Valentine's Day And Ash Wednesday Are On The Same Day, But The Two Don't Equate In Our Culture
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Valentine's Day And Ash Wednesday Are On The Same Day, But The Two Don't Equate In Our Culture

Allow me to explain.

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Valentine's Day And Ash Wednesday Are On The Same Day, But The Two Don't Equate In Our Culture
Pexels & Edited by Eleanor Atkinson

Going by the liturgical calendar, this is the dilemma of the year. It is almost cruel, the way the dates fell this year.

Allow me to explain.

We all know Valentine's Day, right? It's the day of sharing the love, grand romantic gestures, extravagant dates, and expensive dinners. Valentine's Day is all about splurging. (for many people, anyhow)

"well, that's all fine and dandy," you think, "so what's the problem?"

The problem. Oh, the problem. It's a problem I haven't seen in my eighteen years on earth, and it is the sort of problem that is inevitable...we can do absolutely nothing to change it.

Then again, the idea of it has more serious implications than the actual truth of the matter; because, in truth, the great majority of people will neither care about nor heed the implications of this explanation.

But for the itty bitty percentage of people whose minds will be blown out of the astral plane, I am continuing for you.

Not everyone practices the customs of Lent, and for those of you who don't, here's a brief rundown of the Lenten timeline.

-Mardi Gras, or Fat Tuesday, is the very last day before Lent. It is a day of indulgence, extravagance, and basically a great party before the solemnity of Lent.

-Ash Wednesday is the first day of Lent (which lasts a total of 40 days, excluding Sunday). During the Lenten Season, many people try to reflect upon themselves, and many people also give something up, in remembrance of Jesus's fasting and suffering in the desert, before the crucifixion.

As you can see, it marks a much more solemn time than the Mardi Gras festivities.

-For the next 40 days (again, excluding Sundays), those practicing do different things. Many people fast on certain days, and many people avoid meat on Fridays, the day Jesus died upon the cross.

-The last week of Lent, or Holy Week, begins with Palm Sunday, which marks Jesus's entry into Jerusalem. (The palms from the previous year are commonly used as the ashes for Ash Wednesday).

Maundy Thursday, or Holy Thursday, marks the Last Supper, Good Friday marks Jesus's death on the cross, and on Easter Sunday, Lent is officially over, as Jesus's Resurrection is celebrated.

So yeah. That's the gist.

I'm sure you can see the problem now.

Valentine's Day and Ash Wednesday simply do not equate, at least not in the context of our modern commercially-obsessed culture.

While, on the liturgical calendar, Ash Wednesday is a much more important holiday, it seems that in many parts of America, and in the media, Valentine's Day takes the cake.

People are gonna do what they're gonna do on Valentine's Day, and that might mean going out for a fancy schmancy steak dinner. But, for those of you who are more devout, remember, you are supposed to resist this and refrain from meat on Ash Wednesday (according to your faith; this applies to Catholics and some Protestant denominations)

Orrrr.....maybe you could just celebrate Galentine's Day, and then all your problems will be solved! Galentine's Day falls on actual Mardi Gras, so it's already gonna be a big party, and you won't have to feel a conflict in your soul on Valentine's Day/Ash Wednesday.

And, not to be that person (I'm really not that person), but if you're in that place, you can...well...show your love for the Big JC on Valentine's Day. I mean, I personally know many people who say that their relationship with God is the strongest thing they have. Well, honey, it's your time to prove it.



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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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