In this article we’re going to explore some of the symbology and little known folk lore that is a part of the Easter Holiday festivities. As a child Easter always fascinated me. I often wondered what rabbits, chocolate candies and decorated eggs had to do with Jesus and the Bible. My curiosity led me to the library to do some research on the holiday. Looking up Easter in the encyclopedia I learned that the holiday had “pagan” origins that went back thousands of years to the festivals of a Goddess named Ishtar.
Ok. Easter is a “pagan” holiday. At the time that little bit of information was enough for me to not want to participate in the holiday festivities, because as a young Christian, I certainly did not want to participate in anything “pagan” I was taught Pagans where evil. Fast forward to a few years ago and I get the urge to revisit the whole “pagan holiday” thing. Why? Because as I began to study history from an African perspective came to find that the “Church” labeled anything that was not a “Christian” practice or custom – pagan.
I discovered that many African religious and spiritual beliefs, practices and festivals where hidden underneath the label of being “pagan” and that if I wanted to explore and reclaim the history that was purposefully hidden from myself and my people, I was going to have to look behind the curtain of what was considered to be an off-limits subject.
Just to be clear, there is a kind of double trap going on to prevent people from looking more deeply at parts of our culture, (African) especially those parts which concern history and religion because both of these things can be used to manipulate the minds of the ignorant masses.
The first trap is – follow the customs without question and except the cover story that you’ve been given. If the first trap fails and you begin to question the religious practice/custom/ritual, then trap number two activates when you discover that the ritual was actually “pagan”, which has somehow become synonymous with “evil”, in which case you don’t need to mess with it anyway. There is a ton of secret knowledge encoded into most holidays and religious systems, and you will find at their source an African origin for almost every single one of them. When this information is decoded you will find some of the most complex and mysterious stories about the black Gods and Goddesses of ancient times that where later demonized by the Church as being evil. This was done for one reason. To keep “Black” people around the world from realizing who and what we are. But I digress… its time to get back to the main topic of discussion, Easter. I’m going to cover some of the basic facts about the holiday and then get into decoding the symbolism and revealing what is perhaps one of the greatest love stories of all time.
Easter is a Christian holiday celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ on the third day after his crucifixion on a cross at Calvary as described in the Bible. Easter Holiday customs include observing Good Friday, eating fish, egg hunts, white bunny rabbits, colorful eggs and candies for children.
Interesting Easter fact: Easter Sunday is not the actual anniversary of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. If it was in fact; an anniversary, it would fall on the same day every year. In point of fact, Easter falls on a different Sunday almost every year. Why? Because Easter is actually a celebration which very similar to the Jewish Passover, which is considered to be a “moveable feast” in that it does not fall on a fixed date in the Gregorian or Julian calendars. Instead the date is determined to be on the first Sunday after the Paschal moon (first full moon) after the March or Spring Equinox.
(Symbols may vary depending on your denomination)
- Good Friday
- Rabbits or Hares
- Eggs (traditionally painted red, but can include any color combo and different types of decorations)
According to tradition on “Good Friday” Jesus was crucified on a cross at Calvary between two thieves. One of the thieves was positive and the other negative. “And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left.” Luke 23:33 Decode: The two thieves represent negative and positive polarity which exists in the material realm. The Christ being in between the two is the balance of the equation. The goal is always harmony. We live in a world based on polarity; dark and light, good and bad, positive and negative. In this realm, polarity is necessary for locomotion it is the job of the “conscious” to become the master of both polarities.
The Old Testament is full of stories, allegories and metaphors about fish. In the Bible stories, Christ feeds thousands of people with 2 fish and 5 loaves of bread. He promises to make his disciples “fishers of men”. He goes fishing in boats with nets. Why all the fish? The major reason why there are so many fish stories in the New Testament scriptures is an astrological one; the Christians ushered in the age of Pisces which symbolizes the age of the “Believer” of which every Christian is a believer in Christ. The sign of Pisces is symbolized by two fish, which is the hidden reason why there is a profusion of fish symbolism surrounding the story of Jesus. In Western culture the astrological zodiac is made up of 12 signs, each one representing an “age”. Each age lasts approximately 2,160 years. According to Wikipedia “An astrological age is a time period which astrology postulates parallel major changes in the development of Earth’s inhabitants, particularly relating to culture, society and politics.” As stated above, the age of Pisces symbolizes a time when Earth’s development and culture concentrated on “belief”. The next age, the age of Aquarius is about “knowing” as opposed to blind faith and belief. If you’ve every seen the above image on the back of someones vehicle, you’ll note that this fish is the symbol of Christian believers. The letters found inside many of these symbols is Greek and translates to the work ICHTHUS which means “fish”. You’ll also note that there was a pre-Christian god named Ichthys who was a god of fertility, water and fish. Before the time of Christ the traditional passover meal of fish with bread and wine, “was the sacramental meal of the mystery religions and fish meals and sacrifice were solemnized in the ritual worship of all gods of the underworld and lunar goddesses of the water and of love and fecundity, whose son Atargatis, whose son, Ichthys, was the Sacred Fish; also Ishtar, Nina, Isis and Venus; their day was Friday on which day fish was eaten in their honor, but also with the object of partaking of the fecundity of the fish.” J.C. Cooper Take note that Friday was originally a day venerated to the Goddess Ishtar (among others) on which day fish was eaten in their honor! As you study the symbols of Easter you’re going to find the symbolism of Ishtar and Inanna again and again that relate directly to the Easter holiday which is supposed to be about Jesus. The name of the holiday Easter comes directly from Eostre or Oster a Scandanavian Goddess who took her name and attributes directly from the Goddess Ishtar.
