If Halloween Was Celebrated the Indian Way

close-up of pumpkin near wall

On 31st October, every year, people all over the world embrace the spook and celebrate Halloween. Halloween is celebrated as many names such as Allhalloween, All Hallows' Eve, or All Saints' Eve. It is the time in the Christian year dedicated to remembering the dead. It is the eve of the feast of All Hallows’ Day, and it begins the three-day observance of Allhallowtide, which is the time to remember all saints, hallows, and souls.

Celebration and Origin

Halloween is an exciting festival that is fun for all age groups. It involves traditions and activities like trick-or-treating, carving pumpkins, hosting Halloween costume parties, sitting around a bonfire, sharing horror stories, visiting haunted houses, watching horror movies, and playing scary pranks on each other.

Trick-or-treating is a tradition where children dress up in costumes and go door to door saying Trick-or-treat, which implies that if a treat (generally chocolates and candies) is not given, they’ll play a trick on that house or house owner. These customs have been said to be originated from the Celtic nations, having pagan roots that were later Christianized by the church.

If Halloween was celebrated in India

Indians have a spiritual take on the root of this festival. They pay homage to their ancestors through pujas and spiritual activities in festivities like Pitru Paksha, Mahalaya Amavasya, and Karkidaka Vavu day. This makes you wonder how Halloween would be like if it was celebrated in all its grandeur in India.

Halloween comes right after several festivals- Navratri, Diwali, Durga Pujo. Your entire family has been busy preparing for a long time. Cleaning every nook and corner of the house and organizing all the household items has been one of the top priorities. Imagine the look on the mothers’ faces when the kids ask them to put up cobwebs and other scary decorations on the house when they’ve just finished cleaning it.

Let’s not forget that Halloween involves scary and dark items. After the Festival of Lights, Halloween will not involve a lot of prepping in India, because of course, we have plenty of scary and dark streets at our disposal all round the year. Finding a gorgeous, orange pumpkin will be one of the most difficult jobs. Moreover, how can we let those pumpkins go to waste by carving them into Jack O’ Lanterns? We’ll have to be ready to eat ‘Kaddu ki sabzi’ for the next eternity.

Children and adults who want to dress up will probably opt for the Indian ‘Jugaad’. We possibly can’t spend a crazy amount of money on costumes that you will wear only once in the entire year when most of us think twice before buying regular clothing items. Costumes will be weird. Also, convincing your parents to let you wear that costume of your dreams might turn into a nightmare when they say those three dreadful words- Log kya kahenge. If you manage to go out sporting the costume of a famous figure and unfortunately do something ridiculous, beware- Log Zarur Kahenge

Children going door to door for trick-or-treating will be quite interesting. Given that the population of one housing society crosses thousands, kids will be pretty rich in candies even if they are exhausted by the number of apartments they visit. Some instances, of trick-or-treating, would be quite funny though.

Imagine a kid dressed up as a zombie, in torn clothes and fake blood asking for treats. I’m sure he/she would get one “This is just a fancy way for asking donations” or, worse, they’ll be handed leftover sweets and snacks from Diwali like soan papdi and faral. Indian households would just see it as a way to get rid of stuff or items they don’t want. It would range anywhere from a snack they don’t like to broken toys and old clothes.

Halloween? It’ll be the perfect time for a bunch of pujas and what better time than Halloween to do several Nazar Na Lage. After all, there are creepy ghosts everywhere. Politicians’ residences all decorated for Halloween will be hilarious. I wonder what they would distribute. Chocolates or Nimbu and Mirchi?

Halloween parties are inherently themed to be spooky. Watching Indian horror movies, though, would cause rounds of laughter with the distasteful background music and the weird relation between horror and sensuality that every Indian horror film seems to have.

Creepy stories will be quite realistic with the natural additional effects of smoke everywhere because let’s not forget Halloween is right after Diwali. Moreover, people living in places like Delhi would not even have to worry about being spooky. Your masks and scarves would act as the necessary spooky elements. (Delhi Pollution)

Halloween is quite a fun way to remember our ancestors. Even though there may be some technicalities, India is accepting of all traditions and rituals. Halloween would be just as fun in India as it is anywhere else.

- Written by Sunidhi Shende

- Edited by Maitreyi Mehndiratta

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If Halloween Was Celebrated the Indian Way If Halloween Was Celebrated the Indian Way Reviewed by EMN on November 08, 2019 Rating: 5

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