Big BunnyEaster means a lot to many and this holiday, the blogsphere was wide open with interesting facts about the origin of this religious holiday. Of course, this German bunny – what a wabbit! is a bit oblivious to anything traditional..

There are some interesting pagan influences for this holiday. The question for me today leans more to …Where did Easter come from?

Wikipedia is a good place to start…

I especially appreciate any celestial holiday and Easter is unique in that it is usually celebrated the first Sunday after the full moon. The name of the full moon in April is referred to as ‘egg moon” (native american – pink moon). A religious holiday based on a lunar cycle … an intriguing footprint into our woodsy past.

The name Easter comes from a pagan goddess called Eastre (or Eostre) who was worshipped by the Saxons of Northern Europe. When second century Christian missionaries wanted the Saxons to accept Christianity, they decided to use the name Easter for this holiday so that it would match the name of the Saxons own spring celebration, and likewise, the name of their goddess. This was supposed to make it more comfortable for them to accept Christ (now there’s some theology for ya). The goddess Eastre’s symbol on earth was the rabbit, which for obvious reasons, was a sign of fertility.

On another resource is a description of when Easter candy came from…especially the Easter Egg…and you’ll also find an interesting history of Peeps and Jellybeans here too…

In Europe, during the early 1800’s, Chocolate was all the rage. It was the treat of choice for most middle and upper class denizens. Chocolatiers sought to use the image of the egg as a way to celebrate Easter and sell their products.
The symbol of the egg, which was already being used in Easter festivities at this time, had been a pagan symbol representing fertility and re-birth in pagan times. It had been adopted as part of the Christian Easter festival and it came to represent the ‘resurrection’ or re-birth of Christ after the crucifixion and some believe it is a symbol of the the stone blocking the Sepulcher being ‘rolled’ away. It was during this time the first chocolate Easter egg appeared in Germany and France and soon spread to the rest of Europe and beyond.

Happy Easter whatever it means to you.