DAY OF THE DEAD
What is the Day of the Dead?
The Day of the Dead tradition emerged during the Colonial era due to the religious syncretism in the New Spain Viceroyalty. It has roots in the pre-Hispanic times where the cult to dead was part of the daily life.
On November 1st is the All Saints’ festivity according to Catholic tradition and when we remember those who had passed away being children, or without becoming saints. Also, for the Catholic religion, the All Souls’ Day takes place on November 2nd, when people pray for everyone who has not to enter paradise yet.
This Mexican tradition includes a visit to the cemeteries where the remains rest and setting altars with food, candles, incense, photographs, and flowers to remember them. Only during these days every year, the souls of our beloved ones can come back to Earth to be close to their relatives.
What can we find on an altar during the Day of the Dead?
An altar should have several objects, some of them almost mandatory in each one, and personal things from the people who have gone. Among the required elements in every altar, there are candles, salt, incense, sugar candy skulls, Pan de Muerto (Dead Bread), decorated paper, and marigold flowers. Also, it is common to cook the meals they liked while living, liquor or cigarettes, or even a toy or sweet if there was a child.
What is the goal of the Festival?
The Festival of Life and Death Traditions aims its efforts to keep the ancestral Mexican traditions of the Day of the Dead, plus showing to the world the culture of our country. Through costumes and different contemporary artistic expressions, Xcaret contributes to preserving this proud tradition.