Friday, January 25, 2013

Alasitas: Festival of Abundance - La Paz, Bolivia 2013

Beseeching the Aymara God "Ekeko" to bestow blessings and abundance, Aymara Shamans attend the petitions of participants at the Festival of Alasitas in Plaza San Francisco

January 24th begins the multiple week celebration and first day the city was out in full force to enjoy perfect sunshine amidst the rainy season. One woman commented, "This year, the sun is the first blessing we've received from Ekeko!" All smiles, she and her family felt it was a sign of many good things to come.

Just beyond, a young girl was having stacks of money blessed by a Yatiri (shaman). I snapped a few frames and asked, "Why do you need so much money, chica?" She smiled, "I want to buy gifts for my mother... and for my family!" Her smile grew even larger!

All the personal petitions, wishes and desires of the crowd filled the plaza and overflowed into the surrounding streets. And in the clamor, I thought this ready proof that the Festival of Alasitas is very much alive for it resides in the hearts of the young and the old. Part deep Andean belief, part fiesta and altogether a swirl of color, light and movement; Alasitas is sure to be with us for untold generations as an expression of Andean hope and aspiration.

Copyright © Mick Huerta 2013. All Rights Reserved.
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