Several legends concerning the origin and ancestry of Oduduwa abound in Yoruba and Benin mythology. The Yorubas believe he is the father of the Yorubas and progenitor of all Yoruba Oba’s and the Oba of Benin. The Bini believe that he is a Benin prince called EKALADERHAN who was banished by his father, the Ogiso of Benin. His name, the Binis claim, is derived from ‘Idoduwa”, a Bini word meaning fortune’s path, symbolizing the painful exile from his ancestral home. In support of this, they claim, Oduduwa’s son Oranmiyan later returned to Benin to rule the Empire around 1,000 AD. Oduduwa is believed to have had several sons (16 in number) who later became powerful traditional rulers of Yoruba land, most notably Alafin of Oyo, Oni of Ife, Oragun of Ila, Owa of Ilesha, Alake of Abeokuta and Osemawe of Ondo. Yoruba tradition holds that Oduduwa fled from Mecca to Ile-Ife, bringing with him the Ifa religion which was under persecution in Mecca. He established it firmly in Ile-Ife and founded the Ogboni cult to protect the ancient customs and institutions of his people. The Oduduwa shrine is still worshipped today in Ile-Ife as the cradle of Yoruba culture.
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Hero of the Yoruba People and common Ancestor
Obatala is sometimes known as Oduduwa (in Ife)
Oduduwa the first Oni if Ife, fathered sixteen sons who founded the sixteen original kingdoms of the Yoruba
Regarded in Ife as the Orisa who created dry land and performed feats elsewhere attributed to Obatala
The oral history of the Yoruba describes an origin myth, which tells of God lowering a chain at Ile-Ife, down which came Oduduwa, the ancestor of all people, bringing with him a cock, some earth, and a palm kernel. The earth was thrown into the water, the cock scratched it to become land, and the kernel grew into a tree with sixteen limbs, representing the original sixteen kingdoms. The empire of Oyo arose at the end of the 15th century aided by Portuguese guns. Expansion of the kingdom is associated with the acquisition of the horse. At the end of the 18th century civil war broke out at Oyo, the rebels called for assistance to the Fulani, but the latter ended up conquering all of Oyo by the 1830s. The Fulani invasion pushed many Yoruba to the south where the towns of Ibadan and Abeokuta were founded. In the late 1880s, with the help of a British mediator, a treaty was signed between the various warring factions. Yorubaland was officially colonized by the British in 1901, but a system of indirect rule was established that mimicked the structure of Yoruba governance.
E je ka fi’imo sokan
‘Tori ile baba wa
Lati tun se
Lati gbe ga
Fun ‘losiwau rere
Ija irepo lo ye wa
Ka ja fun ‘le baba wa
‘Tori omo wa
Nitori ojo ola
Omo Oduduwa ni wa
Nibikibi ta ba wa
Ka si ma ranti
Pe a o pada sile.
In unity let’s stand
On behalf of our fatherland
To rebuild it
To reform it
For the betterment of all
Let all of us unite
To defend our motherland
For our progress
And for our children’s
And for all posterity
Oduduwa is our spring
Wherever we may be
Let’s be kinfolks
That home is home for us
Ogun keeps matter in motion
Ogun is the sustainer of life
Ogun lives in the knife, and with it, clears a path for man. Ogun is the force within your computer. Ogun is technology.
Ogun is the force of gravity, the force of attraction.
Ogun represents the tools that shape man, bringing out a person’s potential, enhancing one’s life.
Ogun controles life and death. Ogun is our heart beat and the final contraction during birth. Ogun is auto accidents and gun wounds.
Ogun is the warrior, hunter and farmer.
Ogun is the God of loyalty and life long friendships.
Ogun is the master of secrets, skills, crafts, professions and creations.
Orunmila is the God of Wisdom and Destiny
Like the other Deities, Orunmila existed before man and is the only Orisa to witness creation. Orunmila therefore has the knowledge concerning the fate of every man, woman and child. Orunmila is the youngest Deity out of all the Deities created by God before the creation of the earth. This circumvents the position for Orunmila to be the final manifestation of virtue for man to follow.
Orunmila sojourned to earth on various occasions to assist man at the crossroads. The crossroads I speak of are the moments we come to in life that require major decisions or points we get to in life that will affect the rest of our lives. Esu, the Deity that sits at the crossroad, is forever indebted to Orunmila and has vowed to serve and assist Orunmila like non other (Ogbe-Di).
Orunmila, through the sheer power of wisdom, sacrifice and patience became the commander and prosper of all Orisa (Irete-Wori).
The expansion of man all over the earth and the frequent needs for Orunmila to sojourn to earth for the benefit of mankind became cumbersome and frustrating for even Orunmila, this great God of Wisdom. So Olodumare (God) endowed upon Orunmila a means for mankind to communicate with Orunmila to reveal ones individual fate. This means is called Ifa. Ifa is the embodiment of Orunmila and is also another name for Orunmila. Ifa is a literary corpus that entails the fate of man and all of his accomplishments and transgressions. Only priests of Orunmila have the authority to sound the voice of Ifa. These priests are called Babalawo. Orunmila vowed to serve man in spirit with his infinite wisdom and the Babalawo hold the same secrets to creation and the fate of man that Orunmila held through the medium of Ifa.
Orunmila the Deity represents the power of wisdom to overcome misfortune.
Orunmila the Deity represents the power of Divination to analyze our past, reveal our present and forecast our future.
Orunmila the Deity represents the power of sacrifice to achieve what would other wise be impossible.
We all should know what sacrifice is. “The giving up or foregoing of some valued thing for the sake of something of greater value or having a more pressing claim”. Whatever one desires in this life requires the giving up of something. Life does not strive on taking alone. Life also requires giving; hence life is a process of give and take. The simplest form of sacrifice one can give is time. The most complex form of sacrifice one can give is change. This subject of sacrifice takes on many facets. This page will only touch on the fundamentals of sacrifice from an African/Ifa worldview.
The sacrifice of time is the most fundamental form of sacrifice. In America we sacrifice most of our youth towards school. We then sacrifice our time towards daily labor to acquire finances for daily living. On a deeper level the sacrifice of time involves patience.
Time sacrificed does not always bring about the desired result in our lives. Nor does time spent on something guarantee you peace of mind. When these disharmonies are prevalent we are taught to seek the spiritual realm and pray to beg God for favors. Many of us are unaware and do not realize that the spiritual realm like the physical one requires some sort of giving in order to receive. Imagine walking into Human Resources at IBM and demanding a paycheck knowing that you never (sacrificed) worked a day at IBM. The Spiritual realm works the same way.
