This article was written by Clarity Bartleet for the internationally known online alternative News channel, Collective Evolution. Read this article on Collective Evolution's website here.
What is Easter really about? We all know the story of Jesus resurrecting and exiting a cave after three days of death, but what does this mean? And where did it story originate from?
Like many Christian tales and celebrations, Easter and its symbolism and myth were borrowed from a formerly uncovered universal Wisdom. A Wisdom that was transmitted from the Earth -- from The Goddess Herself -- to tribal cultures from all around the world who worshipped Her. In fact, we find similar stories and symbols among many different, scattered and once remote cultures all around the globe.
It is difficult to trace the exact roots of the original myth of Easter, for much Wisdom (e.g. teachings through stories and songs) has been lost due to the oppression that tribal cultures suffered and due their oral mode of transmission of knowledge. However, one of the most obvious connection that we nowadays can still trace to Easter comes to us from Ostara, the Germanic Pagan Goddess of Ancient Europe. To be clear, Ostara is connected to other fertility Goddesses found throughout the world and worshipped at different time in history (e.i. Astarte, Ashtaroth, Eastre, Ishtar, etc.). Ostara in particular represents Spring and the energy of fertility, love, sexuality and growth. Pagans worshipped Her to help Her bring fertility and growth onto the land.
In relation to Easter and the story of Jesus, Ostara similarly emerges from the Earth and re-awakens after a time of deep sleep (or death) during Winter. Both stories then carry the Wisdom of the cycle of life, death and rebirth -- an important lesson about dynamics of Nature and life itself that every human being needs to learn. Why? Well, because, for example, our modern Western culture has us valuing constant growth and life over decline and death (that is essential to bring abouts life). As a result, we perhaps irrationally fear death and do not understand the importance of going inwards, retreating, taking time for ourselves and taking a break from the business of our lives in order to find balance and flourish again when the time is right. The main and important difference, however, between the Christian’s story of Easter and the myth of Ostara is that Jesus’ resurrection is masculine focused (androcentric) and anthropocentric. It ignores the role of Nature and our deep connection to Her, and it ignores the feminine aspect as the carrier of the potential for the cycle of life, death and rebirth.
The story of Jesus’s resurrection is then a distorted version of some very important lesson and a fundamental Wisdom about about the dynamics of Nature and our of our own Nature that might leave us unsatisfied and confused. Hence, the importance of questioning any religious stories that aim at subliminally explaining the dynamics of the world and our role and potential within it. In fact, we should always question or at least contemplate any story that we are exposed to, especially contemporary ones delivered through the impactful images of modern movies and technologies. And instead of passively exposing ourselves to these stories, we should perhaps more actively research more ancient stories and tales that incorporate the feminine wisdom, the universal Wisdom from the Earth. The story of Ostara is one of these stories. It is the story of a not so perfect and not so virgin Goddess worth worshipping nevertheless that teaches us about our human Nature and potential. Here it is:
Ostara is the Goddess responsible for bringing Spring each year. But one year, as she arrived late, the first thing that she saw was a pitiful little bird who lay dying in the snow, his wing frozen by the cold. Ostara felt so guilty! She cradled the shivering creature into her arms and eventually saved his life. Feeling sorry that the poor wingless bird could no longer fly, she turned him into a snow hare called Lepus and gave him the ability to run rapidly so he could evade all hunters. Also. to honor his earlier life as a bird, she gave him the ability to lay eggs in all the colors of the rainbow. Ostara eventually took Lepus as a pet and they became lovers. That’s right! The Goddess and the bunny. Together they galloped abouts the prairies and made love in the fields as Pagans used to -- to spread fertility on the land. But one day, Ostara lost her temper with her passionate lover’s numerous affairs. Filled with anger, she grabbed him by the tail and swung him around and around over her head and threw him into the sky where he would remain for eternity as the constellation Lepus (The Hare) forever positioned under the feet of Orion, The Hunter constellation. Much later, remembering all the good times they had enjoyed together, Ostara softened and allowed Lepus to return to Earth once every year. But only during her own Festival and only to give away his colorful eggs to the children there. And this is how the “Easter Bunny” came about...
In this story, we notice that Ostara is also tightly connected to the Maiden archetype who represents very similar energies to the Goddess: full potential, opportunity for growth and rebirth after the Winter (which is connected to the Crone archetype). The Maiden, one of the most fundamental archetype of the feminine psyche and development, reminds us to dream big. She is the innocent, yet powerful and sexual being who has not yet been conditioned to believe that her dreams will not come true. So she dreams, she imagines, she visions and creates with her beauty and purity. And by doing so, she manifests miracles on Earth!
So let Spring time be a time for us to reclaim Easter and our inherent power and beauty as human beings. Ostara comes to us in this season to connect to the Earth, to The Goddess, to the feminine essence of Nature and Her potential for growth for (re-)birth through her fertility and sexuality. Let this season be a time to celebrate our own growth, (re-)birth, fertility and sexuality! Ostara also comes to us to remind us to plant seeds (literally and also) in our psyche and in the cosmos: to dream the projects that we wish to see manifest as the year unfolds, as the flowers bloom and to benefit from the coming boost of energy (the spring!) that we are getting from Nature. All around us, growth is happening. And because we are inherently connected to Nature, it is important to follow Her patterns; to learn from Her and perhaps reconnect to more ancient ways of grasping Wisdom from the Earth: by observing the seasons, the flowers and understand the extent of our potential as human beings to manifest and to blossom.
