Sunday, April 4, 2010

injaynesworld it's "Easter Sunday..."

So which came first, the Savior or the egg?

On this Christian holiday we hear many lament about how Jesus’ resurrection has been usurped by the Easter Bunny and his colorful eggs.  Another holy day that’s lost its true meaning.  

Not so fast…

Long before the advent of Christianity there was, according to Anglo-Saxon lore, a goddess of spring known as Eostre from which the name Easter is derived.  She was a fertility goddess and eggs and rabbits were sacred to her. 

As the myth goes, Eostre once saved a bird, whose wings had frozen during the winter, by turning it into a rabbit.  Because the rabbit had once been a bird, it could still lay eggs and, over time, became our modern Easter Bunny. 
Eggs, like rabbits, are fertility symbols and came to symbolize the rising fertility of the earth at spring time.

Fast forward to Medieval Europe where hard-boiled eggs were dyed red in memory of Christ’s blood, then given to children as a lucky charm to preserve their health over the next year. To this day, in parts of Europe, red dyed eggs are still considered to have protective qualities and are buried in fields and vineyards to guard against lightning and hail – hence the Easter egg hunt. 

So while you’re celebrating this day in whatever way is traditional for you, remember to give a nod to the goddess Eostre… the sister who may have started it all.

Wishing you all a very Happy Easter...

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