Russian Orthodox Easter
How to tell it's Russian Orthodox Easter? Simple, really. When people greet each other with words "Christ arise", exchange painted eggs and bake cakes - you can bet it's Easter in Russia!
Easter has alwasy been a joyous day, way before first Christians. Pagans celebrated beginning of harvest, then - calving of cattle, and later on, when Jews entered the picture - "Pesah" symbolized their exodus from Egypt. To Orthodox Russians, Easter stands for deliverance from death - and the passage to eternal life.
I must admit there's another good reason for Christians to celebrate. You see, Russian Easter comes right after the end of the Great Lent, which lasts for 40 days. I mean - wouldn't you throw a feast if you haven't seen a decent meal for more than a month?!
Oh, and what a great chance this is to taste the delicious Russian Easter cakes we call "kulichi". If only you knew what works of art my mother-in-law bakes - you'd surely understand why I love this holiday!
To truly witness Russian Orthodox Easter, you should visit Moscow region - the city is just not that! You need some space and nature - and you're gonna get both once you leave the crowded city!
Imagine - it's spring, nasty snow is finally melting away, everything slowly starts to blossom - and the church bells are ringing all around, telling you the wonderful news. Rejoice - Jesus has arisen - and opened the heavens for us!
By the way, every church's gate is opened on this day - and how could they be closed if the Savior himself let us in? That would be extremely inobedient!
Want to feel like a true Russian? Go buy some eggs - it's painting time! Boil them first and then start putting some artwork right on the shell. Use a stencil- or let your imagination run wild. As they say - "the sky is the limit!"
If you're a true believer - don't forget to paint some eggs with plain red. This color symbolizes the blood of Christ - and those are the eggs that "hardcore" Christians give each other prior to anything else.
Want my advice? Invite your Russian friends to help you out with the painting thing! They'll give you a hand - and the process will be twice as fun! I'm not sure you gonna paint the eggs at the end - but that's the case when the outcome is not that important. After all - "life is journey, not a destination"!
Talking about advice - be sure to kiss everyone on the cheek three times. As we say in Russia - "God loves Trinity", meaning some things are better done thrice. So if it's a pretty girl (or a boy you like) - be brave! Who knows - it may just spark the chemistry between the two of you!
Walk around, breathe some air, and enjoy life! This is what God wants from you on Easter - and that's why he invented springtime! Be brave, be cheerful - and praise the Lord!
- Victory Day in Russia
- Victory Day in Russia 2009. City of Chekhov, Moscow region.
- Celebrating Russian Orthodox Christmas
- Russian New Year - a complete guide!
- Russian holidays page III
- Russian holidays part II
- Russian Holidays part I
- Russian Maslenitsa
- International Women's Day in Moscow, Russia