*this article uses the words Nature, Earth and The Goddess interchangeably
The last day of Toronto’s Yoga Conference 2017, I was called to attend Seane Corn's workshop on ‘Yoga for Every Body’ during which I felt that Seane had a powerful energy and message to transmit. So I decided to go deeper in connecting with her and I attended her following workshop on ‘Yoga for Awakening’. Seane talked about the responsibility of being on the Path and answering the Call to share knowledge about how to heal ourselves through Yoga, and not only the physical aspect of yoga / asanas but the full experience of becoming the observer of your own life and transcending the suffering of duality that Yoga is truly about.
Most of us in the room were in fact, already resonated or vibrated to a frequency that drew us to in this workshop and allowed us to receive this download of information/frequency/vibration/energy and this transmission in order to awaken ourselves further and others in our community. Seane stressed the importance of finding the confidence, strength, courage and motivation needed in order to carry out our specific purpose and do this work. Before I went to Seane Corn's workshop, I felt lost and decided to leave the city to go on another trip. Since the workshop, I am more motivated than ever to offer my gifts, passion, wisdom and truth especially regarding the Power of the Feminine and its leading role in awakening in the collective. I am called to facilitate the empowerment of the Feminine for it to be leading men and women through the Shift that we are experiencing on a spirit/mind/body level.
Seane Corn's workshop was for me another initiation for, as a true teacher, Seane teaches through stories by making us experience feelings and emotions (some that we might have previously repressed). During her last workshop, in fact, the majority of the people who were there (mostly women) started to cry as Seane approached a old gentleman in a wheelchair. She apparently knew him from last year’s conference. Seane came to him and kneeled down to share an intimate moments of love and laughter with the man who was previously disrupting the workshop by speaking loudy indiscernible sentences. After their moment, the man quieted and watched the rest of the workshop in silence. I was amazed to see Seane’s ability to stay grounded, in her center, and embrace what had seemed to be a shadow (disruptive force) and transform its energy/frequency with the power of Unconditional Love.
For me, this is a perfect example of doing ‘Shadow Work’ -- what should be one of the main focus of our current ‘Spiritual’ work and movement. We need to find Peace in our relationships and in our life in general, within ourselves, and embrace all our different reflections (deep psychological work!). Whether these reflections come to us through our friends, enemies, strangers, TV, images, in our workplace or in our family. Our reality is a constant unfolding of lessons to broaden our understanding of the Universe and of Ourselves. Seane also stressed the need for us to FEEL the emotions that these reflections are bringing up and discharge/neutralize them through Yoga, meditation, presence, awareness (or by writing ‘f#ck you letters’ to the person that caused us to be triggered -- a great therapy according to Seane).
That day, I successfully released these emotions (previously blockages) in my body, by crying my eyes out. It made room for New Energies to come. I cried during most of the introduction and during the Sun Salutations that Seane made us dedicate to ourselves for forgiveness, to anyone in our life who taught us with Love, to anyone in our lives who needed healing and to anyone in our lives whom we need to forgive. Needless to say; I felt shifted after the workshops. I fact, I felt that I was in a ‘flow state’ for a while -- a higher state that we experience when we resonate at a certain frequency -- during which I was able to discern better, see the Truth more clearly and channel it. For example, I had a moment of Awe when, standing in Extended Side Angle Stretch, I saw lines upon lines of Warrioress and High Priestesses (mostly Yoga Teachers), ready to take on this mission of Awakening themselves to help the whole Collective raise its own vibration by practicing Yoga and doing deep Spiritual Work.
It also confirmed a lesson that I keep getting again and again: The Feminine -- that is overtly represented by women but that is within us all -- needs to lead, our intuitions and inner knowing needs to lead our actions and our Will (our Masculine). And this inner Wisdom and Truth needs to be protected by the Masculine within us all -- and that is overtly represented by men but that exist within us all. In fact, the Yoga conference was a means for the Feminine (mostly women) to gather and do deep shamanic work together. I envision the many festivals and retreats for us to continue doing this work and re-enchant the world: bring back the wisdom of the spiritual world, working with subtle energies, using plant medicines, being connected to Nature, working with Elements, Chanting, Dancing, Sharing Stories, etc. Here lays my passion and purpose.
What really hit me in Seane Corn’s spiritual message is that it was in fact completely grounded in the fourth dimension, which means that it is practical, it help us understand our everyday life and help us make better decisions as Human Beings functioning in this reality. The essence of the message is also grounded in a way that it does not bypass acting, making decisions, and choices for our life and relationships which is often the case with transcendental spiritual teaching -- a more Masculine approach to spirituality. Her massage is a message of Peace, to reclaim the power of Grace, Honor, Respect and especially the high frequency of Unconditional Love in our life by working with our actions and the wisdom of our body as well as with our intentions, with our prayers and with subtle energies.
Later on that day, my partner Darren bought be a beautiful Moldavite Crystal pendant that is to carry the frequency of this download and to remind me, every single day, to be of service to my community; to share the messages/information/energies that are coming through me and help others (especially my Sisters) in doing this work. Like High Priestesses of our modern time, we shall carry on this mission, we shall come together and find Unity within; Unity with our Sisters; Unity between the Divine Feminine and Divine Masculine; between the Light and the Shadow that dances Within and Without. For this is True Yoga.
I am Honored to be participating in bringing forth this Frequency and I embrace the Responsibility and the Power that such a Purpose brings. Fellow Brothers and Sisters, the time is now! Let this message inspire all of us to do our work, to create a viable Alternative to the current Paradigm and access our True Powers as Divine Beings.
Here is a place for me to share some of my downloads, realisations, insights, lessons and experiences - all filled with deep spiritual teachings. I hope some of this will resonate with you.
Clarity Barton is a Women's Empowerment Leader, a Healer and a Tantric & Shamanic Yoga Teacher. She provides her Toronto-based and growing International community with heart-felt, transformative and healing experiences.
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