Eostre’s Gift

For centuries, humans have celebrated the birth of new life. We find a great example of this with the Easter holiday. Though this holiday is generally associated with Christian beliefs of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, this also intertwines with other ancient beliefs that were practiced for centuries. The sphere of rebirth is a gift to creation, and one that holds vibrance and beauty.

In ancient times, indigenous tribes from across the world held celebrations commemorating the return of spring; festivals for the renewal and rebirth of life. One of the more famous accounts is of the pagan Teutonic tribes whose deity for spring was named Eastre or Eostre. She was also known by the symbol of the rabbit. This marked the return of spring, the planting of crops and the spring equinox.

Even though speculation is given to the actual day for the resurrection of Jesus, I find it a wonderful synchronicity that the celebration of his rising is intertwined with the return of spring. This to me gives weight to the fact that our spiritual essence is intertwined with the workings of nature. It is a natural magic of life. 

This wonderful sphere holds the truth that life is constantly in motion, never stopping. It postulates that even in death we have rebirth; life will continue to transform beyond what is known to us.

Whether or not one chooses to believe in the resurrection, its symbolic marker is found here; spring and the resurrection are symbols; to be reborn, to rise again; to witness life spring forth, to return to growth. These are all part of the natural and spiritual world that we inhabit. 

The sphere of rebirth is a gift to us. It is a promise of new life tomorrow. No matter our beliefs, the rhythm of nature is alive and well in both the physical world and in the spiritual realm. We should recognize and smile at them as they surely smile upon us. 

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I am an artist, writer, author, philosopher and lover of nature and life. My blog offers a glimpse into my world, my thoughts, my sphere. Enjoy!

42 thoughts on “Eostre’s Gift

  1. Interesting musings.

    There are a number of Christian traditions and festivals that fall on the same or similar dates as ancient tribal and pagan ones. During the conversion of a tribe to Christianity it would have been easier to enmesh the new with the old. In short: it is easier to change the sign above the door than it is to move the building.

    This is illustrated when one investigates the church burnings in Norway. These churches are built on sites that were once sacred to pagans and anamists before the second crusade. No excuse for such behaviour but it adds another interesting nuance to the points outlined in your (as usual) nicely written post.

  2. I’m a Christian. However, it’s no secret that the early Church co-opted the ancient holidays and adopted them as Church “holy days”.

    The Resurrection and the spring growths are synonymous with new life.

    Great post!

  3. i like this! it is a beautiful time to sit and reflect … to embrace the changes and recognize impermanence.
    🙂

  4. As usual, a beautifully written post. I was aware of most of it, including the co-opting of earlier celebrations mentioned in earlier comments.

    You filled in many gaps in the story that I was unaware of – where the name Easter came from, or how the rabbit fit in to it, for instance. Thank you for the education.

  5. Have you looked much into the whole Eostre = Ishtar = Venus = Ushas = Astarte = Eos thing? It is quite fascinating! These are all goddesses from various European/Asian cultures, and some of their names are etymologically related, whereas some have similar roles and similar names, but experts are not sure if those names have the same root origin.

  6. Many Catholic holidays have root in pagan traditions. Even religions know to honor the cycles of nature, in whatever form. Happy resurrection to all! Happy rebirth!

  7. I am Muslim but my Italian partner is Catholic and this year I accompanied him to church on Good Friday. It was a lovely and interesting experience.
    Easter is called Pasqua in Italian. It’s fascinating though to learn where the word Easter comes from, and also how you link it to the season of spring, of rebirth. I never thought of it that way.
    Happy Easter to you.

  8. Great post, I appreciate the mention of Jesus. The fact of his resirrection gives Christians hope and confidence tat, as you wrote here, we will be (and are) reborn.
    Do you agree with me that our human nature needs a rebirth? Spiritual rebirth is what we’ve all been looking for.

    1. A rebirth perhaps. I think more along the lines of a shift in consciousness. If we could see ourselves and each other as simply spiritual beings, then maybe things will change.

  9. He has Risen!

    The death and resurrection of Jesus Christ coincides with Passover. I know a guy who believes that God did this so we could have a spring festival. He is wrong for that. It coincides with passover as the powerful symbolism for God’s promise that he would send a messiah to redeem mankind. The passover happened at the beginning of spring because that is when the Jews were about to flee egypt. God knew the best time for them to begin the Exodus was in the Spring. I know you have read my blog a few times and liked a few post over at Montana Truth Seekers Ministries. Did you get a chance to stop by and read my Easter Aliens blog? I would love it if you would read it and comment on it for me. Here is the link to the exact blog.

    http://montanatruthseekers.wordpress.com/2012/04/06/easter-aliens-or-easter-demons-you-decide/

  10. Knowthesphere, thank you SO MUCH for deciding to follow my blog! As a granbee, it is such an encouragement to be joined by folks of younger generations in different locations in the world. My daugher and son-in-law work and live in the East Village in NYC. I am also very encourage by your commitment (as apparent from this wonderful post on Eostre’s Gift) to addressing and celebrating issues and occasions and events in Nature that all peoples everywhere, of every belief system, can hold in mutual respect and awe! I do my meditating almost always outdoors and am especially blessed to do so during this wonderful time of spring and renewal in the earth. Have a most blessed and productive and joyous springtide and Eostre Week!

  11. I am new to the whole blogging community and how wonderful it has been to read your initial post and everyone’s replies! I am a follower of Christ but I have been hardened a bit as of late by the disingenuousness of Christian’s. Sometimes I feel like if I do not do things as “expected” I am looked down upon. So, over the last couple months I have taken a step back from going to church and have been using this time to reflect and think about who I am in Christ, how that relates to the church community and then how that connects with my Christian friends.
    One great thing about the internet is that it brings people together that would have never had an opportunity to be linked previously. To learn from others, from their experiences, their successes and failures, what a blessing that is! I appreciate it when people discuss their religious differences rather than tear each other down.
    I was running yesterday and had quite some time to think about and reflect on Passover Sunday, what it means historically and how Jesus has affected my life because of the ultimate sacrifice he made for me. I may not fully understand how everything relates together in this world, suffering, death, injustice, deceit, and the list goes on. Instead I focus on the work God has done in my life and how I see him changing me through steadfastness, love, compassion, and most importantly for me, humor!
    I love spring because I see his promises in the flowers blooming for the first time, the trees slowing changing to color, the smell of life in the air. Promises for a better life…hope for the future!
    There are so many different religions in this world…can one solely be right? I don’t really know and I don’t want to waste my life debating with people about it. I would much rather build relationships with people for who they are and how they choose to live life!

  12. “This wonderful sphere holds the truth that life is constantly in motion, never stopping. It postulates that even in death we have rebirth; life will continue to transform beyond what is known to us.”

    I love this and it gave me such a wonderful visual twirling in my mind. My heart felt very hopeful, and joyful reading this post. 🙂

  13. Wow…there is a certain essence of truth to this, one that, like many Christian believers like myself, are blind to. I’ve never actually speculated the origins of spring and its relation to the world as a whole. Makes you wonder about how maybe other things that modern day cultures have adopted as traditional ceremonies and celebrations interrelate with the centuries previous. The origins of life…a rather thought provoking subject. 🙂 I like it.

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