By Austin Cline, About.com Guide
Easter is the oldest Christian holiday, but how much of the most public and common celebrations of Easter today remain Christian in nature? Many people go to church — far more than go the rest of the year — but what else? Easter candy isn’t Christian. The Easter bunny isn’t Christian. Easter eggs aren’t Christian. Most of what people commonly associate with Easter is pagan in origin; the rest is commercial. Just as American culture secularized Christmas, it’s secularizing Easter.
Read more about Easter's pagan roots here.
As you no doubt know, the Catholic Church stole everything from paganism, from the dying and resurrected god to the observances coinciding with solstices and equinoxes. Where religion is concerned, there is nothing new but Scientology. Christianity is a palimpsest, a pastiche of almost all such religious ideas gone before it.
Yes, the Catholic Church has many pagan influences - I agree James.
Mr. Cline has a lot of good stuff to share. I don't think he gets enough credit as a public face of the atheist community. I do wish he would get a better profile picture, though, if he is going to be our face!
I read Austin Cline a lot - he is very helpful explaining things.