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Yoruba Mythology - Culture - Nairaland

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Yoruba Mythology by Rgp92: 12:37pm On Oct 14, 2011

Osun-Osogbo
The mythology of the Yoruba is sometimes claimed by its supporters to be one of the world's oldest widely practised religions. It is a major religion in Africa, chiefly in Nigeria, and it has given origin to several New World religions such as Santería in Cuba and Candomblé in Brazil.

                                                                                [size=20pt]Deities[/size]

Yoruba deities are called Orishas. The primordial, first-existing, Orishas are called Obatala and Odùduwà, brother and sister respectively, and their father Olorun. Obatala created humanity and Olorun gave life to the hollow shells Obatala had made. Obatala and Odùduwà later had a son, Aganyu, and a daughter, Yemaja, who was a mother goddess. Her son, Ogun, violated her twice; the second time, her body exploded and fifteen Orishas came out. They included Oshun, Olukun, Shakpana, Shango.

                                                                                  [size=20pt]The Orisha[/size]
Aja
Aje
Egungun
Eshu
Ibeji
Oba
Obatala
Ogun
Oshun
Odùduwà
Olokun
Orunmila
Oshunmare
Oya
Shakpana
Shango
Yemaja
                                                                             [size=20pt]Yoruba mythology in the New World[/size]

Many ethnic Yoruba were taken as slaves to Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Brazil and the rest of the New World (chiefly in the 19th century, after the Oyo empire collapsed and the region plunged into civil war), and carried their religious beliefs with them. These concepts were combined with preexisting African-based cults, Christianity, Native American mythology, and Kardecist Spiritism into various New World lineages:

Santería (Cuba)
Oyotunji (USA)]
Idigene (Nigeria)
Anago (Nigeria)
Candomblé (Brazil)
Umbanda (Brazil)
Batuque (Brazil)



The popularly known Vodun religion of Haiti was founded by slaves from a different ethnic group (the Ewe of present-day Benin), but shares many elements with the Yoruba-derived religions above.

2 Likes

Re: Yoruba Mythology by Rgp92: 12:56pm On Oct 14, 2011
[size=20pt]Aja[/size]

In Yoruba mythology, Aja is an Orisha, patron of the forest, the animals within it and herbal healers, whom she taught their art.

[size=20pt]Aje[/size]

In Yoruba mythology, Aje is an Orisha and the goddess of wealth and prosperity.

[size=20pt]Egungun-oya[/size]

In Yoruba mythology, Egungun-oya is a goddess of divination.

[size=20pt]Eshu[/size]

In Yoruba mythology, Eshu is an Orisha, and one of the most respected deities of the tradition. He is the protector of travelers and a god of roads, particularly crossroads. Every magical ceremony or ritual began with an offering to Eshu; failure to do so guaranteed failure in the intent of the ceremony.

Eshu is a trickster-god, and plays frequently malicious tricks for the purpose of causing maturation. He is a difficult teacher, but a good one. As an example, Eshu was walking down the road one day, wearing a hat that was red on one side and blue on the other. Sometime after he departed, the villagers who had seen him began arguing about whether the stranger's hat was blue or red. The villagers on one side of the road had only been capable of seeing the blue side, and the villagers on the other side had only been capable of seeing the red half. They nearly fought over the argument, until Eshu came back and cleared the mystery, teaching the villagers about how one's perspective can alter one's perception of reality, and can be easily fooled.

2 Likes

Re: Yoruba Mythology by Rgp92: 1:09pm On Oct 14, 2011
[size=20pt]Oba[/size]

In Yoruba mythology, Oba was a river-goddess (Orisha), and one of the wives of Shango. She offered Shango her ear to eat, and he scorned her. Grieving, she became the Oba river which intersects with the Oschun river (Oschun was another wife of Shango) at turbulent rapids, a symbol of the rivalry between the two wives.

[size=20pt]Obatala[/size]  cool

In Yoruba mythology, Obatala was a creator god; he made human bodies, and his father, Olorun (husband of Olokun), breathed life into them. Obatala also created defective (handicapped) individuals while drunk off palm wine, making him the patron deity of such people. He is the god of the north. He had a son named Orunmila.

[size=20pt]Ochun[/size]

In Yoruba mythology, Ochun is an Orisha and goddess of love, maternity and marriage. She had to become a LovePeddler to feed her children and the other Orishas removed her children from her home. Ochun went insane from grief and wore the same white dress every day; it eventually turned yellow. Aje'-Shaluga, another Orisha, fell in love with her while she was washing her dress. He gave her money and gems which he collected from the bottom of the river he lived in. They were married and she was reunited with her children.
She is associated with the color yellow and the metals gold and copper.

