In most parts of the world, we define the seasons in two ways. By the Astronomical or Meteorological dates. Astronomical seasons refer to the position of Earth’s orbit in relation to the sun taking into account equinoxes and solstices. Meteorological seasons are instead based on the annual temperature cycle and measure the meteorological state as well as coinciding with the calendar to determine a clear transition between the seasons. ~ MetOffice-UK
The Solstices and Equinoxes are considered to be the astronomical transition points between the seasons. Because they are connected to the Sun and Moon, they were important times to early Pagans.
Of course in the old days, our ancestors didn’t have the benefit of the Naval or Royal Observatories and Satellites to mark the exact second of the Equinox. They relied on Astronomical monuments, like Stonehenge as an example to tell them when the sun was nearing an equinox.
We have the benefit of technology and hundreds of years of study to help us out today.
The March equinox happens at the same moment across the world but is converted to local time. In 2015, it falls on March 20 at 6:45 P.M. EDT, 5:45 P.M. CDT, 4:45 P.M. MDT, and 3:45 P.M. PDT, for example. ~ Farmer’s Almanac
They mark key stages in the astronomical cycle of the earth in dividing the year into growing seasons and harvest seasons. In a year there are two equinoxes (spring and autumn) and two solstices (summer and winter).
The meteorological seasons consists of splitting the seasons into four periods made up of three months each. These seasons are split to coincide with our Gregorian calendar making it easier for meteorological observing and forecasting to compare seasonal and monthly statistics. By the meteorological calendar, spring starts on 1 March. ~ MetOffice-UK
Here in the Northern Hemisphere we are entering into the Spring Equinox, also known as the Vernal Equinox, as the top half of Earth moves closer to the Sun. But in the Southern Hemisphere this is the autumnal, or fall equinox as the lower half of Earth begins moving away from the Sun.
One easy thing to remember is that these Equinox holiday’s are about balance. The balance of day and night; the Sun and Moon; the spirit and the physical worlds. Let your own inner ideas and inspirations lead the way to being creative and expressing the Divine within you.
- High Holy Days: Southern Hemisphere
- The History Of Ostara – The ‘Spring Equinox’
- The History of Mabon – The Feast of Avalon
© 2015 Springwolf, D.D., Ph.D. Springwolf Reflections / Springs Haven, LLC. All Rights Reserved.