It’s late and Valentine’s Day is almost over.

No, I did not forget you.  I wanted to wait and see if you would be the one to email a Happy Valentine’s greeting to me!

But… you did not, and I thank you for that because as an Orthodox Jew it’s a holiday that I don’t celebrate.

St. Valentine’s Day is rooted in Christian tradition – it originated as a Christian feast day honoring a martyr named Valentine.   It’s not a Jewish holiday nor is it a non-religious American holiday.

But if you are celebrating… I wish you a Happy Valentine’s Day!  I hope you got the flowers and chocolates and felt the love!

So how do we celebrate our love in Judaism?  It’s a daily practice.  Each morning when we awake and read the morning prayer, we are reminded to love.  The very first sentence states, “Hareini Mekabel Alai Miztvat Aseh Shel Veahavta Lereacha Kamocha”.

Translated to English this states:  “I hereby take upon myself the mitzvah love your fellowman as yourself”.

This is an important daily reminder to treat others the way you want to be treated.  Help and uplift others.  I’m reminded of this important good deed each morning, and it drives me to do the things that I do each and every day.

I wish you a life worth living that encompasses “Veahavta Lereacha Kamocha” – treat others as you want to be treated!