Yesterday, we looked at the blog-o-sphere’s opinions on whether or not Christians should celebrate Halloween.
As with most things, there were mixed opinions. Some find the popular secular holiday harmless and enjoyable while others maintain that Halloween is a day grounded in evil that should be avoided by faithful Christians.
How do Muslims approach Halloween? Is theirs a similar trend to Christians?
One Islamic blogger wrote that celebrating Halloween goes against the ideals of Iman (faith) and tauheed (existence of Allah). He used a quote from the Prophet Muhammad to warn Muslims to refrain from imitating society in this regard.
“Whoever imitates a nation is one of them.”
The blogger considers Halloween to be an evil celebration because of its pagan origins and history and writes that “even if one decides to go along with the outward practices of Halloween without acknowledging the deeper significance or historical background of this custom, he or she is still guilty of indulging in this pagan festival.”
Hesham Hassaballa, a former contributor for belief.net, wrote a post in 2002 denouncing Muslims who choose to celebrate or allow their children to celebrate Halloween.
He stressed that Islam accepts cultural traditions as long as they do not conflict with Islamic values. For example, Muslims celebrate Mother’s and Father’s Day because their traditional values highly emphasize honoring one’s parents.
However, because Halloween is loosely based on honoring Celtic and Roman gods, he argued that the holiday conflicts with monotheistic Islam.
In 2011, Hassaballa, who is now a contributor for the blog Patheos, wrote another article, admitting that he had changed his stance on whether or not Muslims should acknowledge Halloween and let their children go trick-or-treating.
He explains that he is still a devout Muslim and dedicated to the principles of Islam. However, he began to allow his children to trick-or-treat and started passing out candy to kids in the community when he realized that not answering his door was not very neighborly and that “it is very important to be neighborly if I am to be godly.”
Hassaballa also wrote that while Halloween had once been a religious holiday, it is now simply a cultural tradition.