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Posts Tagged ‘Vernal Equinox’

     Updated 19/03/2015

     Ostara (Old High German) or Ēostre (Old English) falls upon 20th March.  It is one of eight ancient Wheel Of The Year festivals denoting seasonal shifts.

     Ostara marks The Vernal (meaning “youthful”) Equinox: the height of Spring.

     Daylight and darkness are balanced at The Equinox, prior to the lengthening of days: a period sometimes referred to as Lent.  It is a time to celebrate fecundity and growth.

     Ostara is named for an ancient Germanic goddess and the month that bears her name; Ôstarmânoth, now April.

     Ostara is a dawn goddess associated to the Greek Eos and the Roman Aurora.  She represents the resurrection of light following the death of Winter.

     Ostara’s totem animal is the hare: a symbol of fertility dating back to prehistoric times.  The hare was admired for its enthusiastic mating rituals and it’s associations to moon goddesses and the female reproductive cycle.

     Eggs are an ancient symbol of renewal, fertility and life-force.  They can be decorated to represent the wishes we hope will manifest in the coming summer.

     Eggs were used to play a number of festival games such as treasure hunts, races and relays (our modern egg and spoon race).

     Ostara is a solar festival so bonfires, hearth fires and candles can also be lit.

     The daffodil or “harbinger of Spring” is the traditional flower of the Ostara festival.

 

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