In the West, play is a rotten category tainted by unreality, inauthenticity, duplicity, make-believe, looseness, fooling around, and inconsequentiality…The reason … is because the multiple realities of playing are situated inside a pyramidical hierarchy of increasing reality leading from unreal make-believe to “just the facts, Ma՚am”.
These views provide a reading of ritual as a subjunctive, as the construction of an ‘‘as if’’ world…these texts on ritual assume a world that is fragmented and broken. The subjunctive world of ritual resides in inherent tension with such a broken world, and such a subjunctive world is at least implicitly understood to be limited and temporary. Ritual, then, involves the endless work of building, refining, and rebuilding webs of relationships in an otherwise fragmented world. The work of ritual ceaselessly builds a world that, for brief moments, creates pockets of order, pockets of joy, pockets of inspiration…..Once ritual is viewed in this way…. we come to realize that ritual is something that is happening to some extent all the time, in the most seemingly common, mundane aspects of our lives. Indeed, the ability, really the necessity, of humans to reside simultaneously in multiple worlds, ceaselessly playing upon the boundaries between them, may be universal. It is certainly pervasive in our everyday lives. We therefore explored how ritual in fact shares much with play.