011, 02:11:18 AM
"Abba Macarius was traveling up from Scetes to the town of Terenuthis. He went to spend the night in a temple where the bodies of the pagans had been laid to rest years before. And he dragged out one of the mummies and put it under his head for a pillow.

The devils, seeing his boldness, flew into a rage and decided to scare him. And they began to call out from the other bodies, as if calling to a woman:

'Lady, come with us to the baths.'

And another demon, as if he were the ghost of a woman, cried out from the body the Abba was using as a pillow:

'This stranger is holding me down and I can't come.'

But the Abba, far from being frightened, began to pummel the corpse, saying: 'Get up and go swimming if you are able!'
Hearing this the demons cried: 'You have overcome us!' And they fled in confusion."
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on October 31, 2011, 02:21:05 AM
"Abba Macarius was traveling up from Scetes to the town of Terenuthis. He went to spend the night in a temple where the bodies of the pagans had been laid to rest years before. And he dragged out one of the mummies and put it under his head for a pillow.

The devils, seeing his boldness, flew into a rage and decided to scare him. And they began to call out from the other bodies, as if calling to a woman:

'Lady, come with us to the baths.'

And another demon, as if he were the ghost of a woman, cried out from the body the Abba was using as a pillow:

'This stranger is holding me down and I can't come.'

But the Abba, far from being frightened, began to pummel the corpse, saying: 'Get up and go swimming if you are able!'
Hearing this the demons cried: 'You have overcome us!' And they fled in confusion."


The best Halloween story ever!  I love it! 


Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Shiny on October 31, 2011, 03:34:38 AM
This is what I did for Halloween this year:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,30894.0.html



Selam

Stand guard vigilantly for toilet paper being thrown amongst the branches of your trees.
How far would he get with a Gideon's Bible I wonder..
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on October 31, 2011, 04:46:47 AM
This is what I did for Halloween this year:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,30894.0.html



Selam

Stand guard vigilantly for toilet paper being thrown amongst the branches of your trees.
How far would he get with a Gideon's Bible I wonder..


1. I thoroughly rely on my Orthodox Study Bible  ;)

2. I live in the "hood," where such WASPy shenanigans are not tolerated.  ;)


Selam
Title: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: SubdeaconDavid on November 01, 2011, 08:40:19 AM
Serbian Bishop Alexander writes about the inappropriateness of Orthodox Christians in any way participating in Halloween i.e. no lanterns, trick or treat etc. 
Quote
Halloween undermines the very basis of the Church, which was founded on the blood of martyrs who had refused, by giving up their lives, to partake in any form of idolatry.

The holy Church must take a firm stand in counteracting any such (pagan) events. Christ taught us that God is the judge in all our actions and beliefs and that we are either for God or against God. There is no neutral or middle-of-the-road approach.
http://www.russianorthodoxchurch.ws/synod/engdocuments/enart_bpalexanderhalloween.html (http://www.russianorthodoxchurch.ws/synod/engdocuments/enart_bpalexanderhalloween.html)
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: FrChris on November 01, 2011, 08:57:29 AM
Through the GOARCH website (http://detroit.goarch.org/pastoral-help/articles/orthodox-life/whos-afraid-of-halloween) another opinion is offered:

Quote
Well, good Orthodox Christian, what should our Church make of this controversy?  Is Halloween something we Christians should shun like the Black Mass?  Don’t the facts about Halloween’s origins prove that it is an abomination?

No.  First of all, none of these “facts” are true.  It’s all fiction...
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: biro on November 01, 2011, 09:13:16 AM
The Eve of the Feast of All Saints (as celebrated by the Western churches) has nothing to do with the occult.

In our day and age, it has become... a costume party, where little kids get candy and grown-ups go out to clubs.

Fundamentalists have made the thing more serious than it has to be. They probably draw more attention to the occult than some actual occultist people do.  :P

If anything, parents often miss the opportunity to tell the kids the real reason anybody wanted to celebrate in the first place- "blessed is God, who is wondrous in His saints."  :) If one is in a Western church, it's a golden opportunity to talk about that, and All Souls' Day which is on Nov. 2.

Then again, if you wait until today, all the candy is half off at the drugstores.  ;)
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Margaret S. on November 01, 2011, 09:32:08 AM
Oh, no, not that Lord of Death stuff again. Samhain is not a person, not even in the sense that Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny are persons but an Anglicising of samhuinn which means November. I realise that to a non-Gaelic speaker it might be hard not to think Sam Hain but try. Also try to remember that as little as we know of Celtic deities they don't usually have names you can find in the phone book. I was trained as an ethnologist and I have an interest in the calendars and folk customs of the British Isles and in all seriousness that article on the ROCOR site is sheer tripe. If anything 'samhain' is a feast of light. It's a fire festival, fire to push back the cold and the dark, remember we're talking about fairly primitive people, subsistence farmers for whom death by freezing and starvation was very real. There are a whole string of fire festivals in Britain over the winter - Michaelmas, St Katherine's Day, Hallowe'en, Martinmass, Hogmonay, St Bride's Day - and they've all got a heck of a lot more to do with being frightened of the cold and the dark than daft Lords of Death and associated nonsense.

