The Apple Of God's Eye

February 10, 2010

Valentine's Day: A Millennia Old Fertility Rite With A Little Magic To Boot!

When we were small children, we’d often use the word “why”—usually in the form of a question, directed at a person older than us. And each answer, it seemed, triggered another question—another why. But as we grew older, our curiosity began to wane. We stopped asking why so frequently. What was the reason? Was it because we thought we knew everything at that point? No, we became comfortable with the status quo. Most of us began to accept things the way they are—without question.

And so it is with the holiday we are fast approaching on February 14, 2010 – Valentine’s Day — a day which supposedly celebrates love and affection between couples by giving flowers and sending greeting cards.

But since there’s no biblical basis for its observance, we must look to secular history to determine its origin.

Centuries before Christ, the Romans celebrated the evenings of February 14 and 15 (named “Lupercalia)” as an idolatrous and sensuous festival in honor of Lupercus, the “hunter of wolves.” This pagan free-for-all was to be done away with when Constantine made Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire, but the general public would have none of it, and so only the more grossly sensual observances were toned down.

Modern tradition says that this holiday is named after one or more early Christian martyrs named Valentine and was established by Pope Gelasius I in 496 AD. But the fact is that by this time, the holiday had BECOME a “Christian” custom, appropriating the name St. Valentine in place of Lupercus (Lavinia Dobler, Customs and Holidays Around the World).

Who Was The Original Valentine?

Valentine, or Lupercus, the hunter, was none other than “the mighty Hunter” Nimrod (Genesis 10:9). Interestingly, the word valentine comes from the Latin word valentinus derived from the word valens meaning “to be strong,” according to Webster’s Dictionary.

Another interesting point is that hearts were associated with honoring Nimrod. In the Babylonian tongue, the word for heart was bal (see Young’s or Strong’s Concordance). The heart—bal—was merely a symbol of Nimrod—the Baal or Lord of the Babylonians!

Nimrod—Baal or sun god of the ancient pagans—was said to have been born at the winter solstice, which anciently occurred on January 6, not December 25. It was the custom for the mother of a male child to present herself for purification on the 40th day after the day of birth. Forty days takes us to February 15, the celebration of which began on the evening of February 14—the Lupercalia, or St. Valentine’s Day. Semiramis, the mother of Nimrod, was said to have been purified and to have appeared for the first time in public with her son as the original “mother and child.”

Roman Appropriation of Lupercalia

The 14th of February was the day specially set aside for love lotteries in Pagan Rome. A holiday devoted to Juno, Queen of the Gods, and patroness of marriage, the 14th was also the day on which young girls’ names were written on slips of paper and thrown into jars to be picked out by the boys. Chooser and chosen would then be partnered for the duration of the Lupercalia festival. Such arbitrary pairings often resulted in lasting relationships. The Catholic Church later substituted the names of dead saints in place of those of flesh-and-blood girls to subvert the lusty Pagan practice.

The Lupercalia proper began on the 15th of February (derived from “februa,” which the Roman priests used in rites celebrated on St. Valentine’s Day), with animal sacrifice and ritual flagellation. The young men would run through the streets whipping women and crops with the “februa” (thongs made from the skins of sacrificial animals. Archaeological evidence suggests that the Lupercalia, far from being restricted to Rome, was practised in other cities in Italy and Gaul.

Dating from remotest antiquity, the Lupercalia was celebrated until as late as the reign of Anastasius I in 491-518 CE. It was towards the end of the 5th century in 498 CE that Pope Galesius decided to dedicate the Eve of Lupercalia to the long-dead priest. The lottery system was banned as being un-Christian and the Pope did his best to make people forget about other un-Christian ideas such as fertility.

Cupid of Love?

And where do we get the modern appearance of the winged Cupid from – a chubby little baby with wings? Angels do not have the appearance of humans, according to the Bible. In fact, many of them have what we would call a bizarre, though fantastically beautiful, appearance. They have multiple faces (of animals), are amazingly bright and have four and six wings (cherubs and seraphims), though ordinary angels have no wings.

The name Cupid, means “desire,” and stems from Semiramis lusting after her own son Nimrod. There is historical indication that she may have even married her son. Later, as he grew up, Nimrod became the child-hero of many women who desired him. Daniel calls him the “desire of women” (Daniel 11:37). Ezekiel says that he provoked so many women to jealousy that an idol of him was often called the “image of jealousy” (Ezekiel 8:5).

Valentine’s Day has nothing to do with a long dead saint of Catholic lore, and everything to do with deep pagan traditions. The next time you ask someone to be your Valentine, try not to forget that you are engaging in a millennia old fertility rite and, what is more, dabbling in a little Catholic perpetuated tradition to boot. It is NOT a day commanded in the Bible, so Christians should never participate in any of its abominable practices!

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