Equinox is the time when every
place on the Earth experiences 12-hour day and 12-hour night. It happens when
the Sun’s center and the Earth’s equator are in the same plane,
that is, the Sun is positioned exactly above the equator. It is the time when
the Sun is at either of the two points of the celestial sphere where the celestial
equator and ecliptic seem to intersect. Derived from Latin ‘aequus’
(meaning equal) and ‘nox’ (meaning night), equinox is called so
because around it, the day and the night are of equal length.
Actually, the variation in the day/night length or temperature at different
times of the year is because the Earth’s axis is titled at 23.4 degree.
Had the axis on which the Earth rotates been at right angles to the plane
of Earth’s orbit around the Sun, we won’t have had such variations
or different seasons.
An equinox occurs twice annually, around
20th of March and 22nd of September. As the Earth revolves around the Sun, the
Sun’s position in relation to earth’s equator keeps changing. So,
between March equinox and September the Sun is north of equator, while it appears
south of equator during the time from September equinox and March equinox. The
March equinox is called vernal or spring equinox in the Northern hemisphere,
while September equinox is the time of autumnal equinox. This works the other
way for the Southern hemisphere.
The spring equinox has been related to astronomy and astrology. It is considered
the first day of the new year and marks the first point of Aries that is the
start of the Tropical Zodiac. When the Sun enters Aries, Mars (the planet of
assertive action and energy) is also in the sign, making 0 degree Aries potent
with life energy.
Nearly all cultures through the centuries have celebrated the spring equinox. In all parts of the world,
the coming of spring is greeted with rituals, traditions and festivals. The
season has always been considered as a time of organic rebirth. The Sun returns
to the high & mighty skies, the Earth returns to its green abundance and
the Nature seems to be rejoicing and welcoming the approaching warmth.
Spring equinox has also been accorded profound spiritual and esoteric significance.
It is seen as the time when the forces of light and darkness confront and is
considered representative of awakening, enlightenment, self-realization, resurrection
and new beginnings. Coming at a time when the days begin to get longer, it is
symbolic of the triumph of cheerfulness over gloom, of life springing forth
from death and of tremendous shifting of energy. Spring equinox is regarded
as the time of resurrection of Osiris, the ancient Egyptian god; Christianity
celebrates it as the time of Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection; and
it also represents the resurrection of Hun Hunahpu, the Maize god of Mesoamerica.
Several ancient cultures have revered spring equinox, aligning their temples
and other sacred places to it. For instance, the Angor Wat temple in Cambodia
is aligned to the vernal equinox in a way that the rising Sun of the equinox
crowns the temple’s pinnacle. At the feathered serpent temple at Chichen
Itza in Mexico, the feathered serpent ascends the pyramid’s nine terraces
on the vernal equinox. In Egypt, the Great Sphinx of Giza gazes directly at
the rising Sun of the spring equinox, and the great Pyramid does not cast
a shadow at noon on the vernal equinox day.
Even today, many cultures around the world perform specific ceremonies to
celebrate and welcome the spring equinox. Whether through elaborate rituals
or just by being present to witness the rising equinox Sun, they express their
gratitude to the bountiful Nature and hope for a great future.
David Weitzman is the force behind Ka Gold Jewelry. David has dedicated himself for many years to the search for sacred knowledge. He has vast knowledge in the fields of Kabbalah, sacred geometry, Egyptian wisdom, Jewish tradition, Tibetan Buddhism and other sacred concepts.