Usually Easter is considered a religious holiday, but most folks get time off and plan activities with friends and family regardless of whether they celebrate it as a religious day.
There is no reason to sit around and watch the kids look for chocolate eggs while we squirm because we’re not sure what we’re actually celebrating—other than chocolate of course, which is kind of worth the celebration.
Easter is a celebration of Jesus and his death, sure, but it’s also a traditional celebration of new life and new beginnings. It coincides with the Spring Equinox, and there are ways to honor this time of year without lamenting Mary or Jesus’s misfortunes.
1. Eggs. Eggs. Eggs.
Spring is a time of new life and new life is symbolized with eggs! The tradition of coloring eggs or giving chocolate eggs is a way to honor the new beginning of the season. Remember how fun this was as a kid?
But consider reflecting on the symbolism with your friends and family as you scamper across the yard filling a basket. Bunnies symbolize abundance and fertility, but bunnies giving eggs—that’s plain goofy!
2. Decorate with Shamrocks.
The Shamrock is a traditional Druid greenery for the spring celebration of Alban Eilir, or Spring Equinox. The three sided leaves symbolize the cycles of our lives. Traditionally we think of the trinity of spirit: the Father, Son and Holy Ghost, but we can also take it to symbolize maiden, mother, and crone; the body, soul and spirit; or the earth, sky and heavens.
Clovers are so plentiful—another symbol of abundance. If there isn’t snow covering your parks, a family walk to pick this new growth is fun!
Consider using this three sided symbol to reflect on the cycles beginning and ending this time of year.
3. Dreams and Visions
It is said that Jesus knew the crucifixion was upon him, and that one of his good friends had betrayed his vision. Regardless as the story goes, he took time to be sure his disciples were ready to move forward spreading his message of spiritual freedom.
Spring is a time of shifting and underground movements, and not just for Jesus and his disciples on those last days. Our souls are also undergoing these movements.
This is a time that we often have unusually powerful dreams, or we get caught in seductive daydreams with really creative inspirations, or even feel a renewed passion for some of our bucket list items or new beginnings we’d like to see happen in life.
It is helpful to time to write and record where we want to go and what kind of new experiences or dreams we want to fulfill. These dreams and visions are the direct inspiration of the soul, our deeper nature, directly connecting us to a bigger goal of freedom, it’s great to share them with friends who will help support their unfolding in time.
4. Healing Time
Spring is a time of upheaval and groundswells to make room for the new growth. I am from a northern and snowy town, and this time of year the snow melts enough to expose the yellow snow and dog poo that had been building up over the winter.
I playfully consider this time of year to be the time to pick up all the crap that settled over the winter.
Usually we can feel it—some of our old patterns or old heartbreaks feeling tender. We don’t need to reflect on the crucifixion of Jesus, just look in our own hearts to feel challenges surfacing.
Taking some down time is sometimes necessary to take care of any deep pain or grief that might be stirred up. A quiet day to reflect and to do some journaling is usually helpful.
5. Food and Friends
Personally, I love Easter brunch. My mom would always put out a really beautiful and delicious meal.
These days I don’t often make it home, but I always call for the menu. Any time to invite over family or friends to gather and share a meal is always a wonderful way to connect and celebrate.
We all love rituals and we need them, something as simple as popcorn at the movie theatre can bring a sense of special anticipation and sweetness.
The ritual of a meal can be made special this Easter by inviting the folks we love, setting a pretty table with symbols of new beginnings and creating a fun menu.
This year, consider a parade of great new spring vegetables. Also, take a moment before eating to light a candle and share any special dreams of visions we have for the year. Sharing what we are hoping to plant, blossom and harvest in our lives can turn the traditional Easter meal into a time to celebrate the new season beginning.
Assistant Editor: Guenevere Neufeld / Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photo: Becky Wetherington via flickr
Facebook is in talks with major corporate media about pulling their content into FB, leaving other sites to wither or pay up if we want to connect with you, our readers. Want to stay connected before the curtain drops? Get our curated, quality newsletters below!