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  1. 1. Halloween: Celebration or Abomination? A Christian and Islamic Perspective Radio 10/23/2013 Every year, on the evening of October 31st, millions of children across North America paint their faces, dress up in costumes, and go door-to-door collecting treats. The adults often decorate their houses with ghostly figures, carve scary faces on pumpkins, and put candles in them to create “Jack-O-Lanterns.” Unfortunately, among the millions of North Americans indulging in this custom, many are also Muslims. In This show will shed some light on the significance and origins of Halloween, and why Muslims and Christians alike should not participate in it. Origins of the Halloween Festival The ancient Celtic (Irish/Scottish/Welsh) festival called Samhain is considered by most historians and scholars to be the predecessor of what is now Halloween. Samhain was the New Year’s day of the pagan Celts. It was also the Day of the Dead, a time when it was believed that the souls of those who had died during the year were allowed access into the “land of the dead”. Many traditional beliefs and customs associated with Samhain continue to be practiced today on the 31st of October. The most notable of these customs are the practice of leaving offerings of food and drink (now candy) to masked and costumed revelers, and the lighting of bonfires. Elements of this festival were incorporated into the Christian festival of All Hallow’s Eve, or Hallow-Even, the night preceding All Saint’s (Hallows’) Day. It is the glossing of the name Hallow- Evening that has given us the name of Halloween. Until recent times in some parts of Europe, it was believed that on this night the dead walked amongst them, and that witches and warlocks flew in their midst. In preparation for this, bonfires were built to ward off these malevolent spirits. By the 19th century, witches’ pranks were replaced by children’s tricks. The spirits of Samhain, once believed to be wild and powerful, were now recognized as being evil. Devout Christians began rejecting this festival. They had discovered that the so-called gods, goddesses, and other spiritual beings of the pagan religions, were diabolical deceptions. The spiritual forces that people experienced during this festival were indeed real, but they were manifestations of the devil who misled people toward the worship of
  2. 2. false idols. Thus, they rejected the customs associated with Halloween, including all representations of ghosts, vampires, and human skeletons – symbols of the dead – and of the devil and other malevolent and evil creatures. It must also be noted that, to this day, many Satan-worshippers consider the evening of October 31st to be their most sacred. Many devout Christians continue to distance themselves from this pagan festival. The Jack-O-Lantern apparently comes from Irish folklore about a man named Jack who tricked the devil into climbing a tree. Once the devil was in the tree, Jack carved a cross on the trunk, preventing the devil from coming down. The devil then made a deal with Jack not to allow Jack into hell after Jack died if only Jack would remove the cross from the tree. After Jack died, he couldn't go to hell, and he couldn't go to heaven. He was forced to wander around the earth with a single candle to light his way. The candle was placed in a turnip to keep it burning longer. When the Irish came to America in the 1800's, they adopted the pumpkin instead of the turnip. Along with these traditions, they brought the idea that the black cat was considered by some to be reincarnated spirits who had prophetic abilities. So, it appears that the origins of Halloween are a mixture of old Celtic pagan rituals superstition and early Catholic traditions. The Christian prospective: When you take a close look at the symbols that make up Halloween, it is impossible to deny their evil nature since they primarily consist of witches, monsters, ogres, vampires, ghosts, ghouls, goblins and demons. In fact, Halloween is widely recognized as the ultimate day of celebration for Satanists. Those who oppose Christianity have been known to organize on this day to observe satanic rituals, cast spells, come against churches and families, perform sacrilegious acts and even offer blood sacrifices to Satan. In light of these facts, I would imagine as Muslim, which makes me someone that observes from the outside, that logically Christians should not celebrate this. The Bible encourages Christians to avoid participating in pagan activities and incorporating religious pagan practices in worship (see Leviticus 18:24-30 and Deuteronomy 18:9). In Ephesians Paul warn followers of Christ to “Take no part in the worthless deeds of evil and darkness; instead, rebuke and expose them” (Ephesians 5:11). Warnings about this came in many places in the bible. Exodus 22:18: You shall not let a witch live. Deut. 18:10-12: Let no one be found among you who sacrifices his son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, 11 or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. 12 Anyone who does these things is detestable to the LORD…"
