As the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica noted that Astarte “assumes various local forms in the old Semitic world,” which“ has led to consequent fusion and identification with the deities of other nations.”To start with, let’s consider the history of Mother’s Day:
MOTHER’S DAY HISTORY
The majority of countries that celebrate Mother’s Day do so on the second Sunday of May. On this day, it is common for Mothers to be lavished with presents and special attention from their families, friends and loved ones. But it wasn’t always this way…
Spiritual Origin of Mother’s Day
Only recently dubbed “Mother’s Day,” the highly traditional practice of honoring of Motherhood is rooted in antiquity, and past rites typically had strong symbolic and spiritual overtones; societies tended to celebrate Goddesses and symbols rather than actual Mothers. The personal, human touch to Mother’s Day is a relatively new phenomenon. The maternal objects of adoration ranged from mythological female deities to the Christian Church itself. Only in the past few centuries did celebrations of Motherhood develop a decidedly human focus.
Goddess Isis – Early Egyptian Roots
One of the earliest historical records of a society celebrating a Mother deity can be found among the ancient Egyptians, who held an annual festival to honor the goddess Isis, who was commonly regarded as the Mother of the pharaohs…
So the story goes, after Isis’ brother-husband Osiris was slain and dismembered in 13 pieces by their jealous brother Seth, Isis re-assembled Osiris’ body and used it to impregnate herself. She then gave birth to Horus… Horus grew up and defeated Seth, and then became the first ruler of a unified Egypt. Thus Isis earned her stature as the Mother of the pharaohs.
It is interesting to note that the Mother and Son imagery of Isis and Horus—in which Isis cradles and suckles her son—is strikingly similar to that of the Virgin Mary and baby Jesus.
Cybele – Ancient Roman Celebration
The festival of Isis was also celebrated by the Romans who used the event to commemorate an important battle and mark the beginning of Winter… Yet the Roman root of Mother’s Day is perhaps more precisely found in the celebration of the Phrygian goddess Cybele, or Magna Mater (Great Mother).
Cybele stems from the Greek Goddess Rhea, who was the Mother of most of the major deities including Zeus. Rhea was therefore celebrated as a mother goddess, and the festival took place around the time of the Vernal Equinox…
We must remember that Astarte, as Britannica Online Encyclopedia noticed, “Later …became assimilated with the Egyptian deities Isis and Hathor (a goddess of the sky and of women).”Upon careful examination, this is the specific fulfillment of Jeremiah 17:2 regarding “groves” or “images of Astarte” – the Egyptian goddess Isis being assimilated or having resemblance to Astarte. The same is true for the “Phrygian goddess Cybele, or Magna Mater (Great Mother)”, and the “Greek Goddess Rhea, who was the Mother of most of the major deities including Zeus.”
That Semiramis, under the name of Astarte, was worshipped not only as an incarnation of the Spirit of God, but as the mother of mankind, we have very clear and satisfactory evidence. There is no doubt that “the Syrian goddess” was Astarte (LAYARD’S Nineveh and its Remains). Now, the Assyrian goddess, or Astarte, is identified with Semiramis by Athenagoras (Legatio), and by Lucian (De Dea Syria). These testimonies inr egard to Astarte, or the Syrian goddess, being, in one aspect, Semiramis, are quite decisive.1. The name Astarte, as applied to her, has reference to her as being Rhea or Cybele, the tower-bearing goddess… (The Two Babylons – Alexander Hislop, p. 78)
As far as God is concerned, they are all “images of Astarte”! The modern day celebration of Mother’s Day today has been in observance just in recent history. Consider the article below:
A History of Mother’s Day
By Holly Hildebrand
Houston Chronicle Interactive
The first celebrations in honor of mothers were held in the spring in ancient Greece. They paid tribute to Rhea, the Mother of the Gods. During the 17th century, England honored mothers on “Mothering Sunday” celebrated on the fourth Sunday of Lent.
In the United States, Julia Ward Howe suggested the idea of Mother’s Day in 1872. Howe, who wrote the words to the “Battle Hymn of the Republic”, saw Mother’s Day as being dedicated to peace.
Anna Jarvis of Philadelphia is credited with bringing about the official observance of Mother’s Day. Her campaign to establish such a holiday began as a remembrance of her mother, who died in 1905 and who had, in the late 19th century, tried to establish “Mother Friendship Days” as a way to heal the scars of Civil War.
Two years after her mother died, Jarvis held a ceremony in Grafton, West Virginia to honor her. She was so moved by the proceedings that she began a massive campaign to adopt a formal holiday honoring mothers. In 1910, West Virginia became the first state to recognize Mother’s Day. In 1914, President Woodrow Wilson officially proclaimed Mother’s Day as a national holiday to be held on the second Sunday of May.
But Jarvis’ accomplishment soon turned bitter for her. Enraged by the commercialization of the holiday, she filed a lawsuit to stop a 1923 Mother’s Day festival and was even arrested for disturbing peace at a war mother’s convention where women sold white carnations – Jarvis’ symbol for mothers – to raise money. “This is not what I intended,” Jarvis said. “I wanted it to be a day of sentiment, not profit!”
