Dia de los Muertos and Halloween share some elements, not all

Jasmine Masalmeh, Staff Writer

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The film Coco brought the enchantment of Dia de los Muertos to the big screen for massive audiences in the Us in 2017.

The Difference Between Halloween and Día de Los Muertos

By Jasmine Masalmeh

Spooky season is fast approaching and there are many things to look forward to: sweaters, fall weather, crisp leaves, warm drinks and Halloween. Not only is Halloween approaching, but so is Día de Los Muertos. They share similar values, but are very different. What’s the actual difference between Halloween and Día de Los Muertos?

Halloween is a time of fear. The supernatural melds into the real world. On that night, children are dressed in flashy costumes and happily skip from house to house to collect candy.

Halloween is a Celtic holiday. It stems from the festival of Samhain, the night where the dead and the living become one in the same. During the festival, people held bonfires and wore costumes to ward off evil spirits.

Samhain consisted of people wearing animal skins and sacrificing their crops and animals to the Celtic gods. This was a new harvest year for them.

Día de Los Muertos, on the other hand, is a day of celebration, costumes, parties, food and honoring ancestors. It’s time of remembrance and a celebration of life.

Many traditions make Día de Los Muertos what it is. One symbol is the ofrenda, or offering, that is given to our loved ones. Ofrendas are covered with decadent foods, pastries, Pan de Los Muertos, sugar skulls and even alcohol.

Marigolds are another symbol. These flowers come in a bright orange color and can be found all across the graves and walkways to help guide the spirits back to their families.

Graves are decorated and have memorabilia from the family, especially skulls. It’s not uncommon to find a sugar skull with your name on it, and lots of them are given to friends and family.

Food is what unites families during this holiday. From mole negro to tamales, nothing can stop those who celebrate it from devouring a heart-warming dish with the flavors of food and family blended together.

Halloween and Día de Los Muertos are a time of celebration, cherishing the moments we have with the people we love and letting go of our worries. Nothing warms the heart more than a holiday meant to bring people together.