The Yoruba believe in one supreme God called Olodumare. Olodumare is very remote to the Yoruba by virtue of the duality that exists with Olodumare. In other words God created both the “good” and “evil” forces at play in the universe and he gave Ase (power) to both sides. “When you speak about ‘good’, you have already presupposed ‘evil’.” One cannot exist without the other. There are two sides to every story or problem. Within Olodumare lay both sides to one story, so directing energy to Olodumare directly can be vain. Within Ifa the cosmos is divided into two halves. The right side is inhabited by the benevolent supernatural powers and the left side is inhabited by the malevolent supernatural powers. The benevolent powers are the Orisa and their helpful associations with humans. The malevolent powers are evil and destructive energies like Iku (death), Arun (sickness), Ofo (loss), Epe (curse) and so on. There is no peaceful coexistence between these two powers, they are always in conflict.
The Africans believe that verbalization is not enough in one’s relationship with the supernatural. Ifa divination serves as a preamble to prayer. Via Ifa divination we can ascertain how to pray, to whom to pray and for what. For the Yoruba, divining (Ifa) serves as an approach to prayer and shows one why they need to pray and shows one the best procedure for elevating one’s prayer via some form of sacrifice. In this world of many choices, this complex and varied approach is still miraculously accurate and effective. In this world of choices, this complex and varied approach is necessary. The variety of sacrifice includes time, song, dance, money, change and life force offerings.
Communication with the sprit realm is what Ifa is all about. Sacrifice is an attempt to rearrange the forces of the universe so that they can work for us, resulting in peace and harmony for us in our environment. Within Ifa, sacrifice (in Yoruba it is called ebo) is an attempt by human beings to send a message to all these supernatural powers of the universe regarding our own human affairs. When all the supernatural powers accept our sacrifice/ebo, everybody is happy and are committed to work for us and we can achieve peace.
All of God’s creations have some relationship with God and communicate with God at some level beyond our comprehension. Within Ifa, animals are sometimes used to communicate our message to the spiritual realm. Each animal species have distinct properties that are beyond our comprehension. For instance, most humans cannot smell sugar, however if we put sugar or honey on the table, ants will flock there by morning because they have smelt it. Their sense of smell is much higher than our own. The Ifa sacrificial rituals use the unique communication abilities of animals to relay our messages to the supernatural forces at play. The chicken is the first animal inhabitant of the earth and she accompanied the divinities/Deities from heaven to earth. The chicken is a favorite communicator of messages to the spirit realm because of its close association to the Deities from the very start. Life force offerings direct prayer via the animals’ force to a specific force in nature to elevate our prayers for our benefit and to rearrange the universe to work in our favor.
For example, if someone is sick and a sacrifice is prescribed by a diviner, that sacrifice is meant too appease the left and right side divinities. Humans do not give sacrifice directly to the supernatural powers on the left, they give it to their own guardian divinity who is on the right. The closest of these right hand divinities is Ori (head) and can include a host of other Orisa and Eguns (ancestors). Esu, the divine messenger, who is almost always supposed to get part of any blood sacrifice and who shares elements of both the left and right side, will assure that the left hand divinities get their due. Esu plays a very important part in reordering universal events for the good of anyone that sacrifices in this manner.
Sacrifice is essential to human well being. Some people live happy lives sacrificing their pride to beg from strangers. Some people sacrifice half of their adult life in school earning PHD’s. Meat eaters in our society directly benefit from blood sacrifice to accommodate their daily meal. Most meat eaters are disconnected from the total disregard of the poor animal’s life during its slaughter/sacrifice for their benefit. The Jews have their kosher food, which is prayed over animals, sacrificed for consumption. Within Ifa most sacrificed animals are consumed as to further their power (Ase) for our cause and the animals are treated with respect. The European sacrificed the lives of an estimated 100 million African men women and children for their Gods of materialism, greed, lust and conquest. The Christians celebrate the human sacrifice of Jesus Christ and to this day still symbolize this via cannibalism with their communion ritual. Within Ifa the holy Odu Irete-Meji and OturuponTura forbids human sacrifice! Within the traditional African worldview you are for the most part responsible for your own self-improvement. If you want to change your condition you must make sacrifice. Sacrifice often times does not require blood. Sacrifice sometimes requires one to look in a mirror and see beyond what is reflected and to make some psychological change. This can be the most difficult of sacrifices. However, we here at Cultural Expressions are well aware of why the chicken crossed the road, and now you know
This is the popular saying in some parts of Africa, a response to the claim that the missionaries who came to Africa were on a humanitarian “civilizing” mission, bringing salvation to the “primitive” tribes and “lost souls”. We however know from all the available evidence on the activities of the “missionaries” that they were just the fore-runners who paved the way for the colonial conquest and subsequent rape of the Africa, nation states which accepted the culture of the missionaries, called Christianity, without a fight were left with little disruption of their traditional and cultural values. This was the beginning of the system called Indirect Rule introduced first by the British under its governor Lord Lugard in Northern Nigeria. In return for the agreement to allow the British colonialists to carry on their imperialist activities and maintain “law and order” the Northern Nigerian Hausa and Fulani chiefs were allowed to keep their traditional institutions, their culture and even their Islamic religion. The situation was however different in other parts of Africa where the people resisted the introduction of colonial rule.
The Asantes in Ghana fought the British at every turn and even defeated the British in a brutal war in 1826 in which the British Commander Charles McCarthy was killed. In these areas the colonialists used the missionaries on strong “civilizing” missions. The Presbyterian Missionaries were the worst offenders. In the areas that they settled they sought to divide the population by creating separate living communities called “Christian Quarters”, for those who converted to Christianity. These were the “civilized, clean souls” who were not expected to mix with the “uncivilized heathen ones”. This practice divided family units and the divisions have endured till now to the extent that children were separated from their parents, wives from husbands and so on because parts of certain family units would not convert to Christianity.
There is abundant evidence to show that the introduction and imposition of this European colonial culture was a direct extension of European capitalist expansion. The Christian missionary activities was just a guise for European commercial activities. They were the most ambitious ideological agents of the British Empire, bearing with them the fanatical zeal to reconstruct the native world in the name of God and Great Britain. The British “Christian” missionary, David Livingstone who is portrayed as the most dedicated missionary with a passionate vision for the “Dark Continent” (Africa) summed up their intentions in a speech at Oxford University in 1864. He argued that:
“Sending the Gospel to the heathens of Africa must include more than implied in the usual practice of a missionary, namely, a man going about with a Bible under his arms. The promotion of commerce ought to be specially attended to as this, more than anything else, makes the heathen tribes depend on commercial intercourse among civilized nations.
