Many people also make a ring kind of arrangement with this shrub to hang on the door. The custom of kissing under the mistletoe is very old. Different theories are associated with this very popular tradition. It was believed that hanging a ball of mistletoe from the ceiling and exchanging kisses under it was a sign of friendship and goodwill.
Another story that is related with this tradition tells us that this custom was connected to the legend of Freya, goddess of love, beauty and fertility. According to legend, a man had to kiss any young girl who, without realizing it, found herself accidentally under a sprig of mistletoe hanging from the ceiling.
This beautiful custom of exchanging kisses under the mistletoe is followed in many European countries as well as in Canada. Thus if a couple in love exchanges a kiss under the mistletoe, it is interpreted as a promise to marry, as well as a prediction of happiness and long life. In France, the custom linked to mistletoe was reserved for New Year's Day only. Today any one can kiss under the mistletoe at any time during the holiday season.
Another legend tells us that kissing under the mistletoe was first found to be associated with the Greek festival of Saturnalia and later with primitive marriage rites. Mistletoe was believed to have the power of bestowing fertility, and the dung from which the mistletoe was thought to arise was also said to have "life-giving" power.
The mistletoes are hung in many houses during the Christmas time and the young men have the privilege of kissing the girls under it, plucking each time a berry from the bush. It is said that a man should pluck a berry when he kisses a woman under the mistletoe, and when the last berry is gone, there should be no more kissing.
The mistletoes have innumerable properties
- It is said to have medicinal qualities and supernatural power.
- It is considered to be a symbol of love, peace, harmony and romance.
- This beautiful shrub is said to possess magical qualities and life giving energy.