This year the spring equinox arrives when the sun is directly overhead at the equator on March 20 at 5:25 pm. According to the Celts, spring arrives on February 2 on Imbolc. Meteorological spring begins on March 1. But according to many others, spring arrives on the equinox. So it depends on how you see the world. In the Northern Hemisphere this is the time when flowers start to bloom and the natural world starts to turn green. In the Southern Hemisphere this equinox on ushers in autumn. The sun will rise directly east and will set directly west. This is a great day to find out exactly where east and west lie on your landscape without having to use a compass. This day we will have twelve hours of daylight and twelve hours of night. Note that the day and night will be nearly equal lengths for the whole planet!
With the day and night being nearly equal lengths, it is a great time to think about balance. Balance is something you may want to focus on this day. What areas of your life need balance? This is a good time to make a priorities list on which to act. It is also a great time to work on your physical balance and your posture. Think about light and dark being equal. Know that without the dark, we would not have the light and vice versa. Think about the printed page. We need the light color of the paper and the dark ink to be able to read it.
This is a time of fertility. Traditionally we think of colored eggs this time of year. Eggs are a good source of protein, and over the dim light of winter chickens do not lay eggs. Back in the day before electric lights used to fool chickens into laying eggs, chickens started to lay again in March or April. People got excited about this protein source, and coloring eggs became a tradition. There are some natural dyes you can use to color eggs. These are a few of them with the colors that you will get:
Red cabbage – Light blue
Beets – Purple
Chili Powder – Orange
Turmeric – Yellow
Spinach – Green
Vinegar is used to make the dye fast. Note that natural dyes will not give as deep colors as chemical dyes, but pastels are part of the charm for this time of year. Judy Ann Knock gives instructions on how to use natural dyes. You may also check out allrecipes.com. See Suggested Investigation below. Another aspect of fertility is that it is a great time of year to try to become pregnant. You may also think about planting seeds. If for your area the risk of frost has not passed, plant the seeds indoors. You may use peat seed starter trays or waxed paper cups to plant seeds in indoors. See video below. Do not forget to bless the seeds. This is the time to put plans for the betterment of your life into action. This is a great time of year to attract beneficial things to your life.
Greet the sun at the first blush of dawn. The colors of the dyed eggs reflect the color of the sky: yellow, orange, pink and light blue. The green eggs represent the greening of the world. This is a great time of day for an Ostara ritual. One thing you can do is draw down the sun. Do not look at the sun to avoid damaging your eyes. Ground and center. Open your mouth, let the sun shine in your mouth and see what happens. As in drawing down the moon, you will know if it worked if you lost a sense of time.
This is a good time of year to wear something new. Some good colors for Ostara robes are green, lavender, pink and sky blue. I made a new green robe for Ostara. See one of my previous posts titled Robe Making Made Simple.
Connect with nature. Walk outside barefoot and connect with the Earth, soil and new life. This is something rejuvenating that may have been neglected during the colder months. Take a nature walk and create a collection of objects and/or pictures.
Make a butterfly feeder. The Witchcrafted Life has a link with directions. Make sure to be careful with measurements in making butterfly food. Too much sugar can dehydrate the butterflies.
If you have not already done so, do some some spring cleaning and a home blessing. Pick out a warm day to air out your home and enjoy the fresh air.
Here are some decoration ideas: a floral wreath (A circle represents the wheel of the year and a wreath can be used to ward your door.), dyed eggs, rabbit figurines, chocolate rabbits, seeds, flowers and buds.
Foods to celebrate Ostara are seeds, sprouts, salad greens, edible flowers and of course those awesome eggs! Some of the flowers you can eat are rose, primrose, violets, squash blossoms and carnation. Make sure you use flowers that have not been sprayed with pesticides. Put together a salad with some of the above ingredients. Or try deviled eggs or quiche. Yum!
Enjoy making preparations for celebrating Ostara!
I will continue to post on Wednesdays. I will make another post on Ostara next week.
Cabot, Laurie, Celebrate the Earth: A Year of Holidays in the Pagan Tradition, Bantam Doubleday Dell, 1994.
Cunningham, Scott, Cunningham’s Encyclopedia of Wicca in the Kitchen, Llewellyn, 1990.
Fox, Selena, “Eggs in Myth, Magic, and Meditation,” Circle Sanctuary Network Podcasts, March 29, 2020. Encore from 2015.
Fox, Selena, “Spring Equinox Rite,” Circle Sanctuary Network Podcasts, March 22, 2020, Encore from 2013.
Fox, Selena, “Welcoming & Celebrating Spring,” Circle Sanctuary Network Podcasts, March 15, 2020. Encore from 2012.
Nock, Judy Ann, The Wiccan Year: Spells, Rituals, Holiday Celebrations, Provenance Press, 2007.
Sabin, Thea, Wicca for Beginners, Fundamentals of Philosophy & Practice, Llewellyn, 2020.
Telesco, Patricia, A Kitchen Witch’s Cookbook, Llewellyn, 1994.