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The Llewellyn Encyclopedia

Term: Easter

DEFINITIONS

Easter:

Celebration of the resurrection of the Christian deity, Jesus, known as the Christ, three days after His death from crucifixion. Easter is associated with astronomical indicators and is therefore a “moveable feast,” its date changing each year. In 325 c.e. it was fixed as the first Sunday after the full moon following the spring equinox. This means it will occur between March 22 and April 25.

According to the Christian monk the Venerable Bede (673–735 c.e.), the renowned recorder of the early history of Christianity in England, the name of the holiday is derived from the name of the Germanic goddess of the dawn, Eostre, “in whose honor feasts were celebrated in that month” during which Easter is celebrated. [From De Temporum Ratione (On the Reckoning of Time) c. 730.] Her symbols are hares and eggs, indicating that those symbols of Easter would have a Pagan origin. More recently, scholars have questioned Bede’s accuracy, claiming that the name was not associated with a goddess and the symbols were simply Germanic Easter practices. This does not explain how the use of those symbols began, only that they were used.




ARTICLES

Ostara
OSTARA is the Scandinavian goddess of spring who symbolized the rebirth of Nature. During her festival it was the Pagan custom to exchange colored eggs as symbols of renewal. Her sacred animal was the hare. Many modern Wiccans point to the festival ...
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Postures and Movements—East and West
“Postures” generally refer to Eastern yogic postures along with controlled breathing, and our familiar Western postures of standing and sitting. In addition, postures involve intentional movement—even if just sitting with grace and ...
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The History of the Golden Dawn
The story of the Golden Dawn, like that of any human organization, is replete with high points and low points—with human achievements and human failings. There is no need for us to try to whitewash or sugarcoat the faults of some of the individuals ...
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The Robin Wood Tarot—A Review
Summary: A delightful delicacy in lively, stand-out color that modernizes the Rider-Waite-Smith deck in style while keeping most of the symbolism (including the medieval context) and making the characters’ personalities really apparent. This moves ...
Relevance:  3 % 3%


Review of The Robin Wood Tarot
Summary: A delightful delicacy in lively, stand-out color that modernizes the Rider-Waite-Smith deck in style while keeping most of the symbolism (including the medieval context) and making the characters’ personalities really apparent. This moves ...
Relevance:  3 % 3%


Magical Tattwa Cards
Summary: A unique deck of cards that unites the Eastern Tattwa symbols and the Western flashing colors. Great for broad, general divinations and for a wide variety of magical work. Especially good for Golden Dawn practitioners or for people ...
Relevance:  3 % 3%


Six Forces of Magick
Enochian Magick recognizes six primary forces in the manifested cosmic planes of existence as follows: 1. Divine Force. This is the Supreme Force relative to our universe. The forces of light and heat are but pale reflections of this highly ...
Relevance:  2 % 2%


Review of the Celtic Dragon Tarot
Summary: A deck that will appeal to lovers of dragons, especially in a Celtic context. As this deck follows the RWS "standard," it will be usable by beginners and pros looking for an additional deck to add to their collection. A must for lovers of ...
Relevance:  2 % 2%


Review of The Manga Tarot
Summary: The Manga Tarot is a beautiful and insightful deck. It skillfully combines the evocative and fantastical feel of Manga with the equally evocative format of Tarot. Add to the mix some creative changes and juxtapositions and you’ve got a deck ...
Relevance:  2 % 2%


Witchcraft: Death and Resurrection
Soon the leaders of the new religion, determined to wield absolute control over all aspects of human life, sought to stamp out such crimes of heresy as foretelling the future, psychic healing, spiritualism, the creation of protective amulets and ...
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Demons, fairies, and saints—together? These are not three categories we think of together. In past eras, however, perceptions of the supernatural world were much more fluid. Magicians of the Renaissance would not be averse to calling upon whatever beings were available that could teach them secrets, acquire treasure, or gain the love of... read this article
5 Reasons to Combine Crystals, Oils, and Essences to Facilitate a Life Well Lived
May Bush and Wishing Tree Magick for Beltane
Improving Your Habits with Lunar Help
Dispelling the Superstition and Fear of Communicating with Our Loved Ones in Spirit
Everyday Witchcraft

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