Wednesday, November 2, 2011

All Souls Day

November 2, 2011
All Souls Day:  Facts and Misconceptions

• All Souls Day is commonly misinterpreted as the Mexican version of Halloween. In fact it is not. Mexicans have celebrated the Day of the Dead since 1800 B.C.

• The celebrations do not include images of ghosts, dead people, witches or the devil. Therefore it is not scary or morbid.

• This ritual has nothing to do with cults. It is a Catholic Christian ritual intermingled with folk culture. Going to mass is an essential aspect of this celebration.

• This celebration is not about honoring Death, but revering and fondly remembering the deceased relatives. It is an opportunity to cast a reflecting glance on the lives of our ancestors, our heritage, and ponder upon the meaning and purpose behind our existence.

• Ofrendas or altars are not for the purpose of worshipping but for offering our love and remembering our departed family members.

• It is not a sad, scary or morbid ritual. It's a day of happiness because the loved ones are being remembered with fondness. Although when in the graveyard, people tend to assume an introspective attitude. It is about Love not Fear.

• It may appear a weird ritual to those alien to the culture, but in fact it is quite similar to visiting a grave and leaving flowers or stuffed animals, and lighting a candle to remember those who have left for their heavenly abode.

• It is not a careless or daring confrontation of death. It is rather a reflective moment to muse upon one's life and the cycle of life and death.

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