Banished from both heaven and hell, the man’s eternal soul roamed the earth, guiding his way with a lantern carved from a turnip and lit with a piece of burning coal, courtesy of the Devil. Subscribe & Win 1 of 5 $100 Amazon Gift Cards…, 5 Things to Teach Kids About Halloween History, 10 Key Characteristics You Need to Teach Your Child, Make Homemade Music with These 6 DIY Instruments, How Halloween Is Celebrated around the World, Originated in Mexico and celebrated throughout Latin America, Originated with the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain. In most parts of Mexico, the Day of the Dead is used to honor children and infant family members that died. Día de los Muertos and Halloween might seem like two sides of the same coin, but after research and reflection, these holidays have considerable differences. Symbols of Halloween include pumpkins and various tropes of horror literature, including vampires, ghosts and mummies. Rather than displaying grim or gory decorations, Day of the Dead celebrations involve paying respects to loved ones.

So I will happily take my 8-year-old daughter through our neighborhood to ask for candy on Halloween. Contrary to what is widely believed, Día de los Muertos is not the Mexican version of Halloween. K12 is a registered trademark of K12 Inc. Graves are often decorated with orange Mexican marigolds. Among adults, a little over 10% will dress as a witch. It became less of a religious celebration and more about community, taking on the well-known symbols of a black cat, a jack-o-lantern, and a witch’s hat.

This is said to be tied to the Halloween tradition of bobbing for apples. The holiday is strongly associated with the beliefs of the early people of what is now Mexico. Copyright © 2020 K12 Inc. All rights reserved. To celebrate, honor, and remember deceased loved ones. Every year about 70,000 acres of pumpkins are harvested and about $7 million is spent on pumpkin spice products during Halloween.

Yup. Halloween is believed to have pagan roots, and is linked to the Celtic festival Samhain, when the “door” to the Otherworld was believed to be opened so that the souls of the dead could enter this world. Families tend graves and leave offerings, plant flowers and trees, wear the clothes of their deceased relatives, and build altars in their homes to honor their loved ones. Both events are centered on traditions rooted in acknowledging the deceased.

Part of it is that I’ve grown more disturbed by the evolution—or perhaps devolution—of Halloween decorations into what are sometimes quite offensive portrayals of horror.

The Latin American celebration Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is celebrated during the same time frame as Halloween. The celebration of Samhain became part of Roman festivals of Feralia, held in late October to mourn the dead, and a festival celebrating Pomona (aka the goddess of fruit and trees). The practice of celebrating the dead goes back thousands of years in Latin American cultures. Perhaps the most popular part of the holiday is people turning themselves into skeletons using elaborate makeup and masks. Día de los Muertos is a celebration to remember, respect, celebrate, and honor those who have passed on in death. Adults are honored on November 2nd. Black cats have long been associated with witches, and there is a belief that dates to the Middle Ages when people believed that witches could shapeshift into the form of a cat when they needed to hide. But I will also honor the memory of my mother in the coming days.

Did you know about the differences between Halloween and Día de los Muertos? As the Roman Empire conquered Celtic lands, the spread of Christianity began to take over and combined with some of the traditional Celtic celebrations. The Difference Between Dia de los Muertos and Halloween Why You Might Want to Reconsider Dressing Up as a Día de los Muertos Skeleton This Halloween.


Any other major differences that we missed? Diffen LLC, n.d. While they may be related, they are not interchangeable—although, both do involve costumes and festivities and have their roots in ancient customs and practices. Halloween, All Hallows Eve, All Souls Day ... there are many names for the celebration that falls on October 31 every year. Day of the Dead can be traced back to indigenous cultures in Mexico dating back 2,500 to 3,000 years, who had rituals celebrating the deaths of ancestors.

