The rabbit as Easter symbol has came from Germany (Read More) and what I understood is simply that it represents the children that were collecting the eggs, that were hidden in the garden, so they looked like rabbits jumping and catching them and making the nests of colored eggs :)
I can't answer for the bunnies but the egg is pretty straightforward. The faithful had to abstain from eggs during lent (as well as meat). The tradition of pancakes on Shrove Tuesday stems from using up all the eggs before Lent. Easter Sunday they could be eaten again.
Here's some info for you, Maen: Easter Sunday This Christian holy day celebrates the resurrection of Christ after his Crucifixion. It was probably the earliest of the church's annual festivals and was fused with elements of pagan spring festivals celebrating new life. Folk customs attached to the festival date from pre-Christian times. Eggs, traditionally forbidden during Lent, symbolize new life. The Easter Bunny recalls the hare, the Egyptian symbol of fertility. Easter may have derived its name from the Saxon goddess Eostre, whose feast was celebrated each spring at about this time. Or it may have derived from the word oster, meaning "rising." Due to different methods of calculation, the Eastern and Western churches usually celebrate the feast on different days.
Thanks Maen for this interesting discussion. This is what I found about eggs tradition. I took this quotation from Wikipedia, but this story could be met on different sites, not only English: "One tradition concerning Mary Magdalene says that following the death and resurrection of Jesus, she used her position to gain an invitation to a banquet given by Emperor Tiberius. When she met him, she held a plain egg in her hand and exclaimed "Christ is risen!" Caesar laughed, and said that Christ rising from the dead was as likely as the egg in her hand turning red while she held it. Before he finished speaking, the egg in her hand turned a bright red, and she continued proclaiming the Gospel to the entire imperial house"
I must say it is a great discussion - so thank, Maen, for this topic. All I know is that eggs have been "symbol" for paghan celebrating firstly. Something that was already said in discussion. Indeed, I have seen a small exhibition of images "Christian Easter" here and there was absolutaly no image with eggs. All Christian Easter images have shown Jesus in various ways - in light, on cross, reborn etc. and also many spring trees in flower like a symbol of new life. As time goes... both habbits "melted" and so it is perhaps hard to find the absolutaly "origin" habbit. Nice blog!
Great stories Gabriel! Yes I understood them & many I didn't know! Thank you! :) Thanks Enrique & Yuriz :) Thanks Altaf I will be waiting for any finding from your part! You & Maigi are a great reference of the internet ;)
don't know if Jesus ate that egg,what I know is that the egg is a symbol of a reborn,rinnovation and fertility;so think it was because of those concepts that they related it with the Easter time...about the bunnies: didn't really know those informations,so thanks for sharing good weekend to you all! :)
ummm frankly speaking I saw the egg decoration when I came to Dubai. Back home in India I never saw my christian friends celebrating with EGG. I knew they fast for 40 days, Well if i get some info I will surely pass it on.
Egg, itself bearing life, becomes a symbol of regeneration, and purification of eternity. Legend says that when Jesus was beaten with stones, they were touching it turned into red eggs. Another tradition says Sf.Maria coming to see her crucified Son, brought eggs, which were bleeding under the cross. About red eggs are several legends connected by crucifixion of Son God. Thus, it is said that when Jesus was beaten with stones, they would be turned into red eggs when they have reached. Also ,says that after Jesus was crucified, rabbis Pharisees made a feast.One of them would have said: "When the rooster that we eat will raised and the boiled eggs become red, it will revive and Jesus." Shortly thereafter, eggs were reddened and the rooster began to beat his wings.." Eggs smash at Easter table (in all three days of celebration) after a ritual. Thus, the older person - man of the house - collides head egg head egg hand held a companion at table, while known utters the words "Christ is...(More)
Hi Maen, interesting subject! Are you suggesting we should submit Easter Eggs and Rabbits as part of the assignment? (For this new assignment, we're aiming for revelation in spiritual and spirituality-oriented images related to religion and values.) :-)
Interesting ideas here. I'm not sure about the origins either. My Mum taught us to roll our Easter eggs down a hill to crack them before we ate them. It was supposed to represent rolling away the stone that covered the tomb. I always thought that the bunny came from some Pagan spring festival and just got caught up with everything else. I'd be interested to hear if anyone else rolled their eggs as well. One thing is for sure, children love a good Easter egg hunt! Take care :) PS just found this link about egg rolling etc. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Egg_rolling
Great blog, Maen. As usual. And I like your new avatar. :) Since you asked about it, here are some citations: Pagan Practices That Were “Christianized” Easter Eggs: Since the eating of eggs was formerly forbidden during Lent, “decorated eggs,” claims The Encyclopedia Americana, “could symbolize the end of the penitential season and the beginning of joyful celebration.” However, reference works agree that the egg was a symbol of life and fertility among idolaters. Says the book Celebrations: “Eggs were said to be dyed and eaten at the spring festivals in ancient Egypt, Persia, Greece, and Rome. The Persians of that time gave eggs as gifts at the vernal equinox.” Easter Hares and Rabbits: In Europe, the hare has long been a traditional symbol of Easter. (In North America, the animal is a rabbit—a close relative of the hare.) Yet The New Encyclopædia Britannica explains that the hare was “the symbol of fertility in ancient Egypt.” Thus when children...(More)
Hi Brad, that answer about the egg as a symbol of fertility didn't convince me much, I read that also in wikipedia the same section mentioned in the blog! As they stated that the origin is unknown & it's much possible when things were not documented! It makes since to me that the egg started to have it's important symbolism after something! An event, that's why I came up with this theory that refers to non of what I read on the internet! But thanks for the link anyway ;)
Thanks Dessie, watch out the bad smell of egg fight :P ... :))
It's funny but since eggs and bunny rabbits have always been a part of my life, I never even thought about WHY they are or where the icons came from. You bring up a very good point!
I found your blog very information and think your idea does sound very plausible. I am still patiently waiting for spring. It's sunny here today, but it's only in the 30's. That doesn't sound like spring to me!
Thank you for sharing the info and have a Happy Easter!
Dear Mani, I haven't investigated so much about rabbits :-) As for eggs, they symbolise fecondity. Since many Christian feasts have their roots in pagan rituals, their symbols have simply been transferred and attributed a religious meaning later. Also wheat is a symbol of fertility and abundance. For example in Italy there are many easter cakes (both sweet and savory) made of eggs, wheat, etc. I remain curious about rabbits, though! ^_^ Happy Easter everyone!
Happy Easter in advance, Maen! Here we don't have bunnies, we only color eggs and then we're trying to smash each other's egg. Guess - I'm always the winner :D. Now I'm waiting from you to find if the first thing Jesus have eaten was an egg :)))
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