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17 Mar 2016

Spring Equinox

Spring Landscape Sun Rise

The Spring Equinox is sometimes referred to as the Vernal Equinox or Ostara.

This period marks a transition point between the light and dark halves of the year. It takes place three days from sunset; in 2016 in the UK this occurs on Sunday 20th March. The sun will rise due east and will set in due west, providing exactly twelve hours of daylight and officially marks the first day of spring. If you look back at Celtic tradition, the equinox signifies when The God of Light overcame his brother – The God of Darkness and as such made the coming days longer than night.

Because Easter is early this year, Good Friday will take place just a few days after the Spring Equinox on the 25th March. Easter is named after the festival of Eostre; it is a time when hens would begin laying eggs for the first time after winter. Eggs would be painted and offered as a gift at the shrine of Goddess Eostre; the hare was sacred to the Norse Ostara and is believed to be the origin of the Easter rabbit.

Many rituals used to take place at this time of year, such as burning corn dolly’s from the past year’s harvest and scattering the ashes in the fields. This act was supposed to promote fertility for the year to come. It is at this time of year that the Blessed Virgin Mary told Angel Gabriel that she would conceive a son. The period celebrates rebirth, energy and new beginnings in all forms.

If you found that New Year resolutions passed you by, or you started some and broke them quickly, then the Spring Equinox could represent a new opportunity to follow a different path. You may find that you are more determined and more capable of making changes during this equinox period. To focus your energy you could try lighting yellow and green candles to represent optimism and clear thinking. There are also many flowers with special meaning to this time of year: Daffodils herald the triumph of the sun with their bright yellow trumpet shaped blooms. Yellow centred daisies – like us they rest at night and spring wide awake during the day; the name daisy means ‘day’s eye’. Lathyrus vernus or sweet pea to you and me truly signifies spring, flowering from March to May. And of course lilies that will decorate many church alters during the Easter period to symbolise the Annunciation and the Immaculate Conception.

Ref: Encyclopaedia of Magic & Ancient Wisdom

Written by: I4C_Blog_Admin