[size=20pt]Odudua[/size]

In Yoruba mythology, Odudua is ancient fertility goddess, a daughter of Olorun and Olokun, and sister/wife of Obatala, with whom she is the mother of Yemaja. She (occasionally male) is the goddess of the south.

Alternative: Oduduwa, Odudu

1 Like

Re: Yoruba Mythology by Rgp92: 1:11pm On Oct 14, 2011
[size=20pt]Oloddumare[/size]

In Yoruba mythology, Oloddumare is a creative force that drove the establishment of existence and the entire universe. (big slam anyone?

[size=20pt]Olokun[/size]

In Yoruba mythology, Olokun is an ancient goddess of the ocean, wife of Olorun and, by him, the mother of Obatala and Odudua. In some traditions, she is male.

[size=20pt]Olorun[/size]

In Yoruba mythology, Olorun is the Sky Father (though occasionally androgynous or female), and a god of peace, purity and harmony. He is strongly associated with the color white, and controls everything that is white, such as bones, the brain and clouds. He is a primordial Orisha and father of Odudua and Obatala by his wife, Olokun.

1 Like

Re: Yoruba Mythology by Rgp92: 1:18pm On Oct 14, 2011
[size=20pt]Orunmila[/size]

In Yoruba mythology, Orunmila is an Orisha, and god of prophecy. He is a son of Obatala.

[size=20pt]Oschun[/size]

In Yoruba mythology, Oschun is a river-goddess (Orisha) who reigns over love, intimacy, beauty, wealth and diplomacy. She is beneficient and generous, and very kind. She does, however, have a horrific temper, though it is difficult to anger her. She is married to Shango, the sky god, and is his favorite wife because of her excellent cooking skills. One of his other wives, Oba, was her rival. The Oschun river and the Oba river meet in a turbulent place with difficult rapids; their rivalry was symbolized in this intersection.

Alternative: Oshun

[size=20pt]Oshunmare[/size]

In Yoruba mythology, Oshunmare is a rainbow serpent and a symbol of regeneration and rebirth.

1 Like

Re: Yoruba Mythology by Rgp92: 1:24pm On Oct 14, 2011
[size=20pt]Oya[/size]

In Yoruba mythology, Oya is a warrior-goddess of wind, thunder, fertility, fire and magic (which she stole from her husband, Shango). She creates hurricanes and tornadoes and guards the underworld.

[size=20pt]Shakpana[/size]

In Yoruban mythology, Shakpana is an Orisha, a son of Yemaja and Orungan. He inflicted insanity and disease on humans.

[size=20pt]Shango[/size]

In Yoruba mythology, Shango is perhaps the most important Orisha; he is a Sky Father, god of thunder and the ancestor of the Yoruba. He was the fourth king of the Yoruba, and deified after his death; mythologically, he (along with 14 others) burst forth from the goddess Yemaja's body after her son, Orungan, attempted to rape her for the second time. He has three wives. His favorite (because of her excellent cooking) is Oschun, a river goddess. Another wife, Oba, another river goddess, offered Shango her ear to eat. He scorned her and she became the Oba river, which combines in dangerous rapids with the Oschun river. Lastly, Oya was Shango's third wife, and stole the secrets of his powerful magic. Shango is worshipped in Vodun as a god of thunder and weather (Umbanda), as the very powerful loa Nago Shango and as the equivalent of St. Barbara (Santeria, wherein he is called Chango).
In art, Shango is depicted with a double-axe on his three heads. He is associated with the holy animal, the ram, and the holy colors of red and white.

1 Like

Re: Yoruba Mythology by Rgp92: 1:26pm On Oct 14, 2011
[size=20pt]Yemaja[/size]

In Yoruba mythology, Yemaja is a mother goddess, patron deity of women, especially pregnant women, and the Ogun river (the waters of which are said to cure infertility). Her parents are Odudua and Obatala. She had one son, Orungan, who raped her successfully one time and attempted a second time; she exploded instead, and fifteen Orishas came forth from her. They include Ogun, Olukum, Shakpana and Shango.

1 Like

Re: Yoruba Mythology by Rgp92: 1:31pm On Oct 14, 2011
Anyone help me with Ibejis ?
Re: Yoruba Mythology by Rgp92: 1:32pm On Oct 14, 2011
[size=20pt]Yoruba Creation Myth [/size]


In the beginning was only the sky above, water and marshland below.

The chief god Olorun ruled the sky, and the goddess Olokun ruled what was below.

Obatala, another god, reflected upon this situation, then went to Olorun for permission to create dry land for all kinds of living creatures to inhabit. He was given permission, so he sought advice from Orunmila, oldest son of Olorun and the god of prophecy.

