Happy and Blessed Eastre, everyone! Happy First Day of Spring and Happy New Year which began at Dawn, this morning!
Eastre is actually an ancient word for Spring. This is the source of the name of the Goddess, Ostara/ Eostra, Eostre, Eastra, etc. She was the Great Mother Goddess of the Saxon people in Northern Europe. This was first asserted by the Christian monk, Venerable Bede who lived from 632-735. (1)
The following Deanic Traditions are now observing the Vernal Equinox rather than Hiatus: The Lucienne Tradition, the Pantheacraft Tradition and the Janite Tradition.
It felt so wonderful this morning to know that it was the First Day of Spring and that it was also Eastre, the celebration of the Holy Daughter as the Holy Soul of the World/Cosmos. (More on this in the next post.) Several of us were remarking on how ‘right’ it felt. It was truly joyful and joy-filled. Though my day began with a frigid 11 degrees F (- 11.6 Celsius) with a foot (.3 meters) of snow on the ground, by afternoon, it was warm and sunny and the snow was melting away.
Though anyone may practice the Deanic Faith, we have to remember that ultimately, we are a Feminine/feminine religion. Feminine intuition plays such an important part in a devotional religion.
Each of us are devotional in our own way. The Lucienne is a devotional Deanic Tradition through harmony, chant and song. The Janite, Auroran and Pantheacraft Traditions are devotional through art, prose and dance. (There are some exciting projects in the works!!!!)
We, as females, know…inwardly. We connect to the Divine Feminine in a special way. Males are Her sons. We are Her daughters. The relationship is equal, but different. I know this as a mother of four sons and a daughter, and four grandsons and two granddaughters.
We know when something is right. We can feel it. But, it’s more than just a feeling, it’s hard to explain. It’s encompassing. It’s gnosis, not just surmise or belief. When I got up this morning and for the first time in my life, experienced the Divine Feminine Eastre on the Vernal Equinox, the first Day of Spring, it felt exhilarating and oh, so very, very right. This feast day has Divine Feminine origins. How fitting it is to keep the holy ancient Divine Feminine feast day on the actual vernal equinox! It feels so mystical and magickal.
I prayed the Janati rosary on my way to work this morning. Sometimes, I concentrate on the prayers, but other times I fall into a meditation. I was in contemplation about the above and later, I felt that I had received a confirmation. A person who works at my ski area, a young woman in her early 40’s, approached the register next to mine. I heard her mention to my co-worker that she was vegan. As my daughter is vegan, I had some questions to ask her and so we soon fell into a deep conversations. At the end, completely out of the blue she said, “we must eat right in order to nourish our pineal gland, our feminine intuition.
This is the first time anyone has ever said those words to me or talked to me about feminine intuition. This could not be a coincidence.
This is not the first time that something like this has happened to me, that a random stranger who comes to my register says something that was so random, so spiritual after I had been praying and thinking deeply in trying to make a decision for the Janite community, that it could only have come from Dea, Blessed is She. (2)
My feminine intuition and that of others in the JOP understood that Eastre should be on the first day of Spring.
Ostara, Eástre seems therefore to have been the divinity of the radiant dawn, of upspringing light, a spectacle that brings joy and blessing, (3).
I love that, Our Lady of Upspringing Light. Our Lady of the Dawn. Our Holy World Soul.
And so, we have determined that the observance of the Divine Shattering will be on 28 Moura/March 19 except for leap year. Interestingly enough, in Greek, Divine Shattering is Feminine: theía thráfsi.
The Feast of Eastre will be on March 20 or 21, depending on the vernal equinox. Vernal also means Spring. As an aside, years ago, when my daughter was in high school, she had a project in which she had to find a ‘vernal pool’. If she found one, she had to take pictures and locate it on GPS. That vernal pool would then become a conservation area. We searched our local woods and found one fostering baby salamanders! It was such an exciting find in early Spring. It is only recently that I came to know that vernal means Spring.
So, in keeping with the update in the calendar, the Feast of Eastre falls on March 20. It will be a two day feast which extends to 1 Columbina. The Feast of Eastre, like the liturgy, like all our feasts of the Sacred Cosmic Drama, falls ‘eternally, out of time’ and so it is entirely appropriate that not only is the ancient feast of Eastre celebrated on the vernal equinox in the Janite and Pantheacraft Traditions, but also that this, the most holiest, sacred time of the year, falls ‘out of time’, reflecting the fact that this is an Eternally, on -going Cosmic Drama because…. until every last one of our souls has been assumed unto Our Lady, the Celestial Mother, High Queen of Heaven, the Holy Daughter will always, always be with us. She will always be an intimate part of us and us of Her because, thanks to Her Sacrifice, we share the same soul.
My liturgical scripture reading for tonight was The Mythos of the Divine Maid, Chapter VII. So beautiful. So truly beautiful. But during my celebration of the Janite liturgy, where the Bread represents Soul and not Body, I realized that for Janites, the following verses might read:
6: But I shall unite you all who love Me in one great Soul. 7) The highest and the lowest, the living and the dead, those who falter at the door and those who have climbed the highest tower, all shall be one in My Soul, which I have given to the world and all shall be nourished by my Spirit.
This, is exactly what Janites believe. And in liturgy, the white wine is transmuted into Her Spirit and the bread is transmuted into Her Soul.
All praise the Most Holy Daughter, Divine Maid (Kora). Like the Shekinah, like Sophia, You have suffered a Divine Shattering so that you may share Your Soul with all Your children. Thank you for making us One with You. Blessed are You, Dea Filia!
In discussing how the Janati, the Seven Powers of Dea, the Seven Faces of Dea, the Seven Spirits or Pillars or the many ways the Seven of the Divine Feminine (including Holy Sophia) have been described, our own Sorella Shoshana of the Iremian Order of the JOP had this to say about the Seven Janati:
They are both part of Dea, as well as their own. It’s like how the Daughter and Mother and Dark Mystery are also seen as part of Her. But, they are their own. They all form different functions of Dea. It’s like a working mother. She has many functions separate from her whole. Yet, they’re all her. She’s a chef, a driver, an employee, an errand runner for her boss, a school parent, a nurse, a story teller, a teacher, etc. Each Janya has Her own minor Goddess representation….Her own image. Just like the earthly mother. I’m sure we can easily picture all her minor functions being performed in separate situations. Sorella Shoshana.
Thank you, Sorella.
Let us bless the Queen of Heaven, the Holy One! She Who is Princess! She Who is High Priestess! She Who is the Daughter of Wisdom! Praise be to Thee, Most Holy Kora, Divine Maiden, Praise be to Thee!
- http://www.religioustolerance.org/easter1.htm, http://www.religioustolerance.org/easter1.htm.