Margaret
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: biro on November 01, 2011, 09:41:58 AM
Also, there's candy!  :)
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Melodist on November 01, 2011, 09:57:29 AM
The Eve of the Feast of All Saints (as celebrated by the Western churches) has nothing to do with the occult.

In our day and age, it has become... a costume party, where little kids get candy and grown-ups go out to clubs.

Fundamentalists have made the thing more serious than it has to be. They probably draw more attention to the occult than some actual occultist people do.  :P

If anything, parents often miss the opportunity to tell the kids the real reason anybody wanted to celebrate in the first place- "blessed is God, who is wondrous in His saints."  :) If one is in a Western church, it's a golden opportunity to talk about that, and All Souls' Day which is on Nov. 2.

Complete agreement with one addition. You don't need to be in a western church to explain the history of halloween, especially if you live in a western culture that celebrates it. Living in a western culture and being in an eastern rite church, it can become an additional opportunity to teach and celebrate the reality of all saints.

Quote
Then again, if you wait until today, all the candy is half off at the drugstores.  ;)

This is a good enough reason by itself to look forward to halloween.
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: biro on November 01, 2011, 10:00:41 AM
Of course. Reese's Peanut Cups cannot possibly be evil.  ;D
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: FrChris on November 01, 2011, 10:35:28 AM
Don't forget Heath bars! toffee is a weakness of mine, and mixing it with chocolate...well, that is a temptation that must be fought!
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Melodist on November 01, 2011, 10:36:37 AM
Smarties.
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Shanghaiski on November 01, 2011, 10:42:12 AM
Serbian Bishop Alexander writes about the inappropriateness of Orthodox Christians in any way participating in Halloween i.e. no lanterns, trick or treat etc. 
Quote
Halloween undermines the very basis of the Church, which was founded on the blood of martyrs who had refused, by giving up their lives, to partake in any form of idolatry.

The holy Church must take a firm stand in counteracting any such (pagan) events. Christ taught us that God is the judge in all our actions and beliefs and that we are either for God or against God. There is no neutral or middle-of-the-road approach.
http://www.russianorthodoxchurch.ws/synod/engdocuments/enart_bpalexanderhalloween.html (http://www.russianorthodoxchurch.ws/synod/engdocuments/enart_bpalexanderhalloween.html)

Except, originally, Halloween was an Orthodox Christian feast in the West for All Saints, and has nothing, really, to do with paganism. What has become attached to it is a much later innovation, probably no older than the 18th century.
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: elephant on November 01, 2011, 10:49:07 AM
And if you celebrate it 13 days later you can enjoy all those goodies half-off!
But don't try going door-to-door.

Love,
elephant
Title: Bowl of Petunias with candy corn
Post by: Ebor on November 01, 2011, 11:19:11 AM
Thank you Margaret for beating me to the punch on the "Samhain" clap-trap  :)
I was delayed by fighting the impulse to get a keyboard shaped dent in my forehead again.

Over in the other Halloween thread that's been around a while, I and another person went over the nonsense that gets spouted about this and some of the Real History and what real human beings have done during seasons and changes and that in a world where the only source of human made light and heat was fire, the coming of the darker days and winter lead to things like feasts and events to keep the light and life going.   The circle of the year or as Ronald Hutton put in "The Stations of the Sun" were what people lived by: Spring and planting, Summer and growth, Fall and Harvest against the cold and dark of winter...

And we really do NOT know much about the Druids' beliefs or the Anglo-Saxon's either..

Ebor (wondering if in a few months the "Eostre" as an Anglo-Saxon "goddess' codswollop will be back too.)



Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: dcommini on November 01, 2011, 12:08:57 PM
[shameless self promotion] The latest post on my blog talks about the common misconceptions of Halloween and the origins of said holiday (to a degree). [/shameless self promotion]

I agree that Halloween is not in and of itself evil, it started off as an Orthodox holiday that got merged with the existing folklore of Scotland and Ireland which then transferred to the States as the Scots and Irish migrated.

Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Ortho_cat on November 01, 2011, 12:11:12 PM
bah, let the kids eat their candy...
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Heorhij on November 01, 2011, 01:05:23 PM
To me, Halloween is just a celebration of good humor and laughter, nothing more.
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: minasoliman on November 01, 2011, 01:05:32 PM
Don't forget Heath bars! toffee is a weakness of mine, and mixing it with chocolate...well, that is a temptation that must be fought!

