I spent this past weekend celebrating a friend’s wedding in Columbus, Ohio. If you’ve ever been involved with a wedding– yours or someone else’s– then you’re aware of all the fanfare and fuss that surround it. Not only are there standard elements in almost every wedding ceremony, but there are also rehearsal dinners, toasts, first looks, dancing, dining, and so much more. It is an event nearly defined by rituals. Marriage itself seems something entirely different.
In the whirlwind of preparation before the wedding, she and I sat in a moment of quiet reflection. We need rituals, she said. Perhaps they don’t change anything in our physical reality– but in our emotional-spiritual space, rituals occupy a lot of significance.