Various cultures celebrate the coming of Spring

Various cultures celebrate the coming of Spring



From William Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale:

“Daffodils, That come before the swallow dares, and take The winds of March with beauty; violets, dim, But sweeter than the lids of Juno’s eyes, Or Cytherea’s breath; pale primroses, That die unmarried, ere they can behold Bright Phoebus in his strength—a malady Most incident to maids; bold oxlips and The crown imperial, lilies of all kinds…”


With spring’s approach the earth wakes from its wintry slumber. Dormant bulbs will soon carpet the landscape in a riot of floral colors. Trees barren and skeletal from icy hibernation now stretch their limbs, unfurling the full splendor of hidden verdant vigor, ready to bask in the sun’s warmth once more.

The earth awakes and its seasonally somnolent children follow suit. Consider the spring festivals heralding its arrival. Nowruz celebrates the Persian and Baha’i New Year. Rooted in Iranian and Zoroastrian traditions, it’s a massive celebration inaugurated by revelers leaping over bonfires. It’s a time of hope and rebirth as people clean homes, repair or remove things, and improve living spaces.

Holi is a Hindu festival where celebrants throw brightly colored powders, dance, and eat traditional sweets. The colors are red for love and fertility, yellow for purity and purification, blue for divinity and sky, green for new beginnings, pink for happiness and love, and purple for power and ambition.

Shunbun No Hi is a Japanese holiday honoring ancestors by visiting their grave sites. Homes are cleaned and new hobbies or life changes initiated. Hanami or cherry blossom festivals are also underway with picnics beneath the flowers. Because their blooms fade quickly, they represent the impermanence of beauty.

  • What hope leaps within you?
  • What interior spring cleaning is needed?
  • How can you improve living spaces in your neighborhood?
  • What colors would you throw on yourself or your community?


Rev. Dr. Sybrant serves at Murray Hills Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). For more info, visit us at 15050 SW Weir Road, Beaverton. | 503-524-5230