Little is known about the original Saint Valentine, except that he was a priest in ancient Rome martyred for marrying Christians when Christianity was outlawed. His feast day of 14th February became associated with fertility rites and also licentiousness over the ages, which is why we are left with a tradition of romance and celebration of human love on this day.
Saint Valentine’s name derives from the Latin word valens, meaning strong, powerful and honourable, and they are fitting descriptions for love, the basis of our modern Valentine’s Day and also of spirituality. There is a gulf of difference, however, between the love which is the Christ Consciousness, the expression of God on Earth, and love as understood and demonstrated by many humans. The former is unconditional, undemanding, honest and compassionate while love between two people can be intolerant, possessive, unkind and self-centred, based on illusion, pretence and desire. So often, when the glamour of first love has waned and only the reality remains, it is found to be unsatisfactory.
When a partnership is founded on the values of the Christ Consciousness, as it certainly can be, the relationship is sublime and enduring, imbued with spirit but with all the enjoyment of being alive in our world and in body where the celebration of union at every level serves to deepen the connection both with each other and with the divine. Valens, then, is a perfect word to describe what you have.
With a mutual intent to have acceptance and non-judgment, trust and liberty, every couple has the potential to achieve a deeply fulfilling life together and the celebration of Valentine’s Day can be an honouring both of each other and of the essence of love rather than a sometimes trivialised and commercialised token gesture. Love is more than a box of chocolates, and more than just a day.