The Wheel of the Year is turning again, with this turn comes the Vernal Equinox, Spring, or Eostara. At this time the hours of daylight and night are balanced. Equinox marks the time the sun passes over the celestial equator. After this time and until the Autumnal Equinox, daylight will increase.
At this point in the Wheel of the Year, the great Mother Goddess, who is remade virgin at the springing in Imbolc, now wears the aspect of the Spring Maiden. She meets the young God, the Youth of Spring, born into at Yule. Together, the joining of their youthful, vibrant feminine and masculine energies will gestate and plant the seeds of life and growth upon which the continued turning of the Wheel depends. When She welcomes the young Sun God unto her, a child is conceived of this divine union. The child is born nine months later, at Yule, Winter Solstice.
The Goddess´s orgasms blanket the Earth with fertility. She burgeons from Her slumber, as the God stretches and grows to maturity. She oversees the budding plants and burgeoning fertility of the Earth. He walks the greening fields and delights in the abundance of nature. The energies of Nature subtly shift from the sluggishness of Winter to the exuberant expansion of Spring.
The spring equinox in the Northern Hemisphere falls on Friday March 20 this year (2020), the earliest equinox for over 100 years.!
Eostre, the Saxon and Ostara, the German Goddess of fertility are invoked at this Sabbat. In Her Anglo-Saxon form She also represents the dawn.
Eostara proclaims the birth of Spring, the reawakening of life from the Earth, the renewal and rebirth of Nature herself. The season’s change from dark winter to brightening spring, is a time of fertility, for the sowing and emerging of seeds.
Praise the arrival of Spring and the coming lushness of Summer! Light and darkness are in balance, yet the light is growing stronger by the day. The forces of masculine and feminine energy, yin and yang, are in balance.
At this time we think of renewing ourselves. We renew our thoughts, our dreams, and our aspirations, our relationships. This is an excellent time of year to begin anything new or to completely revitalize something.
This sabbat of balance and beginnings is the traditional time to prepare for future planting. The time of tending to and blessing the seeds and future grains of our physical, spiritual, and ritual gardens.
Observe the meeting of the Sun Prince and the Young Maid. Honour all that is youthful, innocent and new. Bless the seeds of future. This is a time of new beginnings and of action.
The colours associated with Eostara are lemon yellow, pale green and pale pink. Other appropriate colours include grass green, all pastels, Robin’s egg blue, violet and white
Personal altars should reflect the Spring sabbat. Decorate your altar in any of the above colours
As Ostara is a time of balance between light and dark. Symbols of polarity can be used. A god and goddess statue, a white candle a black one, a sun and moon, a yin/yang symbol.
Eostara is also a time of new growth and life; potted plants such as new crocuses, daffodils, lilies, and other magical spring flowers, a basket of eggs or figures of lambs, rabbits, calves, etc., a chalice of milk and/or honey. Milk represents new birth, honey is a symbol of abundance.
You could make incense to burn on your altar from a blend from any of the following scents or simply choose one… jasmine, frankincense, myrrh, dragon’s blood, cinnamon, nutmeg, aloes wood, benzoin, musk, African violet, sage, strawberry, lotus, violet flowers, orange peel, or rose petals. Suggestion: A pale green altar cloth with purple(s) and/or blue(s) draped across, add some yellow or pink (candles) to carry the colour up.
Other Spring symbols
Seeds and bulbs
Caterpillars, ladybirds, bumblebees
Gemstones and crystals: aquamarine, rose quartz, and moonstone
Ritual fires in a cauldron or brazier
The earth is cool and dark, and far below, new life begins.
May the soil be blessed with fertility and abundance,
with rains of life-giving water,
with the heat of the sun,
with the energy of the raw earth.
May the soil be blessed
as the womb of the land becomes full and fruitful
to bring forth the garden anew.
Deities for Eostara; all Youthful and Virile Gods and Goddesses, Fertility, Sun and Moon Deities. Mother Goddesses, Love Goddesses.
Aphrodite, Athena, Blodeuwedd, Cybele, Eostre, Flora, Gaia, Hera, Isis, Ishtar, Minerva, Persephone, Venus,
Herne, Robin of the Woods, the Green Man, Cernunnos, Lord of the Greenwood, The Dagda, Attis, The Great Horned God, Mithras, Odin, Thoth, Osiris, and Pan.
