Halloween: A New Celebration for Norway

There are very few countries which does not celebrate Halloween (or All Hallows Eve). But did you know that Norwegians were one of the most resistive western nations against it. Celebration in Norway is a fairly new practice.

If there are not a lot of children knocking at your door and asking for candies in their “frightening costumes” in your neighborhood, you even do not realize that it is Halloween. But in the downtown, you start to feel this day, which has been celebrated since 2000s. As in many other countries, Halloween is a financial sector in Norway and thus it is getting more and more popular year by year despite the disapproval of more conservative Norwegians.

Costume Parties in the town

A recent trend in this day is the costume parties with best costume competitions night clubs organize. Private Halloween parties are also a common trend among some middle-aged Norwegians.

Fun for Kids

Children are the most important figures of the celebrations. Both kindergardens and schools organize parties for kids. Youngsters fly the streets in scary costumes for several days.

The History of Halloween

This day is the eve of All Hallows Day (or All Saints Day). Prior to having significance in Christianity, Oct. 31 was the day for recognizing the coming of winter in the northern hemisphere. It was believed that all the evil spirits, goblins and imps ran away to the depths of the earth at midnight on Oct. 31 to escape the cold. Much mischief was played on people for the few hours leading up to midnight to make up for the forthcoming months of the evil spirits, goblins and imps being in hiding.

Halloween is called Samhain by Wiccans and is regarded as “Summer’s End.” For Wiccans, this day marks the death of the sun god.

Today in the History

Today is the birth anniversary of Chiang Kai-shek (1887-1975). This Chinese soldier and statesman led the nationalist Chinese forces in their struggle against the communist army led by Mao Tse-tung. Kai-shek lost the war and had to flee to Taiwan. Today is observed as a national holiday in Taiwan as he became the first constitutional president of the Republic of China.

Today is the anniversary of the death of Harry Houdini. Also observed as Magic Day, this day commemorates the magician, illusionist and escape artist Houdini (1874-1926). The fact that he passed away on Halloween makes Magic Day even more interesting and magicians come together on this day to honor their guru.

On this day in 1984 Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi was assassinated by Sikh security guards. Gandhi was prime minister of India for three consecutive terms from 1966 to 1977. She began serving her fourth term, which started in 1980, but was assassinated before serving it fully. Gandhi was India’s first and only female prime minister to date.

Prior to having significance in Christianity, Oct. 31 was the day for recognizing the coming of winter in the northern hemisphere.

Gregorian Calendar: 31 October 2009 C.E.

Hijri Calendar: 13 Dhul-Qadah 1430 A.H.

Hebrew Calendar: 13 Cheshvan 5770

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