I go back to Africa to, open a new path to commerce. Do you carry on the work I have started?” Passionate vision indeed!! Even in modern times, the policies and practices of financial institutions like the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank and the foreign and economic policies of most Western nations towards Africa have not diverted from the vision of David Livingstone.
One of the painful destructive legacies unleashed by the Christian missionary adventurers was the perversion of the natural names of Africans. Every African name has a meaning and a significance. For example children born in Ghana carry names of the day on which they were born. We do not carry family names. The surnames reflect the
significance of the circumstances in which the child is born. Parents name children after people who have done significant things in their lives. To keep the good name of such persons parents honor them by
naming a child after that person. For example I was born on a Friday. My first name is therefore Kofi. I was named after my grandfather whom my father really admired. Baffour in some areas my name means
an adventurer, a fighter. My sister is called Afua (female Friday born). Her surname is Maanu which means she is the third female born in the family. Therefore anybody from Ghana looking at my sister’s
name: Afua Maanu knows exactly what it means. I have a Nigerian friend whose parents were so happy that they had a son that they named him Olu Gbenga, meaning “God has elevated me”. And there is my Ugandan friend from East Africa who is named Muhumuza (one who brought relief). His sister is called Nankunda Katangaza: (the little one who amazes) However our Christian invaders decided that those names were heathen, primitive, uncivilized. At baptism, (another cultural imposition) the civilized parents are expected to give Christian names to their children. I was therefore called Michael instead of Kofi. This signified that I had been transformed from paganism to a new civilized life. I do not even know what Michael means. My Nigerian friend was christened Thomas instead of Olu Gbenga and my Uganda friend is Gabriel instead of the beautiful Muhumuza.
Many Africans who have arrived in Canada have had to fight uphill battles with immigration department on their names. They do not understand why family members do not bear the same names. I have two brothers but they do not carry my father’s name because we have nothing designated as family name. There is now a cultural revolution going on in most parts of Africa. Many people are shedding their Christian names for the natural meaningful names given to them at birth. For me I would still carry my Christian name, Michael. At least it will continuously remind me that once upon
a time I came into contact with a bunch of strange people who sought to civilize me by just changing my Name!
The Yoruba People, of whom there are more than twenty-five million, occupy the southwestern corner of Nigeria along the Dahomey border and extends into Dahomey itself. To the east and north the Yoruba culture reaches its approximate limits in the region of the Niger River. However ancestral cultures directly related to the Yoruba once flourished well north of the Niger.
Portuguese explorers “discovered” the Yoruba cities and kingdoms in the fifteenth century, but cities such as Ife and Benin, among others, had been standing at their present sites for at least five hundred years before the European arrival. Archeological evidence indicates that a technologically and artistically advanced, proto-Yoruba (Nok), were living somewhat north of the Niger in the first millennium B.C., and they were then already working with iron.
Ifa theology states that the creation of humankind arose in the sacred city of Ile Ife where Oduduwa created dry land from water. Much later on an unknown number of Africans migrated from Mecca to Ile Ife. At this point the Eastern Africans and Western Africans synergized.
Ife was the first of all Yoruba cities. Oyo and Benin came later and grew and expanded as a consequence of their strategic locations at a time when trading became prosperous. Ife, unlike Benin and Oyo, never developed onto a true kingdom. But though it remained a city-state it had paramount importance to Yoruba’s as the original sacred city and the dispenser of basic religious thought.
Until relatively recent times the Yoruba’s did not consider themselves a single people, but rather as citizens of Oyo, Benin, Yagba and other cities, regions or kingdoms. These cities regarded Lagos and Owo, for example, as foreign neighboors, and the Yoruba kingdoms warred not only against the Dahomeans but also against each other. The name Yoruba was applied to all these linguistically and culturally related peoples by their northern neighbors, the Hausas.
The old Yoruba cities typically were urban centers with surrounding farmlands that extended outward as much as a dozen miles or more. Both Benin and Oyo are said to have been founded by Ife rulers or descendants of Ife rulers. Benin derived its knowledge of brass casting directly from Ife, and the religious system of divining called Ifa spread from Ife not only throughout the Yoruba country but to other West African cultures as well. A common Yoruba belief system dominated the region from the Niger, where it flows in an easterly direction, all the way to the Gulf of Guinea in the south.
It is no accident that the Yoruba cultural influence spread across the Atlantic to the Americas. European slave hunters violently captured and marched untold millions of Africans to their demise on over crowded slave ships bound for the Americas. Slave wars launched by the kingdom of Dahomey against some of the Yoruba kingdoms, and slave wars between the Yoruba’s themselves made war casualty Africans available for transportation to the Americas. Yoruba slaves were sent to British, French, Spanish and Portuguese colonies in the New World, and in a number of these places Yourba traditions survived strongly. In Brazil, Cuba, Haiti, and Trinidad, Yoruba religious rites, beliefs, music and myths is evident even at this late day. In Haiti the Yoruba’s were generally called Anagos. Afro-Haitian religious activities give Yoruba rites and beliefs an honored place, and the pantheon includes numerous deities of Yoruba origin. In Brazil, Yoruba religious activities are called Anago or Shango, and in Cuba they are designated Lucumi.
Slavery in the United States was quite different from other colonized regions. In the U.S. chattel type slavery was the means where the language and culture was whipped and beat out of the African captives. In the U.S. throughout the Diaspora, the African generally received the death penalty for practicing his or her birthright. Today the religion has undergone a phenomenal surge in popularity and interest. Santeria, the adaptation of Yoruba and Ifa with Catholicism, came to the states first with Puerto Ricans in the forties and fifties and then with the flood of Cuban refugees in the sixties. In all of these places mentioned above, the pantheon of major Yoruba deities has survived virtually intact, along with a complex of rites, beliefs, music, dances and myths of Yoruba origin.
In resent years, availability of attainable air travel has enabled African Americans to go back to the essence from which this great culture derived (Africa) and gather the information needed to teach and assist others. Places like Oyotunji village in Beaufort South Carolina, DOYA (Descendants of the Yoruba in America) foundation in Cleveland OH, Ile Ori Ifa Temple in Atlanta GA, and African Paridise in Grffin GA where Yoruba culture and religion is still practiced, are just a few of many locations that offer a place to reclaim the religion of self awarness, inner strength, inner peace and unlimited power for our evolution.
