Phew, four posts in one day! Well, I did promise that I would finish up the ADF Dedicant Path over the long Bank Holiday weekend, and I have! I’m off to eat an Easter egg.
In many Pagan traditions, this time of year is celebrated as a festival of new life. Higginbotham states that “most of the Spring traditions that we observe today relate to fertility and renewal of the life force. The most familiar is the colouring of eggs”. Eggs are an ancient symbol of life, and their traditional meaning has been co-opted into the Christian celebration of Easter, along with the “Easter Bunny”, or March Hare.
In some Druid traditions, the Spring Equinox is known as Alban Eiler, the Light of the Earth, while many Pagans refer to it as Ostara or Eostre. This name, according to Bonewits, comes from the Germanic goddess, Eostre (also the source of the name Easter). This name is attested to by the monastic historian Bede, but does not appear in other sources. Hutton writes that Eostre may have been “a Germanic dawn-deity who was venerated, appropriately, at this season of opening and new beginnings”. It may also be the case, however that the name simply referred to the month itself.
Whatever you celebrate today, have a lovely weekend!