Rituals
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26-01-2013, 06:58 AM
Rituals
As I was making my coffee this morning, I was thinking about how much of a ritual that really is for me.
I used to have a machine that made coffee at the time I got up and have it ready for me. But then I started keeping more erratic hours and am making coffee when I get up.
So every morning I go through the same ritual - I like frothed milk in my coffee and it all takes about 5 minutes. Exact same movements every morning, and somehow the ritual itself is enjoyable. I always thought it would be inconvenient to make coffee in the morning instead of letting a machine on a timer handle it - now I like doing it myself.
That got me started thinking about rituals and how they sneek into our lives.
Of course religion leads the pack with rituals by far. From getting ready to go to church through greetings and the service itself, it's all ritualized.
Saying thanks before eating is a ritual, too.
Most people have tons of rituals other than that, too.
Family life tends to be ritualistic, from doing certain things at certain times of the day to holiday rituals, if there is no ritual around a task that repeats itself, no matter how often, we make a ritual around it. Family traditions are rituals, too.
Most people do the same things every day when they get home from work, when they get into a car, when they eat, etc etc. When you start thinking about it, much of our free time is spent with rituals.
Personal rituals, customs and tradition all fit in the category of rituals.
So why do humans love repetition? Is it that we love patterns so much that we squeeze our lives into predictable patterns?
What are your rituals and why do you follow them?

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26-01-2013, 03:29 PM (This post was last modified: 26-01-2013 03:37 PM by Misanthropik.)
RE: Rituals
Each morning, without fail, I take in a high-sugar breakfast such as pie or Lucky Charms; along with a high-protein drink like milk (sometimes mixed with protein powder).

The reason is that after 8 hours of fasting, my body's glycogen stores (our body's energy reserves, stored in the liver) have been depleted, and my body is stealing stored energy from my muscles in order to sustain itself. To illustrate: our body generally buys from the grocery store that is our liver. But when the food at the grocery store runs out, the body needs to find sustenence somewhere, so it breaks into the pantries of our muscles and begins stealing our muscles' food. For anyone with a heavily-muscled physique, this is unfavorable, because our muscles are our pride and joy (that's why we wear douchebaggy muscle-shirts and skin-tight T-shirts everywhere). So, in order to put a halt to the morning assault on my muscles, I take in a high-sugar food supplement. Simple sugars (like those in apple pie or ice cream or most cereals) are fast-digesting, so they get into our bloodstream the fastest and spike our insulin levels. This prompts the body to stop raiding our muscle stores for energy. In conjunction with the sugar intake, I must also take in 20 or more grams of fast-digesting protein (such as whey) to rebuild what was damaged during the attack on my muscle fibers during the night.

Or, perhaps a better example would be my nightly shower routine. Somehow, the routine has become 1) Face and body, 2) Brush teeth, 3) Shave, 4) Shave again (wink wink), 3) Trim nails. It's just the easiest place to take care of the essentials.

Edit: I feel like the shower thing was more relevant. Tongue

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26-01-2013, 03:42 PM
RE: Rituals
Seems to be a "quirk" (call it what you will) of evolutionary behavior.

Rituals and repetition have a connection to safety. I have survived up to this point, this was the familiar pattern of ways I've done them before, so it builds up a strong subconscious hold on future actions.

I don't have many "conscious" rituals. I do the same types of unwinding patterns like driving around aimlessly to ease my mind to think and walk around in a way around my house. I'm not however a big routine in the bathroom or before I go to work type of guy. I can just snap up and go and do anything without caring about the details as long as I got all I need.

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26-01-2013, 03:46 PM
RE: Rituals
I have many rituals...funny, but that's what I call them. It's nice and comforting to me.


Wind's in the east, a mist coming in
Like something is brewing and about to begin
Can't put my finger on what lies in store
but I feel what's to happen has happened before...


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26-01-2013, 04:31 PM
RE: Rituals
We're pattern forming machines who feel more comfortable in environments where things are consistent. When we don't know what to expect, we become uneasy.


Rituals tend toward the irrational though, which is we call ourselves creatures of habit rather than creatures of ritual.
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26-01-2013, 06:48 PM
RE: Rituals
Rituals are good, they create energy. Routines are bad, they waste energy. So they say in autism counseling Smile

I attend a group meditation once or twice a week. A little chanting and invocation in the beginning and end qualifies it as a ritual.
Besides that, every music track is a ritual, a progression of the melody and following it emotionally.

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27-01-2013, 09:27 AM
RE: Rituals
I don't know, my making coffee is more of a routine I guess, but in a way it is also meditation - my mind wanders and adjusts to waking and what that day will bring in a very calm, relaxing way during the process.
Same thing goes for grilling dinner - it's a routine, I do it most evenings. But it is also a very calming process, being outside, taking in the scenery, plants, birds and what have you. It leaves me in a serene mood.
I think the lines between rituals, routines and habits can be very blurred.

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27-01-2013, 12:09 PM
RE: Rituals
I have this silly ritual I do.

After I achieve victory over an opponent I scream to the heavens and devour their soul while chanting ancient rites.
It's so silly it's embarrassing.

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