After Inanna has been missing for three days her assistant goes to other gods for help.Finally one of them Enki, creates two creatures who carry the plant of life and water of life down to the Underworld, sprinkling them on Inanna and Damuzi, resurrecting them, and giving them the power to return to the earth as the light of the sun for six months.
It is also the day that children excitedly wait for the Easter bunny to arrive and deliver their treats of chocolate eggs.
Easter is a ‘movable feast’ which is chosen to correspond with the first Sunday following the full moon after the March equinox, and occurs on different dates around the world since western churches use the Gregorian calendar, while eastern churches use the Julian calendar.
So where did this ‘movable feast’ begin, and what are the origins of the traditions and customs celebrated on this important day around the world?
Most historians, including Biblical scholars, agree that Easter was originally a pagan festival.
According to the New Unger’s Bible Dictionary says: “The word Easter is of Saxon origin, Eastra, the goddess of spring, in whose honour sacrifices were offered about Passover time each year.
By the eighth century Anglo–Saxons had adopted the name to designate the celebration of Christ’s resurrection.” However, even among those who maintain that Easter has pagan roots, there is some disagreement over which pagan tradition the festival emerged from. Resurrection as a symbol of rebirth One theory that has been put forward is that the Easter story of crucifixion and resurrection is symbolic of rebirth and renewal and retells the cycle of the seasons, the death and return of the sun. Tony Nugent, teacher of Theology and Religious Studies at Seattle University, and Presbyterian minister, the Easter story comes from the Sumerian legend of Damuzi (Tammuz) and his wife Inanna (Ishtar), an epic myth called “The Descent of Inanna” found inscribed on cuneiform clay tablets dating back to 2100 BC.When Tammuz dies, Ishtar is grief–stricken and follows him to the underworld.In the underworld, she enters through seven gates, and her worldly attire is removed."Naked and bowed low" she is judged, killed, and then hung on display.In her absence, the earth loses its fertility, crops cease to grow and animals stop reproducing.Unless something is done, all life on earth will end.