The Living Dead, a timely yet strange title for this post, right? If you’re reading this it did its job; it got your attention. LOL.
As you probably guessed, I am talking about October 31 and its many meanings from trick-or-treat to a day of remembering. Most of us in the US think of Halloween as a time for scary movies, spooky costumes, and playfully extorting candy and treats from our neighbors. For many others worldwide it is a day for celebrating the lives of those they have loved and who have passed on; have left this life and gone on to their infinite adventure. For those people it is not a day to remember they died, but a day to celebrate they lived.
In my lifetime I have celebrated it both ways. My ancestors came from Spain, but I had the unique experience of spending my early years in Mexico City. Mexico is where Dia de los Muertos, or the Day of the Dead, originated. My dad worked for the US Department of Agriculture and was sent on a “mission” to Mexico where we lived for several years. I actually had to learn English before coming back to the states! But I digress…
As the most mystical, crazy, and scariest night of the year, Dia de los Muertos is also the time where everything truly is not as we think it should, but as it is. As Robert Moss says, “it is a topsy-turvy, inside-out time when the past lies ahead of you and the future walks behind you, breathing down your neck. It is the night where the doors between the worlds swing open.”
Halloween is when the delicate gossamer veil between the worlds is the thinnest, and for some it is lifted. Sounds really scary doesn’t it?! But it isn’t. My mom and dad are gone, and yes, they still visit me often. They are my parents, why would I be afraid?
That probably sounds weird to some, (ah, that “w” word again) but you can be sure that if you have lost someone you love they most likely visit you as well. So instead of being afraid, try lighting a candle and talking to them. You may be pleasantly surprised.
“Our dead are never dead to us, until we have forgotten them” — George Eliot