why do we celebrate easter with eggs and rabbits
WITH Easter upon us, thoughts turn to chocolate eggs, hot cross buns and tales of the Easter bunny. And to mark, revellers are already stocking up on sweet treats and arranging Easter egg hunts. бBut what is the history of the tradition and why are bunnies and eggs so symbolic? Why do we buy Easter eggs? During the Christian calendar event, itБs become customary to buy chocolate eggs. The sweet treats have a hollow centre, which has become a symbol of JesusБ empty tomb. According to the Bible, the Son of GodБs body was laid out in the tomb after crucifixion. The scriptures state that when the stone covering the entrance was moved, the corpse was nowhere to be found and onlookers discovered that Jesus had risen. This is another reason why eggs are a common part of the religious ritual, as they re a sign of re-birth. Why do we have the Easter bunny? Bunnies are nowhere to be found in the Biblical scriptures, but this hasnБt stopped the cute creatures from becoming associated with the Christian festival. Century. Early depictions from Germany showed the floppy-eared creatures delivering toys and eggs in baskets to Christian families. ItБs difficult to pinpoint the exact origin of the rabbit symbol, but many scholars believe it stems from pagan ritual. Easter celebrates Jesus rebirth, which is why symbols of fertility are included in tradition
The pagan festival Eostre is dedicated to the goddess of fertility, who is often depicted as a rabbit. As the term Бto go at it like rabbitsБ suggests, the animals are often associated with fertility. This ties in well with the Bible, as Easter celebrates the rebirth of Jesus following his crucifixion.
Why do we celebrate Easter and whatБs the Biblical story? Easter is a Christian tradition that celebrates the resurrection of Jesus and marks the end of Those who follow the Bible believe that Christ was crucified at Calvary on Accounts of the Gospel state that the son of God was betrayed by Judas, before he was sentenced to death. After the crucifixion, the scriptures say that JesusБ body was taken from the cross and placed in a tomb guarded by Roman soldiers. Three days later, Mary Magdalene, followed by some of JesusБ disciples, discovered that ChristБs body had disappeared. His followers believed that the Son of God was resurrected on this day, which has become known as Easter Sunday. ranging between 21 March and 25 April depending on lunar patterns. Many of us will be tucking into chocolate eggs this Easter long weekend, completely unaware of the relevance of the bunny, the chocolate and painted eggs. We all know that eggs are a symbol of new life -- meaningful in the Christian celebration of Christ's resurrection -- but when it comes to chocolate, rabbits and the actual date of Easter, the real reasons behind the tradition are not facts carried over from childhood to adulthood. So when you're licking your chocolate coated fingers this Easter, spare a thought for the real reasons behind the age-old tradition. Hint: there is no such thing as the Easter Bunny. (It was originally a Hare! ) Professor Carole Cusak from University of Sydney Department of Studies in Religion told The Huffington Post Australia eggs became associated with the Paschal feast in the early Christian era. "In spring, eggs were an eloquent explanation of the Resurrection; after the chill of the winter months, nature was coming to life again.
In the Middle Ages it was a special treat to eat decorated eggs after Mass on Easter Sunday, after fasting through Lent. The chocolate eggs that we delight in today began to be manufactured in the nineteenth century," Professor Cusak said. "Eggs related to fertility. In Germany, they used to bury painted eggs for treasure hunts and because hares are often seen in gardens in Spring, folklore said the hares hid the eggs for children to find. The first association of the rabbit with Easter is a mention of the вEaster hareв in Germany. Hares or rabbits are associated with Easter because they are reputed to breed rapidly в a life-affirming thing. Thereвs a good explanation for why the date we celebrate Easter is different every year -- it has to do with the fact that for the early church, Easter was a matter of connecting a Lunar and Solar calendar and thatвs still how the reckoning is done today. вThe Greek and Russian Orthodox churches work it out differently but for us it works like this: when Jesus is actually crucified and dies and then rises on the Sunday, the supper he has on holy Thursday is connected to Passover," Professor Cusack said. вIn the New Testament it says itвs the Passover season. Passover is the feast in the book of Exodus when then Israelites are told to have a meal and smear blood on their doorsteps. The angel of God comes by each house and kills the first born of all the Egyptians, but spares the Israelites.
So itвs a story about death and life. And what happens is that Pharaoh is so grieved he tells the Israelites they can leave Egypt and go to the holy land. They are no longer his slaves. Itвs very important as it becomes one of the major feasts of the Jewish religious year and itвs a special meal people eat together. " ( Exodus 11. 1-10) The Jewish Calender is Luna not Solar. But the key date for Easter is the spring in the northern hemisphere, which falls between March 20-22. But they decided early on to take it from March 21 -- the time in the year when the amount of light and darkness in the 24 hours is exactly the same; 12 hours of light, 12 hours of darkness. In other words, the dates of Easter are a matter of cosmic balance. "Just like Christmas, nobody is suggesting that Jesus was crucified on that exact date. It's just become a date that church is comfortable with celebrating. But there is a connection with Easter and Passover. What happens is that Easter Sunday must always fall in the West, between March 22 and April 25th. This year is early, last year was late. The issue is when is the full moon is March 22 and it falls on a Sunday so thatвs the earliest possible date Easter can be. The full moon doesnвt fall for a whole month after march 21st. Then Easter can be as late as April 25th," Professor Cusak said. "So the eggs that are chocolate and Easter bunnies -- that's all a 19th century thing and these days most people don't remember that the Easter bunny was once the Easter hare. They're pretty similar to it doesn't really matter! "
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