( This is a continuation from Part 1)
The Tale of Jack O’ Lantern
For centuries, people have been making Jack O’ Lantern during Halloween. Actually, there’s a story behind it. This story was brought by very old Irish tale about a man known as ‘Stingy Jack’. Now Jack was a blacksmith and he was known among the local as someone who loves to drink and playing tricks upon others, even his family.
Now one night, Jack finally faced with bad luck when he unluckily met the Devil in the local pub. Jack who is someone that is not easily shaken, bravely invited the Devil to have a drink with him. Now when both of them were finished, being a stingy man he was, Jack refuse to pay for the drink. Instead, he ask the the Devil to turn himself into sixpence which Jack could use to pay for their drinks in exchange for Jack’s soul.
Once the Devil did so, Jack decided to keep the money by putting it in his pocket next to a silver cross, thus preventing the Devil from changing back to its real form. Jack agree to free the Devil with one condition that the Devil would not bother Jack for ten years and when Jack should die, the Devil will not claim his soul.
Now ten years had passed since their last encounter when one night, Jack met the Devil again. Feeling angry, the Devil was so anxious to claim the soul that he wait for so long but again, Jack trick the Devil. Jack persuade the Devil to climb an apple tree to pick up the fruit for his one last meal. Once the Devil had reached the top, Jack quickly carved the cross sign on the tree’s bark, making it impossible for the Devil to come down.
Again, thinking that he was smart enough for tricking the Devil, Jack made him promise to never again ask for his soul. Knowing that he don’t have any other choice, the Devil agree to Jack’s condition.
Shortly after his encounter with the Devil, Jack passed away. His spirit rose up to the gates of heaven but was stopped by St. Peter. St. Peter refused to let him in as he had led such a miserable life on Earth.
Jack’s spirit started to go down to the gates of hell but again he was restricted from entering. The Devil did kept his promise by refusing to take Jack’s soul. Jack began to feel scared as he had nowhere to go and just keep wandering in the dark between heaven and hell. The Devil send Jack off into the dark night with only burning flame taken from hell to light his way. Jack put the flame inside a carved turnip and had been roaming the Earth ever since that day.
Nowadays, pumpkin were used to replace the turnip and was carved with scary faces. Then it was put on the windows or near doors to scare Jack Lantern and any other spirits.
Now why don’t you check your windows or doors to see whether you already placed your jack o’ lantern or the real JACK might come to light up the darkness…
Sources: The Fairytale Traveler