He was told he would need a gold chain long enough to reach below, a snail's shell filled with sand, a white hen, a black cat, and a palm nut, all of which he was to carry in a bag. All the gods contributed what gold they had, and Orunmila supplied the articles for the bag. When all was ready, Obatala hung the chain from a corner of the sky, placed the bag over his shoulder, and started the downward climb. When he reached the end of the chain he saw he still had some distance to go.

From above he heard Orunmila instruct him to pour the sand from the snail's shell, and to immediately release the white hen.

He did as he was told, whereupon the hen landing on the sand began scratching and scattering it about.

Wherever the sand landed it formed dry land, the bigger piles becoming hills and the smaller piles valleys. Obatala jumped to a hill and named the place Ife. The dry land now extended as far as he could see.

He dug a hole, planted the palm nut, and saw it grow to maturity in a flash. The mature palm tree dropped more palm nuts on the ground, each of which grew immediately to maturity and repeated the process. Obatala settled down with the cat for company.

Many months passed, and he grew bored with his routine.

He decided to create beings like himself to keep him company. He dug into the sand and soon found clay with which to mold figures like himself and started on his task, but he soon grew tired and decided to take a break.

He made wine from a nearby palm tree, and drank bowl after bowl. Not realizing he was drunk, Obatala returned to his task of fashioning the new beings; because of his condition he fashioned many imperfect figures.

Without realizing this, he called out to Olorun to breathe life into his creatures.

The next day he realized what he had done and swore never to drink again, and to take care of those who were deformed, thus becoming Protector of the Deformed.

The new people built huts as Obatala had done and soon Ife prospered and became a city.

All the other gods were happy with what Obatala had done, and visited the land often, except for Olokun, the ruler of all below the sky.

She had not been consulted by Obatala and grew angry that he had usurped so much of her kingdom.

When Obatala returned to his home in the sky for a visit, Olokun summoned the great waves of her vast oceans and sent them surging across the land. Wave after wave she unleashed, until much of the land was underwater and many of the people were drowned. Those that had fled to the highest land beseeched the god Eshu who had been visiting, to return to the sky and report what was happening to them. Eshu demanded sacrifice be made to Obatala and himself before he would deliver the message.

The people sacrificed some goats, and Eshu returned to the sky.

When Orunmila heard the news he climbed down the golden chain to the earth, and cast many spells which caused the flood waters to retreat and the dry land reappear.

So ended the great flood.

2 Likes

Re: Yoruba Mythology by Rgp92: 1:36pm On Oct 14, 2011
[size=20pt]Destiny [/size]

The Yoruba (Nigeria) believe that the success or failure of a man in live depends on the choices he made in heaven before he was born. If a person suddenly becomes rich, they will say that he chose the right future for himself, therefore poor people must be patient because even if they have chosen the right life, it may not have arrived yet. We all need patience. The word ayanmo means 'choice', and kadara means 'divine share for a man'; ipin means 'predestined lot'.
The Yoruba believe that there is a god, Ori, who supervises people's choices in heaven. Literally, ori means 'head' or 'mind', because that is what one chooses before birth. If someone chooses a wise head, i.e. intelligence, wisdom, he will walk easily through life, but if someone chooses a fool's head, he will never succeed anywhere. Ori could be considered as a personal god, a sort of guardian angel who will accompany each of us for life, once chosen. Even the gods have their Ori which directs their personal lives. Both men and gods must consult their sacred divination palm-nuts daily in order to learn what their Ori wishes. In this way, Ori is both an individual and a collective concept, a personal spirit directing each individual's life, and also a god in heaven, who is feared even by Orunmila.
In heaven, there is a curious character called Ajala, a very fallible man whose daily work is fashioning faces (ori) from clay. Sometimes he forgets to bake them properly, so they cannot withstand the long journey to earth prior to the beginning of life; especially in the rainy season the clay might be washed away and there would be a total loss of face!

1 Like

Re: Yoruba Mythology by Kilode1: 1:37pm On Oct 14, 2011
Good job

But I guess you are copying them from a "diasporan" source with all the sc, sh, c and dd spellings? Mainstream Yoruba don't use those spellings.

It's ok though, the Latin alphabet is not ours anyway.

Well done.

Yemaja = Yemoja

Shakpana <---- that "K stress" is sacrilegious. We allow our Midwestern cousins ( old Bendelites) to use it, that's all. But don't let elders see it. It can cause heart attack.

Kpele


Like S L Akintola famously said: Ki a ni "K" nse ninu A[b]K[/b]pata?

~What the hell is the letter "K" doing in the name "Apata".

4 Likes

Re: Yoruba Mythology by Rgp92: 1:38pm On Oct 14, 2011
Kilode?!:

Good job

But I guess you are copying these from a "diasporan" source with all the sc, sh, c and dd spellings? Mainstream Yoruba don't use those spellings.

It's ok though, the Latin alphabet is not ours anyway.

Well done.

