I have blogged about Swedish Halloween several times before. (You could probably click on October or November any year in my sidebar archive and find related posts.) When looking for a new angle, I came across the English word Allhallowtide, which is closer to the Swedish word (Allhelgona), and also to our tradions.
I learn that Allhallowtide was first used in 1471, and is derived from two words: the Old English word halig, meaning saint, and the word tide, meaning time or season. (These OE words are also closely related to Swedish words with the same meaning.) It stands for the Western Christian observance of All Hallows' Eve (Hallowe'en), All Saints' Day (All Hallows'), and All Souls' Day, Oct 31 – Nov 2: “A time to remember the dead, including martyrs, saints, and all faithful departed Christians."
This year more than ever, honouring the dead seems a far better idea than dressing up in scary costumes to go trick-or-treat-ing… (Cf. my post from last week.)
We are still having beautiful autumn weather, and I took the opportunity today of going for a walk to my town’s largest (and newest) cemetery and visit my maternal grand-parents’ grave there, and also one other grave on mum’s side of the family.
This cemetery is like a huge natural park with a hilly landscape, lots of huge old trees, a stream with wooden bridges over it, a little lake, and a waterfall adding the sound of running water.
(Odd sculpture that I always find slightly disturbing…)
This magnificent bush I found on my way back home, so not really on “holy ground”… Nonetheless it reminded me of Moses and the burning bush! (Exodus chapter 3)