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 Culture & Traditions

New Year’s Rituals in Mexico Bring Good Luck, Health & Prosperity

by Chela Orozco

When a couple person receives hugs and kisses; they are assured that the year will be full of romance. 

Finally, a toast is made with sparkling wine because its bubbles represent the spark of happiness that you want to have all year long.

Then each person starts with their personal rites of which the best known are:

– Throwing a glass of water out towards the street symbolizes expelling tears, worries and negativity.

– Placing a coin in a shoe or a ticket in their pocket when the person seeks economic prosperity. Or there are also those who customarily eat a handful of lentils.

– For those who want a certain person to give them their love during the new year; tie a red ribbon to a picture of the person and sleep with them under your pillow that night.

– Sweep with a broom from the door to the street when you want to drive out bad vibes, troubles and negative things from the home.


– Those who take a couple of suitcases and go around the block, do it because they want to take a trip … the farther the walk, the farther their trip will be. If it’s with their pair, both take the walk.

– For those who wish to marry, it’s recommended that they should sit and stand up on each of the 12 chimes of the clock.

– Want a promotion at work? Get up on a ladder or stand on a chair and be higher than others.

– For those who like rituals with candles, you can light three candles in a triangle at exactly 12 midnight. One must be red, one green and one yellow, together with nine grains of rice, nine lentils and nine gold coins — no matter what their value — to pray for the family’s prosperity, abundance and love, and so on.

In short, there’s a bit of everything on this evening: some are happy, others cry out of sadness, some like to celebrate it alone and others in the company of their entire family. But the majority practice religious, deep, funny, old, or bizarre rituals; all with the aim of keeping alive the hope of  bringing on better days for all.

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