- Religion and Philosophy»
- Paganism & Witchcraft
Solitary Witchcraft: Ostara (Vernal Equinox)
Spring Is Here
It is called the Spring (Vernal) Equinox. It is the time of the year when day and night are nearly equal in length. When the sun crosses the true celestial equator from south to north. And so we celebrate the first day of spring. It is the time of year that pagans and neopagans celebrate as one of the eight major holidays/sabbats of the wiccan calendar and it is one of the four that fall on solar event.
The Vernal Equinox has many names and it all depends on what Tradition you follow. There is no single 'right' name regardless of what some may think. Ostara is only one of many names that are used to honor this day. Some authors indicate that Ostara might be linked to the name Eostre the Saxon Lunar Goddess of fertility. Her sacred animal is the rabbit which may or may not have led to the myths about the Easter bunny along with eggs which are a sign of fertility. For the sake of this article I prefer to use the term Ostara for the holiday and how I celebrate it.
Ostara is the time of rebirth and renewal on my wiccan calendar. I celebrate it as a festival of spring in which the Goddess in her guise as the Maiden rises from her place a rest. We give thanks for her blessing and look forward to the upcoming growing season. The God is now mature and begins his courting of the Maiden.
- The March Equinox Explained
The March equinox, which marks the beginning of spring in the northern hemisphere, will be on March 20 in 2011.
- Spring Equinox, Eostre, Ostara Sabbat - the Pagan Origins of Easter
Pagan origins and history of the Wiccan Sabbat of Eostre / Ostara and the Spring Equinox.
- The Witch's Tower
Much of what I learned about Wicca I found in books and in a large number of places on the internet. So I've tried to put together what I've learned in a coherent manner. So here I have placed portions of my Book Of Shadows.
Here are a list of items that are traditional parts of my Ostara tradition.
Leafy green vegetables:salads are your friend. Dairy foods; the perfect excuse for ice cream during a ritual. Nuts such as Pumpkin, Sunflower and Pine.
Herbs and Flowers common this time of year: Daffodil, Violet, Iris, Narcissus in fact any spring flowers that grows in your local area.
Jasmine, Rose, Strawberry, Floral of any type. Strawberry is one of my personal favorite scents.
Colors: Green, white and silver.
This is the time when I start breaking ground on my vegetable and herb gardens and preparing the ground for the first plantings. It is also when I start start planning what I'm going to plant and where. On the evening of Ostara I perform the following ritual. If the weather permits, I will do this outside. If not, there is no reason this cannot be performed inside.
I choose one silver candle and one green candles. Use whichever colors are comfortable for you. After I light the candles I speak the following ritual.
On this night and at this hour
I call upon ancestral power
Day and night are equal now
The Lord and Lady give the sacred vow.
From the underworld the rise to the earth
With brith joy of springs rebirth
Seeds stir within their shells
With the sun's warmth a new song to tell
Trees prepare their new gowns of green
Hidden beneath their budded seams
First born raise their eyes to the sundayTo dance and frolic and learn of fun.
Lord and Lady we come to thee
With spring's promise for all to see.
As we will it, so mote it be.
Please note that this is the ritual I use. You are free to use it or change it to fit your own personal needs. Remember, the path of the Solitary is the path of choices.