• All Hallows’ Eve (Halloween) – Oct 31 (also Reformation, Cross-Quarter Day) + 
  • All Saints Day – Nov 1 +
  • All Souls Day – Nov 2

Halloween, or All Hallows’ Eve, is a relatively modern “invention” (though when you dig deeper you can find out that even that day has its roots in a 2,000-year old Celtic and Druid tradition of Samhain – halloween/history-of-trick-or- treating).

Samhain is celebrated on Oct 31 in northern hemisphere, and May 1 in the southern hemisphere.

Halloween is the modern name of an ancient Celtic and Druid holiday “Samhain”. People celebrate this day as a spiritual beginning of a new year. The various activities done in Halloween are mostly associated with the idea to obtain good fortune.

Ancient people believed that ghosts came back to earth on this day. It is said that on this day, the spirits of the dead come back to earth in search of living bodies to possess for the next year and try to return to the homes where they were living. So to appease these spirits, people offer them fruits and nuts. If the spirits are not pleased, it is feared that the spirits would kill the people or destroy their property.

Trick-or-treating is a modern rite for children on Halloween. Children in their costume go from house to house, asking for treats, with a question, “Trick or treat?” The word “trick” refers to a threat to trouble the homeowners or their property if no treat is given. People generally give candy to the children who come to their house.

ALTZAR: In other words, they still buy make-believe “INDULGENCIES” (Medieval term for buying salvation and favors). So Martin Luther’s Reformation, which also started on this day 500 years ago, is perhaps unwittingly set side even by the devout Protestants.

For more on that, see my next post… REFORMATION DAY


October 31, 1517

Five hundred years ago on this day, a simple act of spiritual rebellion by one man changed the world for the next five centuries.

Reformation Day commemorates Martin Luther’s posting of his 95 Theses which he nailed on the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany on October 31, 1517. This act triggered the Reformation, as they were immediately translated and distributed across Germany in a matter of weeks.

The Protestant Reformation was the rediscovery of the doctrine of “salvation by grace alone (Gal. 2:21), through faith alone in Christ alone.”

It was a protest against the corruption within the Roman Catholic Church. false doctrines, biblical illiteracy, and superstition. Monks, priests, bishops, and popes in Rome taught unbiblical doctrines like the selling of indulgences, the treasury of merit, purgatory, and salvation through good works.



But if we dig deeper into reformations BEFORE the (Lutheran) Reformation, we will discover that Luther was inspired by Jan Hus (1369-1415), a Bohemian (Czech) who was burned at the stake a century earlier.

Hus, in turn, was inspired by the writings of John Wycliffe (1320-1384). Who was inspired by Thomas Bradwardine (1300-1349). Who was inspired by Boethius (480-524). Etc.

So the Reformation was a chain of events over a millennium, carried out by brave and enlightened individuals of which Martin Luther is perhaps the best known.

Reformation stands for a rebellion of human spirit against the church dogma. And not just the Catholic church which Luther took on. Reformation stands for throwing off the yoke of intellectual bondage and coercion by one man of another.



From Бобан Шљивић: “There is an interesting anecdote… when they were burning Jan Hus at the stake (“Hus” means “Goose” in Czech), he yelled through the flames, “I may be a goose, but there is a swan coming after me.’ Luther was the swan.” [translated from Serbian by Bob Altzar Djurdjevic at Boban’s request].


The evening before October 31, 1517, the Elector Frederick of Saxony had a dream which was recorded by his brother, Duke John. The dream, in short, is about a monk who wrote on the church door of Wittenberg with a pen so large that it reached to Rome. The more those in authority tried to break the pen, the stronger it became.

When asked how the pen got so strong, the monk replied, “the pen belonged to an old goose of Bohemia, a hundred years old.”

The Elector was unsure exactly what the dream meant, but believed he had an interpretation which he thought may be accurate. The very morning he shared his dream (October 31, 1517), Martin Luther was posting his theses.


Martin Luther himself, who clearly would be familiar with the history of Jan Hus, referred to himself as the swan of which Hus prophesied. In fact, Luther’s fulfilling of Hus’ prophesy is even mentioned in the sermon at Luther’s funeral in 1546. After the death of Luther, the great Reformer was frequently portrayed with a swan in Lutheran art (see the c. 1591 fresco from the Brettach church in Wittenberg).

For more, see – swan/


And now, in honor of Martin Luther on this 500th anniversary of the REFORMATION DAY, here’s my recording of the SWAN LAKE finale (Tchaikovsky’s ballet) recorded in its entirety on a Clavinova on Halloween – Oct 31, 2014: [Swan Lake – finale – video]

For the full story, see…


By Camille Saint-Saens’ –

I just realized for the first time the reason a swan has been appearing to me through musical downloads at this time of the year for at least the last five years. It was to remind me of Martin Luther and his Reformation.

Except that I was not aware of it until today, Oct 31, 2017 – the 500th anniversary of his famous proclamation.

It was in November 2012 that Camille Saint-Saens’ “Swan” landed in my life after about a five-year flight. That’s when I recorded my piano version of that piece, originally written for cello and piano (or a harp) – see “The Swan,” Nov 2012 –

This a story about how that particular Swan landed in my lap for the first time in early 2008 in Scottsdale, Arizona:

Here’s now a cello, harp and orchestra rendition I recorded on October 25, 2013 on my Clavinova:


October 31 is not only a significant date in the spiritual realm. It is also an important marker in astronomy.

This is a cross-quarter day, which is probably why Samhain occurred when it did. Ancient people were keen observers of the sky.

A cross-quarter day is a day more or less midway between an equinox (when the sun sets due west) and a solstice (when the sun sets at its most northern or southern point on the horizon). Halloween – October 31 – is approximately midway point between the autumn equinox and winter solstice, for us in the Northern Hemisphere.

In other words, in traditional astronomy, there are eight major seasonal subdivisions of every year. They include the March and September equinoxes, the June and December solstices, and the intervening four cross-quarter days.

In modern times, the four cross-quarter days are often called Groundhog Day (February 2), May Day (May 1), Lammas (August 1) and Halloween (October 31).


For more, see…

Happy Halloween everyone!



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