Thanks. I created this to informed our lost brothers and sisters.

3 Likes

Re: Yoruba Mythology by Rgp92: 1:40pm On Oct 14, 2011
A white man visits Ífè, the sacred city of the Yórubas, and asks to hear the history of the place. The Órní, the religious head of Yórubaland, begins, and directs the Babaláwo Arába, the chief-priest of Ífa to continue.

I. THE BEGINNING.

The Órní of Ífè speaks:
Oíbo, you have asked to hear our lore,
The legends of the World's young hours—and where
Could truth in greater surety have its home
Than in the precincts of the shrines of Those
Who made the World, and in the mouths of priests
To whom their doings have been handed down
From sire to son?
Arámfè
reigns in
Heaven; Before this World was made
There reigned Arámfè in the realm of Heaven
Amidst his sons. Old were the hills around him;
The Sun had shone upon his vines and cornfields
Since time past reckoning. Old was Arámfè,
The father of the Gods: his youth had been
The youth of Heaven. . . Once when the King reclined
Upon the dais, and his sons lay prostrate
In veneration at his feet, he spoke
tells his
sons of the
creation of
Heaven; Of the great things he purposed:
"My sons, you know
But fair things which I made for you, before
I called your spirits from the Dusk: for always
p. 14 Your eyes have watched the shadows and the wind
On waving corn, and I have given you
The dances and the chorus of the night—
An age of mirth and sunrise (the wine of Heaven)
Is your existence. You have not even heard
Of the grey hour when my young eyes first opened
To gaze upon a herbless Mass, unshaped
And unadorned. But I knew well the heart
Of Him-Who-Speaks-Not, the far-felt Purpose that gave
Me birth; I laboured and the grim years passed:
Streams flowed along their sunny beds; I set
The stars above me, and the hills about;
I fostered budding trees, and taught the birds
Their song—the unshapely I had formed to beauty,
And as the ages came I loved to make
The beautiful more fair. . . All went not well:
A noble animal my mind conceived
Emerged in loathsome form to prey upon
My gentle creatures; a river, born to bask
In sunlit channels and mirror the steep hills,
Tore down its banks and ravaged field and plain;
While cataract and jagged precipice,
Now grand with years, remind me of dread days
p. 15 When Heaven tottered, and wide rifts sundered my young
Fair hills, and all seemed lost. Yet—I prevailed.
Think, now, if the accomplished whole be Heaven,
How wonderful the anxious years of slow
And hazardous achievement—a destiny
For Gods. But yours it has not been to lead
Creation by the cliff's-edge way from Mass
To Paradise." He paused on the remembrance,
And Great Orísha cried: "Can we do naught?
What use in godhead without deeds to do?
Where yearns a helpless region for a hand
To guide it?" And Old Arámfè answered him:
sends them
to make the
World. "My son, your day approaches. Far-off, the haze
Rests always on the outer waste which skirts
Our realm; beyond, a nerveless Mass lies cold
'Neath floods which some malign unreason heaves.
Odúwa, first-born of my sons, to you I give
The five-clawed Bird, the sand of power.1 Go now,
Call a despairing land to smiling life
Above the jealous sea, and found sure homesteads
For a new race whose destiny is not
The eternal life of Gods. You are their judge;
p. 16 Yours is the kingship, and to you all Gods
And men are subject. Wisest of my sons,
Orísha, yours is the grateful task to loose
Vague spirits1 waiting for the Dawn—to make
The race that shall be; and to you I give
This bag of Wisdom's guarded lore and arts
For Man's well-being and advancement. And you,
My younger sons, the chorus and the dance,
The voice of worship and the crafts are yours
To teach—that the new thankful race may know
The mirth of Heaven and the joys of labour."
Then Odúwa said: "Happy our life has been,
And I would gladly roam these hills for ever,
Your son and servant. But to your command
I yield; and in my kingship pride o'ersteps
Sorrow and heaviness. Yet, Lord Arámfè,
I am your first-born: wherefore do you give
The arts and wisdom to Orísha? I,
The King, will be obeyed; the hearts of men
Will turn in wonder to the God who spells
Strange benefits." But Arámfè said "Enough;
To each is fitting task is given. Farewell."
The Gods
leave
Heaven. p. 17 Here the Beginning was: from Arámfè's vales
Through the desert regions the exiled Gods approached
The edge of Heaven, and into blackness plunged—
A sunless void o'er godless water lying—1
To seize an empire from the Dark, and win
Amidst ungoverned waves a sovereignty.

Odúwa
steals the
bag and
causes War
on Earth. But by the roadside while Orísha slept
Odúwa came by stealth and bore away
The bag Arámfè gave. Thus was the will
Of God undone: for thus with the charmed sand
Cast wide on the unmastered sea, his sons
Called forth a World of envy and of war.

