Every February, across the country, candy, flowers, and gifts are exchanged between loved ones, all in the name of St. Valentine.
But who is this mysterious saint and why do we celebrate this holiday?
Valentine was a holy priest in Rome, who, with St. Marius and his family, assisted the martyrs in the persecution under Claudius II. Claudius II had a rule in his empire that no soldiers should marry. Claudius thought that married soldiers weren’t as good as single soldiers.During a ban on marriages of Roman soldiers by the Emperor Claudius II, St. Valentine secretly helped arrange marriages. So Claudius commended him to be beaten with clubs, and afterwards, to be beheaded, which was executed on February 14. On the evening before Valentine was to be executed, he passed a love note to his jailer’s daughter that read, “From your Valentine.”
White Day – March 14.
Men are expected to return the favour to those who gave them chocolates on Valentine’s Day. Many men, however, give only to their girlfriends. Originally, the return gift was supposed to be white chocolate or marshmallows; hence “White Day”.
Black Day – April 14
This one emerged in Korea, when males who did not receive anything for Valentine’s Day gather together on this day.
Pepero Day – November 11
On this day young couples give each other romantic gifts. This one is celebrated in South Korea.
Night of Sevens [Chinese Valentines Day]
Its on the 7th day of the 7th month of the lunar calendar. Young girls traditionally demonstrate their domestic arts, especially melon carving, on this day and make wishes for a good husband. This year its on 19th August.
Tanabata – Seven Evenings[Japanese version of night of sevens]
Its on July 7th on the solar calendar. The story behind the Tanabata is a very interesting one. A young farmer named Mikeran saw a robe lying on the ground one day and decided to take it away to his hut. However, soon after that, a beautiful goddess descended from the skies and asked him, “Have you seen my celestial robe? I cannot return to the skies without it!” Mikeran lied and told Tanabata, the goddess, that he had not but he would help her look for it. Gradually, they fell in love and got married and had many children. However, one day when Mikeran was out working on the fields, Tanabata noticed a shiny piece of cloth poking from the thatched roof. She pulled it and to her dismay, it was her celestial garment! When Mikeran returned and saw her garbed in it, his heart stopped because he knew that she knew he had lied. He fell on his knees begging her to forgive him, but Tanabata had only one thing to say, “Mikeran,” she said, “If you really love me, you will weave 1000 pairs of straw shoes. Only then will I return to you.” She said this and then disappeared. Mikeran tried his best to weave the shoes but could not weave them in his lifetime, thus he never met Tanabata again. However, it is said that they meet once in a while when the moons/stars Altair and Vega intersect.
St. Faustine Day – Feb 15
This is the day of singles. All the people not engaged in a relationship go out to meet their potetianl new mate. Thanks to Mr. A