I'd be soooo happy to trade my toffee for your Reese's, Kit Kats, and Crunches.
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Schultz on November 01, 2011, 01:35:51 PM
To me, Halloween is just a celebration of good humor and laughter, nothing more.

Are you still angry about children extorting candy from you, though?
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Shanghaiski on November 01, 2011, 02:52:27 PM
bah, let the kids eat their candy...

even if it has been sacrificed to idols?
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: dcommini on November 01, 2011, 02:54:03 PM
bah, let the kids eat their candy...

even if it has been sacrificed to idols?

Wait, candy can be sacrificed?
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: minasoliman on November 01, 2011, 02:55:30 PM
bah, let the kids eat their candy...

even if it has been sacrificed to idols?

I thought it was sacrificed to our blood sugars, via the holy bowels, as a sweet savor of digestion to the microvilli.
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: LizaSymonenko on November 01, 2011, 03:07:32 PM

Say what you will....and repeat a thousand times that Halloween doesn't have pagan roots....however, I will not believe it to be as innocent as all of you claim.

Don't get me wrong, I also went out and got candy as a kid (dressed only as a princess or angel)....and I know how much fun it really is.

However, with the exception of a few churches, does anyone actually believe that the multitudes are celebrating the Saints of Christ's Church on that day?  Really?

I went out last night with my nieces/nephews.....we had them collecting canned/packaged food for the homeless shelters in our area on behalf of the Orthodox Church League, in addition to the candy.  I was pleasantly surprised to have collected so much food that my entire back seat and floor is invisible!

However, walking around I also saw the ghouls and goblins.  I heard the eerie noises being emitted over loudspeakers, and the fake fog coming out from every bush.  I saw witches, vampires and devils.  I lost count of how many mini cemeteries I walked by in people's front lawns (some grotesquely too real)....not to mention the spiders, skeletons and werewolves.

What do any of these things have to do with Saints?  Do you honestly think the Saints are represented by these macabre items?  Honestly?  The bloody hatchet hanging from a doorway?  The chopped off bloody limbs strewn over the sidewalks...and the red "blood" oozing down the driveways?

Say what you will....it is fun....but, it is NOT Orthodox.
...and we should stop sugar coating it just so that we feel justified in celebrating the event.

Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Schultz on November 01, 2011, 03:14:50 PM

Say what you will....and repeat a thousand times that Halloween doesn't have pagan roots....however, I will not believe it to be as innocent as all of you claim.

Don't get me wrong, I also went out and got candy as a kid (dressed only as a princess or angel)....and I know how much fun it really is.

However, with the exception of a few churches, does anyone actually believe that the multitudes are celebrating the Saints of Christ's Church on that day?  Really?

I went out last night with my nieces/nephews.....we had them collecting canned/packaged food for the homeless shelters in our area on behalf of the Orthodox Church League, in addition to the candy.  I was pleasantly surprised to have collected so much food that my entire back seat and floor is invisible!

However, walking around I also saw the ghouls and goblins.  I heard the eerie noises being emitted over loudspeakers, and the fake fog coming out from every bush.  I saw witches, vampires and devils.  I lost count of how many mini cemeteries I walked by in people's front lawns (some grotesquely too real)....not to mention the spiders, skeletons and werewolves.

What do any of these things have to do with Saints?  Do you honestly think the Saints are represented by these macabre items?  Honestly?  The bloody hatchet hanging from a doorway?  The chopped off bloody limbs strewn over the sidewalks...and the red "blood" oozing down the driveways?

Say what you will....it is fun....but, it is NOT Orthodox.
...and we should stop sugar coating it just so that we feel justified in celebrating the event.



I, for one, can respect this critique of Halloween.  I don't totally agree with it (because damn near NOTHING we do glorifies God no matter how much we want to sugar coat it), but at least it's not spreading lies about the origins of this annual event.

Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: primuspilus on November 01, 2011, 03:19:03 PM
So....lemonheads =

(http://t1.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcRGqu6L5Jx2fzFyBRm9KC5_cLoFKW-CYt0qfIxAW5T74xB30yVRaLwsNsdG_A)

PP
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Shanghaiski on November 01, 2011, 03:33:41 PM

Say what you will....and repeat a thousand times that Halloween doesn't have pagan roots....however, I will not believe it to be as innocent as all of you claim.

Don't get me wrong, I also went out and got candy as a kid (dressed only as a princess or angel)....and I know how much fun it really is.

However, with the exception of a few churches, does anyone actually believe that the multitudes are celebrating the Saints of Christ's Church on that day?  Really?

I went out last night with my nieces/nephews.....we had them collecting canned/packaged food for the homeless shelters in our area on behalf of the Orthodox Church League, in addition to the candy.  I was pleasantly surprised to have collected so much food that my entire back seat and floor is invisible!

