2005 (Oakland-10th) Displaying image 11 of 14
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Caption10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Sunday **** Musical Stages will be located throughout International Blvd. on Fruitvale Avenue 35th 37th and 40th to 41st Avenues ______________________________________________ More than 500 years ago when the Spanish Conquistadores landed in what is now Mexico they encountered natives practicing a ritual that seemed to mock death. It was a ritual the indigenous people had been practicing for at least 5000 years. In the pre-Columbian cultures and Meso-American especially among Aztecs life was a dream. Only in dying did a human being truly awaken. Death was not feared because it was inevitable. For the Aztecs as for other ancient people death signified not an end but a stage of a constant cycle. The worship of death involved worship of life. The skull often seen as a symbol of death represented a promise of resurrection. This is a ritual the Spaniards would try unsuccessfully to eradicate. What eventually developed through this tolerance of the old indigenous religion was a fusion of Catholic symbols beliefs and rituals with those of the indigenous cultures “El Dia de Los Muertos”. During the Day of the Dead an ofrenda offering or an altar is constructed in the home gravesite or business establishment. Altars are always adorned with yellow orange marigolds Zempasuchitl the traditional pre-Columbian flower of the dead. In addition to flowers the altar is decorated with fruit pan de muerto bread of the dead pictures of Saints sugar skulls chocolate photographs of the dead alcohol and candles. The souls are believed to take only the smells and tastes from the food and in some traditions the food is given away to friends neighbors or the needy the following day. People also bring food to the cemetery and traditionally spend the night in the graveyard by their family member’s tomb cleaning it and decorating it. The cemetery itself becomes a site of great celebration on this special day.
HeadlineSun Oct 30th 2005 take BART to Fruitvale
Copyright Noticeunitycouncil.org Bay Area's largest Day of the Dead event
URLhttp://unitycouncil.org/ddlm

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