31st October: Saint Luka or Halloween

The Serbian tradition vs influence of the globalization

Sunday 28th of October 2018

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In the era of the loudest democracy ever, there is an unprecedented low rate of freedom. A lot of things just have to be done. When you dig a little bit under fine rules and norms, it is easy to conclude that almost everything must be done. In the "sea" of must, however, you have the rights to your own liberalism. Only, the price is not very small. Partially or completely, it is already known. Not a big deal. It is disturbing that among us all, there are those who do not care. Is it really an irrelevant topic who celebrates what on 31st October?

The Serbian Orthodox Church and its believers celebrate 31st October as the day of Saint Luka (Luke the Evangelist). Protector of doctors and craftsmen. The first icon painter. The first one who painted Jesus. He personally knew the Virgin Mary. Constantinople keeps his relics, and beliefs say that his foot is kept in a Montenegrin monastery and there go those who have vision problems. People say he cures sick eyes. On the same day Saint Petar of Cetinje is also celebrated.

Saint Luka, Saint Nikola, Djurdjevdan (Saint George's Day). They are all slava (Saint Patron's Days) and all of them are marked essentially the same way. In a house, with family and closest friends. Candle, wheat, wine and slavski kolac (Feast Bread) are the essence. Everything else is fashion. On the day of slava, no-one in the family works and children do not have to go to school. In the conditions of fast life, krsna slava (Saint Patron's Day), Christmas and Easter are days in the year when the family really gets together. It is not a coincidence that all listed holidays are actually religious holidays. That is what the faith is all about. To bring together the family and dear people, to keep the tradition.

Halloween. A feast on the eve of the holiday of All Saints. Always, like Saint Luke, is celebrated on 31st October. Not all day, but only when the night comes. It represents the memory of the dead. Halloween is related to America even though it was celebrated at the time of Celts domination. The customs associated with this holiday are costumes, lightning pumpkins, watching horror films and telling horror stories. Children play the biggest role in these rituals. Costumed, with a basket in their hands they knock at the door, and after the question "Trick or treat?" and getting sweets they leave the home threshold.

There is no food preparation except for children's cakes that will start hunting for sweets with the first darkness. There is no planning whether slava food will be lenten or not. There is no worry about fitting all guests. Where will everyone sit? Who will first start political issues? Who is this year on a diet and eats a cake under-the-table. The dilemma for Halloween in Belgrade is which costume to choose and where to go to the masquerad.

It is not a sin to disguise yourself and go to a party. Do you really have to choose between two completely different holidays? Of course not. Every inhabitant of this planet should grow and develop as a person and learn about other cultures. Understanding and accepting diversity is virtue. It is essential that nobody ever forgets one's roots because it is the only way we can build something. The Serbs often close their both eyes. To put it simple: nobody can criticize you if you prefer sushi, caviar or some "world-wide taste" to sarma. Legitimate 100%. It is important that you never be ashamed of your tradition, culture and customs.

Honestly, who would give up on gibanica, pork cracklings, roast pork because of French fries, fried chicken and a portion of food in which you do not even see the ingredients? No one. And would someone forever "sell" homemade pancakes and donuts, plum dumplings or Vasina cake for tiramisu or cheesecake? The answer is already known.