However, walking around I also saw the ghouls and goblins.  I heard the eerie noises being emitted over loudspeakers, and the fake fog coming out from every bush.  I saw witches, vampires and devils.  I lost count of how many mini cemeteries I walked by in people's front lawns (some grotesquely too real)....not to mention the spiders, skeletons and werewolves.

What do any of these things have to do with Saints?  Do you honestly think the Saints are represented by these macabre items?  Honestly?  The bloody hatchet hanging from a doorway?  The chopped off bloody limbs strewn over the sidewalks...and the red "blood" oozing down the driveways?

Say what you will....it is fun....but, it is NOT Orthodox.
...and we should stop sugar coating it just so that we feel justified in celebrating the event.



It's not about "pagan roots." Christmas has pagan roots. It's about the aspects of disorderliness and fixation on darkness which the modern celebration of Halloween (trick-or-treating/costumes) often evokes. However, Halloween itself is more than that, just as Christmas is more than the birthday of Mithras.
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: LizaSymonenko on November 01, 2011, 03:42:26 PM

That's exactly what I am saying.

The roots of the holiday do not come in to play here.

...I am more concerned as to what it has morphed into, then as what it began.
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Heorhij on November 01, 2011, 04:03:56 PM
To me, Halloween is just a celebration of good humor and laughter, nothing more.

Are you still angry about children extorting candy from you, though?

No.  :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: minasoliman on November 01, 2011, 04:12:31 PM
Here's a pumpkin carving idea for this year:

(http://www.sthermanseminary.org/images/AllSaintsParty2009/01Pumpkin.jpg)

It's been a while since this post, but it still blows my mind.  :)
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: PeterTheAleut on November 01, 2011, 06:34:24 PM

Say what you will....and repeat a thousand times that Halloween doesn't have pagan roots....however, I will not believe it to be as innocent as all of you claim.

Don't get me wrong, I also went out and got candy as a kid (dressed only as a princess or angel)....and I know how much fun it really is.

However, with the exception of a few churches, does anyone actually believe that the multitudes are celebrating the Saints of Christ's Church on that day?  Really?

I went out last night with my nieces/nephews.....we had them collecting canned/packaged food for the homeless shelters in our area on behalf of the Orthodox Church League, in addition to the candy.  I was pleasantly surprised to have collected so much food that my entire back seat and floor is invisible!

However, walking around I also saw the ghouls and goblins.  I heard the eerie noises being emitted over loudspeakers, and the fake fog coming out from every bush.  I saw witches, vampires and devils.  I lost count of how many mini cemeteries I walked by in people's front lawns (some grotesquely too real)....not to mention the spiders, skeletons and werewolves.

What do any of these things have to do with Saints?  Do you honestly think the Saints are represented by these macabre items?  Honestly?  The bloody hatchet hanging from a doorway?  The chopped off bloody limbs strewn over the sidewalks...and the red "blood" oozing down the driveways?

Say what you will....it is fun....but, it is NOT Orthodox.
...and we should stop sugar coating it just so that we feel justified in celebrating the event.


Well, then, let's take back our holiday!
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: LizaSymonenko on November 01, 2011, 06:38:45 PM

I'm good with that!    Let's!!!
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Riddikulus on November 01, 2011, 06:58:40 PM
Oh, no, not that Lord of Death stuff again. Samhain is not a person, not even in the sense that Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny are persons but an Anglicising of samhuinn which means November. I realise that to a non-Gaelic speaker it might be hard not to think Sam Hain but try. Also try to remember that as little as we know of Celtic deities they don't usually have names you can find in the phone book. I was trained as an ethnologist and I have an interest in the calendars and folk customs of the British Isles and in all seriousness that article on the ROCOR site is sheer tripe. If anything 'samhain' is a feast of light. It's a fire festival, fire to push back the cold and the dark, remember we're talking about fairly primitive people, subsistence farmers for whom death by freezing and starvation was very real. There are a whole string of fire festivals in Britain over the winter - Michaelmas, St Katherine's Day, Hallowe'en, Martinmass, Hogmonay, St Bride's Day - and they've all got a heck of a lot more to do with being frightened of the cold and the dark than daft Lords of Death and associated nonsense.

Margaret

The voice of sanity! Thank you God!
Title: Re: Bowl of Petunias with candy corn
Post by: Riddikulus on November 01, 2011, 07:01:24 PM
Thank you Margaret for beating me to the punch on the "Samhain" clap-trap  :)
I was delayed by fighting the impulse to get a keyboard shaped dent in my forehead again.

