What is Dia de Muertos in Mexico?
The Day of the Dead, or “Dia de Muertos” in Spanish, is an event of great importance in Mexico. This festival takes place annually on November 1 and 2. While most Western cultures view death as a tragic event, Mexicans view death as a natural and necessary biological phenomenon. This festival, which takes place at the beginning of November as the end of the annual corn cycle takes place, is an analogy of the end of the life cycle. The Day of the Dead is an occasion for Mexicans to reunite with family and to celebrate the lives of their deceased loved ones.
Altars for the dead are installed in homes and cemeteries to commemorate deceased individuals. Photographs and personal items of the deceased are placed there as well as his favorite foods and drinks. To complete the decoration, individuals display the altars of lighted candles, cempasuchil flowers, or Indian roses, incense, sugar skulls and Pan de Muerto or “death’s bread”. The Day of the Dead is a festive event where members of the community come together to eat, dance and honor their dead.