Ostara Sabbat Box Theme Release • Emergence
• EMERGENCE •
Our theme this Sabbat for Ostara is emergence. As the Northern Hemisphere begins to green again, we can see this emergence over and over before our eyes: rising from the earth, hibernating animals make their way out of their dens; seedlings and bulbs poke out of the dirt and reach for the earlier sunrise; the Goddess has emerged from Her time of shadow and diminishment into a young Spring maiden. This is the time when many feasts and honorariums in ancient times were celebrated, praising and revering the vegetation gods and making sacrifices for a successful sowing of crops and increase in livestock. In a time when every new life, animal or vegetable, was crucial to continued survival, our Pagan ancestors looked to the joy of the baby calf or blooming flower as victory over the long darkness of winter.
Ostara, historically, is also the Sabbat that commemorates the Spring Equinox. The word “East”—a cardinal direction most associated with the rising sun and the sign of air—comes from the German root word of Ostara. The day of the Spring Equinox brings alignment of the sun with due east, the day ending when the sun sets due west. This alignment is the first indication that there will be a time period when the days will now be longer than the night, allowing for increased sunshine and an abundance of light.
Ostara also the foundation of another Christian holiday, built on ancient Pagan feasts and traditions: Easter. Like Yule, there are many overlaps in traditions and customs that ancient Pagans practiced that were soon adopted by Christians. The ancient fertility symbol of the egg, for instance, is representation of the new life (and potential for life) that appears in nests at this time of year. Another common Easter symbol is the hare—the “Easter Bunny”—which has long been a representation of new life and reproduction.
For Pagans, this Sabbat can also be described as “hopeful balance.” While it is an equinox, we understand that light and dark are swapping places, and that longer days and more light are our immediate future. This is a powerful time for Pagans to focus their works on increase, rising to the obstacles in life, and taking steps to foster financial and spiritual prosperity.
As you celebrate Ostara this year—however you choose to honor this rising emergence of Nature—we encourage you to face the rising sun and look forward to brighter days ahead. While we may not literally be resurrected or reborn at this time, the Sabbat gives us an opportunity to look at those areas of our lives that we can renew and refurbish.
Emerge from your dens, your caves of stagnation and lack! Throw off the winter coat of darkness and embrace the eastward dawn! Now is the time to allow yourself to be reborn—in your relationships, in your work, in your life. Rub your eyes and awaken! Let the spirit of Ostara help you shine a light on the path ahead. Emerge from the old and dead…awaken to the new!
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OSTARA SABBAT BOXES ARE SET TO SHIP: MARCH 10, 2016
- Aeden B