The Spring Equinox is considered the start of the bright spring season and falls on Sunday, March 20 this year. Marked from the beginning of ancient traditions as a sacred day in which there are exactly 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness, it is one of two days in our planet’s revolution in which the Earth is perfectly in balance (The other, of course, being the Autumnal Equinox).
Many cultures view the Spring Equinox as the beginning of the New Year, as the fresh dirt starts to sprout with new growth, new life and new opportunity around this exciting time. After all, there is more light than darkness on each day after the Equinox.
This is a fantastic opportunity to invite friends and family over to celebrate the end of darker days. One of my favorite traditions is perfect for both experienced and beginning gardeners. Ancient Celtic traditions blessed and planted seeds over the Spring Equinox. The sentiment is so comforting that it now spans religions and cultures.
Using a small bowl of your favorite seeds, whether vegetable or ornamental, take each seed individually in your hand. Closing your eyes, focus on a hope, prayer or aspiration for the coming year. It can be as broad as finding more love in your life or as focused as committing to reading a new book every month. Plant the seed in either a container or in your garden (depending on your climate) and watch it sprout with your hopes entangled deep in its growth.
Many other ancient traditions celebrating the Spring Equinox are the basis of many of our modern Easter traditions today. Have you ever wondered how the Christian Easter celebration truly related to rabbits and eggs?
It was rather convenient that the new life of the Son of God was celebrated so close to the new life of the Earth and its Sun. Ancient cultures across Europe used eggs and their sign of fertility and new life to celebrate the Spring Equinox.
This egg game is a favorite among children and adults and is perfect for both kid’s parties and adult get-togethers. This ancient game for sharing hopes for the New Year uses a hard boiled egg. After hard boiling your egg, decorate it with cheerful colors and designs. After it has dried, use a pen or Sharpie to divide your egg into four quadrants. Write a wish or prayer for the New Year in each quadrant. What are you hoping the sunlight shines down on you this year? Love? Wealth? Meaningful Friendship? Professional Success? After writing them down, have everyone sit or stand in a line and gently roll their eggs across the floor, the grass or a table top. The quadrant that faces up toward the sun is what you can expect for the New Year!
However you choose to celebrate the Spring Equinox this weekend, be thankful for the longer days. Enjoy more time in the garden, napping in your porch swing and brightening your home for summer. Whether or not you’ve ever taken note of the Equinox before, always take advantage of an opportunity for a party!