Originally posted by Monsoon X
BTW- What is Holy Eve?
The word, Halloween, means Holy Eve. All Hallows Eve.
I'm also reading in this thread about pagan holidays being evil ... I can understand you feeling that way because you're taught to believe that way.
Samhain, in the traditional sense, was celebrating the harvest, and remembering the dead. People would put candles in their windows, and food by the door, to guide the spirits home (heaven), and to give them a treat. That's where the words Trick or Treat came from, people believed that if you didn't light a candle, and leave food, that the spirits would become lost, and would then haunt your house ... playing tricks on you.
I think it's funny how early Christians, and Jews just changed the names of pagan holidays, and attempted to fit their belief structure into it ... but kept all of the traditional pagan practices intact. Where do you think the practice of decorating Christmas trees came from? Or dancing around the maypole? Or the Easter bunny, and painting the Easter eggs? Why do you think Leprechans are associated with St. Patricks day? The fact is, these holidays or celebrations weren't evil in the slightest ... otherwise, early Christians and Jews would have completely changed the traditional practices. They retained the practices to entice more pagans to convert to Christianity. Like saying "Hey, see we've got these holidays and here's what they mean to us, but look, we do the same things you do on these days, so you don't really have to change anything, just convert and be saved."
I'm not saying blood sacrifice didn't happen ... we all know it did. It also happened in early Christianity (or Judaism). That doesn't make it 'evil', because the people believed that was required. God even favored blood sacrifice according to the Old Testament ... does that make God evil?
Pagan has nothing to do with religion, by the way. It's associated with it now, and has been adopted into the modern vernacular as such, but the traditional meaning of Pagan is country dweller (or someone who lives in the country). It's derived from the Latin word Paganus.