Of Man's Creation, and of the restraint
Olókun2 placed upon the chafing sea,
Of the unconscious years which passed in darkness
Till dazzling sunshine touched the unused eyes
Of men, of War and magic—my priest shall tell you,
And all the Great Ones did before the day
They vanished to return to the calm hills
Life in Ífè
is as it was
in the time
of the Gods p. 18 Of Old Arámfè's realm . . . They went away;
But still with us their altars and their priests
Remain, and from their shrines the hidden Gods
Peer forth with joy to watch the dance they taught,
And hear each night their chorus with the drum:
For changeless here the early World endures
In this first stronghold of humanity,
And, constant as the buffets of the waves
Of Queen Olókun on the shore, the song,
The dance of those old Gods abide, the mirth,
The life . . . I, too, am born of the Beginning:
Odúm’la
speaks for
the Gods; For, when from the sight of men the Great Gods passed,
They left on Earth Órní Odúm’la1 charged
To be a father to a mourning people,
To tend the shrines and utter solemn words
Inspired by Those invisible. And when
Odúm’la's time had come to yield the crown,
To wait upon the River's brink,2 and cross
To Old Arámfè—Ífa,3 in his wisdom,
and lives
for ever in
the person
of the
Órní. p. 19 Proclaimed that son with whom Odúm’la's soul
Abode. Thus has it ever been; and now
With me that Being is—about, within—
And on our sacred days these lips pronounce
The words of Odudúwa and Orísha.
Re: Yoruba Mythology by rgp922: 2:10pm On Oct 14, 2011
Rgp92 was banned by spambot angry

Anyway ill continue with this user.
I found this rare book by a white man

[size=20pt]Myths of Ífè[/size]

By John Wyndham

[London, 1921]

This short book is a translation of some of the myths of the Yoruba people of Nigeria. It is a history of the creation of the world, the gods, and humanity, and the early days of the sacred city of Ífè, the traditional center of Yoruba culture. The text was recited to the author/translator by the high priests of Ífè, and the book is still cited in some books on traditional Yoruba religion and thought today. It has undeservedly become quite rare, as it can be considered a minor classic in the field.

[size=20pt]PERSONS[/size]

Arámfè God of Thunder and Father of the Gods.
Orísha Creator of men. Son of Arámfè.
Odúwa or
Odudúwa ⎱
⎰ King of men. Son of Arámfè.
Ógun God of Iron. Son of Odúwa.
Oráyan The warrior son of Ógun.
Ládi Smith of Ógun.
Obálufon A worker in brass.
Mórimi Wife of Obálufon.
Ífa The Messenger of the Gods, principally known by reason of divination.
Olókun Goddess of the Sea.
Olóssa Goddess of the Lagoons.
Óshun A Goddess who transformed and became the River Oshun.
Édi The Perverter. A God of Evil who led men astray.
p. 10
Éshu Now regarded as the Devil, but originally as the Undoer of the favours of the Gods.
Peregún ’Gbo A Forest God who caused the Forest to bring forth wild animals and watched over the birth of Orúnmila.
Orúnmila A God who watches over the birth of children.
Offun Kánran A messenger of Ífa.
Órní Odúm’la The ancestor of the Órnís of Ífè.
Ojúmu A priest.
Osányi A priest and maker of charms.
The Sun, Moon, Night, Day, Dawn and Evening were also Gods and Goddesses sent by Arámfè, who is often spoken of as God. But a higher and very distant Being is mentioned by some of the Priests.

Oíbo means White Man.

Okpéllè is a charm used in the divination of Ífa.

The final N is as in bon, and French pronunciation is nearly correct in all the above names.

[size=20pt]I. THE BEGINNING.[/size]

A white man visits Ífè, the sacred city of the Yórubas, and asks to hear the history of the place. The Órní, the religious head of Yórubaland, begins, and directs the Babaláwo Arába, the chief-priest of Ífa to continue.

