Mass rituals have always lived beside – if not in a healthy opposition to – idol worship.
In the communal rite, everyone participates and is transported. The ego belongs to the group.
Before an altar, the ego is projected into an abstraction.
The movie camera – television, film – continues in this tradition of idol worship. Viewers focus on a few faces.
In the U.S., we have fewer carnivals, don’t we? Though there are a few efforts, here and there, to create mass play in the age of the iPod.