Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Ostara vs. Easter

Which do I celebrate?  I saw this type of question a lot around the Holidays last year.  Yule or Christmas, then of course there's the current holiday Ostara or Easter, and let's not leave out Samhain or Halloween.  You get the idea.

My question is, why choose?  Very few of us grew up celebrating Yule, Ostara, Samhain or had any idea about the wheel of the year.  When we were kids Spring meant Easter eggs, chocolate bunnies, and lots of candy; Fall brought costumes, going out at night, and more candy; Winter was all about Christmas, Santa Claus, presents, and of course...candy.  There were family traditions that were followed year after year, passed down through the generations and some new ones thrown in occasionally.  These are the things that stuck with us as we became adults and started our own families.  So why should we turn our backs on all those good memories and traditions just because we've chosen a different path for ourselves?

I say don't!  After all, being witchy is based on tradition and lore passed down through generations.  I say celebrate both!  Follow your path and acknowledge the turning of the wheel but don't forget your roots.  Celebrate the generally acknowledged holidays as well.  Have fun with them!  Keep the family traditions you enjoyed as a child and maybe incorporate your current path and make some new traditions.

Remember, this isn't a secret club that will revoke your membership if you celebrate Easter (or Christmas, or Halloween).  That's the beauty of it...nothing is set in stone!  Do what works for you because there's only one rule..."And ye harm none, do what ye will."

~ Heathen


Jeanne said...

Wonderful post!!! I celebrate it all! The traditional Holidays from my childhood and the (non-traditional) Holidays of The Path.
Who's not up for a party or a celebration about once a month? :0)

Danni said...

I celebrate all the holidays my greedy little self can manage to! I love celebrating, for any reason, so I've never seen a reason to turn my back on the holidays of my youth (which were always celebrated as secular holidays anyway) now that I'm following a path with even more holidays. :)

P.S. As for Easter, the husband knows if there is no chocolate rabbit for me Easter morning I'll pout. It's tradition for me to wake up and immediately devour its ears; I've been doing it for as long as I can remember!

Mina said...

I agree whole heartedly and could not have said it better! I celebrate the holidays of my spirituality and my own version of what I was raised with. Goodness, I celebrate every day I think of a reason to.

Heathen said...

Jeanne-It's great having so many celebrations each year isn't it?
Danni-Of course you eat the ears first! Anyone who doesn't is clearly a rookie.
Mina-I love the idea of celebrating the little things and not just the Holidays!

Róisín said...

Hear, hear! I actually count myself very lucky having grown up in Ireland because we do actually celebrate both for a lot of the time. They way it seems to work here is that when speaking English we call them by one name - St Brigid's Day or Halloween, for example - but we use the old names when referring to them in Irish - like Imbolc, Beltaine and Samhain. In a way, the modern Christian holidays are seen as one and the same as the old pagan ones and over the years traditions have got all mixed in together. I suppose that's the same everywhere really, isn't it? Anyway, these days most holidays - Christian, pagan or otherwise - are so commercialised it's good to know there are still people out there appreciating them for what they are reagardless of their own spiritual perspectives.

Great post my friend, gets the mind going!

eimear brennan said...

Great post....and yes "do what works for you" exactly. I can see that happening, celebrating the old festivals and it being cool etc and then dismissing everything else...but they are all part of each other...it doesn't matter does it! And in Ireland...if you don't like the church associated part you can still acknowledge it anyway!