Since Easter is here. Let’s reflect on some previous posts about the subject.
Of Esoteric Mysteries, Myths and Legends: The Dogwood Tree
One of the legends associated with the Passion is the dogwood tree. According to legend the dogwood was the tree the Romans used in Palestine to make crosses which were used in their crucifixions.
Easter: A Religious Reflection
It had been a rough weekend for the disciples and the women. The women could not properly prepare the body for burial on Friday afternoon because the Sabbath would begin at sunset. It must have been a mournful day for these people who had followed and ministered to the Nazarene Teacher for three years in his various travels.
Based on their reactions, they must not have seen an angel or messenger as translated from the Greek before that Sunday morning. The psychological impact on them from the previous days and now this manifestation in the open tomb was too much for them.
The women must have conveyed the message to the disciples since Peter and John ran to the tomb according to John 20. Mary Magdala must have followed them back to the tomb because after they left, she stood outside the tomb weeping.
A Roman Prefect’s Question-What Is Truth?
Perhaps, the most famous question asked of Jesus, the Nazarene Teacher, on the day of his death. It was asked by a Roman.
As the accused Nazarene Teacher stood before Pontius Pilate, the Roman Prefect wanted to know how the man before him understood his place in Roman society. He had heard from the man’s accusers. He had heard over the last three years fantastic reports of what this man had done—his teachings on universal brotherhood, healing the sick, associating with the outcasts of society—the lepers, tax collectors, prostitutes, etc.—and raising the dead just a few days ago in Bethany. The report of this Man chasing the moneychangers and merchants from the temple had made an impression on this Roman.
Maryām’s Week of Triumph and Sorrow
It had been a week of triumph and sorrow for the young woman. She knew about joy, the joy of love, and the sorrow of saying good-bye to one whom she loved more than herself.
At the beginning of the week she had cried tears of ultimate joy. Now, at the end of the week her tears would flow unchecked for the next day. They would be tears of sadness and loss—the kind which burns the eyes and stains the ground.
The memories of a few hours before flooded her mind with every vivid detail. There she stood at the foot of the roman cross where her beloved hung suspended between earth and heaven.
The Voyage From Jerusalem to Glastonbury
In the weeks that followed after that miraculous Sunday morning, some of the highest ranking religious leaders sought to silence those who spoke of the events concerning the death and resurrection of the Nazarene Teacher. Fearing an upheaval of the populace and the brutal censure of the Romans, they sought to suppress the growing heresy with the aid of a zealous young man named Saul of Tarsus who would murder anyone who threatened the established orthodoxy.
Claudia Procula, wife of Roman Prefect Pontius Pilate, continued to have dreams. She would share these with Maryām of Magdala who in turn would inform Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus, both of whom had been excluded from the stratagems of the leadership.
Of Esoteric Mysteries, Myths and Legends: Spear of Destiny
According to legend, the Roman centurion who pierced the side of the Nazarene Teacher was Longinus. His spear would become the Spear of Destiny.
Like other religious artifacts the longche was given mystical powers. Perhaps, the one power which made its possession desirable was that the holder of the Spear of Destiny would rule the world. The corollary was the loss of the spear would result in death, eternal death.
Easter has always had its share of controversy from the religious perspective. Perhaps, what is important to enjoy the day as a family regardless of one’s religious viewpoint.
And if you choose not to observe the day for whatever reason, it’s your choice to make. However, do not feel burden to cast derision and other negative items at those who embrace the day.
We all share the same planet traversing the cosmos. Let’s tolerate each other foibles.
G. D. Williams © 2016
“The English term, according to the Ven. Bede (De temporum ratione, I, v), relates to Estre, a Teutonic goddess of the rising light of day and spring, which deity, however, is otherwise unknown, even in the Edda (Simrock, Mythol., 362); Anglo-Saxon, eâster, eâstron; Old High German, ôstra, ôstrara, ôstrarûn; German, Ostern.”
Easter is the holiday that celebrates and commemorates the central event of the Christian faith: the resurrection of Jesus Christ three days after his death by crucifixion. All major branches of Christianity observe the holiday. Today, other than church attendance, the holiday often involves Easter Eggs for toys and candy as well as the imagery of bunnies and rabbits (see more below). Easter occurs the Sunday after Good Friday.
The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the centerpiece of the Christian faith, according to the Apostle Paul, who even says that if Jesus Christ has not been resurrected then the Christian faith is worthless and futile (1 Cor. 15:14-17). Therefore, without Easter there is no Christianity.
Easter is the oldest Christian holiday and the most important day of the church year. All the Christian movable feasts and the entire liturgical year of worship are arranged around Easter. Easter is preceded by the season of Lent, a 40-day period of fasting and repentance culminating in Holy Week, and followed by a 50-day Easter Season that stretches from Easter to Pentecost.