With the advent of Christianity, Pope Gelasius I banned sexual freedom celebrated during the Pagan festival of the Lupercàli, the current Valentine's Day.
The festival was celebrated for 3 consecutive days, from February 13th to 15th, in honor of the god Fauno (called by all Luperco), protector of sheep and goats from the attack of wolves.
Men and women went in procession to the woods and here they prostrated themselves in an attitude of supplication, expiating and propitiating the transition from the winter months to purification for the new season of spring rebirth of nature.
The Etruscan Oracle invited them to sacrifice a goat and cut its skin into strips.
Young priests called Luperci, half-naked with limbs smeared with fat, a mud mask on their face and goat skin strips in their hands, ran jumping and striking with these whips, both the soil to favor its fertility, and the women who were at the ritual to promote their fertility.
In this ritual the Priests were both goats who donated the fertility of the animal (considered sexually powerful) to the earth and to women, and wolves in the race to exhaustion, understood as an invisible magical enclosure created for the shepherds to protect their flocks from attack of the wolves.
In fact, the offer of the goat was to appease the hunger of the attacking wolves.
Another rite linked to the earth and its fertility, without which our tables would be empty.
Instead of celebrating the 'usual' Valentine's Day with cut flowers and chocolates, take a mindful walk in the woods, accompanied by those you love and touch the earth, thanking it.