Halloween is celebrated on the evening of 31st October, on All-Hallows or All-Saints eve. Children usually dress up, and take up ‘trick-or-treating.’ At this time of year, sweets and chocolates are in stock in many households to serve to the children who knock on doors on their ‘trick-or-treating’ rounds. Pumpkins are carved into Jack-o-lanterns, horror movies and attractions are visited, and pranks are in abundance, not to mention an indulgence in divination games.
Halloween is a festival that originates from the Celtic practice of Samhain in which they would wear costumes and light bonfires to ward off ghosts. It also marks the end of Summer and the harvests and beginning of winter. It is also a Christianised festival, dedicated to remembering the dead, though it is firmly rooted in paganism. Today however, it has become a commercial opportunity to boost sales, and to the masses; a chance to feast, celebrate and have ‘fun’ making forget their purpose on earth.
Where does that leave us muslims? Is it an opportunity for us to participate in the so-called ‘fun’? In fact, is it even anything near fun, or is it something that only incurs the wrath and displeasure of Allah?
Halloween, is a time of superstition, something which has no place in Islam. We firmly believe in Allah and His predestination or decree (Qadr), and this is one of the pillars of iman. Thus to celebrate Halloween is in fact a celebration of shirk, for the Prophet peace be upon him said, “whoever has turned away from doing something because of a bad omen is guilty of Ash-shirk.’ The people asked, ‘O Messenger of Allah! What expiation is there for doing that?’ He said, ‘that he should say, ‘O Allah! There is no goodness except your goodness and no omen except your omen, and there is no true god but you.’” (Ahmad) And what is shirk; except for the greatest sin in which one can indulge. Allah says, “…do not associate [anything] with Allah . Indeed, association [with him] is great injustice,” (Surah Luqman, 31:13)
Moreover to join in these festivities is to aid the disbelievers in their disbelief, and error. And Allah says, “Help one another in Al‑Birr and At‑Taqwa (virtue, righteousness and piety); but do not help one another in sin and transgression. And fear Allah. Verily, Allah is Severe in punishment” [al-Maa’idah 5:2] Plus to aid someone in a sin, will make you guilty too.
Narrated Ibn Jarir bin ‘Abdullah, from his father that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: “Whoever starts a good tradition which is followed, then for him is a reward, and the likes of their rewards of whoever follows him, there being nothing diminished from their rewards. And whoever starts a bad tradition which is followed, then for him is the sin, and the likes of the sins of whoever follows him, there being nothing diminished from their sins.” (Jami At-Tirmidhi, Saheeh)
On this point, if buying the candy, and other products sold at this time of year will support the celebration, then it is impermissible for you to do so.
Furthermore as Muslims, we are not permitted to imitate the disbelievers, for as we know the Prophet, peace be upon him said, “whoever imitates a people is one of them.” (Abu Dawud, Saheeh by Ibn Hibban) And who would like to be among the disbelievers in hereafter where their abode will be eternity in the hellfire?!
To merely wish them a ‘happy halloween’ is wrong, for the simple reason that by saying so, indicates one’s approval of the celebration. We as muslims do not approve of halloween, for it is an act of disobedience to Allah.
The organised parties, and discos honouring halloween, also have no place in Islam, not only are they acts of disobedience to Allah, but they involve free mixing between genders, and are often accompanied with music.
May Allah make it easy for us to uphold our beliefs purely, and to be satisfied with our deen as Islam, for indeed, Islam is complete, and does not need any additions or subtractions.