Easter in Autumn
Happy Easter friends! Today I wish to write about making sense of celebrating a Spring festival in Autumn and as a mother, thinking about how to share this special festival with our son in a wholistic way.
I have been researching the origins of Easter this week as a pagan festival, celebrating the goddess of fertility, dawn and light. Called Eostre in ancient germanic culture, Ishtar in Arabian culture, she had many other names also pertaining to the sun coming from the East, bringing the Spring time of rebirth and abundance. Also, the heavier Christian symbols of the death and resurection of Jesus Christ are present. Then we have eggs, bunny rabbits and chocolate thown in the mix surrounded by the season of Autumn and plenty of rain.
So the question I had was; how do I help our two year old son understand this time of year and all of these symbols and sensations?
Well, we started by telling a simple story of a mother and father rabbit with seven children. Each rabbit had to prove their ability to deliver the egg safely to the children and become the true Easter bunny. I made a felt rabbit stuffed with wool to place on our seasonal table and we spoke about collecting Easter eggs from Nanny’s garden on Sunday. Kai began to get excited. We also continued to talk about Autumn man, who comes to paint the leaves and prepare the Earth for colder weather.
While researching, I found a wonderful website by a woman called Annie Bryant who lives in Mullumbimby. She offered a beautiful story called the Moon Hare which combines the season of Autumn with the surprises of a magical Easter hare. Follow this link to read the story and find some more about Annie’s inspiring work. http://www.talesandsongs.com/the-moon-hare-an-autumn-easter-story/
Traditionally Autumn is the second harvest, so true to the Easter basket it is a time of gathering and preparation- collecting fallen fruits, nuts, seeds and herbs for conserving over the winter. I also loved an idea I saw on pinterest to blow eggs and then dye them and hang them on a bare branch in the house with seedpods and other symbols of the coming of new life.
The idea that Autumn is a time to clear and clense (the rains falling), to let go of the old (falling leaves) and make space for new growth (seed pods/rebirth) can be woven into the story of Easter quite easily. I found some pictures of the Spring and Autumn goddesses which helped me to imagine this combination.
Lastly our Sunday was spent with family, sharing a warm meal together, hunting for Easter eggs around the house, painting and making chocolate crackle nests for little chicks. Kai really enjoyed his day and I hope some of these symbols carried a deeper meaning of natures natural rhythms to his heart.
In our RAMA project we hope to find connection to our planet in a harmonious way through environmentally conscious projects and awareness. I hope that sharing this journey of understanding the seasons and festivals with you, we are working towards that. Thank you for reading and I would love to hear your thoughts on Easter celebrations and how you spent your weekend. Blessings and love, the RAMA family.