Valentine's Day is a garish, corporate shill designed to trick you into substituting commerce for Love, but don't take our word for it: it also just happens to be the Word of God. We picked out a few religious takes on the holiday that have us pondering conversion. Hear that, deities? We'll accept cash, anatomically correct chocolate hearts, and massage hula-hoops for our soul.
This Egyptian Muslim cleric warns of a day where "Everything red will become more expensive." So true! "Only one thing will become cheaper: the blood of Muslims." Wait, Duane Reade has a special on Muslim blood? Ohh, he's referring to a perceived decline in the morality of young people doing naughty things. Then the cleric hints at a deadly virus. Is it AIDS? "No, something more dangerous." Ebola? "More dangerous." Cholera? "More dangerous." Blackberry neck? "Valentine Virus!"
Leave it to a humorless Christian to totally kill the buzz and guilt you into returning that fuzzy heart-shaped rug you bought for your living room. "Saint Valentine's Day is a parody of true religion. Observance of this holiday has to be questioned if we're to return to the heart of true Christianity." See what he did there?
From cursory look at all the YouTube videos on the subject, dating seems to be an oft-debated topic for LDS members. Desert Ridge High School Seminary in Arizona made this video last year about dating and Valentine's Day, complete with this gem from a high school counselor: "Date around. Taste the 31 flavors—not literally taste them, but get a taste of what kind of personalities you like, what kind of people you like."
But that all seems so confusing! What do they mean by "steady dating" and "dating" and "hanging out?" Our man Tommy at FAIRLDS breaks it down in the least-confusing way possible. For instance, this is his flow-chart of a typical date:
See? It's easy! Let his Microsoft Paint stick figures do the heavy lifting.
Oprah-charming hasids aside, we couldn't find too much debate in the Orthodox community about Valentine's Day online (wonder why?) but here's reform E-rabbi Jonathan Ginsburg giving his blessing for a "moderate" celebration of Valentine's Day. Pro tip if you have a spouse and attempt to ignore Valentine's Day, "You probably won't get too far and you'll have a big problem."
"Youngsters and couples should not indulge in immoral behaviour on Feb 14 at public places like pubs, parks, restaurants and gardens." Especially gardens! That's where the first Valentine's Day went horribly wrong!
Then again, all of this old-religion talk makes us restless for something new. Something that combines the pointless consumerism of Valentine's Day and makes it compulsory to achieve a sense of enlightenment. Plus, aliens, and fear, and John Travolta. This February 14, do yourself a favor and Stand Tall.