Posts Tagged ‘Paganism’

The Origin of Easter’s Symbols and Sacred Objects

Thanks to Ann for the link to this informative article! I knew many of these facts but still found some surprises tucked in there like little Easter eggs. 😉

The Origin of Easter’s Symbols and Sacred Objects
Jennifer L. Shelton’s Blog

Most of you probably know that the date of Easter, as celebrated by the Christian church, is pagan in origin. “Like all the church’s ‘movable feasts,’ Easter shows its pagan origin in a dating system based on the old lunar calendar. It is fixed as the first Sunday after the first full moon after the spring equinox, at a time when the Goddess Eostre slew and re-conceived the Savior or vegetation god for a new season. The Christian festival wasn’t called ‘Easter’ until the Goddess’s name was given to it in the late Middle Ages.” – The Woman’s Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets by Barbara G. Walker

Today, I’ve provided the origins of many of the symbols and sacred objects associated with Easter. The entry on “eggs” is excerpted from The Woman’s Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets by Barbara G. Walker. The remaining entries are copied from another work by Barbara Walker, The Woman’s Dictionary of Symbols and Sacred Objects.

Bunny-Eggs

Eggs

Eggs were always symbols of rebirth, which is why Easter eggs were usually colored red – the life-color – especially in Eastern Europe. Russians used to lay red Easter eggs on graves to serve as resurrection charms.

In Bohemia, Christ was duly honored on Easter Sunday and his pagan rival on Eastern Monday, which was the Moon-day opposed to the Sun-day. Village girls like ancient priestesses sacrificed the Lord of Death and threw him into the water, singing, “Death swims in the water, spring comes to visit us, with eggs that are red, with yellow pancakes, we carried Death out of the village, we are carrying Summer into the village.”

Hare

The Easter Bunny began with the pagan festival of the springtime Goddess Eostre, when it was said that the Goddess’s totem, the Moon-hare, would lay eggs for good children to eat. The Easter Bunny still brings eggs to children, though they are now made of chocolate and sugar instead of more nourishing ingredients. Eostre’s hare was the shape that Celts imaged on the surface of the full moon, derived from old Indo-European sources. In Sanskrit, the moon was cacin, “that which is marked with the Hare.” Queen Boadicea’s banners displayed the Moon-hare as a sacred sign. Both hares and cats were designated the familiars of witches in Scotland, where the word malkin or mawkin was applied to both.

[Click here to continue reading about the symbolic origins of hares, hot cross buns, lilies, peacocks, and purple. Happy Easter in whatever form you celebrate this day!]

Door Number 3: “Tree of Life” aka “The Daphne Door”

Some of you know I’ve been in Evanston all week, painting a door rescued by my friends Wendy and Matthew. They left it for me in their laundry room on their way to Peru to swim with the pink dolphins and pirahnas. (I’m really not making this up!) I have a key to their apartment and an open invitation, so I arrived here the day after Spring Equinox to find keys (to the laundry room) and a giant, antique door that possibly weighs more than I do. Wendy’s downstairs neighbor helped me haul it upstairs and I worked on it all week while listening to sacred chants and wearing a moldavite pendant. Lots of energy shifts!

This one looks more like a painting than the other doors, but it is actually even more “coded” with Runes and other symbols. I just worked many of them into the textures and decorative details. The main theme is a “World Tree” or “Tree of Life” with the wood nymph Daphne turned into the Laurel Tree. Apollo loved Daphne and when she became the tree, he created the laurel wreaths/crown of laurels for poets in honor of her. At the top right, is a Celtic Butterfly, and the bottom quote reads, “Wherever you are is the entry point. –Kabir.” Some people will also recognize the Chakana from Schizandra and the Gates of Mu. I had so much fun inserting Runes and other details, but there are too many to tell here, so I’ll just post the photo below.

Please excuse the, um, less than professional look of these photographs! I lost my in-house professional photographer when I got divorced and moved to Chicago, so these are BlackBerry images. I’ll eventually replace them with better quality photos from a wide angle lens, but I wanted to share them now.

Tree of Life

Celtic Butterfly Detail

Daphne Detail

Chakana Tree

Lascaux


Oroboros in the Parted Red Sea--Detail

Viewing doors as portals, I always paint some kind of mantra or Scripture on the back of them. Payuurteel has the Moola Mantra on
The Other Side, and The Alchemy Door now features the Gayatri Mantra. The Tree of Life has a version of Psalm 1:3, along with angels named in the First Pentacle of Jupiter from Solomon’s Keys:

copyright Laura Bruno

Several people have asked if I plan to sell these doors. The short answer is, “No, not these particular ones.” They are very personal for me, and I want them in my home; however, I do intend to create more doors for sale. LOL, I am running out of room in my apartment for all these giant doors!

I’m also available for private commissions if you already have a door you’d like painted and coded for particular intentions or feelings. I especially like the idea of creating different effects for people as they enter or exit rooms. Thresholds are powerful energetic points, and you can literally invite transformation into your daily life by having the door and images coded with subconscious symbols, Sacred Geometry and images that speak to your particular intentions, hopes and dreams. Runes are the building blocks of creation, so including them in an intentional way, operates on the subconscious ability to manifest your heart’s desires. In my experience, this actually works incredibly fast! That’s one reason I don’t wish to part with my first three doors. 😉

Price per door varies, depending on size, desired degree of detail and whether you would like images on both sides. In some cases, I’m willing to travel to you, but that’s on a case-by-case basis, depending on my schedule, available accommodations, number of doors, and your location. If you’re interested, please feel free to email me at brunoleaf at yahoo.com for more details.

Many Blessings!