The Órní of Ífè speaks:
Oíbo, you have asked to hear our lore,
The legends of the World's young hours—and where
Could truth in greater surety have its home
Than in the precincts of the shrines of Those
Who made the World, and in the mouths of priests
To whom their doings have been handed down
From sire to son?
Arámfè
reigns in
Heaven; Before this World was made
There reigned Arámfè in the realm of Heaven
Amidst his sons. Old were the hills around him;
The Sun had shone upon his vines and cornfields
Since time past reckoning. Old was Arámfè,
The father of the Gods: his youth had been
The youth of Heaven. . . Once when the King reclined
Upon the dais, and his sons lay prostrate
In veneration at his feet, he spoke
tells his
sons of the
creation of
Heaven; Of the great things he purposed:
"My sons, you know
But fair things which I made for you, before
I called your spirits from the Dusk: for always
p. 14 Your eyes have watched the shadows and the wind
On waving corn, and I have given you
The dances and the chorus of the night—
An age of mirth and sunrise (the wine of Heaven)
Is your existence. You have not even heard
Of the grey hour when my young eyes first opened
To gaze upon a herbless Mass, unshaped
And unadorned. But I knew well the heart
Of Him-Who-Speaks-Not, the far-felt Purpose that gave
Me birth; I laboured and the grim years passed:
Streams flowed along their sunny beds; I set
The stars above me, and the hills about;
I fostered budding trees, and taught the birds
Their song—the unshapely I had formed to beauty,
And as the ages came I loved to make
The beautiful more fair. . . All went not well:
A noble animal my mind conceived
Emerged in loathsome form to prey upon
My gentle creatures; a river, born to bask
In sunlit channels and mirror the steep hills,
Tore down its banks and ravaged field and plain;
While cataract and jagged precipice,
Now grand with years, remind me of dread days
p. 15 When Heaven tottered, and wide rifts sundered my young
Fair hills, and all seemed lost. Yet—I prevailed.
Think, now, if the accomplished whole be Heaven,
How wonderful the anxious years of slow
And hazardous achievement—a destiny
For Gods. But yours it has not been to lead
Creation by the cliff's-edge way from Mass
To Paradise." He paused on the remembrance,
And Great Orísha cried: "Can we do naught?
What use in godhead without deeds to do?
Where yearns a helpless region for a hand
To guide it?" And Old Arámfè answered him:
sends them
to make the
World. "My son, your day approaches. Far-off, the haze
Rests always on the outer waste which skirts
Our realm; beyond, a nerveless Mass lies cold
'Neath floods which some malign unreason heaves.
Odúwa, first-born of my sons, to you I give
The five-clawed Bird, the sand of power.1 Go now,
Call a despairing land to smiling life
Above the jealous sea, and found sure homesteads
For a new race whose destiny is not
The eternal life of Gods. You are their judge;
p. 16 Yours is the kingship, and to you all Gods
And men are subject. Wisest of my sons,
Orísha, yours is the grateful task to loose
Vague spirits1 waiting for the Dawn—to make
The race that shall be; and to you I give
This bag of Wisdom's guarded lore and arts
For Man's well-being and advancement. And you,
My younger sons, the chorus and the dance,
The voice of worship and the crafts are yours
To teach—that the new thankful race may know
The mirth of Heaven and the joys of labour."
Then Odúwa said: "Happy our life has been,
And I would gladly roam these hills for ever,
Your son and servant. But to your command
I yield; and in my kingship pride o'ersteps
Sorrow and heaviness. Yet, Lord Arámfè,
I am your first-born: wherefore do you give
The arts and wisdom to Orísha? I,
The King, will be obeyed; the hearts of men
Will turn in wonder to the God who spells
Strange benefits." But Arámfè said "Enough;
To each is fitting task is given. Farewell."
The Gods
leave
Heaven. p. 17 Here the Beginning was: from Arámfè's vales
Through the desert regions the exiled Gods approached
The edge of Heaven, and into blackness plunged—
A sunless void o'er godless water lying—1
To seize an empire from the Dark, and win
Amidst ungoverned waves a sovereignty.

Odúwa
steals the
bag and
causes War
on Earth. But by the roadside while Orísha slept
Odúwa came by stealth and bore away
The bag Arámfè gave. Thus was the will
Of God undone: for thus with the charmed sand
Cast wide on the unmastered sea, his sons
Called forth a World of envy and of war.

Of Man's Creation, and of the restraint
Olókun2 placed upon the chafing sea,
Of the unconscious years which passed in darkness
Till dazzling sunshine touched the unused eyes
Of men, of War and magic—my priest shall tell you,
And all the Great Ones did before the day
They vanished to return to the calm hills
Life in Ífè
is as it was
in the time
of the Gods p. 18 Of Old Arámfè's realm . . . They went away;
But still with us their altars and their priests
Remain, and from their shrines the hidden Gods
Peer forth with joy to watch the dance they taught,
And hear each night their chorus with the drum:
For changeless here the early World endures
In this first stronghold of humanity,
And, constant as the buffets of the waves
Of Queen Olókun on the shore, the song,
The dance of those old Gods abide, the mirth,
The life . . . I, too, am born of the Beginning:
Odúm’la
speaks for
the Gods; For, when from the sight of men the Great Gods passed,
They left on Earth Órní Odúm’la1 charged
To be a father to a mourning people,
To tend the shrines and utter solemn words
Inspired by Those invisible. And when
Odúm’la's time had come to yield the crown,
To wait upon the River's brink,2 and cross
To Old Arámfè—Ífa,3 in his wisdom,
and lives
for ever in
the person
of the
Órní. p. 19 Proclaimed that son with whom Odúm’la's soul
Abode. Thus has it ever been; and now
With me that Being is—about, within—
And on our sacred days these lips pronounce
The words of Odudúwa and Orísha.
Re: Yoruba Mythology by rgp922: 2:15pm On Oct 14, 2011
Kilode?!:

Good job

But I guess you are copying them from a "diasporan" source with all the sc, sh, c and dd spellings? Mainstream Yoruba don't use those spellings.

