I’ve never really been one for rituals. Compulsive actions on the other hand, sure.
When I was younger I used to have to flick light switches a certain number of times (usually six) before I could leave a room. Objects also needed to be “in their place.” This may come as a shock to my mother, who was frequently telling me to clean my room as I hop-scotched my way through toys from the door to my bed, however, soaps in dishes always needed to be pointing in the correct direction with equal distance on all sides from any counter edges.
As I grew older, I attached luck to these acts, many times centering on repetitive patterns of six or thirteen. As my mind wandered while reading books I would force myself to re-read passages until every word was fully digested.
At its height, my compulsiveness meant that I needed to read phrases on billboards and road signs backwards and forwards in patterns that somehow seemed to settle any unrest I had in viewing them. This proved to be quite a feat as the car I was in whizzed down the road, forcing me to remember slogans and saying them backwards and forwards in my mind over and over until I could do so without making any mistakes.
Eventually I grew out of these compulsions feeling that they were becoming too ritualistic and controlling the free flowing nature of life.
You may be asking yourself what the point of this post is. All I can say is that I really don’t have one. I saw the video below earlier today and it just got me thinking about rituals.