Ladies, would you strip naked and line up so that men could hit you with the hides of a goat or dog they just sacrificed if it were believed to make you fertile? Would you then follow that up with putting your name in a jar to be picked as someone’s date for the duration of a three day festival?
It may not sound very appealing, but such was the tradition in Rome where they celebrated the feast of Lupercalia from February 13th to February 15th and if you were lucky, the man who picked your name would be a lifelong match and not just a three day fling.
In addition to that, two men with the last name Valentine were executed on February 14th in 3rd century AD. These martyrs were recognized and honored by the Catholic Church with the celebration of St. Valentine’s Day.
In an effort to clean up the tradition. Pope Gelasius combined the two and Valentine’s Day was born in the 5th century. While much of the tradition was abandoned, February 14th remained a day of fertility and love.
How far we have come from those days. Now, Valentine’s Day is a day loved by florists, jewelry stores, and happy couples everywhere.
So as we celebrate this day of love, let’s all begin by loving ourselves. Let’s make today the day that we vow to make lifestyle changes that show how much we love with the person in the mirror.
Let’s not allow ourselves to be the name chosen from the jar or the lady welcoming flowers on February 15th.
Embrace your own self-love and self-worth. Embrace your Mafietta.
Seipel, A. (2011, February 13). The Dark Origins of Valentine’s Day. Retrieved from npr.com: http://www.npr.org/2011/02/14/133693152/the-dark-origins-of-valentines-day