Children and adults dress up as skeletons, and commemorate the lives of the deceased with joyous celebrations each year.
In the Day of the Dead celebrations that occur in the latter half of October and into November in Mexico The living honor and remember their dearly who have passed away, but with joy and not with sorrow.
There is a belief that on it’s Day of the Dead -or Dia de Muertos — they are able to connect with loved ones who have passed away.
There is no way to determine when the first ceremony was held but it’s rooted in beliefs about agriculture that date back to Mexico’s pre-Hispanic period, according to Andres Medina, who is a researcher with the Anthropological Research Institute of the National Autonomous University of Mexico.
“In the mythology of the gods this corn gets dug up once it’s planted and lives to an underground existence for a while before it can reappearing as a plant,” Medina said. Corn is regarded as something like a seed, which is similar to a bone. It is considered to be the source of life.
Skeletons are a central part of the modern day for Day of the Dead celebrations and symbolize a return of bones to the world of living. As seeds are planted in dirt, those who are dead go away for a time, only to reappearing each year, like the harvest of the previous year.
Altars are a central part of the celebration as well. Families put photos of their ancestors ‘ graves on their altars at home and include decorations made from paper and candles.
The manner in which Mexicans commemorate this Day of the Dead continues to change.
“Nowadays there is a resemblance to American Halloween in the celebration,” Medina said. “These elements are given a new meaning within the context of the original purpose of the celebration that is to honor the deceased. To celebrate life.”
Since 2016, Mexico’s government launched an annual parade that is a hit held in Mexico City that concludes in an open square with altars constructed by skilled artisans from across the nation.
Paola Valencia, who hails native to Oaxaca, Mexican state Oaxaca she said that the people of her home town, Santa Cruz Xoxocotlan, devote a lot of their time to construct large altars every year. They’re a source satisfaction for the entire community.
“Sometimes I’m tempted to cry. Our altars reveal our identity. We are very traditional , and we are awed by the thought we know that the dead (the deceased) will be present with us at least once per year,” she said.