The ritual of blowing out candles on one’s birthday is interesting as it shows the characteristics of human beings very well. This ritual shows that the person can make fire while reminding themselves they can extinguish it with one breath. It is a ritual that helps a baby develop into a responsible, social being that is capable of controlling fire. On the other hand, an old person being so breathless that they cannot even blow out a candle signifies that it is time for them to be socially excluded by the active population.
A toast, which is a must when drinking, symbolises friendship, community and love, and an important ritual of building trust. This ritual originates from kings, whilst feasting, clashing their goblets together to mix the drinks, thus proving that they did not poison each other’s drink.
Ergo, the ritual that symbolises “trust” originates from the meaning of “I will not kill you”.
As an addendum, Ancient Romans used to also add pieces of burnt bread into glasses of wine because people were led to believe that charcoal reduced acidity in wines. Hence the origination of the term “toast”. The act of toasting, however, came from ancient Greece.