Come to the Cafe' student lounge and see the altar in observance of El Dia de los Muertos.
The Sierra College Spanish and Puente clubs have reserved the use of the cafeteria Student Lounge area from October 28th - November 8 for the placement of an altar in observance of El Dia de los Muertos.
El Dia De Los Muertos is one of Mexico's traditional holidays reuniting and honoring beloved ancestors, family and friends. This ancient and enduring custom is when the living commune with the dead – a mystical time when the veil is lifted between the two realms that they may share a time together.
Historical research dates this celebration back to the pre-Hispanic Meso-American indigenous people, especially the Nahua (Aztecs, Mayans, Toltecas, Tlaxcaltec, Chichimec, Tecpanec) and others native to Mexico for more than 3,000 years. Indigenous people believed that souls did not die, that they continued living in Mictlán (Place of Death) a special place for them to finally rest. This custom was so deeply rooted, that it survived the conquest by Spain in 1521, endured three hundred years of colonization, and continues to be practiced to this day.
On El Dia De Los Muertos, tradition holds that the dead return to earth to visit their living relatives. It is believed that, although they cannot be seen, their presence can surely be felt. This time is an important feast and evocation. It is a time when family members share memorable stories that evoke the lives of their ancestors. Offerings and altars are created to welcome and commemorate the dead. A profusion of candles dispels the darkness just as the souls are being illuminated from the shadows of death. Altars are created with photos, mementos, fruit, bread, and other favorite things of the ancestors being welcomed and honored. Altar offerings may include; Cempazuchitl (Marigold flowers) known as the “flowers of the dead” the scent of the flower welcomes the dead home after their long journey. Candles dispel the darkness just as the souls are being illuminated from the shadows of death. Personal Items of the deceased such as pictures, eye glasses, books, a favorite object or instrument may also be placed upon the altar to make the spirits feel welcomed. Calacas are popular skeleton figurines that help to decorate altars. Sugar Skulls are one of the most popular symbols of El Día de los Muertos. Pan de Muerto sweet bread is baked especially for the holiday. El Dia De Los Muertos is a time of celebration and remembrance. It is also a time to come to terms with our mortality and become aware of the cycle of life and death. Rather than deny and fear death, this event teaches us to accept and contemplate the meaning of mortality.