October's an interesting month.
Growing up, Halloween was definitively one night of the year. Our school would decorate with Halloween decorations during October; we would eventually have a Halloween party in the earlier part of elementary school; and everything was tidily finished with the grand night itself, full of trick-or-treating.
Things change, and in the modern world, Halloween may as well be the whole month. People are hosting Halloween parties, the decorations aren't just in schools, and as adults, we can purchase massive amounts of candy any time we please. Halloween movies are playing on TV, streaming services set up specific Halloween sections...you name it.
Halloween follows a pattern that exists in many cultures around the world where something that was once borderline to downright terrifying has become, to quote a favorite Halloween movie, "...a night of frolic." (We can substitute the word "month" here instead.)
Many of us follow an interesting path where of course we indulge in the frolic aspect but ask ourselves if perhaps there' more. Is there more to this? Is there something deeper?
Our Nature traditions and modern Pagan paths bring back up what I've mentioned in previous entries- we should be working with and honoring the Dead, specifically our Ancestors and the Forgotten Dead.
Another aspect to consider is that potentially inner transformation that Halloween brings with it. No longer relegated to a mere night, Halloween brings with it an entire month's worth of Shadow Integration.
And that, I think, is the ultimate aspect of Halloween for many of us- by decorating with spooky things, by dressing up as something possibly creepy, by celebrating the World of the Dead and the Hereafter, we relate to both our inner Shadow and the Shadow of the Collective Unconscious.
As opposed to, say, Christmas (which is my personal favorite), Halloween brings with it a little more of a bite. People get a little more creative. There's a little more dynamism in many ways. Halloween feels like it offers to us more ways to celebrate.
May God guide us to properly revere our Loved Ones who've transitioned from this world to the next. May God shine Light Eternal upon them.