What’s a blog for if not for ranting? I’ll just warn the Christian section (vanishingly small) of my readers (again, vanishingly small) to beware.
Every year around this time, you see church leaders and that silly guy in the white hat talking about Christ, how he died for our sins, and how he was resurrected a few days later. Bollocks. It’s all about timing, and how the Christian festival of Easter was plonked headfirst on the pagan festival of Eostre, a spring festival held at the equinox.
Channel 4 – Time Team: “[Eostre] gave her name to the Christian spring festival of Easter, which was originally held on the same day as the festival of Eostre – 21 March, the spring equinox. The modern Easter symbolism of Easter eggs and the Easter bunny arise from pagan custom. The eggs symbolise fertility and rebirth. The rabbit (more properly the hare, which ancient folklore associates with laying eggs) was Eostre’s sacred animal.”
More detail about how this hare lays eggs, from the excitingly named News Letter: “One strangely heartwarming tale about Eostre might even explain why rabbits and eggs have become associated with the Easter festival. The story goes that one winter day, while out walking, Eostre found an injured bird and, in order to save it, turned it into a hare. Unfortunately, the transformation did not go exactly according to plan — the bird achieved the appearance of a hare, but retained the ability to lay eggs. And so it was that this bizarre creature began leaving his eggs — decorated by his own fair paw — as gifts for Eostre!”
So I hope everyone’s celebrating Easter in the contemporary spirit, i.e. enjoying shaped chocolate for breakfast. And then buying more on Tuesday when it’s half price. Chocolate for everyone!