Rabbits and Hares
The rabbit or hare symbolically is a lunar animal, which means it represents the moon and is associated with Moon Goddesses and Earth Mothers. The rabbit represents rebirth, rejuvenation, and resurrection. The rabbit is also a trickster with a quick mind that is able to outwit dull brute force. (It should be abundantly clear to fans of Bugs Bunny cartoons what is meant by rabbits being tricksters)
So why is an animal that is associated with the worship of the moon a part of a holiday that is supposed to be about the Son of God? The rabbit was also a symbol of Ishtar who was said to be a Goddess of fertility and the moon. So we find here too another symbol for the Goddess. Now you know why Easter’s celebration date is determined by the first full Moon after the Spring/March equinox!
Hopefully you can see a pattern beginning to form here. The Easter holiday is about a Goddess; all of the symbols associated with the holiday say so! But you don’t learn this in Church… why not?
Originally the Easter holiday is about the Moon/Mother Goddess and Her Son/Lover aka the Sun. Over time the worship of a male “Father” god began to take over the traditional worship of the Mother Goddess. “As society became increasingly patriarchal, Inanna-Ishtar fell from favor. The goddess in the guise of a sexy, young, independent warrior-woman was no longer considered an appropriate role model.” – Encylopedia of Spirits by Judika Illes
It should be obvious that Rabbits don’t lay eggs. There is no mention of Jesus or his disciples partaking of any eggs during the Passover feast. So why are eggs a part of the holiday? Symbolically eggs are representative of birth and recreation. In the Bible story; Jesus dies on the cross is buried and then resurrected. Eggs can be symbolic to caves in which new life is gestating, ready to be born into the world. Both the rabbit and eggs were sacred to the Saxon Goddess Eostre, (who is really Ishtar/Inanna). The Persian used to present each other with Red Easter eggs (red being the color of life and rebirth) up until the 18th century. Russians used to lay red Easter eggs on graves to serve as resurrection charms.
Easter and the Goddess Connection
Wikipedia says: the modern English word Easter, comes from the German Ostern, and was developed from the Old English word Ēastre or Ēostre. This is generally held to have originally referred to the name of an Anglo-Saxon goddess, Ēostre, a form of the widely attested Indo-European dawn goddess. Going back even further, Eostre comes from the Goddess Ashtoreth. Aha! The fact that Easter is actually a celebration of the Goddess Eostre/Ashtoreth has just been revealed. If we look further we find that Ashtoreth is really just a title for the Babylonian mother Goddess Ishtar. If we go back even further in time we find that Ishtar is a later name for the Goddess Inanna. If you keep going back through time and various African and so called “Middle Eastern” cultures you’ll find that Ishtar is descended from Hetheru (Hathor) and the most ancient of Goddesses; Neith. But it’s the story of Ishtar and her lover Tammuz that I would like to call your attention to, as it is perhaps one of the greatest love stories you’ve probably never heard. It’s the story of the lengths that a black woman will go to in order to save her man. The Goddess Ishtar was loved and venerated throughout the ancient world in such places as Babylon, Akkadia, Chaldea, and Sumer.
Ishtar had a lover named Tammuz who was the God of the Harvest and was responsible for the growth and abundance of crops every year. As the story goes, one day while hunting Tammuz was struck down by a wild boar. When he died he was sent to the Underworld Ishtar was furious and went on a mission to rescue her mate from his fate.
At first the guardians to the gates of the underworld were reluctant to let her in, to which she said to the seven gatekeepers: “If thou openest not the gate so that I cannot enter, I will smash the door, I will shatter the bolt, I will smash the doorpost, I will move the doors, I will raise up the dead, eating the living, so that the dead will outnumber the living!” After this threat and much ass kicking; the gatekeepers reconsidered, and allowed Ishtar to pass and ultimately rescue Tammuz.