Good morning! Ek’aro
Good afternoon! Ek’asan
Good evening! Ek’ale
Welcome! (to greet someone) Ek’abo
Hello my friend! Bawoni Oremi
How are you? (friendly) Bawo lowa
How are you? (polite) Bawo lara
I’m fine, thank you! Mowa dada, Ese
And you? (friendly) Iwo na nko
And you? (polite) Iwo nko
Not so good Kofibe da
Long time no see Ope ti mo ti rie
I missed you Mos’aro e
What’s new? Kini tuntun
Nothing new Kosi tuntun
Thank you (very much)! Ese gan
You’re welcome! (for “thank you”) Ko t’ope
My pleasure Inu midun
Come in! (or: enter!) Wole wa
Make yourself at home! Ef’okan bale,Ile lewa
Have a nice day! Od’igba
Good night! Od’aro
Good night and sweet dreams! od’aro kosi la ala to da
See you later! mari e ni’gba mi
See you soon! mari e laipe
See you tomorrow! mari e lola
Good bye! Od’abo
Have a good trip! Irin ajo ada o
I have to go Moni lati malo
I will be right back! Mon padabo
(Holidays and Wishes)
Good luck! Pade orire
Happy birthday! Eku ojo ibi
Happy new year! Eku odun tuntun
Merry Christmas! Eku odun keresimesi
Ei del kabir Eku odun Ileya
Independence day Eku odun ojo ominira
Congratulations! Eku ori ire
Enjoy! (or: bon appetit) Igba dun
Bless you (when sneezing) Epele
Best wishes! Nko rere fun e
Cheers! (or: to your health) Eku araya
Accept my best wishes Gba nkan rere timo fefun e
(How to Introduce Yourself)
What’s your name? Kini oruko e?
My name is (John Doe) Oruko mi ni (john Doe)
Nice to meet you! Inumidun lati ri e
Where are you from? Ilu wo loti wa?
I’m from (the U.S/ Nigeria) Mowa lati ilu (America/nigeria)
I’m (American/ Nigerian) Omo (America/Nigeria) nimi
Where do you live? Ibo l’ongbe?
I live in (the U.S/ Nigeria) Mongbe ni(America/ nigeria)
Do you like it here? S’o feran ibi?
Nigeria is a beautiful country Orile ede to rewa ni nigeria
What do you do for a living? Ise wo lonse?
I’m a (teacher/ student/ engineer) (Oluko/akeko/ onimo ero) ni mi
Do you speak (English/ Yoruba)? S’ole so ede(geesi/ yoruba)?
Just a little Mole so die
I like Yoruba Moferan yoruba
I’m trying to learn Yoruba Mongbiyanju lati ko ede yoruba
It’s a hard language Ede t’ole ni
It’s an easy language Ede ti kole ni
Oh! That’s good! hehen, Iyen da
Can I practice with you? se mole ko pelu e?
I will try my best to learn Mase iwon ti mole se lati ko
How old are you? Omo odun melo ni e?
I’m (twenty one, thirty two) years old Omo (ogun odun lekan,ogun odun lemeji) ni mi
It was nice talking to you! Mogbadun bi mose nba e soro
It was nice meeting you! mogbadun bi mose pade e
Mr…/ Mrs. …/ Miss… Ogbeni…/ Iya afin…/ Omidan….
This is my wife Iyawo mi niyi
This is my husband Oko mi niyi
Say hi to Thomas for me Bami ki Thomas
(Romance and Love Phrases)
Are you free tomorrow evening? S’o raye lati ola lo
I would like to invite you to dinner mo fe kajo jade fun ounje ale
You look beautiful! (to a woman) O rewa gan lobinrin
You have a beautiful name Oruko re rewa
Can you tell me more about you? Se ole so si fun mi nipa re?
Are you married? Se oti se igbeyawo?
I’m single Mosi da wa
I’m married Moti se igbeyawo
Can I have your phone number? Se mole gba nomba ero ibani soro re?
Can I have your email? Se mole gba iwe ateranse re?
Do you have any pictures of you? Se oni awon aworan re?
Do you have children? Se oni awon omo?
Would you like to go for a walk? Se ole jeka nase jade
I like you Moferan e
I love you Mon’ife e!
You’re very special! Eeyan pataki ni e!
You’re very kind! Odaa gan!
I’m very happy Inumi dun gan
Would you marry me? Se wa femi?
I’m just kidding Mon sere ni o
I’m serious Mi o selere rara
My heart speaks the language of love Okan mi nso ede ife
(Solving a Misunderstanding)
Sorry! (or: I beg your pardon!) Ema binu
Sorry (for a mistake) Epele
No problem! Kosi’yonu
Can you repeat please? Se ole tunso jo?
Can you speak slowly? Se ole soro didie?
Can you write it down? Se ole koosile?
Did you understand what I said? Se nko ti mo so ye e?
I don’t understand! Ko ye mi!
I don’t know! Mi o mo!
What’s that called in Yoruba? Kini won npe ni ede yoruba?
What does that word mean in English? Kini itumo oro yen ni ede geesi?
How do you say “thanks” in Yoruba? Bawo lese nso pe”Ese gan” ni ede yoruba?
What is this? Ki leleyi?
My Yoruba is bad Ede yoruba mi da
Don’t worry! Mase iyonu!
I agree with you Mo faramo nko to so
Is that right? Se iyen da?
Is that wrong? Se iyen o da?
What should I say? Kini kinso?
I just need to practice moni lati ko gan
Your Yoruba is good Ede yoruba re da
I have an accent Ede mi fihan pe mi owa lati ilu yi
You don’t have an accent Ede re dabi tiwa
(Asking for Directions)
Excuse me! (before asking someone) Ejo
I’m lost Mi o mona
Can you help me? S’ele ran mi lowo?
Can I help you? Se mole ran e lowo?
I’m not from here Mio kinse ara ile yi
How can I get to (this place, this city)? Bawo ni mosele de adugbo yi?
Go straight Malo lookan
Turn left Ya si apa osi
Turn right ya si apa otun
Can you show me? S’ole fihan mi?
I can show you! Mole fihan e
Come with me! Telemi kalo!
How long does it take to get there? Ato igbawo k’atodebe?
Downtown (city center) Aarin ilu
Historic center (old city) Ilu atijo
It’s near here Itosi ibi
It’s far from here Ojina s’ibi
Is it within walking distance? Se molerin debe
I’m looking for Mr. Smith Mon bere Ogbeni smith
One moment please! Jo funmi ni iseju kan!
Hold on please! (when on the phone) Ejo monbo
He is not here Ibi kis’ebi ( kosi nibi)
Airport Papako Ofurufu
Bus station Ibudoko
Train station Ibudoko oko ojurin
(Emergency Survival Phrases)
Help! Egbawa o!