Over in the other Halloween thread that's been around a while, I and another person went over the nonsense that gets spouted about this and some of the Real History and what real human beings have done during seasons and changes and that in a world where the only source of human made light and heat was fire, the coming of the darker days and winter lead to things like feasts and events to keep the light and life going.   The circle of the year or as Ronald Hutton put in "The Stations of the Sun" were what people lived by: Spring and planting, Summer and growth, Fall and Harvest against the cold and dark of winter...

And we really do NOT know much about the Druids' beliefs or the Anglo-Saxon's either..

Ebor (wondering if in a few months the "Eostre" as an Anglo-Saxon "goddess' codswollop will be back too.)





I've been trying to bring reason to this topic on the other thread. <head shaped dent in keyboard, here>
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Riddikulus on November 01, 2011, 07:02:27 PM
[shameless self promotion] The latest post on my blog talks about the common misconceptions of Halloween and the origins of said holiday (to a degree). [/shameless self promotion]

I agree that Halloween is not in and of itself evil, it started off as an Orthodox holiday that got merged with the existing folklore of Scotland and Ireland which then transferred to the States as the Scots and Irish migrated.



 :laugh: Where is your blog? (Am I allowed to ask that?)
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Riddikulus on November 01, 2011, 07:06:27 PM

That's exactly what I am saying.

The roots of the holiday do not come in to play here.

...I am more concerned as to what it has morphed into, then as what it began.

But if someone gets blind drunk on Christmas and beats their kids, we don't call for a cancellation of the feast and use its pagan roots as a reason.
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Riddikulus on November 01, 2011, 07:07:25 PM

Say what you will....and repeat a thousand times that Halloween doesn't have pagan roots....however, I will not believe it to be as innocent as all of you claim.

Don't get me wrong, I also went out and got candy as a kid (dressed only as a princess or angel)....and I know how much fun it really is.

However, with the exception of a few churches, does anyone actually believe that the multitudes are celebrating the Saints of Christ's Church on that day?  Really?

I went out last night with my nieces/nephews.....we had them collecting canned/packaged food for the homeless shelters in our area on behalf of the Orthodox Church League, in addition to the candy.  I was pleasantly surprised to have collected so much food that my entire back seat and floor is invisible!

However, walking around I also saw the ghouls and goblins.  I heard the eerie noises being emitted over loudspeakers, and the fake fog coming out from every bush.  I saw witches, vampires and devils.  I lost count of how many mini cemeteries I walked by in people's front lawns (some grotesquely too real)....not to mention the spiders, skeletons and werewolves.

What do any of these things have to do with Saints?  Do you honestly think the Saints are represented by these macabre items?  Honestly?  The bloody hatchet hanging from a doorway?  The chopped off bloody limbs strewn over the sidewalks...and the red "blood" oozing down the driveways?

Say what you will....it is fun....but, it is NOT Orthodox.
...and we should stop sugar coating it just so that we feel justified in celebrating the event.


Well, then, let's take back our holiday!

Doesn't anyone read my posts!!?? I've been saying this. <sigh, mutter, mutter>
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: genesisone on November 01, 2011, 07:29:02 PM

 :laugh: Where is your blog? (Am I allowed to ask that?)
Hint: look at his signature line.
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: britgirl on November 01, 2011, 07:53:13 PM
http://www.stmaryorthodoxchurch.org/orthodoxy/articles/2011-10-26-halloween.php

I found this priest's perspective fascinating and a change from the condemnation of Halloween from the Charismatic movement I was in when I was 12-17.

His overall point:
Quote
What’s my point? You can’t judge a custom by its origins. What counts is one’s intention in the here and now. And let’s be honest: modern Halloween for you and me—and even the Wiccans down the street—has nothing to do with virgin sacrifice or black magic. It’s about having fun in a costume and eating things your dentist wouldn’t approve of.
:D
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Riddikulus on November 01, 2011, 08:15:12 PM

 :laugh: Where is your blog? (Am I allowed to ask that?)
Hint: look at his signature line.

 :laugh: Thanks! Completely missed that! duh!  :-[
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: LizaSymonenko on November 01, 2011, 08:22:24 PM

That's exactly what I am saying.

The roots of the holiday do not come in to play here.

...I am more concerned as to what it has morphed into, then as what it began.

But if someone gets blind drunk on Christmas and beats their kids, we don't call for a cancellation of the feast and use its pagan roots as a reason.

Your example is one drunk idiot beating his kids.  Halloween has many unwise individuals who play with the occult. 

I simply cannot support people and their kids dressing as satan and running around.  Sorry.

Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Riddikulus on November 01, 2011, 08:24:16 PM
http://www.stmaryorthodoxchurch.org/orthodoxy/articles/2011-10-26-halloween.php

I found this priest's perspective fascinating and a change from the condemnation of Halloween from the Charismatic movement I was in when I was 12-17.

