Do the various pagan/earth religions observe the occurrence of the vernal equinox in any way?

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Given that it’s less than a month until the vernal equinox, I happened to wonder if this date is observed or celebrated in any way by pagan/earth religions. Likewise, is there any observance of the autumnal equinox? Thanks!

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The Oracle

Pagans recognised this time of the year long before the xtians took it over and called it Easter.
Pagan roots of Easter lie in celebrating the spring equinox, for millennia an important holiday in many religions. Celebrating the beginning of spring may be among the oldest holidays in human culture. Occurring every year on March 20, 21, or 22, the spring equinox is the end of winter and beginning of spring. Biologically and culturally, it represents for northern climates the end of a “dead” season and the rebirth of life, as well as the importance of fertility and reproduction.

runeman11

Wicca celebrates 8 Sabbats. They are divided into two groups, the Quarters (which are solar in nature) and the Cross-Quarters. The Quarters are Yule and Litha (Winter and Summer solstice) and Mabon and Ostara (Equinoxes).
The particular myths associated with the Sabbats varies from tradition to tradition. In my particular tradition of Wicca, Ostara is the time when the new God quickens within the womb of the Goddess, analogous to the fast approaching Spring. Mabon is when the spirit of the slain God hangs low over the face of the Earth, preparing to move into the Otherwold at Samhain.

sha_lyn68

Most do
In many traditions the equinoxes and solstices are minor holidays. The cross quarter days (the midpoint between the equinoxes and solstices) are the more important holidays.
This site explains the holidays on the wheel of the year
http://www.witchway.net/days/days.html

Jewel

As a matter of fact, yes.
My tradition of eclectic Wicca refers to the vernal equinox as Oestara, and specifically it’s a celebration of Eostre, the goddess of spring and renewed fertility.
The name is, incidentally, where the word “Easter” came from, and most of our celebration looks a great deal like modern Christian celebrations of Easter, except for the part about the carpenter’s resurrection. Bunnies and eggs and soft pastel colors…rabbit stew and egg dishes are traditional, and when we decorate eggs we talk about our hopes for the coming year. The Goddess as Maiden is an important theme, as well as the young trickster God, and we try to reflect those themes in our circle. We’re always excited to see the first real signs of spring, and things can get pretty wild!
The autumnal equinox is quieter, as we prepare for the world’s long sleep. It’s a good time to take stock of what we’ve accomplished, our harvests both literal and metaphorical.

Tahuti Reincarnate

Actually, of the ancient pagan religions, some celebrated the Vernal Equinox, others did not. Some celebrated what we would call “Cross Quarters” only. (evenly spaced between the equinoxes and solstices.
The Equinox, however, is one of my favorite holidays, because my birthday is in March! yay me.

Priestess Jean

Greetings Trish,
The main festivals in my religion are the solstices
and equinoxes. After a ritual of thanks to the Goddess
we enjoy a celebration with good food and drink, music,
and whatever other hedonisic activities the members
wish to indulge in.
Blessings,
Jean

Ruth Aravah, JPA

answer: in addition to Wicca and other pagan religions, Heathenism also celebrates a harvest feast in the Fall and a spring ritual at the vernal equinox, dedicated to Ostara. Rabbits, eggs, feasting, good mead = Heathen celebration of Spring

Fire Tiger ~{JPA}~

I’m in rehab from holidays, I totally disliked them growing up as a christian, and still am subjected to them now as I still live with my family. . . so in my protest of their holidays I work all day and dont celebrate any holidays, instead I thank the goddess/god for each day I am given and find something special out in nature that is a blessing for me to be near.
that all being said, I am starting to research and think about doing more then stopping and saying a few words on each pagan holiday. I don’t know if i’ll ever celebrate every holiday, but knowing me I’ll be more likely to only celebrate the non-winter ones, just because that’s my preferance. My fav holiday tho is this next one comming up because hey, I’m an aries spring baby. . .so this time of year makes me feel more alive and happy then any other time of year.
When I do get out on my own, a simple dinner and doing up my own place in signs/symbols/colors of each holiday is what I’m thinking, I perfer the simple things and rather keep to the short walks thru the woods as I do now and whisper a few words.

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