It's ok though, the Latin alphabet is not ours anyway.

Well done.

Yemaja = Yemoja

Shakpana <---- that "K stress" is sacrilegious. We allow our Midwestern cousins ( old Bendelites) to use it, that's all. But don't let elders see it. It can cause heart attack.

Kpele


Like S L Akintola famously said: Ki a ni "K" nse ninu A[b]K[/b]pata?

~What the hell is the letter "K" doing in the name "Apata".


thanks mate. I welcome corrections. If i miss something, please tell smiley
Re: Yoruba Mythology by PAGAN9JA(m): 2:27pm On Oct 14, 2011
good job. cool
Re: Yoruba Mythology by XBoy3(m): 3:28pm On Oct 14, 2011
n
Re: Yoruba Mythology by rgp922: 4:43pm On Oct 14, 2011
Ill continue later cheesy
Re: Yoruba Mythology by tpia5: 6:16pm On Oct 14, 2011
In heaven, there is a curious character called Ajala, a very fallible man whose daily work is fashioning faces (ori) from clay

interesting.

would like more info on him if possible.
Re: Yoruba Mythology by tpia5: 6:59pm On Oct 14, 2011
btw @ poster why did you start the thread with an eshu statue.

if it's going to be an eshu oriented topic, then please make that public so people know.
Re: Yoruba Mythology by aljharem3: 7:30pm On Oct 14, 2011
Olodumare is the supreme deity.

"He is supreme over all on earth and in heaven, acknowledged by all the divinities as the Head to whom all authority belongs and all allegiance is due. . . His status of supremacy is absolute. Things happen when He approves, things do not come to pass if He disapproves. In worship, the Yoruba holds Him ultimately First and Last; in man's daily life, He has the ultimate pre-eminence."

He is also referred to as: Oluwa (Lord), Eleda (Creator), Olofin-Orun (King of heaven), Orise (the source of all things) and Oba-Orun (The king who dwells in the heavens).

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Re: Yoruba Mythology by aljharem3: 7:31pm On Oct 14, 2011
The Orishas

The Orishas are: Eleggua, Ogun, Oshosi, Obatala, Oya, Oshun, Yemeya, Shango, Orunmila

Orishas or Orixas are 'head guardians' that act as ministers to Oludumare and intermediaries of Oludmare and humanity.They rule over the forces of nature and the endeavors of humanity. They recognise themselves and are recognised through their different numbers and colors which are their marks, and each has their own favorite foods and other things which they like to receive as offerings and gifts. In this way we make our offerings in the manner they are accustomed to, in the way they have always received them, so that they will recognise our offerings and come to our aid.
These correspond to the Orisha in Santeri and Orixa in Candomblé.

The orishas are often best understood by observing the forces of nature they rule over.

http://www.orishanet.org/ocha.htm

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Re: Yoruba Mythology by aljharem3: 7:31pm On Oct 14, 2011
Elegguá
Elegguá is the owner of the roads and doors in this world. He is the repository of ashé. The colors red and black or white and black are his and codify his contradictory nature. In particular, Elegguá stands at the crossroads of the human and the divine, as he is child-like messenger between the two worlds. In this role, it is not surprising that he has a very close relationship with the orisha of divination, Orunmila. Nothing can be done in either world without his permission. Elegguá is always propitiated and called first before any other orisha as he opens the door between the worlds and opens our roads in life. He recognises himself and is recognised by the numbers 3 and 21.


Re: Yoruba Mythology by aljharem3: 7:32pm On Oct 14, 2011
Ogún is the god of iron, war and labor. He is the owner of all technology and because this technology shares in his nature, it is almost always used first for war. As Elegguá opens the roads, it is Ogún that clears the roads with his machete. He is recognised in the numbers 7 and the colors green and black.

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Re: Yoruba Mythology by aljharem3: 7:32pm On Oct 14, 2011
Oshosi is the third member of the group known as the Guerreros or Warriors, and is received along with Elegguá, Ogún and Osun in order to protect the Guerreros initiate and to open and clear their roads. Oshosi is the hunter and the scout of the orishas and assumes the role of enforcer of justice for Obatalá with whom he has a very close relationship. His colors are blue and yellow.

