Saturday, 19 March 2011

Spring Equinox!!!

What a beautiful day it has been today in South Eastern England!!  The promise of warmer days to come.  A lovely drive in the country under blue skies which have been absent for so very long........

I thought I would look into all the different ways of celebrating this time of year,  none of the below links are part of my own belief system,  but all of them are interesting and somewhat bizarre at times!!

The vernal or Spring equinox is not just a Christian time of year in the 'run-up' to Easter,  it has been celebrated by many cultures through time immemorial....

The Pagans and Wiccans were and still are busy celebrating Ostara


In ancient Egypt the festival of Isis was observed when the goddess was in mourning for her dead lover who was resurrected..Some people still believe in this festival as the following link shows:


In Ireland, St. Patrick's Day is celebrated each year on March 17. St. Patrick is known as a symbol of Ireland, particularly around every March. One of the reasons he is so famous is because he drove the snakes out of Ireland, and was even credited with a miracle for this. What many people don't realize is that the serpent was actually a metaphor for the early Pagan faiths of Ireland. St. Patrick brought Christianity to the Emerald Isle, and did such a good job of it that he practically eliminated Paganism from the country.

Ancient religious stones in Ireland

Ancient stone circle in Cork, Ireland

For the ancient Romans, the Feast of Cybele celebrated every spring. Cybele was a mother goddess who was at the centre of a Phrygian fertility cult, and eunuch priests performed mysterious rites in her honour. Her lover was Attis (who also happened to be her grandson), and her jealousy caused him to castrate and kill himself. His blood was the source of the first violets, and divine intervention allowed Attis to be resurrected by Cybele, with some help from Zeus. In some areas, there is still an annual celebration of Attis' rebirth and Cybele's power, called the Hilaria, observed from March 15 th to March 28th  .

One of Judaism's biggest festivals is Passover, which takes place in the middle of the Hebrew month of Nisan. It was a pilgrimage festival, and commemorates the exodus of the Jews from Egypt after centuries of slavery. A special meal is held, called the Seder, and it is concluded with the story of the Jews leaving Egypt, and readings from a special book of prayers. Part of the eight-day Passover traditions include a thorough spring cleaning, going through the house from top to bottom.

Many Christian homes have the tradition of 'Spring Cleaning'  I am so looking forward to opening my windows and doors and thoroughly re-vamping my home in honour of the sunshine!!!!

In Russia, the celebration of Maslenitsa is observed as a time of the return of light and warmth. This folk festival is celebrated about seven weeks before Easter. During the Lent season, meat and fish and dairy products are prohibited. Maslentisa is the last chance anyone will get to enjoy those items for a while, so it's typically a big festival held before the sombre, introspective time of Lent. A straw effigy of the Lady of Maslenitsa, is burned in a bonfire. Leftover pancakes and blintzes are tossed in as well, and when the fire has burned away, the ashes are spread in the fields to fertilize the year's crops.

.So let us jump for joy and be happy no matter how we celebrate the first day of Spring!!!

(credit to to painting: Sir Lawrence Alma Tadema


  1. A super beautiful post and tribute to this gorgeous time of year..Happy Ostara!!...I love this is so wonderful..thanks for a beautiful post! Gorgeous photos...

  2. thank you for sharing the many ways people celebrate this time of year. Spring seems to inspire most of us.

  3. I love all the images decorating your blog!
    It's the most beautiful one I have ever seen
    I have enjoyed reading your post and practising english...I need learn a lot more excuseme my mistakes
    Love,meeting you is a pleasure