In order to pass, Ishtar was required to make a sacrifice of one piece of clothing or jewelry at each gate. After she passed through all 7 gates she stood naked before the ruler of the underworld where she fought for her husband. There is a dance still practiced today that commemorates this tale, known as the “Dance of the 7 Veils” in which belly dancers remove 7 veils or coverings during a very aggressive and provocative dance. This is a Chakra dance.
Chakras are the energy centers in the human body most often associated with Yogo practice. The dance is designed to open the energy centers of both the dancers and the witnesses of the dance.
Esoterically Ishtar and Tammuz in Christian symbology are Mary Magdalene and Jesus. In the story of the resurrection of Christ it was said that Jesus was dead for three days and nights, and while he was dead he went into hell, wrested the keys of death and hell from the devil and freed all of the old testament saints only to rise again from the underworld with the power over evil, ready to ascend back to heaven.
Fun fact: Another title for Ishtar was Ishtar-Mari, Mari, Mari-Anna or Miriam. This name ties Ishtar directly to Mary of the Bible.
Here is another Fun Fact: While mourning for the dead Tammuz, Ishtar’s priestesses where known to wail “Allelu” for hours. In many Catholic Church services on Easter Sunday, Hallelujah is sung to commemorate the Christ who has risen.
If however we go back to the much older story of Ishtar and Tammuz we find that it was Ishtar who went down into the underworld to save Tammuz (as opposed to Jesus going down alone after his death) from the bonds of hell and the Gate keeper.
It was from Ishtar that Tammuz received the keys of death and hell and was able to escape. This story of Ishtar and Tammuz has been repeated over and over through many thousands of years and several cultures. In Sumer the story was about Inanna and Dummuzi in ancient Egypt (Kemet/Tameri) the story goes back to Isis (Auset/Ast/Wst) and Osiris (Ausar/Asir/Wsr).
An even older mythology is at play that involves the ancient Libyan (African) Goddess Neith who was perhaps the most powerful and renown of all of the Virgin/Mother/Warrior Goddesses. In any case you will note that ALL of these Gods and Goddesses are African in origin.
Gods who were “messiah’s” or “christ’s” that were celebrated before the time of Jesus include:
And that’s just naming a few!
There are many more. See “The World’s Sixteen Crucified Saviors” by Kersey Graves, “The Christ Conspiracy – The Greatest Story Ever Sold” by Acharya S and “The Jesus Mysteries” by Peter Gandy and Timothy Freke for references. Do not allow Western culture to steal your stories and history from you by labeling it “Pagan“. Our stories are full of adventure, romance and triumph against all odds… against the very gates of Hell! As I’m reading the old stories I’m often reminded of the lyrics to the Marvin Gaye song: Ain’t No Mountain High Enough – “Listen, baby, ain’t no mountain high enough, Ain’t no valley low enough, ain’t no river wide enough, baby If you need me, call me, no matter where you are”
The stories about black love are legendary! Many of them have been hidden from us, and we disregard them, because we think these stories are not a part of “our heritage” but they are.
Ishtar went to Hell and back to rescue her man, Isis scoured the Earth for her broken man; Osirus, put him back together and raised him from the dead, and raised his Son to be an Avenger and the Redeemer of His name – the ancient stories go on and on about what the Goddess did to resurrect her mate! I hope this strikes a chord with you, dear reader. It certainly did with me.
Is Easter a “pagan holiday“? Absolutely! Does that mean that it is bad or evil? Absolutely not! Concealed within Christianity are many great secrets of the ancient Gods, Goddesses and African mystery systems from which all religion was born. Make it a habit of looking for the root meanings of the symbols and customs associated with any religious holiday or ritual, you’ll be surprised what you’ll find!
If you would like to study this Easter information for yourself here are my sources:
- The Element Encyclopedia of Secret Signs and Symbols by Adele Nozedar
- Dictionary of Ancient Dieties by Patricia Turner and Charles Russell Coulter
- The Woman’s Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets by Barbara G. Walker
- An Illustrated Encyclopedia of Traditional Symbols by J.C. Cooper
- The Dictionary of the Esoteric by Neville Drury
- Blacked Out Through Whitewash by Suzar
- Black Athena by Martin Bernal Vol. 1, 2 & 3
Who Killed the Goddess?
Want to learn more about the Mother Goddess and why the major modern religions only have a “Father” God? Check out my live lecture video: “Who Killed the Goddess?”
The Father, The Son & the Holy Ghost? What happened to the MOTHER?