The ritual is the most important aspect of Shinto; thus performing the ritual the right way is the most important part of worship in Shinto. The rituals serve to bind Japanese to their past as well; since the rituals themselves are sacred they do not change.
The other key element of Shinto is purification. Wiping clean restores the natural process, which is clean and beautiful, and free from pollution. For the Japanese, purity and religion are one and the same (Boyd & Williams, 1999).
Festivals are also important in Shinto. Adherents use festivals as a means to bring the community together. Festivals also become celebrations of ritual, or are held to ask the spirits for prosperity in a profession, or for a harvest.
No author. (2009). Shinto at a glance. British Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved November 28, 2009 from http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/shinto/ataglance/glance.shtml
Boyd, J. & Williams, J. ( Artful means: An aesthetic view of Shinto purification rituals. Journal of Ritual Studies. Vol. 13, 1, 37-52..