WARNING! This page contains massive spoilers for the overall mythology of the canon! Like the timeline, this page is full of spoilers and assumes the reader is up-to-date on the show. You have been warned; this page will not be under a spoiler cut for ease of reading and editing. Continue reading at your own peril!
The Entities normally do not and cannot exist in the physical world - in order for them to do so, they must "merge with reality" by changing the world to be closer to the essence of the Entity. Servants of the Entities can perform a ritual to accomplish this (MAG 92). If the ritual succeeds, the entire world is reshaped in a way that reflects the Entity, making the Entity's fear-energy much more plentiful. Rituals require massive amounts of power built up over centuries; if the ritual fails, that power is lost and must be rebuilt before another ritual can be attempted. No ritual has ever succeeded.
Robert Smirke devised rituals for each entity, though he was not sure whether he invented the rituals or merely discovered them (MAG 138). Smirke suspected that the entities always had rituals; if nothing else, Maxwell Rayner had discussed rituals for the Dark before Smirke ever codified anything about the entities. The Magnus Institute later learned that The Stranger attempted a ritual in 1787, when Smirke was only a child (MAG 116). However, Smirke feared that his ritual designs created blueprints for the entities' followers, making it easier for rituals to be attempted.
It is speculated that one entity's ritual could also bring along other entities with complementary fears (MAG 111). This may explain some of the cooperation between different entities' followers. For instance, the space station Daedalus was a joint project between followers of the Dark, the Lonely, and the Vast (MAG 135), all of which could find ample sustenance in a world dominated by any one of them.
Not all entities have a ritual, only most of them - The Web and The End have never attempted one. (MAG 134)
Individual Rituals Edit
- The Eye's ritual is called "The Watcher's Crown."
- As far as Basira Hussain knows, no one has attempted to bring the Watcher's Crown to fruition, and The Eye may be the only entity who has yet to do so (MAG 123).
- Peter Lukas implied that the Eye has attempted a ritual; in MAG 134, he says that only two powers (The End and The Web) have never tried a ritual.
- It is not clear who is right about the Eye's ritual. However, Elias Bouchard is Basira's most likely source of information, which makes her version suspect.
- The Spiral's ritual is called "The Great Twisting". It happened some time after mid-2009 and at latest 2011.
- The Worker of Clay (MAG 126) created a door through which the Great Twisting would happen.
- Gertrude Robinson took her assistant Michael Shelley to "Sannikov Land" in Russia and gave him a map to navigate the maze. He subsequently became The Distortion, an aspect of The Spiral (or it may be more accurate to say that it became him). Gertrude left the island before it disappeared (MAG 101).
- Peter Lukas confirms that Gertrude Robinson stopped the Lonely's ritual. (MAG 134).
- Little else is known about the Lonely's ritual.
- The Lonely's ritual won't be able to be attempted for a few decades or even centuries. (MAG 134).
- The Stranger's ritual is called "The Unknowing."
- It takes the form of a dance.
- The Stranger has attempted The Unknowing twice that we know of: once in 1787 (stopped by The Slaughter) and once in 2017 (stopped by servants of the Eye, a Hunter, and copious quantities of plastic explosives).
- The Desolation's Ritual is called "The Scoured Earth".
- The Cult of the Lightless Flame deliberately created a "messiah" (Agnes Montague) whom they hoped would prepare the world for the Scoured Earth (MAG 139). Gertrude Robinson partially suppressed Agnes' power (accidentally and at great cost) and thereby prevented the cult from completing the ritual for decades (MAG 145). Agnes began to doubt her destiny during that delay, and her doubts strengthened when she began "dating" a normal man untouched by the powers (MAG 67). Agnes ultimately gave up on the ritual and convinced the cult that she should die without attempting the Scoured Earth, saving the Desolation's long-hoarded power for another attempt. The cult hanged her at her own request (MAG 139).
- It is possible, but not confirmed, that Agnes' premature death will allow the Desolation to attempt another ritual soon.
- The Slaughter's Ritual is called "The Risen War."
- It was attempted in 1942 aboard a ship called the Nemesis and seems to have failed on its own. Gertrude speculates that the ship was supposed to have been bombed in order to complete it but it sank before that could happen. (MAG 137)
- The Vast's Ritual is called "The Awful Deep."
- Simon Fairchild attempted the ritual in 1853 but was sabotaged by an agent of The Hunt. By Fairchild's own admission the ritual was 'not a very good idea', suggesting that it may have failed even without sabotage (MAG 151).
- The Buried's ritual is called "Sunken Sky" and the end result would be called "the Forever Buried."
- It was attempted in 2008 in Bucoda, Washington. The ritual involved Bucoda residents throwing themselves into a vast pit which grew wider with each life it consumed. (MAG 97).
- Gertrude Robinson disrupted the ritual by throwing astronaut Jan Kilbride (MAG 106), a person marked and partially consumed by the Vast, into the pit. Gertrude believed that she was merciful for killing and dismembering Kilbride first. (MAG 129).
- Backlash from the ritual's premature end caused an "earthquake" that obliterated Bucoda. (MAG 97)
- The Dark's ritual is called the "Extinguished Sun."
- The Dark's ritual may have taken place in March 2015 (MAG 25), tied to a solar eclipse in Ny-Alesund, which would make the last ritual in 1715 and tied to the last solar eclipse there. (MAG 108)
- There is currently no information on The Corruption's ritual.
- The Flesh's ritual is "the Last Feast," in which participants continuously offer meat into a giant maw.
- Gertrude stopped the Last Feast in October 2008 by throwing explosives into the "meat pit" in a Gnostic temple in Istanbul (MAG 130).
- Jared Hopworth refused to help with the ritual because he liked the world the way it was (MAG 131).
- The Hunt's ritual is called the Everchase. It involves an endless hunt. One possible manifestation of the Everchase involved groups of explorers hunting for a mythical location, such as the Lost City of Zed or the Northwest Passage.
- Jonathan Sims and Daisy Tonner speculate that the ritual may be impossible to complete because the Hunt and its avatars value the act of hunting more than capturing their quarry, thus driving the Hunt to continue the Everchase forever. (MAG 133)
- It had not yet happened in 2007; Gertrude was looking at North America for its location but wasn't completely sold on this, and expected it to be at some point after that of The Buried in 2008 (MAG 99).
Entities That Have Never Attempted RitualsEdit
- The Web has not attempted a ritual because it prefers the world as it is, where it can play everyone off against each other. (MAG 134)
- The End has never attempted a ritual because it knows it "gets everything eventually" because everything dies.
- A world in which The End manifested would be lifeless, with no terror of death to feed on. (MAG 134)