Watch out! (or: be alert!) Egbara di
Call the police! Epe olopa!
Call a doctor! Epe dokita!
Call the ambulance! Epe oko tongbeyan lo si ile iwosan
Are you okay? S’owa daada!
I feel sick Ara mi oya
I need a doctor Moferi dokita
Food poisoning Majele ounje
Where is the closest pharmacy? Ibo ni ile oloogun oyinbo to sunmon ju?
It hurts here Eeyan nsese nibi?
It’s urgent! Ogba kiakia!
Calm down! Fara bale!
You will be okay! Ara re aya!
Can you help me? Se ole ranmi lowo?
Can I help you? Se mole ran e lowo?
(Hotel Restaurant Travel Phrases)
I have a reservation (for a room) Motigba yara kan sile
Do you have rooms available? Se awon yara wanle?
With shower / With bathroom To ni baluwe
I would like a non-smoking room Mofe yara ti won ti kin mu siga
What is the charge per night? Elo ni owo re fun ale kan?
I’m here on business /on vacation Mo wasibi fun ise/ fun isinmi
Do you accept credit cards? S’e n gba owo ni ona kaadi
I’d like to rent a car Mafe lati ya oko ayokele
How much will it cost? Elo lo ma na mi?
A table for (one / two) please! Ejo tabili fun eyan (kan/meji)!
Is this seat taken? Se wan ti gba aye yi ni?
I’m vegetarian Ounje elewe lemi nje
I don’t eat pork Mio kin je elede
I don’t drink alcohol Mio kin mu oti
What’s the name of this dish? Ki’loruko ounje yi?
Waiter / waitress! Adani loun!
Can we have the check please? S’ele fun mi ni iwe sowedowo na?
It is very delicious! Odun gan!
I don’t like it Mi o feran e
Shopping Expressions Ise nibi nkan rira
How much is this? Elo leleyi?
I’m just looking Mo kan nwo ni
I don’t have change Mio ni sanji
This is too expensive Eyi ti won ju
What time is it? Ago melo lolu?
It’s 3 o’clock Ago meta lolu
Give me this! Fun mi leleyi!
Are you sure? S’o da e loju?
Take this! (when giving something) Gba eleyi!
It’s freezing (weather) Otutu gan nibi gan
It’s cold (weather) Otutu nibi
It’s hot (weather) Ogbona nibi
Do you like it? S’o feran e?
I really like it! Moferan gan!
I’m hungry Ebi npa mi
I’m thirsty Orungbe ngbe mi
He is funny Apani lerin ni
In The Morning l’owuro
In the evening N’irole
At Night L’ale
Hurry up! Se kia!
(Cuss Words (polite): Its good to know these so you know when someone is cussing at you. please dont cuss)
This is nonsense! (or: this is craziness) Kantan kantan leyi!
My God! (to show amazement) Oluwa o!
Oh gosh! (when making a mistake) Mogbe!
It sucks! (or: this is not good) Eyi oda!
What’s wrong with you? Kilo ndamu e?
Are you crazy? S’onsiere ni?
Get lost! (or: go away!) Kuroni’waju mi!
Leave me alone! Fimi sile!
I’m not interested! Ko wunmi!
(Writing a Letter)
Dear John John mi owan
My trip was very nice Irin ajo mi dara
The culture and people were very interesting Asa ati awon eyan yi daa gan ni
I had a good time with you Mogbadun igba ti molo pelu e
I would love to visit your country again Mafe lati wa si orile ede re si
Don’t forget to write me back from time to time Magbagbe lati mak’owe simi ni gbogbo igba
(Short Expressions and words)
So-so (or: not bad not good) Koda kobaje
Me (ie. Who did this? – Me) Emi
Him Owun (okunrin)
Her Owun (obinrin)
When? Nigba wo?
Why? kilo fa?
Ifa is an earth based African spiritual tradition that was conceptualized by the Yoruba people of Nigeria, West Africa. According to oral literature, the practice of Ifa originated as far back as eight thousand years ago, making it possibly the oldest monotheistic religion in the world.
Ifa is balanced on three legs: Orunmila (Creator), Orisa (Nature Spirits), and the Ancestors. The Supreme Being, Orunmila, is without gender and is not an active participant in the affairs of living humans. Orunmila is benevolent and has provided a Universe with all that is needed for humans to be fulfilled and happy. Through Ifa divination, diviners invoke Orunmila, the deity of wisdom, spirit of destiny, prophecy, morality and ethics. Through a rich language of visual metaphors, Ifa priests convey their concept of the cosmos, and the forces that animate it in the design and creation of the times. Ifa divination rites provide an avenue of communication between the spirit world and that of the living.
Ifa divination is performed only by an initiated priest called Babalawo (Awo) (male Ifa priest), or an Iyanifa (female Ifa priestess). The diviner provides insights into the future of the person requesting this information. Ifa is characterized by a deep sense of the interdependence of all life. Every life form and element of Nature has an inner soul force — including waters, rocks, fire, clouds, metals, plants, thunder, Earth and wind. These natural energies that comprise the Universe are called Orisa. Each Orisa has its own specific function. Humans are in constant communication with Orisa energy, whether we’re aware of it or not.
A good Babalawo (Awo) & Iyanifa will always show respect and humility and will have good character values. He or She will help and assist in attaining anyone with their Highest Destiny. The priest or Priestess will be a respected leader who is in touch with the spiritual and is never in conflict with any other tradition or religions – indeed; will help is sought in many ways as his or her influence extends into all phases of life. Awo/Iyanifa will live for one purpose only, to discover the will of Orunmila. Moreover, He or She will lives in accordance with the beliefs of IFA and his manifest reverence and meticulous observance of its ritual constitute one of the strongest arguments against the charge of general dishonesty.
Through Ifa, we are awakened to our Ancestor spirits that are always with us, while realizing they must be honored, acknowledged and consulted. All people are born good and with a destiny meant to develop their character (Iwa-pele). Ifa divination was given to us so that we could periodically check in to make sure we are staying in balance and following the path of our destiny. The mysteries and teachings of Ifa revealed in divination are contained in a body of scriptures and stories called Odu.
Ifa practitioners do not regard their spirituality as a “religion” in the Western sense. It is rather a way of relating to spiritual energy that helps individuals discover and stay on their path.
Ifa tradition is based on staying in balance with our community and with the world itself, with our ancestors and our personal spiritual energies. Diviners are encouraged to employ common sense and personal responsibility to appreciate the sacred everyday life, and to integrate all aspects of being, namely the physical, the emotional, the mental and the spiritual.
