Halloween…you either absolutely love it or absolutely hate it. 

It’s a time when in the old religion (nature), it is the start of the new year…a time to dress up as you would like others to see you; a time to celebrate the old and anticipate the new; a time to dance in the moonlight and feel the barriers between this world and the next loosen and intermingle and almost become one.  

To Christians it is All Saints Day, a time to venerate the saints and remember all of our kin who have gone on ahead.  

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In my mother’s era, the kids would fill socks with flour and fling them at people who wouldn’t participate by giving them a treat. My mother remembered Halloween as an evening when so called “bad boys” roamed the streets and threw flour all over everyone. She didn’t like Halloween at all.

In my youth, the girls dressed as fairies or hags, the boys as cowboys and pirates, cops and fireman, and knocked at every door collecting Halloween loot. Sometimes we had parties where we bobbed for apples and ate lots of spun sugar and candy corn. We weren’t frightened in those days of sick human beings poisoning our treats or hurting us when we rang their bells. What happened?

Why have some of us become so jaded that we harm even our children?

When I lived in Patterson, we’d light up our front porches, put out bowls filled with candies and pennies and a sign saying “Help Yourself…But Leave Some For Others.” Putting kids on their honor worked and no one took more than a few handfuls. Every so often I’d step out and touch whoever was there with my magic wand in keeping with the enchantment of the season.  

Magic wands were part of my persona. I gave them to people I felt needed a boost. When Jason had a triple bypass at Yale, his surgeon was head of the minimal surgery department. I knew he was the best in his field, but I still decided to give him a magic wand, just in case. When he came to tell me that everything went smoothly, he opened his white coat to reveal my wand…”I never tempt fate,” he said. What a terrific human being!! His skill and my wand gave me 10 more years with my wonderful husband.

Some people fear anything that smacks of “magic.” Why? Can’t they see what we call “magic” is just believing that something we think impossible and want desperately can happen and sometimes does?!

Think about it. One hundred years ago, heart transplants, antibiotics, even flu shots would all be thought of as magic. Think what Leonardo could have done with a computer…magic!! As we learn more and more, magic takes a backseat to science, but we’ll always need to accept the impossible.

So have fun this Halloween. Believe in magic and the impossible because at some future date it will no longer be impossible and will be called, not magic, but a new stride in human understanding.  

Contact Adrienne at ergosum1@comcast.net