Feb 14th is being ‘universally’ celebrated as the Valentine Day to express the love for the beloved ones. Every festive occasion has a historic background before it and often the occasion is celebrated with varied contexts.

It is not in my capacity to elaborate the obsession of western civilization with the ancient Roman past, especially its past pagan legacy. Thanks to globalization, the ‘land of sunset’ is more appealing in the eyes of ‘land of sunrise’. What is western is synonymous with what is global and is not much different from the colonial effect of the middle ages.

However, it is in the taste of modernity that all the festivals – whether religious or otherwise- are transformed to events of exchanging costly gifts.

The economist may favor such a transformation with his complex logic while the poor preacher may advocate an indifference to such a change. But when gifts begins to become the essence of a relationship, the scenario turns to be bad.

In fact, it is the defeat of true love when corporate entities like gift vendors, be it online or offline retail stores, starts to superimpose the parameters for the pleasing the Beloved in the way that pleases their profit margins. Like a parvanah (a moth), Love is bewitched by the Shama’a (lamp)’s glitter. Unaware, it burns inside it….

And the sad state of affairs show that such relationships, inspired by hot-selling romantic quotes and gifts, are as delicate as the Valentine Balloons – a little thorn pricks and it goes boom!

Anyways, I have a little message for Mr. Cupid, son of Venus, the Roman god of love and beauty who shoots people with its arrows to make them fall in love :

‘Free yourself from the fetters of corporate culture. Now you are neither the ‘poet’s elation nor the artist’s revelation’. Be true to the message of your arrow. Love is no love at all without the presence of the song of the soul.’

Feb- 14 2001