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It is not just romantic love between a man and a woman, it is any and all kinds of love that are celebrated on Valentine’s Day. Although this day – February 14 – had become popular to celebrate love during the 17th century, yet it persists and continues strongly today.
As with mostly everything, when this started it was a simple occasion in which people who loved one another exchanged simple gifts denoting their affection. Unfortunately, like with many other occasions that started out simply, this one has also become strongly commercialised.
Christmas of course is the most commercialised of all. Now Christmas is no longer the religious celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ but has become an orgy of spending on gifts and of giving money, of vying with your neighbours for the best house and garden decorations, competing about the loveliest Christmas tree and ultimately who gets the most Christmas presents. Then there is the food: whose turkey was the most delicious, who had the largest number of family members and friends celebrating Christmas with them, and again how many gifts there were.
So although people have been brainwashed by the media that the measure of enjoyment is in ratio to the amount spent, still a small inkling of the actual meaning of Christmas lingers on in the carols sung, the kindnesses done and the truly charitable spirit of the season.
With Valentine commercialism had a field day. Though the commercial aspects of Valentine have solidified in certain gifts of chocolate and flowers, somehow a great many others became included over the years. Some stuffed animals were added, jewelry and such expensive gifts slipped right in there along with the compulsory cards.
The best part of Valentine is the opportunity to let the people you love know that you do love them. A simple call or “hello” could do just as well. It does not have to stop with lovers, it could include friends, siblings, cousins, parents, children and even your pets. Each and every being that you love should know how you feel about them at least on that particular day. Of course this should be a continuous process, but so many people take it for granted they never think to mention it. So Valentine’s day is a good reminder that these words need to be said : I love you.
13 February 2016

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