Has the Meaning of Easter Been Lost?
We’re all familiar with the Easter holidays– the chocolate overload, the Easter Bunny and the non-negotiable egg hunt (where something always gets lost forever!) It’s a time to recharge batteries and enjoy the beginning of the spring sunshine (hopefully.) However, there are many people in society who don’t truly know what the meaning of Easter is–have we forgotten the origins of Easter?
How Easter All Began
Easter actually began as a Pagan festival to celebrate spring, long before the advent of Christianity. This is known as the Spring Equinox where the amount of daylight and the amount of dark is exactly the same. This would mark the beginning of spring as the daylight became balanced again. People mapped their whole life from the patterns of
nature. Following the beginning of Christianity, the Easter period became associated with the resurrection of Christ.
In the first couple of centuries after Jesus’ life, Christian feast days were attached to old Pagan festivals. However, in 325AD the first major church council determined that Easter should fall on the Sunday following the first full moon, after the Spring Equinox. There is now a defined period between March 25th and April 25th, where Easter Sunday must fall and that is dependant on the movements of the planets and sun.
Easter as we know it now is heavily involving rabbits/bunnies and eggs and the reason for that is that they are ancient symbols for new life, which links back to the celebration of the resurrection of Christ.
The name Easter is different in many areas of the world as it has derived from many separate things. In most European countries, the name for Easter is derived from a Jewish festival of Passover. In English speaking countries though, Easter takes its name from a Pagan goddess from Anglo-Saxon England.
All of this history appears to now be forgotten and it seems to be all about hunting for chocolate eggs without any meaning behind it. Families gather round for a roast lamb dinner, if they haven’t made themselves feel sick from all of the chocolate for breakfast. Some families spend the day watching movies, playing games and schools often have
Easter bonnet parades. Yet, for a lot of families, Easter is just another day– it’s hardly celebrated. It seems a shame that an ancient holiday has transformed into almost nothing.
Perhaps what we need to remember about Easter is its links to new beginnings. Maybe we should make the most of this holiday and use it for reflecting on the past and looking towards the future. Yes, celebrate with the food, but also set yourself a new goal. Maybe start a new hobby or try to beat a habit. Like the people from the past, let’s use this time for celebrating newness and at the same time, acknowledge our history. Has the meaning of Easter been lost? Yes, but there’s still hope for it yet.
Written by Freddy P.
What is the best Easter egg?
Twirl– Mr Clements
Crème egg or Mini egg– Easter is better than
Christmas!- Miss Rowley
Smarties or Ferrero Rocher– Mrs Barr
Cadbury’s Caramel– Mr Joy
Cadbury’s Dairymilk– Mrs Challender
Lindt– Miss Tyrell
A large one!- Miss Allan