His overall point:
Quote
What’s my point? You can’t judge a custom by its origins. What counts is one’s intention in the here and now. And let’s be honest: modern Halloween for you and me—and even the Wiccans down the street—has nothing to do with virgin sacrifice or black magic. It’s about having fun in a costume and eating things your dentist wouldn’t approve of.
:D

Thanks for sharing this, britgirl.

I was used to hearing *satanic* nonsense repeated in Protestantism. Didn't expect to find it in Orthodoxy. Those rose-coloured spectacles, you know. So it came as quite a shock. The first time I encountered it was the first Christmas our family was Orthodox and being told that we shouldn't have a Christmas tree. When I heard the fundy propoganda, regarding how pagan a Christmas tree was, from Orthodox lips, it was disappointing, to say the least. Fortunately, the parish we were at hadn't heard and had a Christmas tree in the hall, anyway.  ;D

Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: orthonorm on November 01, 2011, 08:29:31 PM

That's exactly what I am saying.

The roots of the holiday do not come in to play here.

...I am more concerned as to what it has morphed into, then as what it began.

But if someone gets blind drunk on Christmas and beats their kids, we don't call for a cancellation of the feast and use its pagan roots as a reason.

Your example is one drunk idiot beating his kids.  Halloween has many unwise individuals who play with the occult. 

I simply cannot support people and their kids dressing as satan and running around.  Sorry.



What wrong with dressing as St. Peter?

Another thing people are really confused by: Satan / The Evil One.
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Riddikulus on November 01, 2011, 08:33:11 PM

That's exactly what I am saying.

The roots of the holiday do not come in to play here.

...I am more concerned as to what it has morphed into, then as what it began.

But if someone gets blind drunk on Christmas and beats their kids, we don't call for a cancellation of the feast and use its pagan roots as a reason.

Your example is one drunk idiot beating his kids.  Halloween has many unwise individuals who play with the occult. 

I simply cannot support people and their kids dressing as satan and running around.  Sorry.



Halloween isn't about the occult, no more than Christmas is worshipping Mithras in a shower of blood. If many individuals misuse the holiday, that's just as much their problem as the drunk on Christmas. And I didn't attach a gender to my comment, because women get drunk and beat their kids, too.

That aside, I respect your decision, although All Hallows has always included dressing as saints and devils, both. It's up to the individual. I certainly wouldn't feel comfortable judging someone on their choice of costume, which is what so much anti-Halloween literature does.
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: LizaSymonenko on November 01, 2011, 08:41:28 PM

Fine, the woman hits her kids.  It's still not comparable to what goes on during Halloween.

I am just amazed at everyone's need to defend Halloween which isn't even one of the major Feast Days of the Church. 

...and having people dress as saints and devils....still doesn't bode well for those dressing as devils.  Why would you ever need to dress as a devil?

Why put up tomb stones in your front yard?

Why all the horrible noises, whining and groaning, as if from Hell?

Say what you will, but, that IS what Halloween has turned into. 

I've said my piece.  I am fine with kids dressing up in non-evil costumes (and yes, I think satan is evil) and having some fun.

However, I will not approve of all the blood and gore.

You may all continue on your journey of celebrating and applauding Halloween for something it isn't.


Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Riddikulus on November 01, 2011, 08:45:08 PM
[shameless self promotion] The latest post on my blog talks about the common misconceptions of Halloween and the origins of said holiday (to a degree). [/shameless self promotion]

I agree that Halloween is not in and of itself evil, it started off as an Orthodox holiday that got merged with the existing folklore of Scotland and Ireland which then transferred to the States as the Scots and Irish migrated.



 :laugh: Where is your blog? (Am I allowed to ask that?)

Happened upon your blog the other day, not knowing it was yours. Good to read. I hope I don't break any rules if I emphasise this...

In conclusion, Halloween was not another Christian holiday with pagan overtones so the Church could get more converts. Samhain was never exclusively set aside for the night of October 31. That people do use Halloween as a night of darkness to commit horrible acts is not evidence that Halloween started as a pagan celebration, but evidence that we let the media and card companies (and Sears the first company to market Halloween costumes) take over yet another Christian holiday and that we failed to hold onto another sacred day. Halloween never started off as a pagan celebration, but a Christian one to commemorate all the saints, but the folklore of the surrounding area integrated with the Christian holiday (as oft times happens, and more on this later during the Christmas season); so go out there and celebrate this Christian holiday with the knowledge that those neo-pagans sacrificing unicorns and kittens are posers and thieves who can't even invent their own proper holiday but have to steal one from us, and then accuse us of stealing their holiday! http://lifeofanorthodoxsoldier.blogspot.com/2011/10/on-halloween.html#more
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Melodist on November 01, 2011, 08:46:13 PM
bah, let the kids eat their candy...
even if it has been sacrificed to idols?