Re: Yoruba Mythology by aljharem3: 7:33pm On Oct 14, 2011
Obatalá is the kindly father of all the orishas and all humanity. He is also the owner of all heads and the mind. Though it was Olorun (Olodumare) who created the universe, it is Obatalá who is the creator of the world and humanity. Obatalá is the source of all that is pure, wise peaceful and compassionate. He has a warrior side though through which he enforces justice in the world. His color is white which is often accented with red, purple and other colors to represent his/her different paths. White is most appropriate for Obatalá as it contains all the colors of the rainbow yet is above them. Obatalá is also the only orisha that has both male and female paths.

Re: Yoruba Mythology by aljharem3: 7:33pm On Oct 14, 2011
Oyá
Oyá is the ruler of the winds, the whirlwind and the gates of the cemetery. Her number is nine which recalls her title of Yansá or "Mother of Nine" in which she rules over the egun or dead. She is also known for the colors of maroon, flowery patterns and nine different colors. She is a fierce warrior who rides to war with Shangó (sharing lightning and fire with him) and was once the wife of Ogún.

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Re: Yoruba Mythology by aljharem3: 7:34pm On Oct 14, 2011
Oshún
Oshún rules over the sweet waters of the world, the brooks, streams and rivers, embodying love, fertility. She also is the one we most often approach to aid us in money matters. She is the youngest of the female orishas but retains the title of Iyalode or great queen. She heals with her sweet waters and with honey which she also owns. She is the femme fatale of the orishas and once saved the world by luring Ogún out of the forests using her feminine wiles. And,in her path or manifestation of Ibú Ikolé she saved the world from draught by flying up to heaven (turning into a vulture in the process). Ikolé means Messenger of the House (of Olodumare). For this reason all who are to be initiated as priests, no matter what orisha rules their head, must go to the river and give account of what they are about to do. She recognises herself in the colors yellow and gold and her number is five. Peacocks and vultures are hers and we use them often to represent her.

Re: Yoruba Mythology by aljharem3: 7:34pm On Oct 14, 2011
Yemayá lives and rules over the seas and lakes. She also rules over maternity in our lives as she is the Mother of All. Her name, a shortened version of Yeyé Omo Eja means "Mother Whose Children are the Fish" to reflect the fact that her children are uncountable. All life started in the sea, the amneotic fluid inside the mother's womb is a form of sea where the embryo must transform and evolve through the form of a fish before becoming a human baby. In this way Yemayá displays herself as truly the mother of all. She partakes of Olokun's abundance as the source of all riches which she freely gives to her little sister Oshún. She dresses herself in seven skirts of blue and white and like the seas and profound lakes she is deep and unknowable. In her path of Okutti she is the queen of witches carrying within her deep and dark secrets. Her number is seven for the seven seas, her colors are blue and white, and she is most often represented by the fish who are her children.
Re: Yoruba Mythology by aljharem3: 7:35pm On Oct 14, 2011
Perhaps the most 'popular' of the orishas, Shangó rules over lightning, thunder, fire, the drums and dance. He is a warrior orisha with quick wits, quick temper and is the epitomy of virility. Shangó took the form of the fourth Alafin (supreme king) of Oyó on Earth for a time. He is married to Obba but has relations with Oyá and Oshún. He is an extremely hot blooded and strong-willed orisha that loves all the pleasures of the world: dance, drumming, women, song and eating. He is ocanani with Elegguá, meaning they are of one heart. When one sees the quickness with which lightning makes short work of a tree or a fire rage through an area, one has witnessed the temper of Shangó in action. Though he traded the Table of Ifá to Orunmila in exchange for the gift of dance, his children have an innate ability for divination. To acknowledge the greatness of this king, all in the religion raise up on the toes of our feet (or rise out our chairs if we are sitting) at the mention of his name. His colors are red and white and he recognises himself in the numbers four and six. He is most often represented by a double headed axe.

Re: Yoruba Mythology by aljharem3: 7:35pm On Oct 14, 2011
Orunmila
Orunmila (also known as Orula) is the orisha of wisdom, knowledge and divination. He was the only orisha allowed to witness the creation of the universe by Olorun and bears witness to our destinies in the making as well. This is the source of his title of Eleri Ipin or "Witness to Destiny in its Creation". His priests, the babalawos or "Fathers of the Secrets" must devote themselves entirely to the practice of divination and the accompanying arts. Through the Table of Ifá his priests unfold the secrets of the universe and the secrets of the unfolding of our lives. His colors are green and yellow which reflect Orunmila's relationship with Osayín (the secrets of the plant world) and with Oshún, who is his apetebí with whom he has an extremely close relationship.

Re: Yoruba Mythology by aljharem3: 7:37pm On Oct 14, 2011
http://agolaroye.com/Elegua.php

NOTE :

All the post of Alj harem are based on the yoruba tradition in Latin America which is similar to those in West Africa

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