Like all good things worth the waiting, so the unmistakable song of the robin on this Good Friday morning, ushering in all that is new and holding eternal hope and promise.
Just how the bunny comes into the entire scheme of things at Easter is an interesting topic in itself. Pagan folklore connected the creature to the goddess of fertility due to the rabbit's prodigious capacity for procreation while early Christian belief was that, because the animal was thought to be a hermaphrodite, it was capable of virgin birth, hence linked to the Virgin Mary. Both of these beliefs, added to other variations world wide, contributed to the bunny being appointed as the logo of Spring renewal and Easter celebration.
The egg has been the symbol of renewal, rebirth and new life to many cultures world wide and is particularly so revered during Easter when we see it in all forms, from chocolate to brightly colored and decorated. The Christian significance of the egg was two fold, one that it represented the empty tomb of Christ as he rose from the dead--comparing that to the emptiness of the eggshell once the chicken has hatched -- and the other significance of the egg was as symbol of new life -- both human and in the natural world, at this time of year.
Christian tradition originated the practice of coloring the eggs red, to represent the blood shed by Christ when crucified. Throughout the centuries, other religions and societal practices have similarly evolved to maintain the original practice of dying the eggs bright colors at this time of year.
But any way you cut it, we are better off for the robin's song this morning-- and for the bunnies, Easter egg hunts and all else that ushers in a gentle season after a daunting winter.