A ritual can be stated to be sequential of activities in the lives of human beings. They are the activities in the human life that revolve around their gestures, their words, and objects. These activities are performed a sequestered place, and the activities are performed as the give set standards and regulations (De, Bloom, Chan, Adler & Lufrano, 2000). Different rituals can be described as per the traditions of a given community. In addition, rituals can be characterized as per the activities of the particular community. Nonetheless, they cannot be defined by performance, traditionalism, sacral symbolism, formalism, rule-governance, and invariance. Examples of rituals in our daily lives include praying, meditating, shaking of hands, giving of gifts, and singing, saying of the grace and giving of awards.
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The need of rituals in our daily lives is a natural human instinct. The need for ritual is just real, urgent and natural as the need will always have for the basic needs like love, shelter, and clothing. Like the way we are to survive, the need for ritual is as important as the need for survival in this world (De, Bloom, Chan, Adler & Lufrano, 2000). Ritual triggers the urge to be together with the infinite gives us an insight of a bigger, archetypal reality and beseech within us the visceral comprehension of the universal paradigms. It gives us an understanding of universal paradigms like the need for reverence, unity, connectivity, awe, and continuity.
It is the functions of rituals that we have adopted in our lives that give us a way to connect intimately with the primordial universal force and give us a chance to hug on that higher power that informs and fuels all the existence. In short, we can state that rituals are our lifeline in this world to the godlike (De, Bloom, Chan, Adler & Lufrano, 2000). In this paper, we are going to look at the roles of rituals in our lives as humans. Among the roles, we are going to give focus include that rituals provide the appropriate set of rules for the actions in the realms of the sacred. Moreover, ritual provides a connecting bridge that enables the passing of the realm for the profane.
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The first role of ritual is that it gives us a chance to quickly perform a particular activity. The rituals that a person believes in makes him, or she ritualizes on a particular activity. It allows one to begin to activate the different actions in a quick manner. He will act on the actions without having to invest in various strategies like planning activity to select the different activities. For instance, you might always have a habit of taking a cup of tea each time you want to begin writing your paper (De, Bloom, Chan, Adler & Lufrano, 2000). After the taking the cup of tea, you immediately begin to write the course outline of the paper then followed by the introduction of the paper. It is clear that you before you get to write any paper you take a cup of tea. For that reason, there is not to bother oneself with thinking about what to do before the paper. It will be an automatic habit to take a cup of tea for you to write the research paper.
The second role of ritual is that it gives the psychological principle that conditions thus making the action process automatic. We the humans are creatures of habits. We have found ourselves falling in certain patterns which in the long-run we find ourselves unconsciously following these pattern (De, Bloom, Chan, Adler & Lufrano, 2000). We can use the rituals in the basic aspect of our psychology to our benefits. For example, let’s say there has been an activity that you have always wanted to do, but you have luck the necessary motivation and encouragement. Let’s assume that the activity to be done but there is no motivation is running every morning. To be able to perform this activity, you have to come up with a series of actions plan that you have to do before you go running. Such series of the action plan will develop to a ritual after a given time span. This will enable you to run each morning with easy and with fewer difficulties as it will have become a ritual developed in you. In other words, the ritual performance if properly done will condition you to do your morning run. Your ritual that will enhance your running in the morning might be putting on gym clothes or doing about twenty sit-ups.
The third role of ritual is that it enables us to recall particular mental states or emotions on command. Rituals is a set of constantly followed pattern of habits. These habits create an experience of particular mental nature. This will allow you to come up with an anchor of feelings thus anchor the experience of the mental state each time you need it. For example, when I perform yoga. The result is that I will find myself feeling good and relaxed. The feeling that I have after doing the yoga will trigger me to do more of the action for the feeling to be felt within oneself thus making yoga a routine (De, Bloom, Chan, Adler & Lufrano, 2000). The feeling that in created I me when I do yoga, I want the feeling to be anchored into a different activity. I can illustrate this with an example when I am at the optimal of my relaxation, I make my hand into a fist and squeeze it two times. With continuous practice, I will be able to experience the feeling of relaxation after performing the act of squeezing my fist twice.
The fourth role of ritual is that it enables us to connect to the past in the most genuine manner. The ritual that the Jews have when it is the time for Passover is to avoid the consumption of food staff that contains leavened grains. This is the most and the highest profile rule that must be followed by any few Jew during the ceremony. When the Jews were leaving the land of Egypt, they have to perform the process in a hurry due to the limited time, but they had to perform the ceremony as they had to connect with their past in the most genuine manner possible. Modern Christians perform the ritual of Passover by not consuming food that luck leavened grains. They do so by commemorating the ceremony that the ancient Jews used to do.
