Halloween is said to be a spooky time when the barrier between the living and the dead disappears – leaving the ghosts, and other evil spirits, to roam the earth freely.
Compared to the Western countries, a “Filipino Halloween” is not that of a big deal. There, they see it as a really big holiday where they have to go all out.
In here – due to most Filipinos’ strong Catholic background, the Halloween period, which starts on the last week of October (Halloween Day is on Oct 31), up to All Saints’ Day, and All Souls’ Day, is dedicated to remembering the dead loved ones, and visiting cemeteries or memorial parks.
Of course, not everyone celebrates the spooky time through candles, flowers or prayers, alone. Many also enjoy having a good time by attending spooky parties, dressing up as monsters, pop culture references, cartoons, etc., facilitating a Trick-or-Treat party for the family, and many more!
But if there’s one thing that we can all agree on (no matter the religion, personal preference, or social obligation), we definitely want to keep our homes free from evil spirits, so they won’t be able to disturb the peace of the house, or put the kids and elderly to a panic attack.
If you’re keen, here’s how Filipinos keep their homes ghost-proof during Halloween Season:
What better way to cleanse the house of evil spirits, than to follow the traditional method of house cleansing – “Pausok/Fumigation?” This is different from the pausok to fend off mosquitoes. This fumigation technique uses medicinal herbs or censers, where the incense is burned. An individual walks around the house, leaving no corner unnoticed, and waves the censer to keep the evil spirits away. Some people may do pausok together with a priest or an albularyo, but some also just do it on their own.
People usually do a house blessing before they live in their homes. But some people think it’s also best to perform a house blessing before the Halloween season. This is performed by inviting either a priest or a pastor, and having him sprinkle holy water in each room. The priest may also recite a short, bible passage for protection (like 2 Samuel 7:28-29).
According to DZMM’s resident psychic Stargazer, putting the radio in a central area in the house and playing the music the whole day may just ward off evil spirits. Ideally, the radio should be placed in vacant rooms, that no one usually occupies or sleeps in. This will keep them away, or at least, feel uncomfortable because of the noise, and won’t bother you.
KEEPING A BOTTLE OF HOLY WATER
Some people think that by keeping a bottle of holy water by the altar, or near their rooms, they would be untouchable to any evil spirit. This is because the holy water is said to “cleanse all that touches it,” as it is used to bless people, places, and things.
KEEPING A ST. BENEDICT MEDAL
According to Catholic or Christian belief, the Saint Benedict Medal can ward off both spiritual and physical dangers, especially those related to evil, poison, and temptation. Some people may keep a St. Benedict medal on their bedside, dangled on their necklace or bracelet, or inside their bag (which they use 24/7) at all times.
USING A BOTTLE OF LANA/OIL
Filipinos have many superstitious beliefs. It’s not just the ghosts, or the evil spirits who are roaming the earth during Halloween, it’s also the numerous monsters and mythical creatures. In the rural areas of the country, people keep a bottle of lana or oil, which contains herbs, and is placed on the altar. Like holy water, this is said to cleanse the evil spirits and protect the home.
SECURING A WEAPON
If holy water, herbs, incense, or music are not enough, some would even go as far as having a stingray tail or buntot ng pagi, as a ready-weapon in the event of an Aswang attack. By preserving a stingray tail, it assumes the form of a whip-like weapon, which you can use to hurt the mythical creature.
HIRING A PARANORMAL EXPERT
Some houses do have evil spirits. This is why preparing for a spooky time such a Halloween is of great importance to the owners, to make sure the family is protected and unharmed. Some will hire a paranormal expert to locate, communicate, and even negotiate with the ghosts, not to disturb the people living in the said house.
While some don’t really bother with these superstitious precautions, there’s nothing to lose if you just follow it. What other home ghost-proofing ways do you know?