Rituals are simply a set of tasks that you do to create space and celebrate for a particular purpose. Humans of all religious and spiritual backgrounds have been creating rituals since the dawn of time. There are no absolute right or wrong ways to perform a ritual, as long as your intention is good. Rituals can be short or long, performed by yourself or with others. You can have different rituals for daily practice and other rituals for annual celebrations, even rituals that happen once a lifetime! Baptisms, birthdays, weddings, festive holidays, sweet 16s, graduations, funerals… these are all rituals!
My love of rituals
I recall my Catholic grandma performing a ritual with my older aunties when my grandpa passed away. Every night, in front of an altar with a candle, plate of food and a handsome smiling photo of my grandpa the elder ladies would sit together in a circle reciting “give us this day, our daily bread.” I would peak in the room to see what they were doing. The room was somber yet peaceful and I remember being drawn to it.
I also remember during the high holiday season, my Jewish mom and my Buddhist step dad decorated our home with every holiday tradition including 7 (yes, 7) Christmas trees, a couple of Menorahs and Japanese new years mochi. I loved it all! During Hanukah, my mom would light the Menorah and say the Hebrew blessings. I would listen, not knowing exactly what she was saying and watch the candles burn.
Create your own ritual in 6 steps
While I did not go on to practice any organized religion, I experienced a number of rituals and readings from traditions that span the globe. What I gleaned from all these rituals is that they all basically organize around the same time-tested steps that we can use to create our own custom rituals.
- Clear space to receive
Before you begin your ritual you want to clear your physical, mental, emotional and energetic space of clutter. Maybe even burn some sage? Get your space smelling, looking and feeling good! You can even set the stage with some relaxing music. e When your space feels good, open and initiate your ritual by calling in a spiritual guide that will help you through the ritual. You can call on a religious guide if you’re so inclined. Or an archetype of a spirit works well too! Call on a spirit that you connect with. If you don’t have a spiritual practice, calling on Mother Nature or Father Sky always works!
- Flow and dream big
Part of getting in the right emotional space in our bodies is to get into flow. One of the best ways to get into flow is to meditate but we all get in the flow state in different ways. The flow state is where your mind is clear yet focused, like the time right before you sleep. A few great ways to get into flow might be to meditate, dance, journal, do yoga, or play an instrument. Hate to meditate? Read further here! Do what works for you. The idea of getting into flow is that your mind is now in a receiving state for you to dream big! Remember, that in this state, there are no limitations. Why not dream about what you really want instead of what you think you can manage. Dream like you did when you were a child. Your 5-year old self knew no limits!
- Intend and Ask for what you want
Now is the time to grasp those dreams and let your spirit guides know that this is what you want! You need to ask for it! Say it out loud, write it down, put a message in a bottle and drop it in the ocean (glass bottle please – no plastic). By asking for what you desire and for help in achieving your desire you are letting the whole Universe know that you mean business. It astonishes me to hear how often we do not ask for what we want. Asking for what you want makes you vulnerable and brave! It truly takes courage to ask for what you want. And I know you have that courage. Ask now!
- Active and do now
To show the Universe (and your spiritual guide) that you mean business you need to take action. One single action to show you mean business… that you really want this dream to become reality and manifested in our physical world. Do one thing that points to your desire. One small intentional step towards your dream is all you need to lay the groundwork towards achieving your ultimate desire. This could be a planning step, like listing out the things you need to do to accomplish the goal. This could be an action step like actually going out and doing one thing that brings you closer to your goal. Or it could be a symbolic step such as planting (putting in soil to manifest), consuming (eating or drinking to embody) or burning (setting on fire – carefully – to release or put forth into the spiritual realm).
- Give thanks and release
Gratitude is powerful and a surefire way to accept all your blessings! Research proves the benefits of gratitude! By acknowledging your blessings seen and unseen, you further set into motion to the Universe that you are deserving of more blessings. And by acknowledging and thanking your spiritual guide for their assistance you are honoring the spirit for all they do for you. I imagine they like receiving thanks just as much as I enjoy hearing praise and gratitude. Once you thank your spirit guide, be sure to release them from your ritual so they may go forth and do their intended work on your behalf. This is more powerful if you speak the words out loud. Spoken word is very powerful, be sure to say positive and kind words with good intentions. Something like, “Thank you for helping me accomplish my dreams and for all my blessings seen and unseen. May you go forth into the world and complete your purpose.” Releasing your spirit is important, please remember to do this step as it allows the spirit you have called to be free.
- Share the love
If you were at a wedding, this is where you would party at the reception, eating wonderful food and dancing the night away! This is a perfect example of sharing the love by celebrating and grounding. Grounding, again. Yes, you want to return to this earth of ours and partake in actions that bring you back to the physical world. Eating and dancing are perfect ways. And when you eat or dance with others, you are sharing the love. You can get some extra credit if you pass it forward to someone in need! Share how ever you can and what resonates with your dream. For example, if your ritual was to manifest a love partnership, pass out compliments to strangers. If your ritual was for financial abundance, donate money to a person or organization in need.
Remember good intentions
Before you go off and create your own ritual, please remember that the most important aspect is that you are performing rituals for yourself, not your ego and not to show off to others. The absolute worst thing you could do is to perform ritual for any purpose other than to honor yourself or your loved ones. Any ritual created for display will surely backfire in unintended ways. And I don’t have to say it, but any ritual for any purpose other than good, well, don’t even think of it.
Be well my friends, and manifest manifest manifest! I send you love and light as you go forth and create your own rituals!
If you have a favorite ritual or tip on you customize your rituals, please share it below in the comments.