Ritual is a word used to denote our daily practices, the moments we take for ourselves, the practice of intentionally returning again and again to a thing, a structure, and intention, and a way of being.
Mary Ruefle, poet and writer teaches us that each word carries a secret and that secret is its etymology,The English word ritual comes to us from the Latin word ritualis. This pertains to rites, the proven way of doing something, a custom. It may have come from a further root that means to count.
Some believe that it is related to the Sanskrit for visible order. In Vedic religion, “the lawful and regular order of the normal, and therefore proper, natural and true structure of cosmic, worldly, human and ritual events. Rituals can bring attention and also balance to our day-to-day lives.
Poet and ritualist CAconrad says, “Rituals can reconnect us to one another and the natural cycles of life and help put an end to our alienation from the planet.”
Some of our Favorite Rituals
1. Palm Inhalation from 3rd Ritual
To practice the ritual of Palm Inhalation first select a scent to match your intention.
We use Moon before during the day, and Earth to ground at day’s end. Then, apply 1-2 drops to the palms of your hands. Then rub your hands together, activating the blend via the natural oils on your skin. Cup your palms in front of your face without touching. Inhale deeply, remove your hands, and repeat as desired.
2. Working with the Moon & Nature
The moon teaches us reflection. The moon is the embodiment of feminine energy, or yin. The moon can teach us to pay attention to our cycles. Keeping track of these cycles with a Moon Calendar can be helpful. Forest Bathing, too, is a way to come to center. The Japanese Way of Shinrin Yoku is one to learn.
3. Breathing Meditation
A ritual can be crafted via breath and stillness. As we all could benefit from slowing down and lean into moments of tenderness and rest, Boketto’s own Olivia Yohai shares how to develop a home meditation practice (video), and serves as a beautiful ritual to further support these areas of our lives. By allowing subtle, restorative practices to unfold privately and within a nurturing environment, one can more gently and freely arrive in their own body and its rhythms of self-expression.
Whether it’s any of the above practices, washing hands, your skincare routine, or making food, treating the everyday as ritual can imbue what is usual with the sacred.
**Image Credit: John Baldessari