Many customs, ringing bells, lighting new fires at dawn to heal, renew life and protect the crops still survive in the Southern Americas and Europe and other continents.
Decorating hard-boiled eggs or blown eggshells is an ancient custom. The golden orb of yolk represents the Sun God, the shell the White or Brown Goddess, the whole is a symbol of rebirth.
Eggs were gathered and used to make talismans and/or ritually eaten. The gathering of different coloured eggs from the nests of a variety of birds has gave rise to the Easter egg hunt, and colouring eggs in imitation of the various pastel colours of wild birds. It is believed that humankind learnt weaving from watching birds make nests. Also perhaps the origin of Easter baskets.
As Spring is the season of new life and nature’s fertility goes a little crazy. We can channel this frantic, fertile energy into magical workings. Key actions to keep in mind during this time include openings and new beginnings.
Eostara is the best time to start putting those plans and preparations you made at Imbolc into action. Start working towards physically manifesting your plans now. Spell work for fertility and abundance, improving communication and group interaction are recommended. This is also an excellent month for prosperity rituals or any rituals to do with growth.
“Spring cleaning” is much more than simple physical work. It can be seen as the concentrated efforts to rid your home of problems and negativity especially those of the past Winter months, an way to prepare for the coming spring and summer. Approach the task of cleaning with positive thoughts. This frees the home of all negative feelings brought about in winter.
A common rule of thumb for Spring cleaning is; all motions involving scrubbing (stains) or mopping the floors should be done “clockwise”. Pagans believe this custom aids in filling the home with good energy for growth
- place a rabbit skin under your bed to bring fertility and abundance to your sexual activities. If you’re opposed to the use of real fur, use some other symbol of the rabbit that you’re more comfortable with.
- A rabbit’s foot is said to bring good luck to those who carry it.
- For boundless energy, carry a talisman engraved or painted with a rabbit’s image.
- In some magical traditions, the wild rabbit is associated with the deities of spring, make a wish and leave them an offering of lettuce, shredded carrots, cabbage, or other fresh greens..
- Rabbits and hares go to ground very quickly if they sense danger. Add a few rabbit hairs to a witch bottle for protection magic.
- In some legends, rabbits and hares are the messengers of the underworld coming and going into and out of the earth as they please. Do a meditation that involves an underworld journey, calling upon rabbit or hare to be your guide.
Animals associated with this time include the mythical specifically unicorns, merpeople and Pegasus. Worms, are also celebrated now they one of the first denizens of the animal kingdom, as they emerge, symbolizing the serpent and all it’s lore.
Rabbits and Hares have been long associated with Spring, fertility magic and sexual energy. Eostre’s patron animal is the hare.
The “Easter bunny” first appeared in 16th-century German writings, which said that well-behaved children, would be rewarded with coloured eggs if they built a nest with their caps or bonnets.
Hares are nocturnal most of the year, but in March when mating season begins, they are everywhere all day long. The female is super fecund and can conceive a second litter while still pregnant with the first. The males become frustrated when rebuffed by their mates and bounce around erratically when discouraged, especially at this time of year when go a bit bonkers.
The term “mad as a March hare” is found in it’s earliest form in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, in the Friar’s Tale: For though this man were wild as is a hare, to tell his evil deeds I will not spare.
In 1500, in the poem ‘Blowbol’s Test’ the original (unknown) poet said:
Thanne þey begyn to swere and to stare, And be as braynles as a Marshe hare
(Then they begin to swerve and to stare, And be as brainless as a March hare)
In the 28 October 1908 publication of the British Daily Telegraph, German Kaiser Wilhelm II was quoted as saying: “You English are mad, mad, mad as March hares.” The remark intended to improve German–British relations was a major diplomatic blunder.
Link appropriate food to ritual (hard-boiled) eggs, egg salad, (honey) cakes, first fruits of the season, fish, biscuits, cheeses, honey, ham. leafy, green vegetables, sunflower, pumpkin and sesame seeds, pine nuts, sprouts
Try making flower dishes like stuffed nasturtiums or carnation cupcakes (recipe suggestion below) Eostara meat dishes should contain fish or ham
For hundreds of years, plants that we grow have been used in magic. Flowers magical applications.
