History – The Version we Like.

31 Oct

Happy Halloween.

This post was a seed planted in my brain, while driving across the bridge to get to work today.

History – I have found that if you dig deep enough in history, whatever traditions you thought you held onto had a different meaning, whether good or bad. Let’s take Thanksgiving – that’s a very good Christian holiday. Obviously, we take opportunity to thank God for His blessings. Also, it was when the Puritans extended their hand of friendship to the Native Americans. If you dig deep enough though, you’ll find that Thanksgiving had roots from very pagan events. You see, History is funny like that. Even before the Pilgrims, before the settlers, before the native americans, many people used to celebrate that same event to thank mother earth, or some other deity for the plentiful harvest. But we never think about that part of it. We choose the part of history we like, and we roll with it.

Now, something more relative: Halloween. Obviously, from our very innocent minds, we were taught that Halloween is evil – that witches who practice black magic were burnt at the steak. We were taught that spirits and demons danced around on this very day. We were taught that Halloween is something a Christian should participate in – even to the extent of carving a pumpkin, or dressing your child up as a super hero, or giving away candy to cute ballerinas and ghosts. BUT, if you dig deep enough, you’ll find that Halloween’s history didn’t have anything to do with evil things.  Actually, if you take world history, many other celebrations and events happen on this day. BUT, we pick and choose the version of History that we know, and we can use to wield our traditions. Valentine’s Day, Christmas, Easter – if you dig deep enough, you’ll find a version of these traditions that are so far off from what we thought they were.

So, what do we do? Is it right to pick and choose? Can we judge according to History? I think not. But I’m afraid people are too steeped in their version of History, there’s no possibility of changing their mind. I hope to have a world view – to judge these traditions for what they really are, and not value them above their worth.

Happy Halloween Christians.

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