Reuniting the Living with the Dead

Reuniting the Living with the Dead

Ignacio Ochoa has published a recent article about the history of kite making in Santiago Sacatepéquez under the name of Messenges in the Wind. Below the first paragraph of this wonderful article:

On November 1 and 2, a powerful force stirs in all the towns of Guatemala. Traditional markets are filled with flowers of sempa (orange marigolds), chrysanthemums, wild daisies and the smell of copal—a pre-Columbian incense made from pine resin. People clean family graves and adorn them with cut-out tissue paper called papel picado, wreaths of fresh flowers and candles. They also honor the dead with festive foods such as candied fruits, tamales and fiambre (a cold meat and vegetable dish prepared only at this time of year). These days mark the celebration of El dí­a de los difuntos or the Day of the Dead, a very important festival throughout Guatemala, especially in the predominantly indigenous town of Santiago Sacatépequez, where it is the occasion for a unique kite-flying ritual of the Kakchiquel people, integrating the Catholic feast of All Saints with pre-Columbian Mayan practices of remembering the dead. The kites are made as a way to communicate with the dead, symbolically attracting the spirits to earth at this special time of the year, when family members, living and dead, are reunited. (continue reading… )

If you would like to have the following giant kite flying image as a wallpaper for you desktop or laptop computer, as always, just download the following photo (1200×900). You can click to thumbnail below to get a larger preview. Enjoy!

Santiago Sacatepéquez, Lugar de Tradiciones

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  • Thanks you for the background image, Rudy! I often put your photos up on my screen and everyone here at work stops to look and ooooh and aaahhh.