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Welcome the spring

by Niina Mero

FOR MODERN man, the vernal or spring equinox is no more than a pointless reminder in the almanac. Nothing happens. Clocks are not advanced until a week later and there’s still a good three weeks until Easter. All the spring equinox does is refer to the date when day and night are of equal length.

However, it is also an ancient holiday celebrating the arrival of spring. For centuries pagans have celebrated this time of harmony, when the powers of light and dark stand in perfect balance. It marks the beginning of spring, an end to the confines of dreary winter. Life begins to sprout anew and the barren, cold landscape gives way to the blossoming spring. The timing of Easter each year is decided according to the first full moon after the spring equinox, and the Christian tradition has a close connection with pagan celebrations of spring. The word “Easter” derives from an Old English word Eastre or Eostre, rooted in the month Eostur-monath named after the Goddess Eostre of Anglo-Saxon pagans. The Teutonic name most modern pagans use for the deity is Ostara.

Read the original article at: Helsinki Times

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