Ask not for conscience sake.
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: PeterTheAleut on November 01, 2011, 08:49:11 PM
http://www.stmaryorthodoxchurch.org/orthodoxy/articles/2011-10-26-halloween.php

I found this priest's perspective fascinating and a change from the condemnation of Halloween from the Charismatic movement I was in when I was 12-17.

His overall point:
Quote
What’s my point? You can’t judge a custom by its origins. What counts is one’s intention in the here and now. And let’s be honest: modern Halloween for you and me—and even the Wiccans down the street—has nothing to do with virgin sacrifice or black magic. It’s about having fun in a costume and eating things your dentist wouldn’t approve of.
:D
Do you realize you just posted a link to the same essay that Fr. Chris quoted earlier? ;)
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: britgirl on November 01, 2011, 09:21:41 PM
Quote
Do you realize you just posted a link to the same essay that Fr. Chris quoted earlier? ;)
I did not! Do alter my post if necessary, then!  :) Sorry.
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: elijahmaria on November 01, 2011, 09:31:12 PM
bah, let the kids eat their candy...

even if it has been sacrificed to idols?

I thought it was sacrificed to our blood sugars, via the holy bowels, as a sweet savor of digestion to the microvilli.

Only in Orthodoxy...You could tempt a girl to convert writing digestive doxologies like this one!!
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Riddikulus on November 01, 2011, 10:18:09 PM
Through the GOARCH website (http://detroit.goarch.org/pastoral-help/articles/orthodox-life/whos-afraid-of-halloween) another opinion is offered:

Quote
Well, good Orthodox Christian, what should our Church make of this controversy?  Is Halloween something we Christians should shun like the Black Mass?  Don’t the facts about Halloween’s origins prove that it is an abomination?

No.  First of all, none of these “facts” are true.  It’s all fiction...

Sorry, Fr Chris, I missed this, too!  :-[
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: FrChris on November 01, 2011, 10:51:03 PM
Through the GOARCH website (http://detroit.goarch.org/pastoral-help/articles/orthodox-life/whos-afraid-of-halloween) another opinion is offered:

Quote
Well, good Orthodox Christian, what should our Church make of this controversy?  Is Halloween something we Christians should shun like the Black Mass?  Don’t the facts about Halloween’s origins prove that it is an abomination?

No.  First of all, none of these “facts” are true.  It’s all fiction...

Sorry, Fr Chris, I missed this, too!  :-[

It's OK, Britgirl and Riddikulus....there is a reason I'm the Rodney Dangerfield of OC.net!  :D
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Riddikulus on November 01, 2011, 11:13:19 PM
Through the GOARCH website (http://detroit.goarch.org/pastoral-help/articles/orthodox-life/whos-afraid-of-halloween) another opinion is offered:

Quote
Well, good Orthodox Christian, what should our Church make of this controversy?  Is Halloween something we Christians should shun like the Black Mass?  Don’t the facts about Halloween’s origins prove that it is an abomination?

No.  First of all, none of these “facts” are true.  It’s all fiction...

Sorry, Fr Chris, I missed this, too!  :-[

It's OK, Britgirl and Riddikulus....there is a reason I'm the Rodney Dangerfield of OC.net!  :D

 :laugh:
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on November 01, 2011, 11:36:19 PM
Here's a pumpkin carving idea for this year:

(http://www.sthermanseminary.org/images/AllSaintsParty2009/01Pumpkin.jpg)

It's been a while since this post, but it still blows my mind.  :)

Amazing!


Selam
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: dcommini on November 01, 2011, 11:41:04 PM
[shameless self promotion] The latest post on my blog talks about the common misconceptions of Halloween and the origins of said holiday (to a degree). [/shameless self promotion]

I agree that Halloween is not in and of itself evil, it started off as an Orthodox holiday that got merged with the existing folklore of Scotland and Ireland which then transferred to the States as the Scots and Irish migrated.



 :laugh: Where is your blog? (Am I allowed to ask that?)

Happened upon your blog the other day, not knowing it was yours. Good to read. I hope I don't break any rules if I emphasise this...

In conclusion, Halloween was not another Christian holiday with pagan overtones so the Church could get more converts. Samhain was never exclusively set aside for the night of October 31. That people do use Halloween as a night of darkness to commit horrible acts is not evidence that Halloween started as a pagan celebration, but evidence that we let the media and card companies (and Sears the first company to market Halloween costumes) take over yet another Christian holiday and that we failed to hold onto another sacred day. Halloween never started off as a pagan celebration, but a Christian one to commemorate all the saints, but the folklore of the surrounding area integrated with the Christian holiday (as oft times happens, and more on this later during the Christmas season); so go out there and celebrate this Christian holiday with the knowledge that those neo-pagans sacrificing unicorns and kittens are posers and thieves who can't even invent their own proper holiday but have to steal one from us, and then accuse us of stealing their holiday! http://lifeofanorthodoxsoldier.blogspot.com/2011/10/on-halloween.html#more

How did you just happen upon my blog?  :o I was under the impression that it was hidden somewhere in the recesses of the web that only those who are lost and wondering ever happen upon it.

