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The Spring Equinox

Spring EquinoxThe Spring (or Vernal) Equinox is halfway between the Winter and Summer Solstices, the shortest and the longest day, where night balances day. It is considered to be the first day of Spring. Early Pagans celebrated Ostara around the 21st of March. At this time certain deities were seen to return from the underworld where they had spent winter.

This celebration became entwined with the Christian story of the Crucifixion and the Resurrection of Christ and was absorbed into the Christian Calendar as Easter.

The Ostara festivities celebrated a time of birth and new life, the marriage of the God and the Goddess and the conception of a child. It was considered a time of fertility for the land and all of its creatures. This time was sacred to the Teutonic Goddess Eostra whose name is found in the female hormone Oestrogen. Baby rabbits (the rabbit is very fertile!), chicks, eggs and lambs are all symbols of this time of new life.

Easter Eggs are given to celebrate Easter or Springtime. The old tradition was to give dyed or painted chicken’s eggs, but more usually it is now chocolate as Eggs or Bunnies.  For Easter Egg hunts it is said that they are left by the Easter Bunny. The old tradition of the Easter Bunny may well go back to the Hare as an ancient pagan fertility symbol. The confusion about Hares and eggs may have come about from Lapwings laying their eggs in the ‘forms’ of hares during March. ‘Forms’ are hollows or scrapes in open ground and meadows where the hare takes shelter. (Unlike the rabbit, the hare does not burrow.) Lapwings lay their eggs in similar locations in shallow scrapes lined with grass.

The Spring Equinox is also when the sun moves from watery Pisces into Fiery Aries on the 20th of March. Aries is all about initiative, impulse and action. This will be followed by an Aries New Moon on Thursday 22nd. The Aries New Moon is a very good time to take action, take initiative and bravely do something new or maybe something you have been putting off.

It is a good time to take charge of your life. This coming week can be a time of new beginnings or making important changes. Just consider possible repercussions though: Aries is well-known for being rash and impulsive and leaping without looking first! Having assessed the realities (not just your fears) maybe you can allow yourself to discover something about your courage and inner strength and bring exciting changes into your life.

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