It was not until I entered high school that I became aware of the existence of Halloween. Halloween was one of the Pagan holidays and as a Pagan ritual it was not acknowledged in my community. With the discovery of Halloween came the awareness that even the mention of the holiday would summon evil spirits. It was the most evil day of the year and a time when humanity invited the devil into their homes and his demons to openly walk the streets. In that understanding I became terrified of Halloween and could never find it in me the ability to celebrate such a dark and horrifying holiday.
I spent my childhood being terrorized by stories of the devil and his demons. My religion taught me that the devil had been given dominion over earth and his demons walked the earth in spirit form. That it was their intent to lead me into temptation and drag me into the depths of hell and join them in their misery. Evil spirits lived under my bed, in dark closets and in the forest surrounding my home. The only time I was safe was in the presence of a man who held the priesthood or in a room that had been recently cleansed and consecrated. Dreams about the devil tormented me in my sleep and I lived with a constant sense that I was being followed. The belief that evil was ever present kept me in a constant state of fear and terror. The religion that was created to supposedly bring light into my life kept my mind and soul in hell.
As I grew to become an adult I let go of the irrational belief that the devil was out to get me. I came to understand that the devil was a creation of religion intended to keep me in submission to my religion and its teachings. But I still was unable to find the ability to celebrate Halloween with joy. I dressed up and played the part but underlying the parties and the role-playing was a deep seeded belief that it was wrong. The dreams about the devil still haunted me on occasion and I still did not fully understand the difference between good and evil.
It was not until recently that it all became crystal clear and I finally healed the trauma to my soul that my religion had caused. As I came to listen to my own internal truth about who I am and what God and the devil are for me I found a pure peace in Spirit that my religion could have never provided me. For me the devil and his demons do not exist, at least not in the form my religion attempted to control me with. They are nothing more than the voices in my head that attempt to thwart me from my life purpose and keep me from understanding my true divine worth and potential. They are nothing more than my own imagination.
Halloween has now become a regular celebration in my home. Each year I dress up with my kids and wander the neighborhood with family and friends as we enjoy the freedom of being out after dark and the camaraderie of fantasy. Halloween has become one of my most favorite holidays and one that I celebrate with joy and exuberance, not just for the fun with my family, but for me it is but a celebration of overcoming the fears that once held my soul captive.