Besides that, the transformation of the mundane to the sacred is another role of rituals. There are certain habits that have been created in a given community and due to their importance. The actions have seemed to be a ritual thus becoming more sacred among the people of that community. This can best be illustrated by way of tea of the Japanese community. The act of tea has turned to be a tea ceremony for the community. It has created a ritual that has embedded deeply in the ways of the community (De, Bloom, Chan, Adler & Lufrano, 2000). It has created a deeper meaning of purity, inner quietness, and tranquility among the people of Japanese. In the contemporary society, rituals give us an enhancement to stop, reconnect and take a break from breath. It enables us to reconnect with inner desires and needs. The needs and desires can be those of enjoyment, inspiration, relaxation, and gratitude. There is that one ritual that when you perform it greats good feeling feelings within you and makes you reconnect with the sacred. Therefore, if we connect with the sacred, it means that we are getting back in the process of being in touch with nature or the Goddesses. Also, rituals are perfect manner to re-introduce that into our daily lives via seemingly mundane actions.
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In addition, it is the role of rituals to trigger in us the feeling of safety and balanced. We as humans conduct spiritual festivals in the context of rituals to the purpose to create a safe resting place. The rituals we perform each day whether they are spiritual or not, their primary functions is to support the needs of humans in their structure and balance. We do not want to be in the kind of life that is full of frustration and disorder (De, Bloom, Chan, Adler & Lufrano, 2000). That is why we keep carrying our habits to make a platform that creates order in our life that contains unpredictable disarray. When an individual starts to do more healthy rituals on a daily basis, then there will be reduced tension, and he will have the feeling of greater well-being and safety developed within him (Zhonghua, 1994). Such healthy rituals that we are encouraged to do include taking herbal tea before bed or running in the morning to relax your nervous tension. The kind of ritual that one decides to choose most preferable the healthy rituals will always the significance of adding better feelings of within balance and safety.
Furthermore, the role of rituals is that it fosters a bigger connection with oneself and other persons. It will be a wise act to always take a few minutes of your day for the sole reason of emptying your mind from all the stress and depression you mind have experienced. You can do this effectively b either writing a journal or have a talk with your family members at dinner time. Such acts will enable you to feel better (De, Bloom, Chan, Adler & Lufrano, 2000). Also, it will make you feel closer and in touch with others. If we happen to do this on a daily basis and make it a ritual, then we trigger love, togetherness, and authenticity. We will not focus on the differences that exist between each other, but there will be that feeling of togetherness that will erupt in each of us.
The other role of ritual is that it enhances the habit of self-love within an individual. Rituals play a powerful role in our lives. We have to utilize the power of rituals to asserts the value that you hold within oneself and to know the significance of one`s welfare (Zhonghua, 1994). The daily activities that are used to doing the do not have to have an empty meaning in our lives but should have personal meaning and importance. The activities we do like taking a cold shower, taking with friends or watching movies should have significance and meaning attached to them. It will be a hard process to take care of oneself if you have developed daily rituals.
Furthermore, the other role that rituals play in the livelihood of humans is that promotes creativity. The largest percentage of individuals who have been successful in the world did have developed rituals in their lives. For instance, in the educational sector, there has been great writers like Stephen Kings and Ray Bradbury who were successful because they had day-to-day developed rituals. They had put in place day-to-day created rituals that guided them to become writers. We should not ignore any ritual even if it is a bizarre ritual. They have some significance level in rolling the ball of creativity in an individual (De, Bloom, Chan, Adler & Lufrano, 2000). Also, that small ritual can assist in sharpening and improving one`s skill and knowledge. The famous author who wrote the book “Tipping Point” stated that in our lives to be able to comprehend one thing, we have to take more than ten thousand hours to deliberately master that one practice. The individuals who we have viewed them to be the most talented have had rituals that they have practiced on a daily basis. In the long-run, they have developed a habit through creativity.
Finally, it is the role of rituals to enable us to serve different purposes in our families. Among the various purposes that are enhanced by rituals in our family settings include helping us to stay connected with our family members, assists by bringing stability and order in the family, they help in the learning of basic skills among all the family members through generations, is helps realize the importance of passage of time in our lives and it also helps to be in a position of coping with trauma and loss (De, Bloom, Chan, Adler & Lufrano, 2000). Moreover, it assists us in the process of reconnecting with our past, impacts certain important social values to us, assist in communication amongst family members and helps in the campaign of protecting fellow family members against drug abuse and violence.
In concussion, is it not a surprising and amazing thing about how rituals work in our lives? The human nature that we possess, as it gravitates towards the unforeseen character. We have taken rituals for granted for a long period without identifying the importance they have in our lives. We have often connected rituals with dry religious festivals or associating them to empty useless day-to-day habits. But when we want to live the kind of life that is full of balance, creativity, connection, and sacredness we have to incorporate rituals. Rituals will enable us to identify and get produce the best out of each of the day we live. It is up to you personally to identify the rituals that you have or the kind of rituals you want in your life. Try to share them with friends or family to inspire and to be inspired and motivated.
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