- Crocus: One of the first to see in the spring, often associated with newly blooming love. The crocus is also known to enhance visions and bring about intuitive dreams.
- Daffodil: It’s bright petals are typically shades of white, yellow or even pale orange. This flower is associated with love and fertility — place fresh ones in your home to bring about abundance. Wear this flower close to your heart to draw love and luck.
- Dandelion: The leaf of the dandelion is used for healing, purification, and ritual cleansing. To bring positive change about, plant dandelions in the north west corner of your property. The bright yellow flowers can be used in divination, or placed in a sachet to draw good energy your way.
- Echinacea: Also called purple cornflower, this garden mainstay adds a little bit of magical “oomph” to charms and sachets. Use for prosperity related workings. Burn the dried flowers in incense, use on your altar or during ritual as an offering to deities.
- Goldenseal: The sunny yellow flower often found in the wild, along roadsides and in fields. Use it in money spells, or for business dealings. Work it into charms connected to matters of financial gain or legal issues.
- Hibiscus: This lusty flower incites passion. Use it to attract love or lust, or for prophetic dreams about your lover. Burn in incense, or carry in a sachet to bring love your way.
- Hyacinth: Named for Hyakinthos, a Greek hero beloved by Apollo, is considered the patron herb of gay men. Hyacinth is known to promote peaceful sleep, it guards against nightmares. Carry in an amulet to help heal a broken heart or to ease grief when a loved one dies.
- Irish Moss: Carrageen) is not a true moss, but dried seaweed, chondrus crispus. Widely believed to bring about good fortune in money matters, through business success and good luck in gambling. Carry some in a green flannel bag or in a pocket when placing a bet or buy a lottery ticket it is said to ‘bring in the winnings’. Or sprinkle it under the carpets at a place of business to attract and hold a stream of Steady Paying Customers.
- Jasmine: considered one of the most powerful flowers used in spell work and magic. It evokes sensuality passion, clarity and calm. Use in rituals for love, prophecy and predictions
- Lily: The Easter lily or Tiger lily is associated with all kinds of Spring connections — fertility, rebirth, renewal and abundance.
- Narcissus: Named for another Greek figure, the Narcissus helps promote polarity and harmony. Its calming vibrations bring about tranquility and inner peace.
- Tulip: has many different colours and varieties, it is connected to prosperity. Combine with colour magic for (full) moon rituals, prosperity or love magic.
- Violet: In Roman myth, the first violet sprung from the spilled blood of Attis, who killed himself for Cybele, the mother goddess. Today the violet is associated with tranquillity and peace. The leaf offers protection from evil, sew some into a pillow or sachet for a new baby. Carry the petals to bring luck and enhance night time magic.
Some suggested flowers for flower cuisine and magic:
- Allium: Blossoms from the allium family are edible. Flavours go from soft to sharp garlic taste. Tou can consume it all of of this amazing plant.
- Anise Hyssop: Flowers and leaves from the anise hyssop are perfect for giving that flavour.
- Carnations: the petals of this beautiful flowers taste sweet and give a perfumed aroma.
- Bachelor Button: The calyx is bitter so only eat the grassy flavoured petals.
- Bee Balm: If you like minty flavour but want a change, try with bee balm. The red flowers are minty and will give a fabulous look to your food.
- Sunflowers: The petals are edible too! The flavour is like artichoke
- Dandelion: has been eaten for centuries, for food but also as a medicine. Young dandelions greens are delicious and tender. Serve it in salads or sandwiches.
- Calendula: are a little bit peppery, tangy and spicy. Their bright colour will get all the attention.
- Roses: The flavor can be incredible. The strong perfumed flavour is perfect for drinks and desserts. All roses are edible but the darker the petal, the better flavour.
For Eostara make spice cupcakes, and place a fresh (carnation) petal on each cupcake.
Stuff (nasturtium, courgette) blossoms with cream cheese, chopped nuts, chives and watercress (or other items from the food list)
Heli St. Luce