As Easter approaches, the Anglo-Saxon goddess, Ostara, fills our days with spring blossoms, colored eggs, and bunny sightings. Like all spring goddesses, she brings with her new ideas, new beginnings, rebirth, and hope. In the Christian tradition, Easter celebrates the resurrection of Christ, but in ancient times spring festivals celebrated the arrival of the goddess who ushered in the new dawn, the imminent return of the sun. Following these time-honored traditions, today Easter is always celebrated on the Sunday after the first full moon after the vernal equinox. This full moon, known in April as the Egg or Pink Moon, appears on April 17.
As a fertility goddess, Ostara reminds us of what we are birthing. Her totem animal is the hare or rabbit, a symbol of fecundity. It is a time to make great leaps, to start bringing that idea that's been brewing into fruition or to take the leap into the unknown. Because who knows what magic will come when you do?
Today, I am giving birth to two chapters of my SoulWork book, In the Lap of the Goddess: Connecting to the Divine Feminine available here. The two goddesses featured in these chapters, Kali, Goddess of Destruction, and Yemaya, Goddess of Creation, are timely as they help us through the process of death and rebirth.
In May, I will present three more chapters on the Triple Goddess of Greek myth: Persephone, the Maiden, Demeter, the Mother, and Hecate, the Crone. At that time you will also be able to purchase the entire SoulWork book, which celebrates these five goddesses from different traditions, either as a download or in printed form.
And to tell us about another great leap into the unknown is my guest today, the beautiful Goddess Leonie from Down Under, whose Creating My Goddess Year inspired me to create my own e-book. And without further ado, here she is to tell us a tale about...
The Miracle of a Rabbit
Many moons ago, a rabbit came to live in our front yard for a while. She would sit there, hovering beneath the pines, watching us with calm eyes and a dignified kind of grace.
I would laugh about it each morning as we set off to work together.
"Rabbit! I wonder what that means! I must look up its medicine!" I'd tell my love.
Then we'd bundle into our blue jeep and head out into the turquoise day, and I'd promptly forget about it.
Each night we'd return home just on dusk.
And there Rabbit would be. Hovering just beneath the pines, just out of arm's reach.
I worried about her at first. Worried that she would be sniffed out by the neighborhood dogs that roamed.
She didn't want to be caught though. She led us on a wild hopping goose chase until we relinquished the fact: she was safe. She was happy. She was where she needed to be.
Then we'd go inside our cottage, and I'd forget about it.
And each morning, the same dance would happen again.
There Rabbit would be.
We'd drive and I'd dream out loud to my love:
"What does Rabbit mean? New hope? Spring time?"
It was winter here in the southern hemisphere. Spring was still months away, and it just didn't feel like the answer that fit.
And I'd say "I should look deeper into this. Find out her medicine!"
I was too busy eating everything in sight. And forgetting everything moments after they happened.
Can you guess Rabbit's medicine yet?
One Sunday, my love and I ate falafels for lunch.
I pushed the rest of mine away.
Ugh. I feel nauseous. What did we eat last night?
My love looked at me. They crinkled around the edges, and his right eyebrow raised just a millimetre.
After knowing and loving this man for ten years, I know the movements of his face as whole conversations.
WHAAAAAAT? WHAT'S WITH THE EYEBROW, MISTER?
And he smiled a secret smile.
My love, he said.
Do you think it's time for a pregnancy test?
I was adamant I wasn't.
I would KNOW if I was. Me - the one who is so in tune with her body. I would KNOW if a baby's energy had come to stay!
But the smile and the crinkle of his eye and that glow of his --
they suggested otherwise.
And as he so often is, he was right.
Nine moons later, a cyclone blew over my tropical hometown paradise -- Proserpine, the only town in the world named after the Goddess Persephone. A deep energy cleansing.
My waters burst with a rush of ocean the next day.
Three days later, a week or so after the equinox, a week or so before Easter,
a baby girl was born.
She rushes in one swoop into her father's hands, and he gifts her to me.
She echoes one birth cry, then is quiet, wide blue eyes open to the world, taking it in peacefully.
And true to the spirit of the Rabbit, to Spring, to miracles, to hope, to Easter,
her name emerged:
My goddess daughter. Filled with the light.
Of the goddess that Easter was named for.
Of Morgaine Le Fay.
Of all the ways the blessings of our ancestors make our days anew now.
The time is drawing near again.
The marketplaces become filled again with soft, fluffy totems of rabbits, and chocolate odes to the beginning egg.
And my heart lights up with the joy of it all.
It is that sacred time again: the spring time in our souls.
The rabbit is hopping.
Note: Ostara just turned one in March.
~~~~ Goddess Leonie is the creator of the popular creativity and spirituality blog, www.GoddessGuidebook.com and the online Goddess Circle.