There are two basic aspects to these celebrations; the time honored traditions based in religious reverence to promote the wellbeing of the tribe the other is a celebration as a reason to come together and have a party. Just as in Abrahamic religions, traditions and sects among Pagan religions can be widely varied. Many of what people think of today as ancient Pagan religions and traditions are, in fact, fairly recent inventions. There is the rub. To some people “ancient” includes medieval traditions while to others they include some even later traditions (including the 17th Century birth of Wicca) that are considered “ancient.” It is difficult to draw a line in the timeline sand regarding these traditions as early elements are part of or influence these later traditions. I feel that the earlier the tradition, the closer to the earth-based reverence and connection to the energies behind that which sustains us. I base my own ritual celebrations on those of my 4th Century ancestor’s. Due to changes in today’s cultural acceptance of ritual practices I substitute some more modern traditions (substituting corn husk dolls in a wicker man for human sacrifice for example). I also tailor my ritual garb as that worn by my 4th Century ancestor as one thing I can do to honor the ancient. Thus, the dichotomy of ancient verses modern may be seen. One of the practices that transcends both early ancient and more modern practices is the use of masks. The use of masks goes way back to the very earliest traditions (as depicted in the European cave paintings such as “The Sorcerer”). Today masks may be found in use across most cultures and in many traditions for varied reasons. From the Krampus of Europe to the Kachinas of the western US to the Mud Men of New Guinea masks still frequently appear in spiritual rituals.