To quote Michael Jackson slightly out of context – grisly ghouls from every tomb are closing in to seal your doom. But don’t be alarmed by all the witches and zombies crawling all over your social media timelines – it’s only India’s PDA for Halloween. Kids trick or treating, parties with adults in risqué costumes, and even corporates having scary make-up days have all become par for the course over the last couple of years. But don’t we have enough festivals of our own – why this enthusiastic embrace of something with no resonance in our own culture?
Perhaps, the answer is in us rather than in the festivals we choose to celebrate. Life has become complicated, rushed, and stressed. We yearn for warm connections and meaningful moments with others. We long for more human contact and for a feeling of belonging to a community. We do not want to be alone but to be a part of something. The version of Halloween that we have chosen to adopt has at its core the sense of “coming together as a community to do fun things”. On this day every one bends the rules and dress codes just that little bit – but all together. And it is this sense of coming together that we are probably celebrating.
So, as long as we seek that human connection in an increasingly disconnected world we will be only more attracted to occasions like these. The festival itself is just the vehicle – so get ready for Thanksgiving. With Tandoori Chicken and Cranberry Sauce perhaps!