Other essays on this theme

Essay: "Rituals"

by Uri Jr. Small
At Peace with Rituals

Normally, when I consider rituals, I think of certain religious behaviors and procedures. But upon close examination, one will find that when an individual constantly performs the same social practices on a daily basis, this can be considered a ritual, as well. Examples: Every Friday night AL must go too the bar; every Tuesday morning Deb attends a N.A. meeting; etc. And rituals could possibly be performed on a non-social level while still being non-religious.

Whether rituals are religious, social, or non-social, their value is based on the effect they have on the practitioner. If praying in the name of Jesus brings an individual peace, then that ritual is good for that individual. If an individual feels that a day cannot go by without them stopping at the gambling house, then that ritual is good for that individual, as well. It takes great maturity and awareness for people to accept that others may practice a way of living that is different from theirs. But why should we hate what others love, if it doesn't affect us?

People perform rituals in the search for peace, love, and true happiness. While doing one set of rituals, we may find that they are not benefiting us in this search. This is the time when it's appropriate to ask others about their rituals, and in return have them share with us how and why their rituals are good.

But if we see others who are at peace with their rituals and we are at peace with our rituals, then we should be at peace with each other. Because even though our rituals may be different, they are the same in bringing us the fruits of peace.

-Uri Small, Jr.