When she died in 1948, at age 84, Jarvis had become a woman of great ironies. Never a mother herself, her maternal fortune dissipated by her efforts to stop the commercialization of the holiday she had founded, Jarvis told a reporter shortly before her death that she was sorry she had ever started Mother’s Day. She spoke these words in a nursing home where every Mother’s Day her room had been filled with cards from all over the world.
Today, because and despite Jarvis’ efforts, many celebrations of Mother’s Days are held throughout the world. Although they do not fall at the same time, such countries as Denmark, Finland, Italy, Turkey, Australia and Belgium also celebrate Mother’s Day on the same day as the United States.
It is noteworthy to consider that the first celebrations of Mother’s Day was rooted in paganism and was celebrated in England as “Mothering Sunday” during the 4th Sunday of Lent.
While the modern day observance of Mother’s Day every 2nd Sunday of May was credited to Anna Jarvis, who eventually turned against her very creation because she saw that the end result became corrupted which was not according to what she had intended initially.
Is it because that Satan had a hand on it, making sure that it would conform to the “IMAGE” of the previous one? Although Mother’s Day and Mothering Sunday are different as some may say, yet both are celebrated during Sundays and focuses on the Mother figure. Even secular observers noticed the connection of the modern day celebration with that of its ancient origin which is rooted from pagan festivity celebrating the Mother deity and passed on through time. Consider the article below:
Anna M. Jarvis’s Mother’s Day in 1908
In 1908, Anna (Jarvis) petitioned the superintendent of the church where her Mother had spent over 20 years teaching Sunday School. Her request was honored, and on May 10, 1908, the first official Mother’s Day celebration took place at Andrew’s Methodist Church in Grafton, West Virginia and a church in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The West Virginia event drew a congregation of 407 and Anna Jarvis arranged for white carnations—her Mother’s favorite flower—to adorn the patrons. Two carnations were given to every Mother in attendance. Today, white carnations are used to honor deceased Mothers, while pink or red carnations pay tribute to Mothers who are still alive. Andrew’s Methodist Church exists to this day, and was incorporated into the International Mother’s Day Shrine in 1962…
Mother’s Day vs. Mothering Day
The United States’ version of Mother’s Day has been exported to many other nations throughout the world. In certain countries there has been little significant cultural adaptation. In other countries, especially those whose tradition stems from the English Mothering Day (which is now also called Mother’s Day), the traditions are quite different from those of the United States.
While the United States’ version of Mother’s Day—the version most widely exported to the rest of the world—has secular humanist roots followed up by extensive commercialization, it is interesting to note that many countries, regardless of this Western trend, continue to attach much more symbolic and/or religious importance to their Mother’s Day celebrations.
In Spain Mother’s Day is tied to the Feast of the Immaculate Conception on December 8th. The Virgin Mary is celebrated next to the mothers of the nation. In Ethiopia the holiday is tied to seasons and agriculture, and in Yugoslavia it leads up to Christmas, commemorating the Motherhood of Christ.
As Anna Jarvis even shortly before her death felt sorry for starting Mother’s Day, the celebration has already deteriorated into commercialization and many countries continue to attach symbolic and religious importance to it. Moreover, it was a Methodist Church that initiated the first official Mother’s Day celebration. The church that supported Mother’s Day has its roots traceable to Babylon mystery religion:
The Methodist branch of Protestant religion traces its roots back to 1739 where it developed in England as a result of the teachings of John Wesley.
In other words, the modern day celebration of Mother’s Day has been tainted and eventually taken a resemblance of the former as the “image of Astarte”! Notice, that it has to be always celebrated on a Sunday also, just like the former one!
Again, “resemblance” means: the quality of similarity in nature, form, etc.; relative identity or counterpart. Now, the question is this: Is Mother’s Day not a counterpart of Mothering Sunday? The answer is obvious and without a doubt one of the “images of Astarte” as the prophet Jeremiah vividly describes:
“The sin of Judah is written with a pen of iron, and with the point of a diamond: it is graven upon the table of their heart, and upon the horns of your altars; Whilst their children remember their altars and their groves (images of Astarte)…” (Jeremiah 17:1-2)
Although Mr. Armstrong has not dwelled too much on the subject of Mother’s Day, yet the PCG ministry has basically given much weight on the celebration to its lay membership compared to that of the Father’s Day. In an article from the Trumpet Website – Friday, May 11, 2007, Mother’s Day was initially endorsed by the ministry:
The Beautiful Role of a Mother
With Sunday being Mother’s Day, consider the vital importance of this pillar of a stable society… Remember—and not only this Mother’s Day—to put Mom on a pedestal. Her God-given role is most praiseworthy and exalted, most beautiful. Most honorable.
From then on, the PCG ministry has put Mother’s Day on a pedestal, even using the event every year as a money-making scheme to raise fund for God’s house, the Armstrong Auditorium.
Remember that this “commercialization of the holiday” is even CONTRARY to Anna Jarvis’ real intention in celebrating Mother’s Day.
“‘This is not what I intended,’ Jarvis said. ‘I wanted it to be a day of sentiment, not profit!’” (op. cit.)
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