Monday, November 2, 2009

My World#46 Philippine's All Soul's Day

If Westerners celebrate Halloween with trick or treats and parties, Filipinos do it by visiting the graves of their dead loved ones. Known more as "Undas", the Philippine tradition of visiting the cemeteries, offering food, flowers and prayers and lighting up candles on the graves start as early as October 31.

Philippine tradition

Days prior to All Soul's Day, which is on the 1st of November, people would start to clean, and even put on some new paint on the graves of their dead loved ones. Police presence in the cemeteries gets beefed up. Visiting usually starts on the October 31st that would last until November 2nd. Some people have tents and would stay for a day or two at the cemeteries. Some families use these particular days as their reunion days with other family members and it is not uncommon to see some parties going on right there at the cemetery. However, the more solemn aspect of offering prayers and candles are never absent on these days.

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SandyCarlson November 2, 2009 at 6:33 PM  

Thank you for telling me about these days in your country. I am thinking I live in a country that does not honor its ancestors. We would do well to honor this tradition.

Martha Z November 2, 2009 at 7:25 PM  

I think that may be a more civilized tradition than ours.

Sylvia K November 2, 2009 at 7:58 PM  

Oh, I have to agree with Sandy and Martha, all that I have read today about the celebration of All Soul's day has made me realize that our Halloween is not the way to honor our ancestors. We could, indeed, do well to honor the tradition as your country and others do.

Thanks for sharing this!


AL November 3, 2009 at 2:24 AM  

And I am so glad that the tradition still lives.

Louise November 3, 2009 at 8:16 AM  

I really like these things. Such a spectacular holiday to honor loved ones who have passed..

Lawstude November 3, 2009 at 6:23 PM  

iba tayo mag-celebrate no? most halloween posts here are about tricks or treat unlike us where we celebrate it at the cemetery reminiscing old time with our dearly departed.

Gattina November 3, 2009 at 11:26 PM  

Now we do both here ! A very small part of the Belgians celebrate Halloween, but not like in the States and on All Saints day everybody goes to the cimetary to bring chrisanths to put on the graves of family members. That's tradition.
I remember when I lived in Germany we put little candles on the window sills to honor the dead.

LadyFi November 3, 2009 at 11:56 PM  

I think it's lovely how you can both remember the dead while finding joy in meeting up with the living members of the family.

Jo November 4, 2009 at 12:53 AM  

I like that people meet up with other family and friends. Thanks for visiting my blog.

Janie November 4, 2009 at 9:59 AM  

This is an interesting tradition. It's always good to remember our ancestors.

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