Recap From Last Week
Valentine’s Day is getting closer now. I’ve been researching the history around this celebration that many of us take part in. Last week’s article covered the ancient Roman celebration called Lupercalia. Some historians believe this festivity was likely the origin of what we call Valentine’s Day.
One could say Lupercalia and Valentine’s Day are related but do differ greatly. If you didn’t catch the article from last week, feel free to check it out. It’s pretty interesting. 🙂
This week I have written Valentine’s Day History Part 2. We will move ahead in history from what we know about Lupercalia and early Rome and take a look at some events that changed Lupercalia into the celebration of Valentine’s Day.
I also spent some time this week making a list of oils that are known to be especially enjoyed by men. The scents are earthy and less floral. Many women will love them too, I just thought it would be nice to focus on something for the guys! (Since it’s almost Valentine’s Day 🙂 )
OK, let’s look at how Valentine’s Day came to be.
Lupercalia Becomes Valentine’s Day
With the onset of Christianity Lupercalia slowly evolved, becoming a little more civilized in nature. For instance, they started to wear clothes during ceremonies and the festivities were less sexual. The celebration was toned down considerably.
In the 3rd century A.D. Lupercalia took the backseat to a celebration honoring more than one Christian martyr that was beheaded by the Roman Emperor Claudius. At least this is how the story goes.
History is complicated and there are differing opinions by historians. There are a couple different stories about two different men with the name Valentine, they were both executed by Emperor Claudius on the 14th of February in different years.
The common story says that a man by the name of St. Valentine was imprisoned because he was helping persecuted Christians and marrying couples that were in love. It is said that Valentine tried to convert Claudius to Christianity. Claudius became enraged and demanded Valentine renounce his faith. He would not and was beheaded.
Additionally, this man Valentine may have fallen in love with a woman and before being beheaded he wrote her a letter ending with the phrase “From Your Valentine.”
The Christian Church at this time set aside February 14th
as Valentine’s Day, a day to remember the St. Valentine(s) that was beheaded for his faith. The celebration of Lupercalia fell to the side and Valentine’s Day was born.
Like I said, there are differing opinions surrounding the details and the authenticity about this story, but there it is. 🙂
Where Did Cupid Come From?
Cupid, that little angel with bow in hand, where did this iconic figure come from? We see him everywhere especially on Valentine’s Day.
Cupid is known in both Roman and Greek Mythology, however, in Greek he goes by the name Eros. Cupid (meaning desire) was the god of desire, affection and erotic love. He is thought to be the son of the love Goddess Venus.
Cupid is often shown with arrows and a quiver. Did you know he has two kinds of arrows? He carries sharp golden tipped arrows and blunt lead tipped arrows. Anyone struck with the golden arrow is filled with uncontrollable desire, if you are struck with the lead tipped arrow you are filled with aversion and the desire to run away. This was new to me.
There are various pieces of old literature where Cupid is mentioned. The most detailed literary source is found within an ancient Roman collection of stories called Metamorphoses.
One story I found most interesting is called Cupid and Psyche. A story from as far back as the 4th Century B.C. it tells the tale of Cupid and Psyche and their struggles leading up to their marriage.
Cupid remains popular into our modern times, I am glad I did some research about the origin of Cupid. I learned some interesting stuff. 🙂
Essential Oils for the Guys
People have been using essential oils for thousands of years for mental, physical and even sexual health. Using certain essential oils for increased sensuality is not a new idea. As humans, we are strongly impacted by aroma and fragrance. Scents have proven to arouse the senses and increase desire.
I thought it might be nice to make a list of oils that are generally known to be liked by men. These oils are not flowery but rather more spicy, woody, and earthy in nature. These oils, and there are many others, are known to help us feel good, happy, energetic and in love. 🙂 Lots of women like them too!!
Sandalwood is very popular, its aroma could be described as very woody, creamy, smooth, vanilla-like, and exotic. It’s said to promote emotional openness. Great as a base or middle note in blends.
The aroma of Patchouli can be described as strong, slightly sweet, dark, woody, musky, and earthy. Mixes well in blends, most commonly used a middle to base note. Known to improve the spirit making us more open to love.
Related to lemongrass and citronella. The aroma is deep, earthy, and woody, like newly tilled soil. Vetiver has a soothing effect on the senses and has been used for thousands of years. Known as a middle to base note.
Citrus essential oils like orange, lemon, and grapefruit are uplifting and energizing. These oils are top notes and blend nicely with many other EOs.
Reminiscent of peppercorns with a hint of green and floral scents. Black Pepper essential oil won’t make you sneeze or bother your eyes. This oil can stimulate both your appetite for food and love! Known as a top to middle note.
Sweet and spicy, warm and uplifting, cinnamon improves circulation and blood flow. Known as a middle to base note.
Black Pepper and Cinnamon are known as Warm/Hot Oils. This means they can increase blood flow and make you feel warm.
For further information about the meaning of top, middle and base notes, check out the Related Articles section below.
Making the Most of Your Essential Oils
Have fun with your essential oils. Mix it up and experiment to find a blend that you like. The most popular way to use essential oils is in a diffuser. Check your diffuser manual for recommendations regarding how many drops you should use. Amounts will vary depending on the size of your diffuser. My diffuser is 100ml, I usually add 10-12 drops total. Preferences will vary.
Topical application is another great way to use your oils. Mix 10-12 drops into 1 ounce of your chosen carrier oil. (Coconut, Jojoba, Olive, Sweet Almond and Grapeseed are great carrier oils). Enjoy your favorite scents while giving or receiving a relaxing massage. It will feel great and you will even boost your immunity and improve your physical and mental health. Sounds great, doesn’t it? 🙂
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Use essential oils in the tub to create a relaxing romantic atmosphere. Mix 10-12 drops of EO into 1 ounce of carrier oil and mix into your bath water before entering.
Most oils can be used safely in the bath. Additional care should be taken with oils that are considered hot/warm however as these particular oils may cause skin irritation if not used properly. We are all different and we experience essential oils in our own way. Some people may not be bothered by hot/warm oils and other individuals may want to use them sparingly.
Thank you shopping with Your Aromatherapy Store
I sure hope you enjoyed Valentine’s Day History Part 2. I’ve learned a lot while preparing these two articles. History is fascinating and it’s sure interesting to try to figure out where some of our customs come from. I know more now about Valentine’s Day than I did before.
I hope everyone has a very nice Valentine’s Day. No matter how you celebrate this day, be sure to tell those you love how you feel.
It’s always nice to hear from people. If you have any comments or questions about this article please use the boxes below. It would be so cool to hear from you.
Stay happy and healthy.
Angela (founder of Your Aromatherapy Store)
I would like to remind you that essential oils are very POTENT and should be used with common sense and caution. Always read the labels. If you are currently taking any prescribed medication it is recommended that you speak to your doctor before using essential oils.
If you are concerned about allergies, you may want to perform a patch test on your skin.
It is also good to be aware that some essential oils are photo toxic. Avoid the sun as necessary when using these oils.
Please know that some oils are not recommended if you are pregnant or nursing.
Essential oils are considered “complementary and alternative medicines” and are not always a substitute for professional medical intervention and advice. If you are experiencing severe physical or mental illness it is best to contact a medical professional.