What does the word "ritual" mean in chapter 1 of "The Giver?"

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ladyvols1 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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In Lois Lowery's "The Giver," rituals are very important.  In the first chapter we meet Jonas, who is an eleven.  He is excited about becoming a twelve in December.  As his family sits down to dinner one evening the father asks, "Who wants to be first tonight, for feelings?"  

"It was one of the rituals, the evening telling of feelings.  Sometimes Jonas and his sister, Lily, argued over turns, over who would get t go first."

In this form of usage, rituals, is used as a noun meaning traditions. The sharing of feelings is something the family does every night they have a meal together.  Just like some families today have traditions when they all get together, Jonas and his family always did certain things too.

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