NEWS -- 2013.02.14.Thursday Valentine
- Thursday 14 February 2013
Two Reflections on Valentine's Day
Virginia Harris, C.S.B. - Golden Rule Day
Golden Rule Day http://www.virginiaharris.com/post/42976351660/golden-rule-day
Do you remember Valentine's Day when you were a kid in elementary school? What I remember is coming to school with a brown paper sack filled with valentine cards for everyone in my class, to be placed on each desk at the first recess. No one was left out, everyone received a Valentine - even the kid(s) who I was sure didn't like me much. But it was the one day I could make a little gesture to be a friend to everyone.so said my mom.
At some point, at least in the US, Valentine's Day becomes more romantic and exclusive to that special someone. Advertising promotes Valentine gifts, like candy, flowers or jewelry, and maybe a romantic dinner. The day - and the run-up to the day - is so focused on couples that if you aren't in a relationship you might feel left out. It's not like elementary school anymore.
Maybe returning to the spirit of an inclusive Valentine's Day for adults where no one is left out is a better idea. In fact, in Mexico and many Latin American countries the day is known as 'El Dia del Amor y Amistad,' the day of love and friendship when people offer acts of appreciation for friends. I like this.it is a gentle reminder of the expansive and expressive nature of love.
When you think about how powerful and meaningful a genuine love and affection for family and friends can be - even that special someone - would it not have its source in something grander than any one individual? When you feel this kind of powerful love, you have this sense that it doesn't begin with you but rather you - and everyone you love - is embraced by it. To me, this is evidence of divine, universal Love. This unlimited Love can't be defined by a chosen few or confined to one day.
It's good to have a day when we are reminded about the importance of love and friendship. And who doesn't love to feel loved! Perhaps a better way of acknowledging the day is to look for more people to love - enlarge your circle to include those who would especially appreciate the extra attention. Look for any opportunity to make a small gesture to be a friend, like offering a gracious smile to a harried shopworker or flashing a smile of comfort to an exasperated parent - just have a smile ready to bless! It's the Golden Rule in action, right? "Treat men exactly as you would like them to treat you." (Luke 6:31 J.B. Phillips New Testament) A lesson learned from elementary school still works.
"Human affection is not poured forth vainly, even though it meet no return. Love enriches the nature, enlarging, purifying, and elevating it." - Mary Baker Eddy
So let's think of Valentine's Day as Golden Rule Day. And how about living - and loving - every day like Golden Rule Day?
St. Valentine's Day
a.. 1 Saint Valentine
a.. 1.1 Historical facts
b.. 1.2 Legends
b.. 2 Attested traditions
a.. 2.1 Lupercalia
b.. 2.2 Chaucer's love birds
c.. 2.3 Medieval period and the English Renaissance
d.. 2.4 Modern times
c.. 3 Antique and vintage Valentines, 1850-1950
a.. 3.1 Valentines of the mid-19th and early 20th centuries
b.. 3.2 Postcards, "pop-ups", and mechanical Valentines, circa 1900-1930
c.. 3.3 Children's Valentines
d.. 3.4 Others
d.. 4 Similar days celebrating love
a.. 4.1 East Asia
a.. 4.1.1 Japan
b.. 4.2 Europe
c.. 4.3 India
d.. 4.4 Latin America
e.. 4.5 Middle East
f.. 4.6 Southeast Asia
e.. 5 Conflict with Islamic countries and political parties
a.. 5.1 Iran
b.. 5.2 Malaysia
c.. 5.3 Pakistan
d.. 5.4 Saudi Arabia
f.. 6 See also
g.. 7 References
h.. 8 External links
5 -- Conflict with Islamic countries and political parties
In the first part of the 21st century, the celebration of Valentine's Day in Iran has been harshly criticized by Islamic Teachers who see the celebrations as opposed to Islamic culture. In 2011, the Iranian printing works owners' union issued a directive banning the printing and distribution of any goods promoting the holiday, including cards, gifts and teddy bears. "Printing and producing any goods related to this day including posters, boxes and cards emblazoned with hearts or half-hearts, red roses and any activities promoting this day are banned... Outlets that violate this will be legally dealt with", the union warned.
Islamic officials in Malaysia warned Muslims against celebrating Valentine's Day, linking it with vice activities. Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin said the celebration of romantic love was "not suitable" for Muslims. Wan Mohamad Sheikh Abdul Aziz, head of the Malaysian Islamic Development Department (Jakim), which oversees the country's Islamic policies said that a fatwa (ruling) issued by the country's top clerics in 2005 noted that the day 'is associated with elements of Christianity,' and 'we just cannot get involved with other religion's worshipping rituals.' Jakim officials planned to carry out a nationwide campaign called "Awas Jerat Valentine's Day" ("Mind the Valentine's Day Trap"), aimed at preventing Muslims from celebrating the day on 14 February 2011. Activities include conducting raids in hotels to stop young couples from having unlawful sex and distributing leaflets to Muslim university students warning them against the day.
On Valentine's Day 2011, Malaysian religious authorities arrested more than 100 Muslim couples concerning the celebration ban. Some of them would be charged in the Shariah Court for defying the department's ban against the celebration of Valentine's Day.
The concept of Valentine's Day was introduced into Pakistan during the late 1990s with special TV and radio programs. The Jamaat-e-Islami political party has called for the banning of Valentine's Day celebration. Despite this, the celebration is becoming popular among urban youth and the florists expect to sell a great amount of flowers, especially red roses. The case is the Same with card publishers. However, the public at large still considers Valentine's Day to be opposed to Pakistani culture and Islamic teachings.
In Saudi Arabia, in 2002 and 2011, religious police banned the sale of all Valentine's Day items, telling shop workers to remove any red items, because the day is considered a Christian holiday. In 2008 this ban created a black market for roses and wrapping paper.
My comment ---
The drug of religion can be so nasty.
Here's another variation of Valentine's Day history ---
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