IFA is the Divine Message of Olodumare (Almighty) to mankind.
IFA is the word of Olodumare.
IFA transcends all the cultures and traditions of all things – man, animals, plants, rocks, water, wind and fire.
IFA explains the basis for the existence of all things past, present and future.
IFA prescribes the spiritual/physical solutions to all problems.
IFA is the first, oldest and truest religion of mankind.
Orunmila, harbinger of the divine message of Olodumare (IFA) is thus the first and truest guardian of universal secrets of existence.
Orunmila, in all things spiritual and esoteric is the deputy of Olodumare.
All Orisa worship and veneration are acceptable, provided they are subservient to the worship of Olodumare as outlined by IFA religion.
No guidelines or signposts to salvation can lead to the path of divine truth except that outlined by Orunmila
books to order
black gods by john mason
the handbook of yoruba religious concepts baba ifa karade
There is One Supreme God
There is no Devil
Except for the day you were born and the day you are supposed to die there is not a single event in ones life that cannot be forecast and if necessary, changed.
Your spirit lives on after death and can reincarnate through blood relatives
You are born with a specific path. Divination serves as a road map to your path.
Our ancestors exist and must be honored, respected and consulted.
This page exists for the benefit of those who know nothing or very little about Ifaism/Yoruba, and at this moment find themselves in the Ifa Link. The Ifa Link is meant to inform not entertain, although many find it entertaining. The focus here is religion, something taken totally out of context in this day and time. Within this page I will attempt to explain the content of these expressive pages. However I will never fully understand it’s content.
Ifaism is usually referred to as Yoruba. The name Yourba in Africa encompasses a group of people that speak the same language and live within certain boundaries. Now-a-days, many Yourbas know nothing about Ifa. The educational systems in America, by design, teach our children nothing about African history, culture, virtues and of course religion. The only history most Black Americans know about is American history where we started out as slaves and built America. Many Black Americans do not realize that if our slave masters were not Christians then our most recent Ancestors wouldn’t have been.
By no means am I trying to impose my worldview on you. This tactic was devised to control the many for the benefit of the few. Religion is a personal relationship that you, and only you, have with God. Only you are held accountable for what you have and have not done on earth. At the end of the day, it’s only you (Ori). When you laugh the whole world laughs with you, when you cry you cry alone.
It is obvious that every one of us is different. We exist here on earth expressing our different attitudes and energies. We each strive on a daily basis to better our sojourn here on earth. Ifa is the medium with which our individual strengths are expounded upon enabling us to express our different attitudes in harmony with one another. Ifa is also a means of exposing the weaknesses we have that block our path to success, happiness and longevity.
Before there was any sort of writing there was Ifa. Ifa at this time, of course, was oral. In Africa, specific individuals spent their entire life, from childhood, learning Ifa verses. These verses number in the thousands and express every single facet and possibility in life. Ifa verses cover the creation of this earth, the creation of every animal species, man and even this computer. Ifa is the totality of our earthly and heavenly realms and gives us a direct and individual phone number to God.
The Orisa are manifestations of God created to help us understand each piece of life’s puzzle. Ifa helps us put the pieces together and identify which piece we represent. In other words, knowing exactly who you are and what your destiny is makes achieving your goals fundamental. This information enables us to avoid trial-by-error, which causes so much vanity and frustration in our lives. The Orisa are all within Ifa and serve as an individual focal point for our prayers and aspirations. The differences between the 401+ Orisa serve as a spiritual medium that is suitable for our individual attitudes. Ifa assists us in identifying which Orisa force to align ourselves with, thereby increasing our chances for true success.
So there it is! Understanding these points is the first level you must come to in order to understand and appreciate this Ifa Link in the same spirit with which it was created. The colors, sights, and sounds all represent some aspect of the Orisa from a top level view. There is so much more to be said and felt about them. Ifa is a religion that you have to feel and experience. These pages attempt to captivate your feelings by expressing the splendor of the universe, one page at a time
The Orisa (forces of nature) live within us and deal with the affairs of men.
You must never initiate harm to another human being or to the universe, which you are apart of.
Spiritual, physical, mental, and emotional realms of our existence must all work together and be balanced.
Sacrifice guarantees success.
What the Yoruba Reject
We are born in sin
The European civilized the African
Jesus Christ is the only way to God
Culture is expressed via years of learned behavior. It is expressed through our children via external stimuli and internal Eguns (ancestors) or guardians (Orisa). The internal and external realms of our existence must constantly be balanced. The synchronization of the two results in the acquisition of material wealth and good character. Regardless of who you are, or what you believe in, the key to success in this life and beyond is exemplifying good character and harmony amongst each other.
African people have been ostracized from inherent greatness in many arenas, most of which are now expressed externally (physically). We must now make strides to balance the scales. Our spiritual (internal) composition is as complex as our physical one. This “new age” culture that the African has been exposed to for the last 400 years or so has effectively alienated us from the science we once used to achieve the equilibrium I’m expressing.
Within Cultural Expressions the holy Odu Osa-Tura solidifies the two realms. The physical realm, which is comprised of the physical computer, and the spiritual realm which is comprised of the spiritual computer (Ifa). We as a people are learning most of our lessons the hard way, for the lack of the proper guidance of our spiritual and physical energy. Because of this, we very often get to the crossroad and make the wrong turn. The inner science that we have inherited lies dormant in most of our lives. We too often rely on our human instincts (emotion), hence we make improperly judged decisions. Everything we go through in life has been done already. Is it not logical to learn from the mistakes of others instead of you yourself having to live it and then learn?
You must give to get back in this life. Ifa is the apparatus, the road map. Divination is the means. Destiny is the end
In the Beginning, Olodumare (God) gave the Orisa Orunmila a flawless method of communication between himself and the Orisa called Ifa. Ifa is linked to destiny through the symbolism of the number sixteen. Sixteen is the number of cosmos; it represents the primal order that issued from the unity of Olodumare. (Sixteen is also a significant number in the world of computers.) When the world was first created, it spread out from an original palm tree that stood at the center of the world at Ile-Ife. The palm tree had sixteen branches, which formed the four cardinal points and the sixteen original quarters of Ile-Ife. In political terms, Odudua, the first oni of Ife, fathered sixteen sons who founded the sixteen original kingdoms of the Yoruba. On a deeper level still, Orunmila taught the art of divination to his sixteen sons; they, in turn, passed it down to the Babalawos who practice it today.
