Have you lit a candle yet?
On this day Slovenes usually visit the cemetery and light a candle for those who have passed away.
The tradition is remembering everyone no longer with us – grandparents, great-grandparents, or perhaps someone else.
Visiting the cemetery and arranging the graves is a meaningful custom in Slovenia to honor the deceased and their memory. It is often done beforehand in preparation for the holiday.
Psychologists say that taking care of the graves is a form of mourning.
Traditionally Slovenes honor the memory of the departed in a quiet and intimate way, often meeting with relatives.
The holiday is recognized differently around the world. In some places the celebration lasts for several days.
On the eve ofrendas, special altars for the dead, are set up. They put pictures of the deceased, their favorite food, flowers, and candles on them. They celebrate with dancing and music in the streets.
This tradition is so special that UNESCO declared it an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
In the Philippines the three-day celebration ends with dancing and partying on the beach. In Japan the dead are honored already in August with Obon, a lantern festival that lasts for three days.
It’s not really important how you celebrate today, and you don’t necessarily have to visit the cemetery.
It is important to cherish the memory of those who have passed, think about them, and remember the good times you’ve spent together.
Mourning is showing sadness when someone dies.
Intangible is something you can’t touch or hold.
Points to Consider
- How do you take care of your relatives’ graves?
- With whom do you go to the cemetery?
- Do you know a cartoon about the Mexican holiday, Dia de los muertos?
The original version of this article was published on 1st November.