Greetings, and welcome to March!
"March is the month of expectation.."
Emily Dickinson (1830-86).
March begins, astrologically, with the sun in
the sign of Pisces and ends in the sign of Aries. March was originally
the first month of the Roman calendar before the winter months of January
and February were added - about 700 BC. In ancient Rome, March was called
Martius, named after Mars, the Roman god of war, one of the most prominent,
most worshipped gods. In early Roman history he was a god of Spring,
growth in nature, and fertility, and the protector of cattle. Mars is
also mentioned as a chthonic god (of, or relating to, the underworld),
and this could explain why he became a god of death and finally, a god
In Finnish, the month of March is called maaliskuu,
which originates from maallinen kuu, meaning 'earthy month'.
(at this time, earth would begin to show through the snow). Historical
names for March include the Saxon term lenctmonat, named for
the equinox and eventual lengthening of days (and the eventual namesake
of Lent.). The Saxons also called March rhed-monat (for their
goddess Rhedam); ancient Britons called it hyld-monath (meaning
loud or stormy).
As part of the seasonal calendar, March is often
referred to as the time of the 'Storm Moon' according to Pagan
beliefs, and the period described as the 'Moon of the Snow-blind'
by Black Elk. It has also been known as: 'Hreth-monath' (Rough
month) and 'Llyd-monath' (Boisterous month) (Old Saxon).
March ends the Winter and ushers in the Spring.
(As we know, March weather can be both wintry and springlike.) In the
northern hemisphere, many animals end their hibernation, and many plants
come to life again. Sap flows in the trees, and the first green buds
appear. The first pussy willows and wild flowers can be found in the
woods. Most frogs lay their eggs. Hibernating animals, such as bears,
chipmunks, and woodchucks, leave their winter sleeping places. Wild
geese and ducks begin their northward flights.
In March, we begin to look for the first robin
as a sign that spring has really arrived. The flower for March is the
violet. Spring, in the northern half of the world, begins with the Vernal
Equinox, which occurs about March 21st. (This year it's the 20th) On
this day, the the sun crosses the plane of the earth's equator, making
night and day of approximately equal length all over the earth.
Ostara is one of the eight major holidays
on the Wiccan Wheel of the Year. (It is celebrated on the Spring Equinox,
in the Northern hemisphere around March 21 and in the Southern hemisphere
around September 23). Among the Wiccan sabbats, it is preceded by Imbolc
and followed by Beltane. The holiday is a celebration of spring and
growth, the renewal of life that appears on the earth after the winter.
In the book Eight Sabbats for Witches (Farrar), it is
characterized by the rejoining of the Mother Goddess and her lover-consort-son,
who spent the winter months in death.
Whether ' in like a lion, out like a lamb'
March is an in between month,
When wintry winds are high.
But milder days remind us all,
Spring's coming by and by.
However you observe the month of March, we
wish you a very merry.
Hope to see you soon!
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