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Halloween Thoughts

by Louisa Chisholm-Kelly



All around the world there are groups of people that pay their respects to their ancestors in and around October.


Every group do something slightly different. Some think back one or two generations, others think back as far as they can. Some lay out food and invite their ancestors into their home, others go to visit them at their places of rest.

Some groups of people believe that Halloween is a scary time, that evil spirits walk the earth and that they can harm you.


I believe that something happens at this time of year that somehow brings our world closer to the spirit realm. I don't know if the veil actually thins, or how it all works, I just know that it happens, and that in my life it happens whether I want it to or not!


My close family are all Pagan. On one side, going back a good few generations, they are Spiritualist. A strong belief in spirits and respect of the ancestors is a major part of our lives. I come from a long line of very successful psychic mediums. It is literally in my blood. Communing with the departed is as normal to my family as watching Saturday night TV, or getting together for Sunday dinner.


As far back as I can remember my family have stayed at home on Halloween night. They would go to parties the night before or the night after, but never on the actual night itself. The second it started to get dark we would sit together, light some candles and wait. Every single time we would get a visit, sometimes multiple visits. Family, friends, pets and even distant ancestors, all coming together to check in and remind us of their love for us.


One year I took a risk, I went out. I was young and my social life came first. I know, I know, you probably already know how this is going to go. Well, into the evening I got a phone call. It was my mum telling me I needed to go home. Within seconds of answering the phone a family member appeared in front of me and told me to go home. I learned that day that it didn't matter where I was, they would find me and scold me, so being at home meant I didn't get told off!


Now that I live with my husband, 300 miles away from my family, we do Halloween by phone. We eat early, something special usually, light the candles and set ourselves up in our respective homes, all cosy and ready. When we get a visit, we call each other and pass the messages between us. A thoroughly modern way to keep us all together. I like to have a sweet treat ready for when it's all gone quiet later on. Halloween cakes and sweets are a firm favourite.


Growing up in my family gave me a very different understanding of death. I always knew that it wasn't the end, I've had the proof time and time again. Messages and conversations from loved ones have meant that I have a limited understanding of how it all works for them. They all see each other regularly, they all keep an eye on us, helping if they can, and they all seem happy. Knowing what I know means I'm very accepting of our mortality, death is inevitable, what comes before it is for us to enjoy as we see fit. The life we choose for ourselves is is entirely our own and we can, and should, make our own choices.


Halloween, for me, is my favourite time of year. It's the time I get to see my favourite people for a few moments. This year, like every year, I'll be at home with the candles lit waiting to see who will pop in to say hello.


What do you have planned for Halloween?


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