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Rituals
Celebrations of Death













Home | Meaning | Myths | Fear | Necromancy | Common Rituals | Sacrificies | Around the World | Celebrations of Death | Burial Grounds





Mexico

In Mexico, the Days of the Dead (día de los muertos) celebration on the first and second of November marks the return of dead spirits, which some see personified in migrating butterflies. Offerings are made to the deceased, and survivors visit grave sites, sitting on them in a celebration of life. Others set up altars at homes, decorating them in flowers. Places are set at the table for dead loved ones, and special pumpkin bread and bread of the dead (pan de muerto) is cooked. The country fills with bones and skulls, ranging from candy to skeletons dressed for specific professions. Children run through the streets shouting calaveras (skulls) for candy and money all add to the holiday

 

Celts

The day before the new year was celebrated as Samhain, when God took over from the Lady to rule the earth. During this transition on November 1, the dead were allowed to come back to the earth and mingle with humans and celebrate.

 

China

In a part of the spring festival called "saluting the tomb," graves are covered in red rice and peeled eggs. Paper money is burned on behalf of the dead. During the winter, the Winter Dress Festival is also an occasion to visit ancestral graves. This time, they burn paper garments.

 

Panama City

During Carnival before Ash Wednesday, they throw a fish into the ocean in a mockery of funerals called the "Burial of the Sardine." Guess who made a painting bearing that name ?

 

Japan

People believe that all their ancestors' souls visit their houses during "obon" days, which start on August 13th and last until 16th in most areas in Japan, so they prepare simple altars for the deceased and offer meals three times a day, fruits, and flowers in front of the altars. They visit the family grave firstly to bring their ancestors' souls back to their houses, and secondly to see them off. People go home and feast all night, ending with ritual. Paper boats are put in water bodies with laterns, carrying away souls of the departed.

 

Rome

On May 9, 11, and 15, the Romans "celebrated" the Lemuria to appease any lemures that might be haunting their houses. The head of the household would awake at midnight and make the sign of mano fico (a fertility charm) and walk barefoot while spitting out nine black beans as an exchange for the occupants of the household. Otherwise, the lemures might carry away any living person they choose































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