Words and rituals (M. Mauss 1972)

Every ritual action has a corresponding phrase, since there is always a minimal representation through which the nature and object of the ritual is expressed, even if this is achieved only through an interior language. It is for this reason that there is no such a thing as a wordless ritual; an apparent silence does not mean that inaudible incantation expressing the magician's will are not being made. From this point of view, the mechanical rite is but a translation of the unspoken incantation: a gesture is a sign, and also a language. Words and actions become absolutely equivalent and that is why we find descriptions of the non-verbal rites presented to us as spells.

...The fact that all spells are formulas and that virtually all non verbal rites also have their formulas shows at once to what degree all magic is formalistic.

Marcell Mauss. A general theory of magic. 1972.