The church bells ring louder today, the bakeries are filled with unique goodies and cakes, the families are reuniting after days – this is the Easter spirit.
Easter is celebrated all across the globe and is one of the two major Christian festivals following Christmas. Although different Christian practices include more reasons to celebrate, these two are the most significant ones for this religion.
Here, we’re going to take you through some of the known and unknown facts you must recall or learn about Easter. These will not only empower your spiritual side but also remind you why it is essential to always start afresh.
What is Easter?
As per the records of the Holy Bible, after the fall of men, there was a loss of fellowship between men and God. Men kept sinning against God’s will and that led to the flood and destruction in this world. It was just Noah who could save his family and every animal species. But even that didn’t help, and men started sinning again.
The Bible then tells us stories of prophets, Isaiah, Daniel, Hosea, Jeremiah, and John the Baptist who prophesied the coming of a Messiah way ahead of time. This Man would take away all the worldly sins and set the people free. And yes! This man was Lord Jesus Christ.
Jesus was born of Virgin Mary and nurtured by her and Father Joseph. Jesus lived on the earth like just another ordinary human and preached the teachings of God. He was betrayed by one of his disciples and that led him into the painful Cross.
Easter comes two days after Good Friday, the day of his crucifixion, and marks the day when he rose to life again. He overcame death and lived for 40 more days before he rose to heaven to be with his Father.
What is the true essence of Easter?
Easter is the festival to commemorate the resurrection of Christ and to mark the ultimate sacrifice for love and humanity. Jesus embodied forgiveness, courage, humility, and endurance. This season reminds us that we must love our family and neighbors and fulfill the needs of people who are less-privileged amidst us.
Easter is not only an occasion to celebrate but to start afresh. It is the day when people must forget their differences and embrace the beauty of life. It gives us a reason to take better steps towards life and bring about a great change.
Things you didn’t know about Easter
Now that we’ve remembered the true essence of Easter, it is time to know a few quick facts that we didn’t know about it:
1. Origin of the name
The word Easter is derived from the name of the mother Goddess of Saxons of Northern Europe. Her name was Eostre and was known to be the goddess of growing light of spring.
2. The story around Easter Eggs
Most of us know that Easter Eggs make an essential part of the celebration. But where did they originate from and what is the significance?
Easter is the symbol of life and new beginnings. Medieval Europe discovered eggs to be one of their first foods to be blessed by priests and eaten after Lenten fast.
The concept of coloring eggs goes back to early Syrian and Greek Christians who exchanged crimson painted eggs that represented the Blood of Jesus.
3. Concept of the Easter bunny
The concept of the Easter bunny giving eggs and candies is known to originate in Germany during Middle Age. The tradition dated backed to the 16th century. It was taken forward by the Dutch settlers in Pennsylvania and they spread this concept all across the US by the 1700s.
4. The concept of Hot Cross Bun
Hot cross buns are a traditional pastry that is eaten on Good Friday primarily in the UK. It is sweet bread flavored with spices and fruits. It is like a bun that is adorned by a cross to remind each one of Christ’s suffering.
5. Chocolates in Easter
Every year, the candy manufacturers make more than 90 million Easter bunnies. The solid chocolate bunnies are supposedly the most sold Easter goodie followed by marshmallow bunnies and hollow chocolate bunnies.
6. The meat of the feast
Although many traditions avoid pork and beef on Easter, roasted lamb or goat is a common part of Easter feast. It is said to signify the Lamb of God and the meat is consumed in a happy note. Many tend to cook lamb in the oven rather than grilling it. You’d love to accompany it with Greek wines to take the high-spirited mood ahead.
7. Jelly beans are in great demand
Although the rest of the world knows that Easter bunny chocolates and eggs are the most consumed treats, the Americans don’t forget to count on jelly beans. The sales of jelly beans go up three times during Easter. People buy more than 16 million jelly beans during this festival and can’t go without having them on Easter.
8. Have pretzels for Easter
Pretzels have an age-old history with Easter, even if you don’t find it during Easter at present. The salty treat represents arms crossing in prayer and is like an ode to the Lord from its people.
9. Easter Parade
There is an old superstitious thought that wearing new clothes on Easter day means having good luck for the rest of the year. During the mid-1800, the rich people in New York would exit grand churches and parade along Fifth Avenue. This practice is carried out until today and is called the Fifth Avenue Easter Parade.
10. Easter for families
Apart from going to the Sunday mass to worship the Lord, the tradition of Easter gives families a reason to reunite. It is the day when people forgive and forget their differences and love each other. They should acknowledge what God has done for them and find ways to have a relationship with each other and with God.
Finally, Easter Monday happens to be a great day to start anew and take up new challenges. It is one of the most productive Mondays that can shape your year and also help you go closer to God.
Following the concepts of Easter will not only help you know a little more about this religion but also teach you the sacrifice of Jesus for humankind, irrespective of the faith they believe in.