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Magickal Musings From Infinite Flame

Ostara/Spring Equinox
Define "wicked".......


Happy Spring!!

Don’t let the cold temperatures fool you, Mother Earth is awakening and preparing to dazzle us with her spring beauty. The robins have come quietly back, unlike the geese whom I’ve heard announce their return often in the past few days. The air smells less ‘cold’ and more earthy. People are feeling more active..... and more frisky : )

The Spring Equinox is a day of balance; equal night and day. But for us pagans it is more. It is a spring celebration. The celebration Christians stole much of the imagery from to help convert the people to their Easter. How many Christians realize that even the very name Easter comes from the Goddess Eostre? Well, I won’t tell them if you won’t. This month I will share some info about the Goddess Ostara, a Goddess I feel a strong to connection to.

Ostara

In a group guided meditation we were to be given a spiritual name. The name I got was spoken fast and only once, then I saw the spelling of it. Once out of the meditation, I tried to pronounce it for the others, saying it wrong and explaining that that wasn’t right, it was much prettier. After about an hour, in a flash, the correct pronunciation came. The name was Ostara. At the time of this meditation, I was a witch but was not celebrating the Wheel of the Year, I had just recently found about the holidays and was learning about them. When I looked into the name later, I saw it was the name for this holiday. I had a moment of doubt, thinking the name came to me because I had seen it in a book recently. The spring really held no special place for me, I preferred the hot summers, and there was too much mud and rain at that time. So why Ostara? Through a few unmistakable signs from the Goddess, I knew this was my magickal name that I was to use as I started a new phase on my path. I got the name in January, and in February I started teaching another about witchcraft and also started holding rituals at every holiday on the Wheel of the Year. By March I was experiencing a rebirth in my magickal life. The Goddess in her wisdom gave me this name to awaken me to this time of year.

So who is Ostara? Ostara is the Germanic counterpart to the Saxon Goddess Eostre. Both are Goddesses of spring, dawn, fertility, and rebirth. Both also have the rabbit as one of their sacred symbols. Both are associated with fertility and a woman’s cycle. The hormone estrogen is named for Eostre.

Ostara is the living symbol for air and the life force of spring. Air is also associated with the East (dawn), mental powers, new beginnings and allowing your spirit to soar. Ostara’s celebrations often occurred at sunrise on hilltops, the theme being growth and renewal of life. People prayed to her to assure abundance of crops. At some rituals, eggs were eaten and/or exchanged. Ostara is the perfect goddess to call on when dealing with women's health issues, especially when related to the reproductive system.

How did Ostara/Eostre become connected to eggs and rabbits? Here’s a little story I found in Ostara, Customs, Spells & Rituals For The Rites of Spring, by Edain McCoy:

One of Eostre’s devotees was a small rabbit who wished to give his Goddess a gift, but didn’t have anything he thought of value to give her. One day while out foraging, he came across a fresh egg, which was a very valuable thing in this time. Altho the rabbit wanted very badly to eat the egg, he realized this would be the perfect gift for his Goddess. He realized she could have all the eggs she wanted so he pondered how to make this egg special for her. He decided to decorate the egg. He created paints out of natural sources like dandelions and heather. He painted the egg in pastel colors and with symbols of spring. When he felt it was as beautiful as he could make it, he took it to present it to Eostre. She was so pleased by the rabbit’s gift that she wanted everyone, especially children, to enjoy this gift too. Since that day, the descendants of that rabbit have taken up the task of delivering decorated eggs to the world’s children at spring. Thus they were known as Eostre’s Bunnies and then, Easter Bunny.

So how did this holiday get the name Ostara instead of Eostre? I have not been able to find out. All my books call this holiday Ostara and mention that she is the counterpart of Eostre, but none specify why it is called Ostara. My theory? Somewhere along the way, pagans wanted to separate their holiday from the Christian Easter but still honor the same Goddess. If anyone has a different theory or knowledge of this, please let me know and I will share it in the next newsletter.

Scents of Spring

The most obvious scents for spring are those of flowers. Any floral oil or herb would be wonderful in your own spring concoction Here are some magickal correspondences for your consideration:

  • Lilac: can help you see past lives and also wards off evil spirits

  • Violet: has many magickal uses including protection, love, healing and sleep

  • Rose: any type of love, especially for romantic love

  • Primrose: attracts spring fairies

  • Cowslip: another for spring fairies, also wealth and health

  • Apple blossom: love spells, symbol of the otherworld and rebirth, Avalon

  • Orange blossom: marriage, carry at your wedding to insure a sexy and sacred marriage

  • Daisy: another one for love and lust, also for bringing wealth into your life

  • Hawthorn: ultimate fairy plant, they make their homes in this bush

  • Daffodil: wishing charms and love spells, use to honor the God & Goddess of Spring to enhance fertility

  • Jasmine: love, psychic dreaming, and to help find needed cash

  • Crocus: attracts love and a good choice to adorn Ostara altars

Not into flowers? Want to honor the Spring God? Try this recipe from Edain McCoy:

4 drops oak moss oil
2 drops cinnamon oil*
1 drop bay oil
2 drops allspice oil

Add these to a base of 2 tablespoons almond or safflower oil. Seal tightly in a dark glass vial until ready to use.

*Note: cinnamon can irritate the skin, best to use this to on a candle or to anoint something other than the skin. If you want to use it to anoint yourself or your god, either omit the cinnamon or replace it with a safer oil, I bet sandalwood would smell wonderful in this blend. I haven’t tried it yet but plan on making some in the coming days.

 

~~~~Rhiannon Rose

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Symbols of Ostara:

  • Egg
  • Rabbit
  • Flowers
  • Basket
  • Birds/Robin
  • Grass green
  • Robin egg blue
  • Yellow
  • Pink
  • Lavender

Ostara Energies:

  • Balance
  • Rebirth
  • Growth
  • Fertility
  • Earth
  • Plant seeds of intention


 

 

Resources

The Wiccan Year by Judy Ann Nock

Ostara; Customs, Spells & Rituals for the Rites of Spring by Edain McCoy

www.goddessvision.net/ Ostara.htm which also has some advice for constructing an Ostara altar

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