All Hallow Seven

Today some reflections on All Hallows Even AKA Halloween AKA Reformation Day along with poetry by Siouxsie and the Banshees.

I also present to you my brand-new global graphics® line of festive “Mark-of-the-Beast”  skulls for the season. (They may be purchased as a set or separately for 30 shekels each).

October 31st is a night to celebrate – to celebrate Absolute Truth. It is a night to clearly grasp the sinister magnitude of the predicament fallen humanity is in. We are a species terrorized by  death every day – not only on the last night of October. Yet, since we are conditioned to fear and repress the reality of mortality in our sick culture, it gathers subliminal intensity only to surface in a collective psychosis and hypoglycemic spending orgy every Halloween. Consumer marketing strategies enhance and augment, in a  soulless way, this national delirium. Our vulgar seasonal spectacle is now made in China.

I have noted, in my few years of this earthly pilgrimage, a distressing degeneration of Halloween from what it was in my childhood. I recall less commercial pressure to consume – whether nutritionally worthless [pre-diabetic even] sugary treats  or morbid costumes and plastic props with murderous connotations. Halloween was less of an unrepentant death-trip then, it was less graphically gruesome.  I remember my mother helping me turn my childish costume fantasies into reality:  I was a robot, I was a bat, I was the Mummy ( I wear my memories like a shroud…) trailing Egyptian linen many autumn moons past. There was more child-friendly fantasy when I was growing up. The culture had not yet begun to harden into a crassly consumerist rigor mortis yet – or maybe I didn’t notice that part of it so much. Am I  just idealizing a vanished past? Possibly, yes… but the push to turn Halloween into a cannibalistic slasher-film is a real phenomenon and also a discernible symptom.

Strange that it is most pronounced in the decadent industrialized Western Democracies where the majority live quite comfortably.  Poorer nations that live in closer proximity to death seem to glamorize it far less,  it seems to me.

I for one am disgusted with the spectacle of Halloween in the USA. But I hold a grudging respect for what looks like a passing victory for death and the grave every year on the last gasp of October. How do I personally war against the dumbing- down/bloodying-up of Halloween here in the Land of the supposedly Free? Like all other grouchy sensible old men, I rail to my family about how it used to be. I give out treats that won’t worsen the pre-diabetic tendencies of the nation’s children. I compliment all the Princesses, Animals, Witches, Robots, Fairies, Superheros and Star Wars defenders on their costumes. I ignore the obnoxious older kids who look like Freddy Kruger or worse.  I sometimes slip a gospel tract into the child’s bag. (Yeah, that was me – go ahead, get mad…)

Which brings me to Reformation Day:

In honor of my three patron saints, St. Martin Luther, St. John Calvin and  St. John Knox (all recently canonized by His Holiness Pope Ratzinger), I want to proclaim the ongoing triumph of the Reformation. October 31, “Reformation Day“, is a national day of celebration in Germany, Slovenia, Chile, and Scandinavia – and it should be here in the US of A as well.  It is a day to thank God for the liberation of His Word from hieratic pomp and empty ritual.  It is a night to clothe yourself in liberty and consider the fall of nations along with the fall of the leaves.  It is a night to see the light of unstoppable Truth glowing in the eyes of every Jack-O-Lantern you behold. It is a night to comprehend the shining of Christ’s victory in the face of the marshaled powers of the grave. The wages of sin is death (the bitter) but the gift of God is eternal life (the sweet).

Halloween by Siouxsie and the Banshees:

The night is still, and the frost it bites my face
I wear my silence like a mask and murmur like a ghost

“Trick or Treat – Trick or Treat”
The bitter and the sweet

The carefree days are distant now
I wear my memories like a shroud
I try to speak but words collapse, echoing, echoing….

“Trick or Treat – Trick or Treat”
The bitter and the sweet

I wander though your sadness
Gazing at you with scorpion eyes
Halloween……Halloween

A sweet reminder in the ice-blue nursery
Of a childish murder – of hidden luster, and she cries:

“Trick or Treat – Trick or Treat”
The bitter and the sweet

I wander through your sadness
Gazing at you with scorpion eyes
Halloween, Halloween

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