But seriously glad to know that you enjoyed reading it enough to quote it  ;D
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Riddikulus on November 02, 2011, 12:54:24 AM
[shameless self promotion] The latest post on my blog talks about the common misconceptions of Halloween and the origins of said holiday (to a degree). [/shameless self promotion]

I agree that Halloween is not in and of itself evil, it started off as an Orthodox holiday that got merged with the existing folklore of Scotland and Ireland which then transferred to the States as the Scots and Irish migrated.



 :laugh: Where is your blog? (Am I allowed to ask that?)

Happened upon your blog the other day, not knowing it was yours. Good to read. I hope I don't break any rules if I emphasise this...

In conclusion, Halloween was not another Christian holiday with pagan overtones so the Church could get more converts. Samhain was never exclusively set aside for the night of October 31. That people do use Halloween as a night of darkness to commit horrible acts is not evidence that Halloween started as a pagan celebration, but evidence that we let the media and card companies (and Sears the first company to market Halloween costumes) take over yet another Christian holiday and that we failed to hold onto another sacred day. Halloween never started off as a pagan celebration, but a Christian one to commemorate all the saints, but the folklore of the surrounding area integrated with the Christian holiday (as oft times happens, and more on this later during the Christmas season); so go out there and celebrate this Christian holiday with the knowledge that those neo-pagans sacrificing unicorns and kittens are posers and thieves who can't even invent their own proper holiday but have to steal one from us, and then accuse us of stealing their holiday! http://lifeofanorthodoxsoldier.blogspot.com/2011/10/on-halloween.html#more

How did you just happen upon my blog?  :o I was under the impression that it was hidden somewhere in the recesses of the web that only those who are lost and wondering ever happen upon it.

But seriously glad to know that you enjoyed reading it enough to quote it  ;D

I'm not sure how I managed to hit your blog! Perhaps I was lost and wandering?  Knowing me.... :-[ But yes, it was very good!
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: minasoliman on November 02, 2011, 12:36:39 PM
bah, let the kids eat their candy...

even if it has been sacrificed to idols?

I thought it was sacrificed to our blood sugars, via the holy bowels, as a sweet savor of digestion to the microvilli.

Only in Orthodoxy...You could tempt a girl to convert writing digestive doxologies like this one!!
;D :laugh:
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Gebre Menfes Kidus on November 02, 2011, 02:37:36 PM

Fine, the woman hits her kids.  It's still not comparable to what goes on during Halloween.

I am just amazed at everyone's need to defend Halloween which isn't even one of the major Feast Days of the Church. 

...and having people dress as saints and devils....still doesn't bode well for those dressing as devils.  Why would you ever need to dress as a devil?

Why put up tomb stones in your front yard?

Why all the horrible noises, whining and groaning, as if from Hell?

Say what you will, but, that IS what Halloween has turned into. 

I've said my piece.  I am fine with kids dressing up in non-evil costumes (and yes, I think satan is evil) and having some fun.

However, I will not approve of all the blood and gore.

You may all continue on your journey of celebrating and applauding Halloween for something it isn't.




I'm with you Liza.


Selam
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: katherine 2001 on November 02, 2011, 09:10:07 PM
My favorite is the Milky Way bars.  Heath Bars and Reese's Peanut Butter cups follow right behind Milky Way, though.
Title: Re: Is it OK for Orthodox Christians to celebrate Halloween?
Post by: Riddikulus on November 02, 2011, 09:15:42 PM
I'm sorry, this has to stop. This thread is becoming way too calorific!  :police:
Title: Re: Halloween should be anathema to Orthodox Christians
Post by: Irish Hermit on November 02, 2011, 10:52:32 PM
There was no deity called Samhain who was the Lord of Death. Both His Grace Bishop Kyrill (in his own article) and Bishop Alexander have picked up this canard from who knows where. 
 
Let's not take up arms against the resurgence of paganism by equipping our people with false "truths".  There is quite a lot of misinformation in this article and in the name of truth it ought to be rewritten. If we are to fight neo-paganism we shan't do it by offering people false information. The neo-pagans will just laugh at us, and rightly so.


Samhain is pronounced "sow-in" (where "ow" rhymes with "cow").  Samhain is simply Irish Gaelic for the month of November. 
 
The god Samhain myth first appears in the year 1770 when Col. Charles Vallency wrote a 6 volume set of books which attempted to prove that the Irish people once came from Armenia!!    Geoffrey Higgins then