Halloween is approaching and children in towns throughout America ? large and small ? are beginning to prepare their costumes.? Traditionally, it?s been a celebration for children with parents escorting them to parties and throughout neighborhoods saying ?trick or treat? and collecting candies from the houses they visit.

In New York City there is a huge parade each year in Greenwich Village where 1.5 million people line the streets to celebrate the gaiety of the holiday.? Parade participants dressed in creatively wild and wonderful costumes stroll up 6th Avenue, including: musicians, people walking on stilts, groups of a dozen puppeteers dressed in similar costumes holding poles that guide the head, arms, body and leg movements of some tremendous 30-foot paper mache creature 20 feet off the ground!

It?s a joyous and fantastic opportunity to enjoy unique costuming and celebration.? In recent years the annual New York City event has inspired major Halloween parades in other cities.

It occurs to me that Halloween is an opportunity for adults to honor the child within themselves.? It?s a chance to put on a costume and pretend to be someone else.??? Without the encumbrance and reserve of upholding a set personal identity, we feel liberated to act out whatever role we want to play.? If we think no one knows who we are, we feel confident to ask strangers for sweets and goodies? free to dance and play in the streets? able to laugh for no reason other than celebrating the enjoyment of life itself!

As a child, I always selected costumes that were a reflection of my nature: princess, fairy godmother, etc.? It now occurs to me that Halloween gives us the opportunity to bring forth aspects within our nature that we normally suppress.

For example, if you are normally gentle, you could wear a fierce costume- thereby acting out and expressing a part of yourself that normally you deny.? If you have a persona of strength and invulnerability, you could wear a ?puppy? costume and act out a role of trust, playfulness and loving devotion.? By accessing a different part of ourselves in the process of play acting, we become freer and more rounded in everyday life.

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