  3. 3. Some parents don’t see a problem with allowing their children to celebrate Halloween. These parents celebrated it themselves when they were young and believe Halloween is both completely harmless and fun, but most of them don’t know that Halloween is deeply rooted in evil, so when they participate in Halloween, they can often send a subtle message to others that there’s no need to seriously consider the spirit realm. Even the types of costumes in which they dress the children can have a deep effect on them since a lot of them are a representation of evil, especially that this participation in such a night can send a message to children that witchcraft, demonic practices, Satanism and the occult are all harmless are entertaining and fun. Other proof from the Bible and other sources: Anton Szandor Lavey, a famous Satanist and the Author of the book "Satanic bible", said " After one’s birthday, the two major Satanic nights are " Walpurgisnacht (or Walpurgis Night) and Halloween. So Halloween is considered by the Satanists as one of the their top holidays, and Christians are commanded not to be part of such a thing. 3rd John 1:11: Beloved, follow not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that doeth good is of God: but he that doeth evil hath not seen God. 2nd Corinthians 6:14: Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? And what communion hath light with darkness? And Halloween is filled with darkness, symbols of death, devils, witches and ghosts. In the bible is says clearly that the believers should be separate from the wicked. 2nd Corinthians 6:17: Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing: and I will receive you. Christians are warned in the bible not to play around with evil things and abominations. Deuteronomy 18:9-14: 9 When you enter the land the Lord your God is giving you, do not learn to imitate the detestable ways of the nations there. 10 Let no one be found among you who sacrifices their son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, 11 12 or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord; because of these same detestable practices the Lord your God will drive out those nations before you. 13 You must be blameless before the Lord your God.
  4. 4. 14 The nations you will dispossess listen to those who practice sorcery or divination. But as for you, the Lord your God has not permitted you to do so. Some Christians have created a substitute for Halloween, so that they can keep the fun part and do away with the evil part of it, they call it the harvest festival, but is that permissible in Christianity let us find out, because this suggest that the fun part of Halloween is something that kids can not do without. The bible says otherwise. 1st John 2:15: Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man loves the world, the love of the father is not in him. Having a substitute for Halloween on the same night, even if you change the name, you are still keeping the satanic ritual and the satanic sacred night alive, you are not transforming it. 1st Thessalonians 5:22: Abstain from all appearance of Evil. Conclusion: Based on the proofs that we saw, the bible warns the Christians from celebrating such a night, a night of Satanism, a night of evil a night of wickedness, furthermore Christians are commanded not to try to Christianize pagan days or pagan holidays, on the contrary, they are supposed to cast them away as it says in: Romans 13:12: The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let therefore cast off the work of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. And by the way, have we ever wondered about the expression that all kids use on the night of Halloween, "Trick or treat "? Celtic Druids that started this tradition, they taught the Celts to dress up in weird ghoulish outfits and to put out little fruits and vegetables on the porches of their homes, so that the wicked spirits and ghouls would not harm their home or their livestock. It was a treat so that the spirits would not do mischief - a trick, if you will. So every time a child says " trick or treat " he is part taking and repeating an age old pagan festival of death, because these vegetable offerings (or treats) were not enough anymore, pretty soon they turned into a animal sacrifice and soon after if became human sacrifice. We hope that was enough information to make any person with enough intellect, one that has any faith in the one true God, to not participate in this “festival”.
  5. 5. The Islamic Perspective Iman (faith) is the foundation of Islamic society, and tauheed (the belief in the existence and Oneness of Allah) is the essence of this faith and the very core of Islam. The safeguarding of this iman, and of this pure tauheed, is the primary objective of all Islamic teachings and legislation. In order to keep the Muslim society purified of all traces of shirk (associating partners with Allah) and remnants of error, a effort must be made to bring awareness to the Muslims to stay away from all customs and practices which originate from societies’ that are ignorant of divine guidance, and in the errors of paganism and idol worshiping. Our beloved Prophet Muhammad (s.a.s.) issued a stern warning: “Whoever imitates a nation is one of them!” (Abu Da’oud). Muslims should heed this warning and refrain from copying or imitating the others in their celebrations especially one of pagan origins. Islam has strongly forbidden Muslims to follow the religious or social customs of the non-Muslims, and especially of the idol-worshippers or those who worship the devil. Prophet Mohammed (s.a.s.) said: “By Him in Whose hands is my life, you are ordered to enjoin good and forbid evil, or else Allah will certainly afflict you with torments. Thereafter, even your du’a (supplications) will not be