Ready For THIS Mexican Holiday?

Ready For THIS Mexican Holiday?

Denise Najera, Sports Recorder

Dia de los Muertos. Also know as, Day of the Dead. Ever heard of it? Chances are you have. Just to make it clear, Day of the Dead is not a “Mexican” version of Halloween. People may dress up like Halloween, but trust me-it has a whole different meaning. The 29th Annual All Souls Procession Weekend in Tucson is November 2-4, 2018.

Dia de los Muertos is a popular Mexican holiday that is celebrated world wide and is meant to celebrate and honor the loved ones who have passed. In Mexico, the celebration lasts for three days. It starts on October 31 and goes through November 2.  Day of the Dead has been around for 2,500–3,000 years. On Day of the Dead a giant Catholic feast is held. Gifts of food, clothing, etc. are offered on the graves of the

passed. They believe that the gates of heaven are opened at midnight on October 31, and the spirits of all deceased children (angelitos) are allowed to reunite with their families for 24 hours. On November 2, the spirits of the adults come down to enjoy the festivities or goods that are prepared for them.

Now this is the ‘modern’ day celebration. Dia de los Muertos has been passed on for so long that it has had many alters, changes, and additions to it.

While there has been many changes, the belief in the after life is something that has never changed. Back then, tombs were constructed beneath the home of families. That way their deceased loved ones would still be close to the living family. The Aztecs actually had a month long celebration. Just like today, offerings were left and festivals were made. Only theirs would last all throughout the month of August.

Then there was the Catholic influence. The Spaniards arrived in the sixteenth century, they introduced the Catholic faith to the indigenous people of Mesoamerica and did their best to stamp out the native religion.

They were only kinda successful, and so their beliefs had created new traditions. The festival related to death and celebrating the ancestors was moved to coincide with the Catholic holidays of All Saints Day (November 1st) and All Souls Day (November 2nd), and although it is considered a Catholic holiday, it retains various elements that are carried over from the pre-Hispanic celebrations.

So if you celebrate this holiday the Aztec way, Spaniard way, modern day, or anyway else, go and celebrate the loved ones that have passes, and I hope you have an amazing Dia de Los Muertos!