The way that descriptions, encoded in definitions, tacitly reproduce theories, sets of interests, and ways of prioritizing, paying attention & ignoring, is pretty evident in the commonsense definition of ritual that many of us walk around with — and, sadly, which many scholars adopt and use as well. Or maybe I should say that it is pretty evident once one compares it to another sort of description, as found in a different sort of definition. For example, just consider if the above definitions instead read:
ritual (n.): repetitive behavioral means whereby members of groups become convinced that collectivities exist in some tangible manner.
ritual (adj.): of, relating to, or done as a form of ideological indoctrination.
Failing to see that the first set of definitions carry as much baggage as do the second — though it is different baggage, of course, normalizing different interests — is a shortcoming of much scholarship.