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Eagle's View

Día de los Muertos


  Día de los Muertos originated in Mexico but is now widely celebrated in all of Latin America. Celebrators wear colorful outfits and decorated calaveras and calacas.

   “Day of the Dead has been around for a long time, probably back to the Aztec times. The origin of the holiday is a mix of local beliefs and a catholic holiday called “All Saints Day” it is a time when it’s believed that the veils between this life and the next life (a place for souls to stay, think Coco/book of life) thin and some people believe that the souls can cross over.” Señora Lynn Liberty North High School Spanish teacher said.

  The people who celebrate this colorful holiday throw parties and have parades. A favorite during this holiday is to dress as calacas during the festivities. The women wear bright colorful dresses and large headpieces and the men wear colorful designed suits or a nice guayabera shirt.

    “Days before the first they go to the cemetery to clean off their loved ones’ graves, they decorate them with candles and flowers, and things that the person liked while they were alive. They also build alters in their homes, those are also decorated with flowers and candles along with pictures of their lost loved ones.” Señora Lynn said.

   People who participate in the festivity set candles and foods, along with the Marigold flower, on graves and headstones. They also have Ofrendas (Altar de Muertos) inside the house which don pictures and paintings of the deceased family members along with plentiful foods, beads, marigolds, calaveras, calacas, and other offerings, some may be personalized things. They believe that white candles help guide the souls back to their families and marigolds resemble death, their purpose is to guide lost souls back to the living world. And the burning of copal incense is to help strengthen the dead and living souls. 

   “Day of the Dead or Día de los Muertos in Spanish is celebrated from November first to the second.” Señora Lynn said.

   Even though the two holidays are very close in date and in theme they are very different. Día de los Muertos or Day of the Dead, is not a Mexican version of Halloween. Halloween is celebrated on the last day of October, the holiday celebrates terror and mischief, whereas Día de los Muertos celebrates love and honors the respect of deceased loved ones on the first and second days of November. 

   “I don’t celebrate Día de los Muertos because it’s against my religion but as a Spanish teacher I teach it to my students every year.” Señora Lynn said.

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