The Enigma of Easter

The Enigma of Easter

When it was suggested to my five-year-old granddaughter that she should think about including Jesus in her Easter garden, she was more than a little confused.

‘But Mummy, I don’t know at which part of the story Jesus met the Easter bunny.’

To deepen the confusion, this lop-eared, fluffy white bunny, who is a mammal, brings chocolate eggs, yet eggs are laid by chickens. No one wears a bonnet anymore, and the word is rarely used, but they are trimmed up for Easter and paraded about to be judged. Eggs are also decorated, sometimes most elaborately. I recall the Easter egg decorating competition at Balderstone School, which remains an important part of their school year. The inventiveness of the children never ceased to amaze me. Another custom is to hard boil and roll the eggs downhill, frantically chasing after them. We eat toasted spice-flavoured buns with a cross on the top, a tradition dating back to 1733. Add to this the Bible story of the crucifixion and the resurrection and it isn’t surprising that a five-year-old is wondering what on earth Easter is all about. 

Hopefully, for most of us, the long weekend will have been be a time for relaxing, spending time with family and friends and enjoying some spring weather. No doubt the consumption of chocolate treats will also feature highly.

If you need some Easter reading about rabbits, here are a few suggestions for all ages.

That’s Not My Bunny by Fiona Watt

The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter (also Benjamin Bunny, The Fierce Bad Rabbit and The Flopsy Bunnies)

Guess How Much I Love You (admittedly it’s a hare but too good to be missed off the list) by Sam McBratney and Anita Jeram

The Velveteen Rabbit by Marjorie Williams

Watership Down by Richard Adams

Let me know if you have any favourite customs for this time of year, or favourite fictional rabbits!