The Ritual of Obliteration, also known as the Rite of Oblivion, was an evil and complex ritual invented by Bavmorda, malevolent enchantress and queen of Nockmaar. It would draw upon the energy of the universe to destroy a living being's very essence, sending him or her into the netherworld. Bavmorda planned to cast it on Elora Danan, an infant whom prophecies described as the future empress of all Daikini kingdoms, for fear that simply killing her would not be enough.
The ritual took twelve hours, required a purified copper altar, thirteen large candles, large quantities of human blood, and many rare ingredients, a thunderstorm, and at least two assistants. The target, of course, had to be present at all times, and the caster could not leave the ritual area until completion of the ritual.
The Ritual of Obliteration began with the sounding of a gong, and it sounded again at the start of each hour. All the while, the executing mage would cast many spells of binding on the target, as well as summon a great deal of energy through a rutine spell of weather control. At the end of the twelfth hour, the gong sounded thirteen times, and the accumulated energy would strike the target in the form of lightining, destroying his or her spirit.
When Bavmorda attempted to cast the Ritual of Obliteration on Danan, she was interrupted by the sudden arrival of the good enchantress Fin Raziel, her long-time rival, who wielded the powerful wand of Cherlindrea. Although Bavmorda managed to overpower Raziel, she also had to deal with the seemingly ineffectual and harmless Willow Ufgood, a Nelwyn farmer who aspired to become a magician. When Ufgood worked his disappearing-pig trick to make it appear Elora Danan had vanished, Bavmorda was confused enough to believe her target was really gone. She panicked, which caused her to trop and upset some of the bowls containing fluids used in the ritual. Because the altar had been corrupted by the spilled fluids, the concentrated energy turned on the evil sorceress.