Click on the picture to see more photos Voodoo in Haiti At kilometers from Port-au-Prince, the Haitian capital, a cascade of water flows.
Day of the Dead Day of the Dead or Dia de los Muertos is a series of commemorative days dedicated to those who have died. It is celebrated generally between Halloween, Oct.
Day of the Dead is actually divided into two distinct holidays, the first being Dide los Inocentes, which is dedicated to children on Nov. Both days taken together are collectively referred to as the Day of the Dead, and celebrations can begin as early as Halloween Oct.
In recent years, the tradition has spread into North America, particularly into communities with large Mexican and Latin American populations. The holiday blends with celebrations across several nations and cultures and draws upon traditions found in other cultures, however the holiday is largely a Mexican development.
Families often come together over this period and preparations can be made during the entire year leading up to the Day of the Dead. This is a solemn occasion, with few actual festivities.
Instead, people visit and repair graves of their dearly departed. It is common to light candles, leave offerings of prepared foods, often a favorite meal, and to pray and play music. Private altars are built as focal points for small, private religious observances. Small parties, or wakes, can be held in conjunction with the holidays.
Celebrations can sometimes take a humorous tone, particularly if the deceased relative was known to enjoy humor. Poems can be read and public morality plays are sometimes performed. Parents of deceased children commonly leave offerings of toys on the Day of the Innocents.
Small offerings of alcohol are sometimes left for adults. It is easy to see why these celebrations can be heartbreaking, even to outsiders. The skull is a common symbol of the holiday and it is common for women to paint all or one-half of their face with a skull.
The half-skull painted on the face, particularly of a youthful woman, represents the brief transition between life and death. The holiday itself has multiple traditional origins, chiefly Catholic. Catholics believe that the deceased do not always enter directly into heaven or hell upon their death, but instead may enter into purgatory, a sort of holding space, where they are cleansed of their sins before they can enter heaven.
People who die in a state of mortal sin go directly to hell, by virtue of their choice, while those who die without sin may go directly to heaven.
Purgatory is for those who have died in a state of sin, but not mortal sin. These people must wait in purgatory until they are cleansed of their sins by the prayers of the faithful on Earth.
Day of the Dead is an occasion to offer those prayers. This is largely redundant with the Catholic holy day of All Souls. Day of the Dead is an occasion to pray for these departed people in purgatory. Many Mexicans also trace their celebrations back to ancient Mesoamerican cultures.
The Aztec, in particular, would celebrate their dead for the entire month of August. Families may carry on celebrations throughout the year, long after Day of the Dead has ended. It is common for families to maintain small, private altars at home and they may create makeshift shrines dedicated to their dearly departed.
Pictures, candles and flowers commonly adorn these shrines. Even public schools participate with altars being prepared at schools and the children decorating them with mementoes of the dearly departed and decorations.
Small alters can even be found in government offices across Mexico.Day of the Dead or Dia de los Muertos is a series of commemorative days dedicated to those who have died.
It is celebrated generally between Halloween, Oct. 31 through Nov. 2, and coincides with the Catholic holy days of All Saints (Nov. 1) and All Souls (Nov. 2). Born to die – vodou ritual and the importance of Gede At the heart vodou practitioners believe, “People are born to die” ().
The vision of death is ever present in their life and it is what gives them energy. e-misférica Caribbean Rasanblaj; All Issues; Masthead; he said, no, he does not use the skull for its vodou valences. “People die here every day, they die on the street, I have seen people die on the street.
Scholars of Afro-Atlantic religions have remarked upon the uncanny presence of the experience of enslavement in vodou. At the heart vodou practitioners believe, “People are born to die” ().
The vision of death is ever present in their life and it is what gives them energy. Houngas and Mambos of the Diaspora: The Role of Vodou Ritual Specialists in Group Reintegration, Identity Creation and the Production of Health among Haitians in Little Haiti Author S.
Merone. Although worship a single god, Bondy, are also very powerful other beings, such as ' praise '- Legba, Kalfu, Erzulie, Papa Gede or familiar spirits and the forces of the universe, and the ' dead '.