Through the linked concepts of order, creation, and destiny, the number sixteen represents the variables of the human condition, the sixteen possible situations of human life. For the Yoruba, the sixteen principle signs are called Odu or Olodu, from each of which are drawn sixteen subordinate signs (omo-Odu, “children of the odu” or Odus). These represent the sixteen essential life situations with sixteen possible variations each. This means 256 possible combinations (Odu’s) or two to the eighth power. Each Odu is a recital of a set of poems called ese, that provide clues for the resolution of the problem during a divination session. There are at least, and by far not the most, 16 different ese’s for each of the 256 Odu. This adds up to at least 4096 different scenarios. The goal of the Babalawo is to arrive at the appropiate Odu for the situation of his “querent”.
Each of the 256 Odu reveals an archetypal situation that was resolved in the mythic past through sacrifice to an Orisa. In the thousands of Ifa poems, the Orisa are organized into a community of spirits whose ase (power) can can be brought to bear on the problems of individual men and women in need. In this way, Ifa and the Babalawo priesthood are responsible for directing the adherents of all the Orisa’s by leading querents to them. Nearly all the sacrifice/ebo of Ifa/Yoruba religion are offered to the Orisa’s as a result of divination. Ifa structures Orisa worship; the randomness of the system ensures that all the Orisa’s are duly venerated. Through Ifa, the balance of the sacrificial relationship between heaven and earth is maintained, for Ifa, through Odu (word of God), provides human beings with information about their place in the world, their destiny, and what the God’s require of them. Ifa and the ceremonial life that it generates constitute the organizing principle of the traditional Yoruba religious vision. It is a view that finds human destiny “rooted in the breath of God Almighty”. Nothing happens by chance. There is a reason for everything, and it is the duty of human beings to recognize this mystery. Within the Odu lay the hidden messages of the unseen influences. These messages are best interpreted by a well trained Babalawo during a divination session.
This high system of virtue held by hundreds of thousands of Yoruba men and women survived the middle passage to the America’s where they (we) were taken as slaves. The deep-rooted virtues, expressed in each Odu, sustained the African through one of history’s darkest hours. Continue this cyber journey if you must, as we shed light on the virtues and power (Ase) of the Odu.
Inserts taken from Santeria an African Religion in America, by Joseph M. Murphy
This is an insert from the holy Odu Irete-Ogbe. Let this page shed some light on the Orisa called Odu.
You trample upon the brush. I trample upon the brush.
We trample the brush down together.
Ifa was consulted for Odu by these Awos.
They said, Odu is going from heaven to earth.
Whenever she arrive on earth.
They said, thee Odu, this is your beginning.
Olodumare gave her a bird.
She took this bird with her to earth.
Aragamago is the named that Olodumare gave this bird.
Aragamago is the name that Odu’s bird carried.
He said, “You Odu, any undertaking upon which you send this bird, it will do.
He said, “Any place that it pleases you to send this bird, it will go.
He said, “If it is to do bad or good.”
He said, Anything that it pleases you to tell it to do, it will do.
Odu brought this bird to earth.
Odu has said that no other person will be able to look upon it.
She said that it must not be looked upon.
If any enemy of Odu looks upon it,
She will shatter his eyes,
With the power of this bird, she will blind the eyes.
If another of her enemies peers into the calabash of this bird.
This bird Aragamago, will shatter their eyes.
She used this bird thusly.
She used it even to get to the house of Orunmila.
Orunmila went to consult his Awos.
The Oracle said, “If we teach intelligence to someone, his intelligence will be intelligent.
If we teach stupidity to someone, his stupidity will be stupid.”
The Babalawos of the house of Orunmila consulted Ifa in order to know the day that he would take Odu as his wife.
In this manner Orunmila would take Odu for his wife.
The Awos of Orunmila said “Hee.”
They said, Odu that you wish to take for your wife.
A power is in her hands.
They said, because of this power Orunmila must make an offering to the earth.
In the interest of all of his people.
They said, so that with this power, she will not kill and eat him.
Orunmila made the offering.
When Orunmila had made the offering, they consulted Ifa for him.
Orunmila carried the offering outside.
At the arrival of Odu, she found the offering in the street.
Hee! Who has made this offering to the earth?
Ha! Esu said, “Orunmila has made this offering to the earth.”
Because he wishes to marry you Odu.
Odu said, not bad.
All the things that Odu carried behind her, these are the bad things.
She told them to eat.
Odu opened the calabash of Aragamago, her bird, to the ground.
She told it to eat.
Odu entered the house.
When she had entered the house, Odu called Orunmila.
She said, “Orunmila, she had arrived.”
She said, her powers are numerous.
She said, but she did not wish that they should fight with him.
She said, she did not want to fight with Orunmila.
She said, even if someone asked her help, asked her help to fight him, she would not fight him.
Because if Odu did not wish that Orunmila suffers.
Otherwise, if they wished to make Orunmila suffer. Odu, with the power and with the power of the bird, would fight the people.
When Odu finished speaking thusly.
Orunmila said, not bad.
The time came, Odu said, Thou Orunmila, You are going to learn my taboo.
She said, she wish to tell him her taboo.
She said, she did not want his other wives to see her face.
She said, that he should tell all of his other wives that they should not look at her face.
Whoever looked into her face, she would fight.
She said, she did not want anyone to look at her appearance.
Orunmila said, “Fine!”
He then called all of his wives.
He prevailed upon them.
The wives of Orunmila would not look at Odu’s face.
Odu told Orunmila that.
She said, with him she would make his burdens good.
She said, she would heal all things.
She said, anything that he causes to go wrong, she would repair it.
She said, if he observed his taboo.
She said, all things that she completed would be good.
Anyone who would disturb them, she would in turn disturb them.
If Oso (sorcerer) wished to destroy.
She said, she would leave him nothing.
Then he himself would be destroyed.
All his children, who are Awo.
He will implore them that they should never dare to trifle with Odu.
Because Odu is the power of Awo.
He said, if the Awo possesses Ifa, he will also have Odu.
The power that Odu gives him says that.
No woman must look upon her form.
From this day no Babalawo is complete without possessing this Odu.
One who does not have Odu will not be able to consult Ifa.
The day that one comes into possession of Odu,
On that day will he become a person that Odu will not allow to suffer
It would be a negligent oversight to examine the Afrikan family structure without making reference to polygyny (the practice of several women joining unto one man), which incidentally was first introduced into ancient societies by the Afrikan Woman. In the old days of Afrika’s glory the woman considered herself nothing without a man to defend her and a man was nothing without a woman and a family to defend. At this time polygyny was generally practiced throughout most of the world, a result of the Black Man’s cultural influence all around the globe. Polygyny or polygamy, as some call it, was adopted by Black Women to ensure every woman in the society having access to a man, whose primary role was protector, guide, provider and keeper of the realm.
