Thursday, February 14, 2013
Today is Valentine's Day, something that we now associate with sending flowers or candy to our "significant other". It is a nice gesture but as many other Christian traditions, things have changed over the years. I suppose that Cupid might possibly be an angel sent by God to shoot arrows that caused people to fall in love :-)
Most scholars believe that the St. Valentine of the holiday was a priest who attracted the disfavor of Roman emperor Claudius II around 270. At this stage, the factual ends and the mythic begins. According to one legend, Claudius II had prohibited marriage for young men, claiming that bachelors made better soldiers. Valentine continued to secretly perform marriage ceremonies but was eventually apprehended by the Romans and put to death. Another legend has it that Valentine, imprisoned by Claudius, fell in love with the daughter of his jailer. Before he was executed, he allegedly sent her a letter signed "from your Valentine." Probably the most plausible story surrounding St. Valentine is one not focused on Eros (passionate love) but on Agape (Christian love): he was martyred for refusing to renounce his religion.
I remember a story about a wealthy man who died. He left his wife the mansion and a Rolls-Royce, however, he left his secretary $40 million. His wife, full of anger, stormed down to the funeral home to edit his tombstone. When she got there the engraver had already chiseled in stone his name, the dates, and the inscription "Rest in Peace." The man said, there's nothing to do, I can't just erase it. She thought for a second and then she said I want you to add underneath "Rest in Peace."-"Until We Meet Again" .
Much Love, Dennis