Day of The Dead, 2016

Day of the Dead Retreat with Teresa Maron

day of the dead retreat with teresa maronDay of the Dead is as much about celebrating life as it is about honoring death. It teaches every child where they fit in, how they can contribute and what their families have done in the past. It is so very soothing. It brings peace in the worst of times, and joy in the best. It teaches that we should eat, drink, love and be merry as the reality of death cannot be ignored. But death is not the end, you will still hold your place in the community and the family you served.

I have been traveling to Oaxaca for more than 10 years, to the Pacific Coast and of course, I have fallen in love with the area. I have even purchased land, and plan on building a dream there.

I want to share one of my most cherished memories, that was the beginning of my love for this area, was when I happened to be in San Agustinillo on Day of the Dead, 2007.

I was in a small restaurant, Ebertina’s, only 4 tables, having a freshly made Italian/German meal, when I noticed a few villagers walking in a straight line carrying platters of vegetables, sweets and fruits. Others soon joined in lighting candles and I heard them singing. More people joined in smiling. Soon, the entire village was in procession laughing, celebrating and in harmony of spirit.

I wondered where they were going, and followed, a little bashful, as I knew I didn’t fit in. Soon, I saw it was the cemetery, and it was lit up with hundreds of candles, showing decor of hundreds of flowers and lacy paper garlands, just really beautiful. Oh my. I had never thought of a cemetery as a place for a Joyful celebration.

I was intrigued and had so many questions. I made it a point over the next week to talk to everyone I knew about the traditions. The more I found out, the more I realized that the Day of the Dead that I thought I knew was a far cry from how it is really celebrated in this culture.

Our Halloween is such a different energy and celebration, that it hardly seems to be the same. This is what I learned.

There are 3 very different celebrations:

  • One is for the loved dead, to honor them, remember them and bring them to life through the art of stories, memories and pictures. A child who didn’t get to know a grandparent very well will look at pictures, hear stories and see favorite clothes, tools, wedding veils and special items they loved. They will get a real sense of who they were. The relatives speak of the person as if they are there, serve them their favorite foods, and tell them what is going on in their lives. Many times a family will sit in the cemetery all night, talking and reminiscing.
  • Two, is for children who have died before becoming an adult. These are the children who are so missed and cherished, and the anguish is real. They celebrate the lives that were lost too soon, and tell stories of what talents and accomplishments they had. In this way they heal, keeping the memories alive.
  • Third, they honor the lives of those who were not well loved or even liked. The criminals, ne’er do wells and those who had a challenge in staying on track. They encourage them to do better in the heavenly world and forgive them for their missteps on this one. Oh the lessons here, that forgiveness doesn’t die at the grave. It is ongoing. It is now.

The whole community is committed to devoting this 3 day holiday to focus on not only their individual memories, but the collective memories of the entire group.

Then I saw the bigger picture. It’s not just once a year. They all go to communityweddings and funerals, attend the birth and commencement ceremonies of the children and work together to keep the community safe. In times of trouble, like a hurricane or fire, everyone is there, helping and contributing. It is what I would call a community that works. It is a high consciousness world model, too rare in so called civilized communities. Like mine.

Day of the Dead is as much about celebrating life as it is about honoring death. It teaches every child where they fit in, how they can contribute and what their families have done in the past. It is so very soothing. It brings peace in the worst of times, and joy in the best. It teaches that we should eat, drink, love and be merry as the reality of death cannot be ignored. But death is not the end, you will still hold your place in the community and the family you served.

Many of us in the US have never felt this, not deeply, and to do so is a healing.

day-dead-oaxaca-banner

Day of the Dead Retreat 2016, October 30-November 6

That is why I want to be in the city this year that is known for the best and most authentic celebration of Day of the Dead. Oaxaca City. I will be honoring my Aunt Ruth. She was the most elegant, loving and kind woman I have ever known, and I want to bring her into the celebration with me, to honor her and bring me peace.

I will also be honoring someone who was difficult and tortured. I want to release the disappointment and pain, and truly release that sorrow.

I know you have someone you feel close to, that would be a blessings to honor at this festival, known around the world.

Peace is really why we are going, but to balance it there will be the best of food, art and mescal. Powerful balance.

By celebrating life, we honor death, and that is the lesson of Day of the Dead.

Joyful Blessings,

Teresa Maron

Want to Join the trip?  For Information, Itinerary, Activities and Booking, Click Here

share

Teresa Maron, Creator of Spiritual Adventures for Women, is a consultant on the subject of the deadly effects of stress. Her mission is to empower you to understand where your stress is coming from, and how it affects your health, happiness and ability to succeed. Her destination retreats provide inspirational experiences with world class teachers in mind-body awareness and alternative healing systems in a stunning natural setting.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

4 × 5 =


Join Spiritual Adventures - A Newsletter for Today’s Wise Woman