This has been a holy/sacred week and weekend of observances for many people across diverse spiritual and religious paths.
Ive shared below this brief summary about Ishtar, Easter, etc. It is always fascinating for me, personally, to learn and work with new pieces of information ~ due to my deep appreciation and curiosity of root suffixes, etymology, etc etc etc…
Im aware of Ishtar and the root origins around that. However, today, I learned another piece related to Ishtar which I will share in another post here. It is a love story and written originated from the Hittite civilization. I appreciated this layer being added to my learning.
Whatever your traditions, cultural roots, origins, and paths of beliefs ~ i wish today to be full of beauty, joy, abundance, and magic in all ways for you and yours.
A Brief History of Eostre, Ishtar, Ostara, Easter🌷🐰🌷🐣🌷🐇🌷
Since ancient times, Eostre has been a celebration of spring, rejuvenation, revival, and fertility. It is a time for molting and rebirth. The symbolic resurrection story is echoed in the awakening of the plant and animal life around us.
Eggs, bunnies, candy, Easter baskets, flowers – all these traditions have their origin in practices which have little or nothing to do with religion – until the Roman Empire made it a religious holiday.
The Easter Bunny is rooted in sexual activity, birth, and new life…both animal and human. Sexual activity is the root of all new life: to honor this activity is to honor the most direct connection to nature.
The association of rabbits with Easter has a connection with fertility. These furry creatures reproduce rapidly, and often. The same goes with chicks, who emerge wobbly and slimy from their eggs only to become fluffy, yellow and cute within a few hours.
The act of coloring eggs and giving eggs at Easter is an ancient tradition. Eggs are symbols of fertility…and spring is the season when many animals mate…and flowers/trees pollinate and reproduce.
Among Greeks, eggs are traditionally dyed dark red and given as gifts. And in modern western culture, eggs are often dyed multiple colors…then hidden.
As for the Easter egg hunt, eggs were/are decorated and offered as gifts…symbolizing prosperity and abundance in the coming year. People hid eggs for children to seek and find. Even in ancient times, this would take place with the children of the village looking in gardens and beneath fences and other locations.
Long before the dawn of some modern religions, rituals followed a more simplistic path. Guided by the natural cycle of birth-life-death-renewal, ancient people recognized the seasons by celebrating each phase of the yearly cycle.
The festivals that mark the change of seasons – winter, spring, summer and fall – have been transposed to our modern world. Old ways of honoring these times have been woven into some modern rituals today.
The celebration of Equinox and Solstice are commonly referred to as pagan holidays. The origin of the word ‘pagan’ is from the Latin word ‘Paganus’…meaning ‘country dweller’.
The latter Roman Empire (under Emperor Constantine) used religion as a political tool to gather people under one umbrella…or one religion. The latter Roman Empire used the word ‘pagan’ as a derogatory term to label non-Christians.
Bolstered (funded) by the Roman Empire under Emperor Constantine (and later the Pope), Christianity spread through most of the towns and cities of the empire…but was not as accepted and embraced outside of those domains.
Those whose livelihood depended on the natural cycles of the seasons still followed ancient customs, rituals, and lore.
So the term ‘paganus’ became synonymous with one who not only lived in rural areas (most of ancient Europe), but also one who did not follow the ordinations of the Roman Empire.
In time…and through language changes…the old Latin word of ‘paganus’ (country dweller) became shortened to ‘pagan’…while its original meaning became (almost) lost in the passage of time, the reference to non-religious customs remained.
The word ‘Easter’ is derived from the much older word ‘Eostre’ – The origin of the word “east” (where the sun rises) is derived from various Austro-Hungarian and Germanic words for the word ‘Dawn’…that share the root of the word ‘Aurora’…which means ‘to rise and shine.’
Ostara, Oestra, and Ishtar are other ancient words that have similar meanings, but were used in different regions of the world.
The Vernal Equinox usually falls somewhere between March 19th and 22nd and depending upon when the first full moon on or after the Equinox occurs, Easter falls sometime between late-March and mid-April.
Equinox is the midpoint in the seasons between the Winter and Summer Solstices.
Ostara/Eostre/Ishtar/Easter represents the return of the Sun…the return of spring life-force from the long season of dormant winter sleep…
Trees begin to bud, cherry blossoms burst open, the ground births new life, the rains diminish, sap begins to flow, and the fragrance and color of spring slowly awakens and rejuvenates our own lives…