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Title: The spring equinox celebrates the planting season
Source: independentmail.com
URL Source: http://www.independentmail.com/news ... uinox-celebrates-the-planting/
Published: Mar 17, 2012
Author: Tammy Trotter-Bazzle
Post Date: 2012-03-17 19:31:49 by Ferret Mike
Keywords: None
Views: 1247
Comments: 2

This month marks the spring equinox. We celebrate the return of spring and the end of the long, dark winter months. This season is about new beginnings and rebirth. An equinox occurs twice a year, at the beginning of spring and again at the beginning of fall, when the days and nights are equal in length. This is a day of planting. We not only plant in the physical sense of the word but also in the spiritual and mental sense. We plant the seeds of the crop we wish to grow and nurture until the harvest.

The spring equinox has been celebrated for centuries all over the world. The Mayans and present day Maya people have celebrated spring for more than 10 centuries. Numerous cultures, including Pagans, have had several names for this time of year as well as the festivals held. Festivals include Alban Elfed, the Teutonic festival in honor of Eostre, Roman Hilaria Matris Deum, Welsh Gwyl Canol Gwenwynol (Day of the Gorse), the Wiccan Ostara Sabbat and the Christian Feast of the Annunciation of the Virgin Mary (Lady Day) as well as Easter. In more recent history, neo-Pagans, mainly Wiccans, have begun to celebrate this day as Ostara. Though not an ancient path, Wicca is based on ancient traditions and is a modern form of Paganism created by Dr. Gerald B. Gardner in 1954.

The origin of the word Ostara is Eostre, which is a spring goddess from Germanic lore. Keeping in mind that Ostara is a modern Sabbat observed by most Wiccans, ancient Celtic tribes did not celebrate Ostara but did recognize and celebrate the change of the season.

There are many symbols often associated with Ostara or the epring equinox. It is common to include hares and colored eggs. These are all symbols of fertility and birth or rebirth. The hare was sacred in many ancient traditions and was associated with the moon goddesses and the various deities of hunting. Often, these symbols are shaped into candies and eaten based on the principle belief that by eating something we take on its characteristics. Because we want our seedlings to grow, we focus on and consume fertility symbols.

When looking at the traditions associated with the spring equinox and various religious denominations or paths, the numerous observances or practices have several commonalities. We are not so different. The question of late seems to be, "Can we coexist?" Is tolerance possible? Yes it is. My way may not be for all, but I find a peace and understanding of existence that works for me. This is the basis of Unity Day on March 31. Our directions are not so different after all.

A friend once explained to me that there are many routes to get to California. We can take a different road but when all is said and done, we are heading to the same overall destination.

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#1. To: (#0) (Edited)

Do we really need to know whether Esotre or Ostara was a "Real" Goddess?

EostreSo what should pagans and Wiccans do about all this controversy? Do we really need to know whether Esotre or Ostara was a "real" goddess? The answer is, no.

Wicca, a neo-pagan religion, is based on a symbolic mythology. As we advance in our understanding of the Wiccan beliefs, we come to realize we are not worshipping a "real" deity, but an archetype. An archetype is a deep-seated, ancestral memory from the collective unconscious, which connects us to our own inner psyche. Unlike Christianity, whose followers believe that their god is real and walked the earth, a symbolic mythology helps us access our higher self, the goddess and god within.

Wicca is also an evolving religion. Its traditions are being created and re-created on a daily basis, as the participants contact and experience divine energy. Through repeated celebrations and rituals devoted to a goddess named Eostre, or Ostara, we have essentially re-created her. In the world of quantum physics and multiple universes, anything is possible. So by our action of focusing on Her, The Goddess Eostre, we are strengthening the energetic principle which feeds the archetype. Thus the essence of a spring goddess is continually with us.

May an Ostrich fly up your nose, and a Community Organizer piss in your wiccan chalice.

"We (government) need to do a lot less, a lot sooner" ~Ron Paul

Obama's watch stopped on 24 May 2008, but he's been too busy smoking crack to notice.

Hondo68  posted on  2012-03-17   21:18:10 ET  (2 images) Reply   Trace   Private Reply  

#2. To: hondo68 (#1)

You do know that Every christian holiday is laid over a pagan one.

But with Chicago and Fargo doing 80 degrees today I guess this really doesn't matter.

We're down to Two Seasons now with Spring/Fall sprinkled all around.

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-03-18   8:59:59 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  

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