Saturday, April 11, 2009

Happy Eostur

The modern English term Easter developed from Old English word Ēastre or Ēostre or Eoaster, which itself developed prior to 899. The name refers to Eostur-monath, a month of the Germanic calendar named after the goddess Ēostre of Anglo-Saxon paganism. Eostur-monath was the equivalent to the month of April, and that feasts held her in honor during Ēostur-monath , replaced with the Christian custom of Easter. Theories connecting Eostre with records of Germanic folk custom (including hares and eggs), and as descendant of the Proto-Indo-European goddess of the dawn through the etymology of her name. So all this bunny and egg stuff comes from the pagan goddess celebration. An "arrival of spring" celebration. Over the hundreds of years, we have mixed pagan rituals with Christian beliefs. Makes you wonder what the celebration will be like in another couple hundred years or so. Will it evolve again? Will it be more of a celebration of spring, more focused on the earth itself, on the planting season, or the resurrection of life, after a long cold winter. Will it continue the American way, and be more of a shopping weekend, or will it become more focused on what's really important, life, family, happiness? Our christian celebration of the resurrection, is uniquely tied to the celebration of spring, where we have mixed our old pagan rituals, with the not as old christian rituals. It looks to me like we're all celebrating the same thing. The season of renewal, of re-birth, a new year, a new season that is better than the last, with peace, and happiness for all. Something for everyone, in one form or another. Happy Easter, Spring, New Year, Eostur!

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