Halloween; hallow evening, is the evening when the hallowing (initiation) of the children starts! In the Pagan world, the children were not seen as real human beings until they had gone through this ritual. They were not even given a proper name before that! In order to become a real (hu-) man each child had to go trough this scary, dangerous and difficult ritual. They had to overcome their fear of the dark, or the bear, of the dead and of the unknown – and they had to fend for themselves for a long time too.
The ritual started with their descent into the underworld, into the realm of the dead; usually a cave, or a hollow tree or (later) a burial mound. There they would find the remains of the dead person whom they wanted to take the name from; the dead person whom they wanted to become themselves.
They chose themselves whom they were to become, and naturally only the honourable were chosen for rebirth. The more honourable, the more posthumous fame a person had, the more likely he was to be chosen. Later men brought with them their riches into their graves too, not just their names, to make sure they would enjoy these in the next life too (or perhaps to increase their chances to be chosen for rebirth…). And yes; the children went into the graves, and found these valuables, and brought them out into the world of the living. They gave them to the sorcerer, and thus showed him whom they wanted to be reborn as.
This was only the beginning of the initiation though, so the sorcerer kept the valuables, for safe keeping, all the way until the Yule evening – when TîwaR (Týr), the honourable, is (re-) born!
Between Halloween and the Yule eve the children went through many trials, that I will not discuss here, and then on the Yule eve the successful ones returned to their families – in the night, guided by the sorcerer. Thus the ‘elves’, i. e. the spirits of the honourable dead, visited on the Yule night. Naturally, the children were often very hungry, after living alone for so long, so their parents placed food to them in the living room on the Yule eve: a big bowl of porridge, perhaps? Later, after the Christianization, this was too Pagan for those in power, and the Pagans (i. e. the people…) had to move this feeding of the returning dead, of the small ‘goblins’ (as these children were called by the Christians), to the barn. Finally, the children were reborn, as the individuals they had chosen from the grave. The sorcerer then gave them the valuables they had collected from the graves; because the children were now reborn as the dead persons in the grave, and these items were theirs. So they just got back what they had brought with them to the grave from the last life.
Not all the children made it though, they were not ‘good’ enough, and thus perished before the Yule night came, and the ‘bad’ children were instead just given ashes from the grave. They remained children, and had to try to gain a name for themselves again the next Halloween. The sorcerer then returned the items of the dead that had not yet been reborn to the grave; or rather he just left the items in the grave opening.
The children who made it were given a name, a real name, and thus they travelled from farm to farm, to greet their family members and neighbours, and to introduce themselves with their new names. Thus we call this custom for ‘julebukk’ (Yule-bow); they bowed politely when they introduced themselves, after they had been (re-) born on the Yule eve.
More about this can be found in my book Sorcery and Religion in Ancient Scandinavia, and actually much more in MYFAROG, but my main purpose to bring this topic up now is that we are getting nearer the Yule eve, and as we know; every single year we hear the nonsense of the Christians and the Atheists and others too, about the Yule celebration, about why we have a ‘Santa Claus’ about why ‘good’ children receive gifts, about goblins eating porridge in the barn and you-name-it. Their ignorance is extreme, their will to spread lies even more extreme, and I think it is worthwhile to write a little bit about this here, to show you what this tradition really is all about.
My wife will with time explain even more about this on her YouTube channel, and will go in even more detail than I do in MYFAROG, and will go even further back in time than I have done in any of my writings. So I advice you to subscribe to her channel, and wait for more.
We can fight the enemies of our culture and traditions with all sorts of means, but I think the best means is to simply show people the obvious truth, and thus banish their darkness with light.