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REVERENT REMEMBRANCE: HONORING THE DEAD
 

Ancient Roots
For thousands of years, human communities have honored their dead and prepared them for the afterlife with special ceremonies and burial practices. Neanderthals offered red ochre, food, and flowers to their dead more than 70,000 years ago. The great pyramids built by ancient Egyptians around 2700 BC and by Native Americans between AD 100 and 1400 expressed similar sentiments on a grand scale. Today, many cultures hold annual community events to remember their dead with respect and reverence, welcoming them back into their midst with gifts, food, flowers, and drink.

Many Traditions - Similar Beliefs
Reverent Remembrance explores a number of distinctive traditions of honoring the dead, including: the pre-Christian European roots of American Halloween, the reverent practices of ancient Egypt, and the continuing traditions of both Mexico and Indonesia. These varied celebrations provide a spectrum of insight into this ultimate human event. Each is different, yet all are based on similar beliefs: that we should honor our loved ones and celebrate that honor in community-wide observances.

Accepting Death
The customs, festivities, and beliefs presented in this exhibit reflect an acceptance of death and the dead as a part of the reality that makes up our lives. Even if death itself is not welcome, the dead are - sometimes with humor, but always with reverence.   



  DAY OF
THE DEAD
 
 
  HALLOWEEN  
   
  EGYPTIAN
MUMMY
 
 
INDONESIAN
RITUALS
AMERICAN
MEMORIALS