Día de Muertos: A look at Mexico’s Day of the Dead festival

Mexico City: Catholics around the world celebrate the Day of the Dead around November 2 in connection with the holy days of All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day.

Dia de los Muertos, a holiday that originated in Mexico in which the dead are joyously celebrated, their spirits awakened to share in the activities they enjoyed in life. All Souls' Day is a day to remember the souls of people who have died and rituals include the offering of mass for the dead, visiting family graves and commemorating lost loved ones.

 Día de Muertos: A look at Mexico’s Day of the Dead festival

People with their faces painted to look like the popular Mexican figure called "Catrina" take part in the annual Catrina Fest in Mexico City November 1, 2015. REUTERS

In Mexico, the Day of the Dead is an event when people hold candlelight vigils and leave food out for deceased relatives. Believing the dead would be insulted by mourning or sadness, Día de Muertos celebrates the lives of the deceased with food, drink and parties.

People with their faces painted to look like the popular Mexican figure called "Catrina" take part in the annual Catrina Fest in Mexico City November 1, 2015. According to participants, about 310 women gathered at the Catrina Fest, where women dressed to look like "Catrina", a character also known as "The Elegant Death", created by Guadalupe Posada in the early 1900s. Mexicans celebrate the annual Day of the Dead on November 1 and 2. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso - RTX1UB67

According to participants, about 310 women gathered at the Catrina Fest, where women dressed to look like "Catrina", a character also known as "The Elegant Death", created by Guadalupe Posada in the early 1900s. Mexicans celebrate the annual Day of the Dead on November 1 and 2. REUTERS

The deceased are often honoured with sugar skulls, marigolds and their favourite foods. Celebrations often take the form of street parties and parades, characterised by vibrant colours and festivities.

A man with his face painted to look like the popular Mexican figure called "Catrin ", paints a boy's face as they take part in the annual Catrina Fest in Mexico City November 1, 2015. According to participants, about 310 women gathered at the Catrina Fest, where women dressed to look like "Catrina", a character also known as "The Elegant Death", created by Guadalupe Posada in the early 1900s. Mexicans celebrate the annual Day of the Dead on November 1 and 2. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso - RTX1UB6C

A man with his face painted to look like the popular Mexican figure called "Catrin ", paints a boy's face as they take part in the annual Catrina Fest in Mexico City. REUTERS

Lively celebrations include masks, painted faces and brightly coloured decorations. Sugar skulls remind us of the fact no matter what we are in life, in death we’re all the same. It’s part of a belief that birth and death are a continuum and assumes the dead would rather be celebrated for what they loved in life.

People take pictures of a traditional Mexican altar created to commemorate the Day of the Dead at the Museum of Immigrants in Sao Paulo, Brazil, November 1, 2015. REUTERS/Paulo Whitaker - RTX1UAF5

People take pictures of a traditional Mexican altar created to commemorate the Day of the Dead at the Museum of Immigrants in Sao Paulo, Brazil, November 1, 2015. REUTERS/Paulo Whitaker - RTX1UAF5

A combination photograph shows revelers dressed in "Dia de Muertos" or "Day of the Dead" themes as they pose for photos while taking part in the Greenwich Village Halloween Parade in the Manhattan borough of New York October 31, 2015. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri - RTX1U71D

A combination photograph shows revelers dressed in "Dia de Muertos" or "Day of the Dead" themes as they pose for photos while taking part in the Greenwich Village Halloween Parade in the Manhattan borough of New York October 31, 2015. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri - RTX1U71D

It’s mainly associated with Mexico, but is celebrated throughout Latin America where families come together to welcome their loved ones with their favourite food, drinks, candles, flowers and incense.

People sit next to the graves of their relatives on the Day of the Dead, at a cemetery in Santa Maria Atzompa, on the outskirts of Oaxaca, November 1, 2015. Mexicans mark the Day of the Dead by paying homage to their dead relatives, through the decoration of their graves, and the preparation of meals. REUTERS/Jorge Luis Plata - RTX1U9H1

People sit next to the graves of their relatives on the Day of the Dead, at a cemetery in Santa Maria Atzompa, on the outskirts of Oaxaca, November 1, 2015. Mexicans mark the Day of the Dead by paying homage to their dead relatives, through the decoration of their graves, and the preparation of meals. REUTERS/Jorge Luis Plata - RTX1U9H1


(with inputs from agencies)

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Updated Date: Nov 02, 2015 14:10:57 IST