The Magic of the Cities.

Zen promotes the rediscovery of the obvious, which is so often lost in its familiarity and simplicity. It sees the miraculous in the common and magic in our everyday surroundings. When we are not rushed, and our minds are unclouded by conceptualizations, a veil will sometimes drop, introducing the viewer to a world unseen since childhood. ~ John Greer

Showing posts with label The Day of the Dead. Show all posts
Showing posts with label The Day of the Dead. Show all posts

Sunday, November 2, 2014


The Day of the Dead Offerings

“I am so accustomed to being alive
I didn’t realize I had turned into a vulture”.
Jorge Reyes
 (Mexican Composer)

The sound of the rain, the smell of wet earth, the heat of fire, the color of the sky glowing in the afternoon and the taste of hot coffee: all sensory experiences that we keep with us and that accompany us as we go through our life on earth.
 But it isn't always like that.  Some day, sooner or later, we cross the threshold that divides life and death, and then our perception of the world, as we know it changes.  And red after red is perhaps a more surprising color any other shade that has ever been seen or imagined; the sharpest sounds that have ever been heard and we discover the hidden beauty of the odors that are hidden from our earthly noses...Or perhaps, we won't even need our senses -- sight, hearing, smell, taste, and touch -- for the new sensory experiences that our soul never used while life flowed by day to day.
 What experiences manifest themselves in that moment?  What new textures do we learn?  What new senses do we discover?  Until now, no one has been able to answer these questions that are as unsettling as they are old.
 But there is a moment where simple belief is confused with faith, a magical moment in which whatever's out there and our world reconcile, and crying and pain suffered in the wake of irremediable loss of a loved one is transformed.  And body and spirit are reunited, the world of the alive and the kingdom of the dead, color, magic, tradition, mysticism untie to form one of the most celebrated parties in Mexico:  the Day of the Dead.
 The Day of the Dead offering is a living hope to spend just one more day with our loved ones from far away, from a remote place that allows them to return to earth, to the land of tastes, smells, colors, sounds and textures...where they must relearn about senses and experiences that are no longer useful to them.  They come back to share our elements, those which surely they also had at one time, and it is our only way to ensure communion in the festivity.
Oscar Guzmán

Dulceria de Celaya
If you want to get a taste of upper-class Mexico in the age of the Porfiriato, go to this elegant store. If you're lucky enough to be in Mexico City around Day of the Dead, you'll see a wonderful window display here. Try a variety of the treats. They are a little more expensive than you might find elsewhere, but the atmosphere and the experience of watching the candy being boxed up are worth the price!

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Saturday, November 2, 2013

Day of The Dead

You have to be aware of the uselessness of your self-importance and of your personal history.
Your death can give you a little warning, it always comes as a chill.
Death is our eternal companion, it is always to our left, at an arm's length.
How can anyone feel so important when we know that death is stalking us.
The thing to do when you're impatient is to turn to your left and ask advice from your death.
An immense amount of pettiness is dropped if your death makes a gesture to you, or if you catch a glimpse of it, or if you just have the feeling that your companion is there watching you.
The issue of our death is never pressed far enough. Death is the only wise adviser that we have.
Freedom is like a contagious disease. It is transmitted; its carrier is an impeccable nagual. People might not appreciate that, and that's because they don't want to be free. Freedom is frightening. Remember that. But not for us.
~ Carlos Castaneda.

In the Mexican capital, death is intellectualized in museums and galleries, it dresses up for a night gala in five stars hotels, and yet easily maintains it’s provincial air in humble neighborhoods.
Bread of the Dead because of the extension of the City, one must visit the Capital for at least two continuous years during the season of Day of the Dead, to have a more profound vision of the changes that take place in it’s inhabitants when they start preparing to celebrate this tradition, so closely tied to the soul of Mexicans.
To be born and to die is one of the dualities faced by human beings and everything that exists. This duality is the key to the Mexican idiosyncrasy, manifested in the pre-Cortez epoch and routed among the centuries in a mix of pre-Hispanic and religious beliefs, of humor and mysticism, of sadness and joy.
Altar Museum Estudio Diego Rivera like the small towns of the provinces, the majority of the residents in Mexico City prepare with anticipation to celebrate with dignity the return of the souls of the dead. In the Capital the offerings are placed in museums and galleries entrusting the work to artists that interpret different subjects or motives, in creating truly artistic designs to later expose them to an array of aromas and colors in which the flower of the season – the cempasuchitl – is the prevailing one.
It is difficult to calculate the amount of craftsmanship that is sold at different prices in Mexico City; this shows that the industry that generates the Day of the Dead is one of the most important affecting the year’s economy of the city, and at the same time demonstrates that this tradition is more alive than ever.
Paper mache calaca in what corresponds to the festive activity, besides eating the chocolate and sugar skeletons with one’s name on it, children, even adults buy toys with images of an enthusiastic skeleton made of paper mache, and jointed skeletons which dance when you pull on a string. Very few stay away from the funeral procession consisting of paper dolls with heads made of garbanzo, which move by the means of a thread, making the head come out of the coffin. The craftsman takes advantage of the opportunity to write special messages on the coffin.
From the bilingual book “Through the Eyes of the Soul Day of the Dead In Mexico - Mexico City, Mixquic and Morelos”. For information of books about this tradition, written by Mary J. Andrade, visit - See more at: Day of The Dead

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Thursday, November 3, 2011

The Day of The Dead II

Day of the Dead (Spanish: Día de Muertos) is a Mexican holiday celebrated throughout Mexico and around the world in many cultures. The holiday focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died. It is particularly celebrated in Mexico, where it attains the quality of a National Holiday, and all banks are closed. The celebration takes place on November 1–2, in connection with the Catholic holidays of All Saints' Day (November 1) and All Souls' Day (November 2). Traditions connected with the holiday include building private altars honoring the deceased using sugar skulls, marigolds, and the favorite foods and beverages of the departed and visiting graves with these as gifts.
Scholars trace the origins of the modern Mexican holiday to indigenous observances dating back hundreds of years and to an Aztec festival dedicated to a goddess called Mictecacihuatl. The holiday has spread throughout the world: In Brazil, Dia de Finados is a public holiday that many Brazilians celebrate by visiting cemeteries and churches. In Spain, there are festivals and parades, and, at the end of the day, people gather at cemeteries and pray for their dead loved ones. Similar observances occur elsewhere in Europe, and similarly themed celebrations appear in many Asian and African cultures.


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