Wednesday 20 April 2011

A Happy Easter

Image by Thalia Took

Over millennia, legions of christian mind-benders have hi-jacked the period around the spring equinox for the celebration of their own gruesome beliefs and rituals. Yet, unlike Christmas, they have failed to impose on it, an English name of uniquely christian significance.

The etymology is complicated but 'Easter' is believed to have developed via Old English from the word for April, Eostur-monath, in the Germanic calendar; and the Venerable Bede reckoned that this was so named after the pagan goddess Eostre whose festival was celibrated in that month. Other, more recent,  linguistic scholars have identified the goddess as a Germanic reconstruction of the Proto-Indo-European goddess of the dawn, 'Hausos'. In short the name has its roots in pre-christian beliefs, and from ancient time customs associated with it, frequently involving hares, rabbits and eggs, have survived to this day.

With that clarification in mind we can wish each other a "Happy Easter" safe in the knowledge that we are not celebrating the image of a scourged, crucified body and its mythical resurrection, or by a process of tortuous, insane reasoning extracting some theological message from it;  but rather being glad that the earth is still rolling round the sun, that the season of growth and renewal is once again upon us, and that we are here to enjoy it.

"To have lived at all is a dream come true; to live in awe of the dream is cause to celebrate and revel in the wonder of Life and all its delicious bedlammy; from lovers spurned and fortunes lost to plots unbound and rivals crushed, let us bask in the splendifery and wallow in the mayhemble - be it good or bad, we celebrate Life!" ~ Marco Dodo

1 comment:

  1. Mmmn, but you see hot X buns and 'easter' chocolate eggs are both delicious!

    Mind you - I think that lots of Jewish food is lovely and I suspect that the Muslims and the Hindus both have some lovely things to eat as well!

    We could just call them 'traditional' or something I suppose.