By BOBSON GBINIJE
“Love seeketh not itself to please, nor for itself hath any Care, but for another gives it’s ease, and builds a heaven in hell’s despair” William Blake
OUR world is bedraggled by hideous physiognomies, grotesque intermezzos and lugubrious fixations. We are steeple chasing down the gedarene slope of self-induced annihilation through the short-circuiting of the beatific vision. We are fatalistically and wearily facing the ineluctable fate of doom. It is this state of homosapental hopelessness that stimulated martyrs of altruism to start searching for therapies and antidotes to man’s mundane morass.
One of such heroes of hope is the Monk ST VALENTINE, who, without vacillating, initiated and enunciated the matrix of love as the basis for a common humanity. He said in “The Canons of St. Valentine” that “Any attempt to combat a philosophy with methods of violence will fail in the end, unless the fight takes the form of attack of the new spiritual attitude of love”.
In “The World Book Encyclopedia 1973 edition, volume 20 page 204 it is stated that “Valentine’s Day comes on the feast day of two different Christian Martyrs named Valentine. But the customs connected with the day came from an ancient Roman festival called LUPERCALIA” which took place every February 15. The festival honoured Juno, the Roman goddess of women and marriage and Pan the god of nature. But in contemporary times Valentine’s Day celebration transcends the contours of religions, politics and tribe. It is now a global and globalising phenomenon, which entails the exchange and sharing of letters, cards foods, drinks etc with a sweetheart as the hallmark of love.
Truly, love is the reason for the Valentine’s Day or season. But what type of love? Is there still love amongst humanity sunken in the banality of materialism and moral degeneracy? Is there still love in a world ambience or global scenario where our leaders luxuriate in injustice, oppression of the people of the Niger Delta by Federal Hegemonists and their surrogates in coronal garments (Agbada).?
Is there love in a world where the Hitleric proclivies of Putin of Russia against Ukrain and David Cameron of Britain and eight European Union (EU) countries have resolved to genocidally wipe out the innocent people of Iran and Lybia from the face of the earth. Is there love in Delta State where the Urhobos, Itsekiris and Ijaws are at each others economic and political jugular, sunken in bellicosity and hate? Where is the love in Africa were the Democratic Republic Congo (DRC), Sudan, Liberia, Somalia, Ivory-Coast, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Burundi, Chad, Rwanda, etc are sandwiched in a culture of macabre bloodletting?
Love is an enchiridion of uncontrollable emotion. It is to lay down our lives for our fellow man. It is not selfish, arrogant and solipsistic. It is kind, liberal, humble and forgiving. Almighty Jehovah called by or known by any other names is the Creator and generalissimo of the cosmogony. He is the perfect embodiment and exemplification of love through Jesus Christ.
Those who claim to know Him, but have no love for their fellowmen are enshrined in the configurations of the illusionist crudity. This Morbid world is what it is today, because of the dearth of love. The essayist Victor Hugo asserted that “The supreme happiness of live is the conviction that we are loved”. The celebrated poet Virgil said Omnia Vincit a mor (love conquers all).
Whither goeth mankind without love? As we celebrate St. Valentine’s Day, let it be the vaulting ambition and consuming desire of our leaders, religious groups, politicians, tribal jingoists, youths, professionals, robbers, assassins, workers of iniquity, kidnappers and sons of perdition to turn a new leaf. We must reaffirm our total submission to consolidating and pursuing the globalisation of love.
A love- based St Valentine’s Day celebration that corroborates Shakespeare’s advice in his book “Love Labour Lost” “And when love speaks, the voice of all gods make heaven drowsy with the harmony”. – The every minute, every second, every hour, every day, every week, every month, every year love that cuts across the totality of mankind.
Let our Valentine’s Day celebration take cognizance of the admonitions of God Almighty in Romans 23: 12-13 that “The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore, let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the amour of light. Let us walk properly, as in the day not in revelry and drunkenness, not in sexual intercourse and lust, not in strife and enmity, but in one true love” God bless, and a Happy Valentine’s Day to all Mankind.