Parent Category: Lectures and Studies
Written by El-Hageen
Published: 09 February 2014
The word “love” has great meaning, significance and is subject to certain limits in the light of the pure Sharee‘ah(Islamic legislation).
It is strange, however, that nowadays love and emotion are exploited to the extent that they are associated with pagan myths and dissolute festivals which are not acceptable to people with sound reason. In the middle of February each year, a great celebration is held in the name of “the day of love”, which was originally a pagan Roman festival.
According to pagan Roman beliefs, this festival was an expression of "divine love". There are some myths associated with this pagan festival which continued to be observed by the Romans and was inherited by the Christians. The most common myth in this regard is that the Romans believed that Romulus, the founder of Rome, was suckled by a she-wolf, which provided him with strength and wisdom. Hence, the Romans used to celebrate this incident every year by slaughtering a dog and a goat. Two sturdy young men would rub their bodies with the blood of the dog and the goat, and then wash the blood off with milk. Afterwards, a large procession with the two youths in the lead would move through the streets. They used to have two pieces of leather to smear everyone they encountered. The Roman women would welcome this procession, as they believed that this would prevent and cure barrenness.
The background of the modern "festival of love" is that it is associated with the name of Valentine, who belonged to the Christian Church and espoused the cause of lovers. It is said that he died in Rome as a result of the torture inflicted by the Gothic commander Claudius in 296 CE. A church was built in Rome in 350 CE. at the spot where he was killed to eternalize his memory.
When the Romans converted to Christianity, they continued to celebrate Valentine’s Day but they substituted the pagan concept of "divine love", to another concept, i.e, the commemoration of the "martyr of love", represented by Valentine, who it was claimed had been martyred in that cause. This day was also called the 'Day of Lovers' and Valentine was hailed as the intercessor and patron saint of lovers.
Among the erroneous practices that marked this day was the people would write the names of marriageable girls on small rolls of paper and put them in a plate on a table. Young men who wanted to get married would be asked to take out a roll and place themselves in the service of the girl whose name was on the roll for one year. By doing so they would familiarize themselves with the habits and manners of each other and then get married, or repeat the same thing during Valentine’s Day the following year.
Revocation and condemnation:
However, Christian clerics in Italy revolted against this tradition and revoked it because they thought it would corrupt the morals of the youth. The celebration of Valentine’s Day was revived and gained popularity during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and many shops in Western countries started selling special books that included some love poetry on the occasion. Young men would select words of love and send greeting cards to their sweethearts on the designated "day of love.
In brief, this is the story of "day of the love".
· To the Muslims who show happiness on Valentine’s Day
· To those who exchange red roses
· To those who exchange loving greeting cards during this festival
· To those who send cards with the image of Cupid, a child with wings and a bow and arrow, who is believed to be the 'god of love' by the Romans.
· To those who exchange words of love and passion
· To those who want you to "be their Valentine" (as is written on cards and expressed in phone calls)
· To those who hold parties during the day and night
· To those who tie red ribbons or put on red clothes with the intention of celebrating Valentine’s Day.
· To those who inflate red balloons and write “I love you” on them
· To those who write names, initials and heart shapes on their hands
Such acts represent Christian and pagan concepts. Please note that the origin of the "day of love" is pagan ideology that is expressed by the worship of pagan "divine love", which was worshipped instead of Allaah The Almighty. Are you pleased to celebrate a polytheistic occasion when idols are worshipped?
Please note that the origin of this festival is associated with myths that are not acceptable to sound reason, let alone to the mind of the Muslim who believes in Allaah The Almighty and His Messengers, may Allah exalt their mention.