This year I had a new thought about Halloween. The thought is new for me, but not original.
Halloween has been an exciting time for my kids because of the mass quantities of sugary treats they acquire — all the candy they get. This year though, I could see in my son he was thinking a bit more about all the symbolism surrounding this spooky holiday. With the witches, ghouls, ghosts, skeletons, and generally scary stuff for a six-year-old.
This night was a confirmation that the scary things seeped into his consciousness. I could hear him whimpering in his bed. I asked him what was wrong, and he just shrugs his shoulders. So, I prompted him by asking him if he was having a bad dream about all the spooky things he saw tonight. He replied with a meek yes.
What I wanted to tell him was all Halloween is, is an embodiment of humans’ fear of death. We as biological beings are on an inexorable march toward death, for some this brings about fear and anxiety, so we make lite of it by scaring each other and decorating our homes in silly representations of death and the unknown. Or, others embrace it by trying to be as realistic as possible with their representations. I wanted to tell him this.
But, being he is only six I decided to go with, “None of that stuff is real, and people are just being silly and having fun. You remember that time I scared your sister and you thought it was funny? Well, it’s like that, people are just having fun.”
Anyhow, my new thought was the whole thing about Halloween just being a representation, or embodiment of humans’ fear of death.