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Spring Equinox: A Natural New Year

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For inhabitants of Earth’s northern half, March brings the beginning of Spring. Heralded on the vernal equinox, Spring starts when the sun’s rays cross the celestial equator at the planet’s center. At this moment of symmetry, the sun is giving equal light to the northern and southern hemispheres and making the day and night the same length. In autumn, we will experience the reverse as spring is welcomed again in the southern hemisphere. For now, until summer solstice, our tilt towards the sun will intensify, enticing plants out of dormancy and prompting animals to migrate and mate.  

For many peoples, this solar occasion is celebrated as New Year’s! An ancient Zoroastrian tradition, this nature-driven new year is still celebrated in much of the Middle East, Eastern Europe, and Central and South Asia today. Festivities are as diverse as their multicultural celebrants and vary depending on locale, but all include several days of rituals around fire and earth to cleanse the old and usher in the new.  

Here are a few ancient ideas to incorporate into your own equinox celebration: 

Make a Fire

It can be as big as a bonfire or as small as a candle—fire is essential in welcoming the warmth and light of the sun.

Grow Sprouts

After a long winter, nothing tastes better than fresh, crisp local greens. It’s still chilly to start seeding veggies outside, but a windowsill is all you need to sprout some microgreens for your salads and sandwiches.  

Create a seasonal altar

Altars are a key part of most springtime festivities and commonly include- hyacinths, mirrors, fruits, books of poetry, candles, painted eggs, coins, and those sprouts you just grew, among other symbolic items. Don’t feel restricted—any personally important item can be included if it represents the season.

Get outdoors

Take a walk, whether it’s brisk or meditative. Have a picnic, try birding, or get back in the garden.    

Spring Equinox Blog

Happy Spring To All

And Happy New Year to those who celebrate spring equinox as an annual beginning! 

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