Saturday, April 15, 2006

Traditions

Easter is an interesting holiday for, despite the fact that it's Christian celebrating the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, it has so many pagan ties that sometimes you wonder what Christians were thinking when they named it Easter. And then you have the date it's celebrated-- the first Sunday after the first full moon after the spring Equinox. Passover, which you'd think it'd be connected to given the events celebrated by Easter, it isn't.

The symbols for the Norse Goddess Ostara were the hare and the egg. Both represented fertility. Hence we have the Easter egg hunt and Easter bunny. I guess some are upset this year that not everywhere is the Easter bunny called an Easter bunny-- similar to the stir that somebody was trying to steal Christmas. Well since neither the bunny nor the egg relate to Christ, I don't think they have a thing to worry about if it got stolen.

And this year to add to the spiritual season, we have the movie coming out soon based on Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code. I had read the DaVinci Code some time back, enjoyed it, but not sure I care to see the movie. It had some interesting concepts in the book-- like the fact that DaVinci painted the person next to Christ in The Last Supper as a woman. I had never noticed that and had to go check for myself. Sure enough, it's a woman, but did that mean it was Mary Magalene at the actual last supper? No matter what DaVinci might've believed, there is no way to know.

Now with the Gospel of Judas comes another that some see as an assault on traditional Christianity-- not that the practices of Christianity today are traditional to the time of Christ but never mind that. Traditions that are important are defined as we go. I have not read the Gospel of Judas, not sure I will. I haven't actually read any of the gnostic gospels because I looked at them, considered them and decided they weren't something I could relate to at the time. They are not automatically true simply because they are historic. They are simply another version of tradition.

I do not see anything wrong with tradition or ritual. They can be very satisfying to humans, satisfy certain needs, make you feel a stirring inside. It's important though to think where they come from and not mistake either for spirituality-- which they might or might not be connected to.

1 comment:

Parapluie said...

It doesn't bother me that our traditions around religious holidays have Pegan roots. of course I am not very religious. More and more as time goes by I think the Pegan wisdom must be reflective of our subconscious needs and Christianity and even Judaism is relatively young in traditions and must borrow to function as a complete way of life. I speculate that the Easter Bunny sweetens an otherwise dismal holiday about Jesus being killed, a concept difficult for children to grasp. I think also decorated eggs do have some bearing on some accounts of the death of Jesus in Russian Orthodox context. But I am no authority on that!! I used to have a a ceramic wall hanging of Mary holding up the first Easter egg as a bribe to save Jesus. It was hanging below a mosaic of dancers. When the holder broke on the mosaic it hit the ceramic panel which completely fell apart saving the mosaic which fell 6 feet to a cement floor. My mosaic remained in one piece. Amaing!!