Free crystal with every order! All orders over $75 ship free in the continental US!

Ostara & the Spring Equinox: Celebrating Spring Spirit & Balance

March 18, 2019 0 Comments

Ostara & the Spring Equinox: Celebrating Spring Spirit & Balance

  Image by Maxfield Parrish c. 1916

 

Ostara & the Spring Equinox: Celebrating Spring Spirit & Balance

This year’s spring equinox and Ostara arrive on March 20, for the northern hemisphere the same day as the Libra Supermoon, and offers an opportunity for getting into the spring spirit. Ostara occurs between Imbolc and Beltane as the middle spring festival and representing the Goddess in her fullest Maiden expression. As the sun moves north over the celestial equator creating equal parts day and night while also marking a solar milestone into warmth.

With spring we welcome greener days ahead while plants seem to wake up from their winter slumber with emerging buds and blossoms as symbols of new growth. The energies are more active as animals and humans seem to awaken into more activity, and even the bees return to their pollination cycle. While we have not yet arrived at the heat of Summer, instead we can enjoy the balanced energies of Equinox as the Sun seems to suspend in time. 

In Northern European traditions, spring was celebrated with Ostara--also known as Eostre--a goddess of fertility and dawn. She was often accompanied with a rabbit or basket of eggs. One Germanic story recounts Ostara finding a bird dying from the cold and changed it into a rabbit to keep warm- so it seems she liked birds and bunnies, and we can see where the name and many Easter traditions came from! Eggs have become a perfect symbol for springtime and new beginnings, though the folklore tale of the spring equinox being the only day of the year where you can balance an egg on its end turns out to be false (though that hasn’t stopped me from trying a few times). :P

 

 

However, Ostara herself is also shrouded in mysterious folklore as she is technically only mentioned once in writings by a monk during the 7th century A.C.E. Some scholars even think he may have made her up. Because of this, there is debate among scholars about whether Ostara was traditionally celebrated or if it is a more modern neo-Pagan holiday.

Wiccan mythology may not have worshipped Ostara at all, but Druids and ancient Eastern European cultures painted eggs and had symbols of the rabbit for fertility. And without a doubt spring has been an important turning point for many cultures and religions. In fact, Hindu Holi, Jewish Purim, Sikh Hola Mohalla, and Christian Easter all occur around the same time as Ostara and the Vernal Equinox.

 

Everyday ritual recommendations to celebrate Ostara or simply get into the Spring Spirit:

  • Create an altar with flowers, plants, crystals such as aquamarine or rose quartz, and symbolism such as ladybugs or bees. 
  • Wear flowy tops and skirts or floral patterns to welcome the new spring growth
  • Eat egg dishes such as quiches, frittatas, or omelettes to get into the fertility spirit
  • Greet the sun at sunrise with sun salutations or just a quick hello
  • Put flowers or something bright in the Eastern-facing area of your home
  

      ostara peach blossom

       

       

       

       

       

      Rebecca Farrar of Wild Witch of the West has her M.A. in Philosophy, Cosmology, and Consciousness, and has worked with many renowned astrologists and cosmologists. Read her bio here, and catch more of her work on Witch of the West.

      ______________________________________

      Read more on astrology, horoscopes, occultism, magick & ritual on our blog, Esoteric Insights!





        Also in Esoteric Insights

        Revolution Calls: New Moon in Aquarius, January 24, 2020
        Revolution Calls: New Moon in Aquarius, January 24, 2020

        January 23, 2020 0 Comments

        With this New Moon, expect a strong need for emotional freedom! As with all new moons, we welcome new opportunities and experiences. This is a potent time to conduct any new rituals or habits to assist with changes. Aquarius is considered to be a fixed air element and presides over all matters revolutionizing. Adopting new and unorthodox ways of viewing the world is likely to help you in the weeks ahead. Aquarius is an incredibly intelligent and social sign, so it’s possible some quality time with a like-minded friend or group could provide...

        Continue Reading

        Aquarius: Evolution & Expression
        Aquarius: Evolution & Expression

        January 20, 2020 0 Comments

        The word “Aquarius” comes from Latin meaning “water-carrier, water-pourer.” Its astrological symbol represents water, but looks like an electrical jolt. And rightfully so—Aquarius connects us to energies of originality, eccentricity, freedom, radical expression, and epiphanies of all sorts. It craves innovation and orients us to the future and what is possible. When sparked it catalyzes creativity, new insights, or exciting novelty. Activated Aquarius energy in our society spurs...

        Continue Reading

        Deities and Demons: Shiva the Destroyer
        Deities and Demons: Shiva the Destroyer

        January 08, 2020 0 Comments

        Shiva is a complex Hindu Deity whose identity is inseparable from the Hindu Trimurti (or trinity) of Gods, composed of Brahma as Creator, Vishnu as Preserver, and Shiva as Destroyer. In that they are a trinity, neither of them is exclusively bound to the actions their names would imply, and instead each acts as a mask of inertia upon the stage that is life. The role Shiva plays in the game of life is that of a juggler who effortlessly balances the opposing forces of creation and destruction, asceticism and procreation, stillness and dancing, order and chaos. There are myths that...

        Continue Reading