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The Pagan Origins Of Valentine’s Day

Click Here FOR a FREE psychic reading at PsychicAccess.comDid you know that the Valentine’s Day that many people all over the world will be celebrating today, has its origins in pagan rituals of the past? This is in fact true of many of our modern holidays. But how did we get our modern day cards, cupids, and hearts?

In ancient Rome, the Festival of Lupercalia was annually celebrated on February 15th. As with similar Roman holidays, such as Ostara (Easter), this was a time to celebrate fertility and love. The deities honored were Lupercus, Patron of Shepherds; Juno, Goddess of Marriage; as well as Pan, a pastoral god who came to be regarded in Roman times as the representative of paganism and the personification of all nature.

In a festival custom that survives to this day in the form of valentine’s cards, young men would randomly draw the names of eligible women from a jar or urn.  In the Middle Ages, Emperor Claudius II believed single men made better soldiers so he declared marriage illegal. As a concession, he encouraged temporary romances.

Drawing the name of a lady during the festival determined who a soldier’s partner would be for that coming year. He would then wear her name on his sleeve for the rest of the festival. This gave rise to the saying “wearing your heart on your sleeve.” Whether or not they also exchanged flowers, candy or gifts is uncertain.

It is also interesting to note that Cupid, the son of the love goddess Venus, was not originally linked specifically with this festival, even though he is associated with it today.Venus, it turns out, was particularly fond of red roses and this custom still survives after 2,000 years. As for the symbolism of the heart, this is also an ancient image found across many cultures, including Greco-Roman, Indian, and Meso-American. Instead of romantic love, it was often used to represent rebirth, purity, and spiritual love.

In Valentine’s Day or in any other day, the brightest star is not Venus or Jupiter but the very love in people’s heart ~ Mehmet Murat Ildan

When the Roman Empire began to shift away from the pantheon of mythical gods and toward Christianity, its rulers simply decided, as with many other pagan holidays, to let it overlap. The modern Christian holiday is centered around the legend of a third-century martyr, St. Valentine, who conducted marriages in secret during the reign of Claudius II.

Today Valentine’s is much easier to celebrate than the way the Romans once did. The Lupercalia festival also involved men stripping naked, then chasing eligible women with whips and prods in hopes of increasing their fertility. Most people today are more than happy just to get a simple card or even a box of chocolates (another food with so-called aphrodisiac powers) instead of going through all that!

The Valentine’s customs we practice today originate mostly from the Victorian era, but some of them come from antiquity.


About The Author: Mystic Shelley

Mystic Shelley is a Psychic Medium. She has been reading for over 15 years helping and guiding people. She uses my 8 spirit Guides during her readings. She reads in the area of love, relationships, career, money and all matters of love. She will give you only honest and direct answers. Get a reading with Mystic Shelley now at PsychicAccess.com

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