Day of the Dead Tribute
Remembering our loved ones
November 1, 2023 | Blog
Every year from the 31st of October to the 2nd of November, we pay tribute to the ones who have touched our lives but have passed on. Different cultures have different names to call this day. The United States has Halloween or All Hallow’s Eve, Latin America calls it the Day of the Dead or Dia De Los Muertos and where we’re from, the Philippines, we call it Undás.
This tradition of celebrating the ones who have passed on was practiced thousands of years ago by indigenous peoples such as the Aztecs and the Toltecs. They believed that death was not the end of one’s life but rather just a chapter of it.
We’ve seen it in movies like The Book of Life and Coco. Families would place pictures of their beloved ones who have passed on in what they call an ofrenda, which is like an altar but to honor those who have gone ahead. In the movie Coco, we saw that the dead are able to travel to the mortal realm in order to visit their loved ones once a year.
I believe in this tradition. I’d like to think that once a year, the people I miss dearly come to visit me - of course, in a none-scary-horror-movie type way but rather in a sense that they visit to check on me.
In the Philippines, during undás, it is tradition to visit cemeteries and stay there for hours at a time to celebrate the lives of our loved ones who have gone ahead. We would have picnics, pray the rosary, catch up with our relatives and just share memories of the ones we’ve lost.
As Pandas now living away from home, we can’t visit our loved ones in the cemeteries they’re buried in. So, this is our own little way of paying tribute to the ones we’ve lost in the past.
We would also like to dedicate a special tribute to that friend who taught us “Pilosopy”. In Filipino, the term “pilosopo” means “to be sarcastic”. Most of us learned how to answer questions sarcastically from Chandler Muriel Bing of the 90’s sitcom F.R.I.E.N.D.S, played by Matthew Perry, who sadly passed away last October 28.