accepted.” (Tirmidhi). From an Islamic standpoint, Halloween is one of the worst celebrations because of its origins and history. It is haram (forbidden), even if there may be some seemingly good or harmless elements in those practices, as evidenced by a statement from the Prophet (s.a.s.) “Every innovation (in our religion) is misguidance, even if the people regard it as something good” (ad-Daarimee.). Although it may be argued that the celebration of Halloween today has nothing to do with devil-worship, it is still forbidden for Muslims to participate in it. If Muslims begin to take part in such customs, it is a sure sign of weak iman and that we have either forgotten, or outright rejected the mission of our Prophet (s.a.s.) who came to cleanse us from jahiliyyah customs, superstitions and false practices. Islam seeks to cleanse the Muslim of all immoral conducts and habits, and thus paving the way for the Qur’an and Sunnah to be the correct and pure source for original Islamic thought and behavior. A Muslim should be a model for others in faith; he should practice his religion in worship as well as in behavior and moral character, and not a blind imitator dependent on other nations and cultures. Even if one decides to go along with the outward practices of Halloween without
  6. 6. acknowledging the deeper significance or historical background of this custom, he or she is still guilty of indulging in this pagan festival. Undoubtedly, even after hearing the Truth, some Muslims will still participate in Halloween, send their kids “trick-ortreating,” and they will try to justify it by saying they are doing it merely to make their children happy. But what is the duty of Muslim parents? Is it to follow the wishes of their children without question, or to mold them within the correct Islamic framework as outlined in the Qur’an and
 Sunnah? Is it not the responsibility of Muslim parents to impart correct Islamic training and instruction to their children? How can this duty be performed if, instead of instructing the children in Islam, parents allow and encourage their children to be taught other ways? Allah exposes these types of people in the Qur’an: Allah said “That is because the ones that disbelieve follow falsehood while those who believer follow the truth from their Lord, Thus Allah sets forth their parables for mankind.” (47:3). Muslim parents must teach their children to refrain from practicing falsehood, and not to imitate the non-Muslims in their customs and festivals. If the children are taught to be proud of their Islamic heritage, they themselves will, insha Allah, abstain from Halloween and other
 non-Muslim celebrations, such as birthdays, anniversaries, Valentines Day, etc. The Prophet Muhammad (s.a.s.) said: You will certainly follow the footsteps of the ones that came before you hand span by hand span, and cubit by cubit (inch by inch) so much so that if they were to enter the whole of a lizard, you would follow them. (Bukhari). Islam is a pure religion with no need to accommodate any custom, practice or celebration that is not a part of it. Islam does not distinguish between “secular and sacred;” This way of life must be clear and apparent in every aspect of our daily lives and daily endeavors. Prophet Mohammed SL3WS said “You must keep to my Sunnah and the sunnah of the rightly-guided
 Caliphs; cling to it firmly. Beware of newly invented matters, for every
 new matter is an innovation, and every innovation is a misguidance.”
 (Bukhari) “Whoever imitates a nation is one of them.” (Abu Da’oud) What to do on Halloween: We have established, beyond doubt that the celebration of Halloween is absolutely forbidden in Islam. It is haram. The question arises as to what to do on this night. Muslim parents must not send their kids out “trick-or-treating” on Halloween night. Our children must be told why we do not celebrate Halloween. Most children are very receptive when taught with sincerity, and especially when shown in practice the joy of their own Islamic celebrations and traditions.
  7. 7. In this regard, teach them about the two Islamic festivals of Eid. (Eid-ul-Fitr and Eid Al Adhaa these are the only two festivals that the Muslim can celebrate. 
 It must also be mentioned that, even Muslims who stay home and give out treats to those who come to their door are still participating in this festival. In order to avoid this, leave the front lights off and don’t open the door. Educate your neighbors about our Islamic teachings. Inform them in advance as kindly and as gently as possible that Muslims do not participate in Halloween, and explain the reasons why. (Give them a copy of this flyer if needed.)
 They will respect your wishes, and you will gain respect in the process. Prophet Mohammed (saws) said, “A person who calls another to guidance will be rewarded, as will the one who accepts the message.” (Tirmidhi) Finally, we must remember that we are fully accountable to Allah for all our actions and deeds. If, after knowing the Truth, we do not cease our un-Islamic practices, we risk the wrath of Allah as He himself warned us in the Qur’an: Allah said “Then let them beware who refuse the Messenger’s order lest some trial befall them, or a grievous punishment be afflicted upon them!” Annoor (24:63). This is a serious matter and not to be taken lightly. And Allah knows best. May Allah guide us, help us to stay on the right path, and save us from all deviations and innovations that will lead us into the hellfire.