Friday, March 12, 2010

Spring Equinox Approaches - Plan for Change

Equinox means the date when passage occurs.

Since ancient times, the Spring (or Vernal) Equinox marked the start of the new year. The changing Light from the darkness of Winter to the longer days and new life of Spring played an important role in folklore, mythology, lifestyle, and art.

Technically, an equinox occurs when the tilt of the Earth's axis is vertical to the Sun, neither tilted towards the Sun (as in summer in the northern hemisphere) or away from it (in winter). Day and night are of approximately equal length. After the Spring Equinox, the days will get longer - until the Summer Solstice. The Spring Equinox always occurs around March 20-21.

This date has been celebrated in indigenous cultures since ancient times. Calendars of cultures around the world commemorate this date. The Persian festival of Nowruz celebrates creation and the cosmology of Iranian & Persian people. Ancient Egyptians celebrated Sham El Nessim going back to 2700 BC. Christians have the Easter holiday around this time - the first Sunday after the first full moon after the March equinox.

Establishing the ability to fix key seasonal celestial transitions was essential to successul planting, harvesting, and hunting migrating animals. Native American tribes often appointed "sun watchers" to establish this significant ritual date. Northern California's Miwok tribe was believed to honor fertility during this time - perhaps at the rock carvings on Ring Mountain shown in the picture at left (not far from where I live).

South is the direction commonly associated with the Spring Equinox, and the Earth Element represents this season.

After the contemplation and planning of Winter, the time for change arrives. Often this is when we begin to put change into action - how we are going to live differently in our hearts, to begin preparing for the planting leading to harvest. Often this is a time of focusing on relationships and matters of the heart. [My Lab loves to eat spring grass]

And definitely this is a time to smudge your home, your office - to clear out the Winter's energies and bring in the joy and abundance of Spring! The Spring Equinox Talisman uses the energies of vibrant Moss Agate, Heliodor, Baltic Amber, and Selenite to recharge your own environment and help banish Seasonal Affective Disorder.

Want to learn more about conducting a sacred smoke blessing? Are you seeking a super-fragrant, colorful smudge for your Equinox celebration? Try my handcrafted smudge sticks, made with a blend of fragrant herbs and flowers ... fresh lavender, rosemary, mint. Each smudge stick purchase includes colorful instructions on smudging for people, home and office.

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