Joanna Bristow Watkins

Lupercalia

  • Monday 14th February, Valentine's Day

    valentine heartMonday 14th February - is Valentine's Day and is all about love and compassion, which includes Universal Love for all other living things and also Self-love which is so often overlooked. 

    Some bitterly refer to it as Singles Awareness Day and blame card manufacturers and our materialistic society for love being ritualistically forced upon us every year at this time. However, although it may have the fee of a mordern folk tradition, the first Valentine's Day was celebrated in AD 496 and it's celebtated in a number of other countries as well as the UK.

    However, although the story of 'Saint' Valentine long precedes Hallmark et al, the origins are somewhat blurred as there are historical references to the existence of several different Valentines. Folklore indicates that Valentine was a priest during the third century in Rome. Emperor Claudius II outlawed marriage as he believed that single men made better soldiers than those with wives and families. Valentine, however, defied Claudius and continued to perform marriages in secret. Claudius found out and Valentine was imprisoned, where one version of the legend indicates he befriended a jailer with a blind daughter and he may have somehow managed to restore her sight, resulting in the jailer converting to Christianity. Claudius ordered that Valentine be executed on February 14th and allegedly before his death sentence was carried out, he sent a note to the jailer's daughter and signed it, "From Your Valentine." Hence Valentine's Day is celebrated in his memory. 

    However, his death day and his association with lovers and notes may have been convenient for Roman Christians looking for ways to blend existing Pagan/Roman celebrations into their Calendar. Many believe it replaced Lupercalia (15th February); a pre-existing Roman Festival where men dressed up as wolves and roamed the streets looking for partners. More on this tomorrow... 

    I would be delighted if you choose to share this blog with others who might enjoy it, you can use the social media share buttons at the top.

    Aligning ourselves with other members of the community through mutual celebration is very therapeutic and is excellent for bringing harmony and wellbeing into our lives. 

    Harmony Healing utilises the philosophies of the Ancient Egyptians, in the form of Reyad Sekh Em (RSE) Egyptian Alchemy Healing, to bring balance and harmony. Reyad Sekh Em (RSE) Level 1 -our next interactive training course series starts with Khemitology on Thursday 17th February and Violet Flame of Amention Wednesday 23rd February, followed by Mindful Chakras starting 10th March and Essene Angelology starting 16th March.

    Through Harmony Healing, Joanna offers a wider spectrum of events designed to nurture your welbeing. If you are looking for regular spiritually enlightening activities which help to connect you with the lunar cycle, we have our monthly Full Moon Guided Healing Meditations. The next one is Wednesday 16th February at 7.30-9.30pm (UK time = GMT). Participants all receive a deeply healing experience. Cost to participate is £20 by online BACS payment (£1 admin fee added for PayPal) or half price to RSE graduates. There are multi-buy packages for regular attendees. Book at the Harmony Shop.

    Other services

    Within Surrey, via Harmony In Nature, we facilitate Forest Bathing+ Sessions to help adults reconnect with nature and reap the therapeutic benefits.

    Currently, MP3 meditations and distant readings and healings are proving popular and we offer Harmony Healing Vouchers for any value for use on Harmony Healing services andHarmony in Nature vouchers for Forest Bathing vouchers (£35).

    To receive regular Blog updates (headed with a title detailing the occasion or event so that you can choose whether to open it or not), featuring New and Full Moon, meteor showers, eclipses and other meteorological events, interesting anniversaries, ancient festival dates plus notification of dates of numerological significance, sign up for the Harmony Healing e-newsletters above or at the top of any page of this Harmony Healing website. The nature of the Blog means that whenever there are several key dates in close succession, there will be frequent mailings. The sender e-mail address is  (and the sender will show as Joanna Bristow-Watkins @ Harmony Healing). You may need to add this email to your safe list and check your junk filter initially. 

  • Tuesday 15th February, Lupercalia - Ancient Roman Festival

    lupercalia final

    Tuesday 15th February is Lupercalia in Ancient Roman tradition. Apparently, this was the popular ceremony of fertility, featuring naked men running through the street!  I can’t see this catching on in the UK climate!  

    Ancient inages show men dressed as dogs (or possibly Wolves since Lupus meant Wolf) and goats, Cupid and other personifications of fertility. Supposedly, the specially nominated priesthood for the occasion were called the Luperci ("brothers of the wolf"), and during the fertility ritual they paraded the streets around Rome either naked, or near naked, carrying strips of leather which were used to thrash in the direction of the gathered audience.

    It was believed that any pregnant ladies struck by the whips would have an easier birthing process and any other ladies, whether considered barren or otherwise, would be granted fertility. 

    Hence, some say this ceremony was the precursor for Valentine’s Day (see entry below for 14th February).

    The Ancient Romans believed that celebrating Lupercalia would enhance their fertility and hence improve their personal harmony and wellbeing.

    Harmony Healing utilises the philosophies of the Ancient Egyptians, in the form of Reyad Sekh Em (RSE) Egyptian Alchemy Healing, to bring balance and harmony. Reyad Sekh Em (RSE) Level 1 -our next interactive training course series starts with Khemitology on Thursday 17th February and Violet Flame of Amention Wednesday 23rd February, followed by Mindful Chakras starting 10th March and Essene Angelology starting 16th March.

    Through Harmony Healing, Joanna offers a wider spectrum of events designed to nurture your welbeing. If you are looking for regular spiritually enlightening activities which help to connect you with the lunar cycle, we have our monthly Full Moon Guided Healing Meditations. The next one is tomorrow, Wednesday 16th February at 7.30-9.30pm (UK time = GMT). Participants all receive a deeply healing experience. Cost to participate is £20 by online BACS payment (£1 admin fee added for PayPal) or half price to RSE graduates. There are multi-buy packages for regular attendees. Book at the Harmony Shop.

    Other services

    Within Surrey, via Harmony In Nature, we facilitate Forest Bathing+ Sessions to help adults reconnect with nature and reap the therapeutic benefits.

    Currently, MP3 meditations and distant readings and healings are proving popular and we offer Harmony Healing Vouchers for any value for use on Harmony Healing services andHarmony in Nature vouchers for Forest Bathing vouchers (£35).

    To receive regular Blog updates (headed with a title detailing the occasion or event so that you can choose whether to open it or not), featuring New and Full Moon, meteor showers, eclipses and other meteorological events, interesting anniversaries, ancient festival dates plus notification of dates of numerological significance, sign up for the Harmony Healing e-newsletters above or at the top of any page of this Harmony Healing website. The nature of the Blog means that whenever there are several key dates in close succession, there will be frequent mailings. The sender e-mail address is  (and the sender will show as Joanna Bristow-Watkins @ Harmony Healing). You may need to add this email to your safe list and check your junk filter initially.