All Hallows Eve

The night before All Saints day, when the saints throughout history are stirred from their rest until the Resurrection, has come upon us a custom, to walk among the dead and be aware of death itself.  Today, it is Halloween, All Hallows Eve.  Before the Saints are awakened from rest, the demons and devils, deadly and dead move about ahead of them to disturb us from the good we are about to envisage tomorrow. Before the lives of the Saints are honored, the dishonorable break the barrier between the dimensions to remind us they too existed… and exist.  They haunt us tonight, remind us of their presence with us.  The dead are with us.  We cannot hide, nor do we want to.  Tonight is the night we press the ages together, peer through the cracks in the walls between our space and theirs, give them permission to haunt, and even, in some sense sinister, we want them to haunt us.  Where do we go when we die?  What is death like?  What becomes of our bodies?  Are we zombies or ghouls?  What do they make of us?  Is it our world or theirs?  When we sleep, do they watch us?  When we turn off the lights and lock the doors, are they already with us, locked inside, hiding the shadows?  Is there someone out there, captivated by the force that caused death in the first place seeking to cast our lives among the dead?  What do we really believe about the afterlife?  What do we really believe about resurrection?  What do we make of the dark shadowy places that creep and growl at us, the things we see from the corner of our eyes that disappear when we turn to view them?  What is the talk of demons in the gospels?  Why does the satanic make our skin crawl – holiness, or the lack of it?  Are we complicit in the darkness?  Should we participate with it tonight?  Should we invite the horror and the fear?  Dare we imitate the dead, embody death, watch for the reaper?  Tonight we do… for it is Halloween… and tonight we invite what we abhor every other day of the year.  Celebrating saints is for tomorrow – they are not awakened for our honor until the sunrise.  Tonight belongs to fear, darkness, and death.  Tis All Hallows Eve.

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