Judith Ashley is the author of The Sacred Women's Circle series, romantic fiction that honors spiritual traditions that nurture the soul.
March 2017 the Genre-istas are talking about the changing seasons and/or the Spring Equinox also known as Ostara.
This year the special day falls on March 20th a Monday. I know I’ve said this at least once before in a blog post however it bears repeating. In ancient times, the people knew their environment to the point they knew when Yule or Winter Solstice, Ostara or Spring Equinox, Lithia or Summer Solstice and Mabon or Fall Equinox fell. They erected wood and stone circles around the world to mark those occasions.
Gabriella learns as she studies Sacred Geometry that Eratosthenes c.275-194 BC used two sticks and a measuring wheel to measure the earth’s circumference = 24,461 miles.
Using the most advanced, expensive technology we now know it is 24,891 miles! A 430 mile discrepancy.
Ostara is the day when day and night are equal and it marks the beginning of the time of the year when light has more power. Plants and people breathe a sigh of relief after winter’s dark months. Hope and life as well as flowers bloom bright.
It is Valentine’s Day as I write this. A few hardy plants in my yard are pushing their way to the surface (daffodils, crocus in particular). Soon tulips and hyacinths will make an appearance. When I look at my Larch Diana (the larch tree loses its needles in the Fall), I can see a reddening where the new needles will appear. Right now the tree seems edged in red, so different from the stark black of a couple of weeks ago.
We had a hard winter where I live and my yard has suffered. My plan is to prune back many of the plants to see if they can recover from their base or roots instead of just at the end of the limbs. My Larch also lost a limb from the heavy snow and ice we had in January. I’ve pulled it to the side to inspect more closely later in the spring. I think making a wand from that branch would be a way to appreciate the gifts this tree gives me each day.
If you read my December post on Winter Solstice, you know that I follow the Wheel of Life through the year and that in my tradition, Winter Solstice is the beginning of the year because that is when Light overcomes Dark and begins to strengthen.
Celebrating Ostara is about acknowledging the power of light, of life, of the continuity or flow as the Wheel turns.
You may not know this but when Christianity was coming into its own as a world religion, many earth-based religion or pagan customs and sacred days were assumed by the new church. Ostara is one of them.
Easter is determined by the following formula: The first Sunday after the first Full Moon after Ostara or the Spring Equinox.
I’m already looking forward to Spring and new growth. The rebirth of my Armistead Salvia will bring butterflies and the hummingbirds who love it so. From my window next to my computer, even when writing, I have a view (albeit small) of nature. This view feeds my writing with inspiration. And I look for the messages the natural world has to tell me.
What have you learned about the natural world that bring amazement and wonder into your life?
And, my March posts on my JudithAshley.blogspot.com site delve into the aspects of Ostara in more detail. Please join me each Monday as I explore The Wheel of the Year: Ostara.
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© 2017 Judith Ashley