The ancient Celtic festival of Samhain was celebrated to observe the end of summer, to celebrate the harvest of crops, and to usher in the cold dark winter season. It is on November 1. It replaced the very old traditions of leaving bowls of food outside for the visiting spirits. That means that when you paint your dumb face to look like a sugar skull you’re not “honoring” my culture, you’re appropriating it and disrespecting it. The Day of the Dead celebrates and remembers friends and family members who have died. Learning the history and stories of both Halloween and Día de los Muertos helps with our overall understanding and respect for other cultures. Costumes are traditionally supernatural or frightening, but over time, they have changes to be costumes on any theme. Although mostly different, a few characteristics of both holidays make them similar -- helping to explain why confusion between the two exist. Give us all the details in the comments, and whatever you celebrate, we hope it’s the best year yet! It has its roots in pagan celebrations for the end of the harvest season, various festivals of the dead, and the Celtic Samhain festival. Participants dress up as skeletons and paint their faces to look like colorful skulls. Mourning the dead was not honor, it was disrespect in those cultures, rather they believed the dead were still among the community—they were part of life, alive in spirit and in memory. First thing’s first: Dia de Los Muertos is not the Mexican version of Halloween. Both celebrations involve costumes, skeletons, and treats as well as graveyards and death imagery. With origins tracing back to the traditional celebration of Samhain in the Celtic religion, Halloween began as a festival to keep ghosts at bay and has grown and evolved into the celebration of parties and costumes that we all love today. The atmosphere is rather that of a picnic or celebration than mourning. At the time of the 9th century, the church’s celebration of All Souls Day was held on November 2 and had encompassed the older celebrations of the dead. Only Christmas has more retail success than Halloween, to put a bit of perspective on the amount that we spend on this one night of ghoulish fun. Literal meaning is the night before All Hallows' Day (aka All Saints' Day), Visit cemetery, leave food offerings shaped like skulls at the altar along with candles, incense and a picture of the dead person, Carve Jack o' Lanterns out of pumpkins, decorate the house with a ghoulish theme, parties, go trick or treating door to door wearing costumes, Pan de muertos (bread of the dead - skull-shaped bread), candied pumpkins, any favorite food of the celebrated late friend/family member, Pumpkin pie, cookies shaped like pumpkins, ghosts or skulls, candy, cakes made like a graveyard, Paganism, Christianity (All Hallows Eve); now modernized and embraced universally as a fun festival. CNN reported that 175 million Americans planned to celebrate Halloween in 2018, spending about $9 billion on the festivities. 3.8 million of them are expected to dress as a princess, 2.2 million as Batman and 1.9 million as a Star Wars character. Web. Will you celebrate anyone?

Toys are brought for dead children, and bottles of tequila, mescal or pulque are brought for adults. (Learn more about the haunted history of Halloween here!). Diffen.com. It is believed that when family members leave offerings of food, lit candles, and pictures of their departed loved ones on an alter, an ofredna, in their homes or in graveyards, it will welcome their souls back to the land of the living.
The festival originally occurred in the ninth month of the Azteccalendar and lasted for the entire month. People celebrating wear skull masks, called calacas. The holiday began in ancient times, with the pre-Hispanic indigenous peoples, the tribes of the Aztec, the Nuhau, and the Toltec people. The dead move on to a place known as the Land of the Dead, Chicunamictlán. The skeletal appearance highlighted with flowers, bright colors and artwork is a striking image that has now become an icon of the Day of the Dead. The Day of the Dead holiday (in Spanish referred to as Dia de los Muertos), originated in Mexico and celebrates the dead, rather than being afraid of the dead.

Today's celebrations are a combination of these early traditions and other Catholic and Christian celebrations that followed, such as the earlier-mentioned All Souls Day, as well as practices from Europe and the people of Spain.

Remember and celebrate friends and family who are dead, An appreciation of the afterlife and the survival after death. Additionally, people would dress up and go house to house asking for food, which eventually became the modern practice of asking for candy. Music, feasting, dancing, and more activities make this holiday a celebration of life. Very colorful and ornate sugar skulls are seen on masks and as edible treats, as well as on decorations and face paint.


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