Adventures Mexico / Travel  / Hanal Pixan
5 Apr

Hanal Pixan

The Hanal pixan has deep prehispanic roots, in Maya “Hanal” means food and “Pixán” Soul that gives life to the body, ‘Food of souls’ and is celebrated by the Mayan people. In Yucatan is celebrated getting a home altar with pictures of deceased relatives with food, desserts and drinks that the deceased used to eat when they were with us. It makes remembering the dead that went ahead, because in those days from October 31 to November 2, the spirits “get permission” to visit their relatives. The first day is devoted to children and we call it u hanal palal. The second day, November 1, is dedicated to the dead adults and we call u hanal nucuch uinicoob, and the third day is for all the saints or u hanal pixanoob called in some places misa pixán, because that day a Mass dedicated to the souls, usually in the cemetery of the town. It is custom, especially in the interior of the State that children use during those days red or black ribbon on the right wrist, so the spirits do not take them. It is also a custom to tether animals in the house, because they could see the spirits and prevent the passage toward the altar. The tradition includes several rites, but the main is to set up a table that serves as an altar, lit with wax candles, beneath the trees in the yard and near the graves of relatives, where typical food of the season is placed: New atole, Pibes or mucbipollos (special and baked tamale), black or white filling, pickle chicken, beans with pork, pibil pork, puchero (stewpot), corn handmade tortillas​​, fruits like jicama, tangerines, oranges, xe’ek’ (mixture made with orange, mandarin orange, jicama and other fruits and chili powder), papaya, sweet potato, cassava, pumpkin, coconut, pumpkin seed, x’pelón tamale, vaporcitos (tamale cook by steam), balché (intoxicating drink made from the bark of a tree called like that), sweet bread and bowls of tasty so-Chucuá (atole which is made with corn, cacao, pepper and anise). They also offer chocolate, dead bread (sweet bread), sweet corn, cooked corn, cigars, brandy or tequila if the deceased used to consume. At the altar of adults sets, black or gray wax candles, incense made ​​of clay, white tablecloths embroidered with white, black and purple flowers in the corners, flowers, a bowl of water (gourd), rue (a medicinal plant), corn seeds, photographs of the dead, a holy cross, some ashes beside the altar and ornaments made of tree bark. The day of the dead children, the altar is decorated with an embroidered tablecloth in bright colors, which are placed, colorful candles, incense made of clay, candy and toys, rattles, photographs and decorated with flowers xpujuc (type wild and yellow), red and xtés Virginias and color, the Holy Cross, a water bowl rue (a medicinal plant) They are offering chocolate, sweet bread, new atole (hot beverage) fresh corn, cooked corn, kids or mucbipollos (special and baked tamal), sweet seeds and fruits of the season. These viands spend all night 1 to November 2, in these small altars, under the trees. And when the souls of the deads “have taken grace”, relatives of those eat the mucbipollos, and pibinales (corn cooked underground), and drink atole and balché. A week later, the biix (a party made eight days after an event) or eighth, which is a kind of repetition less complicated than the previous one is done. In the evening of that day, the doors of the houses and the barricades have lit candles so the souls can see their way when they come and leave the area.

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