Sunday, March 27, 2016

Rising Up with Oestre

Who can resist the rising energy of Springtime?  Plants resurrecting themselves from the barren, seemingly dead, chilly winter silence.  Amazing!  Profound! Thankfully, Endless!  

Spring Quotations

March Quotations

Spring Equinox Celebrations

We enjoy a secular and pagan version of the Easter holiday: colored eggs, bunnies, chocolate, sumptuous meals, family and friends gathering, games, Springtime themes, fun.  

Since I am not a Christian, Judeo-Christian mythology holds little interest for me; I favor Greek, NeoPagan, and Chinese mythologies.  All have tales of creatures and beings rising from the dead, defeating death, resurrecting, fertilizing, born and reborn, Emergent, living on, Transmigration, in the springtime of your life, Springtime in California.  

"Easter is named for a Saxon goddess who was known by the names of Oestre or Eastre, and in Germany by the name of Ostara. She is a goddess of the dawn and the spring, and her name derives from words for dawn, the shining light arising from the east. Our words for the "female hormone" estrogen derives from her name. Ostara was, of course, a fertility goddess. Bringing in the end of winter, with the days brighter and growing longer after the vernal equinox, Ostara had a passion for new life. Her presence was felt in the flowering of plants and the birth of babies, both animal and human. The rabbit (well known for its propensity for rapid reproduction) was her sacred animal. Easter eggs and the Easter Bunny both featured in the spring festivals of Ostara, which were initially held during the feasts of the goddess Ishtar | Inanna. Eggs are an obvious symbol of fertility, and the newborn chicks an adorable representation of new growth. Brightly colored eggs, chicks, and bunnies were all used at festival time to express appreciation for Ostara's gift of abundance."
- Easter History  

"Fertility rights are ceremonies of a magic-religious nature performed to ensure the perpetuation of mankind and to control the environment. Expressed as invocations, incantations, prayers, hymns, processions, dances, and sacred dramas, these liturgical endeavors were, and still are, believed to be closely connected with the mechanisms of nature. The basis for such rites is usually a belief in sympathetic magic - that is magic worked on one level to have an effect on a different level, and based on the assumption that life and fertility, whether animal or vegetable, are one and indivisible. If such fertility rites could induce fertility in the animal and human worlds, then the vegetable world would also be stimulated to reproduction, resulting in an abundant harvest."
-  Robert Ellison, The Solitary Druid, p. 130

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