As already stated, in these ancient Afrikan societies women were held in the highest honor and respect, the female entity was revered and oft-times worshipped as the Great Mother, Nourisher and Sustainer of life, the source of all terrestrial inspiration and the maintainer of revitalized life. This was the usual way of life in those wonderful days when the Black Man dominated the earth, widespread love, respect and affection was consistently demonstrated by the Black Man to the Black Woman. He delighted in adorning her with gold and silver often rhapsodizing to her in the most beautiful language (perhaps this is why sisters still love to hear a Black Man lay down some good “rap” even unto this day), the norm in ancient Black Society, where each gender clearly accepted and dignified their distinguished roles in the community with mutual affection and respect for one another. In those days of amorous joy Black Women delighted in dancing and singing praises to their men especially after they had returned from the battle (usually in defense of the homeland) or the hunt.
The family practices of the Black Man’s High Culture System began to deteriorate in certain parts of the world namely Europe and northern Asia when the Caucasian appeared on the scene. At first white Europeans with no real culture of their own, other than the insatiable love of warfare, tried to emulate the Afrikan in the practice of polygyny although there was no general change in his attitude regarding the treatment of the Caucasian woman. With the coming of syphilis and its wide-spread infections among the women of his race, which caused the largest percentage of the female population to die out like flies, the nomadic Caucasians leaving their bodies where they fell, the shortage in the already limited female population was intensified so the European shortly returned to monogamy, homosexuality and the wide-spread practice of polyandry – one woman, many men. In the European custom of polyandry one woman, be she mother, daughter, sister and in some cases a queen, became the wife of as many as ten or more men, included in this group might be her father, her son, her brother, her cousin, her uncle as well as her husband and on certain occasions, at the whim of the family head man she was made available for the pleasure of all the men in the community. The ancient Europeans said their rationale for doing this was an attempt to minimize the constant fighting and bloodletting of rivals over the limited amount of women available. It was out of this confusion that the patriarchal line of descent and the modern European system of monogamy was born. As a result of eventual European world domination many Black People and other peoples of color have been forced to adopt monogamy and in same cases rape and homosexuality as a cultural frame of reference. Subliminally this is one of the manifold reasons for the many traumatic Black Male-Female relationships in the United States and other parts of the world today. But in spite of this mental conditioning we as a people must join unto our own and through the proper light of understanding correctly put into practice those systems that will prosper and sustain us, insuring Our survival and longevity on the earth.
At this point a word of caution is in order. The above statements of historical fact – and it is an irrefutable fact that the practice of polygyny was the norm for Afrikans before the coming of the European – were not intended to denigrate or condemn those families where the Black Man and Woman mutually prefer a monogamous relationship, rather they have been cited to present the cultural roots, validity and obvious advantages of polygyny for Black families who wish to practice it today. Of course it must be clearly understood, especially by the brothers that this is not something you just up and jump into without careful thought and preparation, for there are great responsibilities involved. But those Black Men and Women who are serious and adequately prepare themselves through consultation, study and self discipline applying the practice of polygyny on the high spiritual plane of which it was originally developed will eventually become some of the most respected and powerful men and women in the world. It is believed by some Black Scholars who have carefully and painstakingly studied the societal structures of Afrikan People that the correct application of this system could be a mighty key factor in the economic, spiritual, mental and physical survival of Blacks wherever we are in the world today.
One of the main reasons why polygyny was developed and practiced by the ancients was to enhance the economic power of the family, community and nation. Wherein a brother might achieve moderately well in a basic monoganous structure, he could maximize his efforts a hundred fold with the right combination of sister-wives. Bear in mind this idea was first introduced into the community by the women of the society. The biblical story of Jacob, the reputed father of the Israelite nation, mentions his four wives and how the first two brought the latter two into the family. In this present Euro-centric dominated society which is adverse to our very nature, it is somewhat difficult for us to practice those traditions which are more in tuned with our cosmic vibrations. Therefore we must adopt the wisdom of the Kawaida doctrine which advises us to practice “tradition and reason” as we strive to create a new society a better condition and a better world. There is much truth in the old adage “Where there is a will, there is a way.”
As always it is imperative for us as a people to be constantly advancing in knowledge and understanding ever cultivating the habit of doing those things which contribute to our growth. Above all we must not allow ourselves to become stagnant or we will be like the sitting waters that provide a habitation and breeding ground for blood sucking mosquitoes which can be likened unto our natural enemy hovering overhead, ever ready to feed upon our spiritual being and suck out the life blood of our mind, buzzing about and laying the eggs of his degenerate society. Those brothers and sisters who may react to the above statements out of wild undiciplined emotion instead of the logic and scientific analysis of a sound mind which was originally created and given to you for the purpose of deductive reasoning, we advise; investigate and examine before you rush forward to condemn. Black People must be very certain that the concepts and decisions on the part of both male and female regarding the practice of polygyny are based on knowledge, wisdom, logic and understanding rather than negative emotional reaction. In light of this let not the white-mindedness that to some degree has infected all of us be a stumbling block to our progress as a race.
In raising this issue we are fully aware that humans tend to see into a concept that which appeals to their own personal desires, therefore we do strongly urge this subject be approached with the right mental and spiritual attitude. For it is our fervent prayer that we as a people may soon move from a position of weak powerlessness to our own proper position of power and strength on the Earth. Again we admonish those brothers and sisters who are desirous of practicing polygyny to study and investigate it well,being certain to properly prepare themselves mentally, physically and spiritually so as to avoid the emotional pain and suffering which is repercussive of incorrect and clandestine dealings. At all times the brother must be honest, fair, wise and strong in order for the sisters to feel confident and secure in the relationship. In light of the wide percentage gap between the Black Female and Black Male population, particularly in America, sisters should adopt a cooperative spirit, while seeking ways to remedy this situation. Every Black Woman who needs and wants one should have a Black man. Remember the survival of the race is at stake here, not our uncontrolled emotions.
As I review the great benefits of polygyny to our ancient societies I’m inclined, while at the same time considering our present position here in the western hemisphere, to propose that this way of life must be revived and redeveloped in this day but it must be done correctly and in harmony with good principles. There is much information and many living examples of this practice available to those who diligently seek it out. Again let us reaffirm that this subject was not presented to foment consternation or to cause brothers and sisters to throw up their defenses, “jump salty with each other” and become polarized into forming opposing camps but rather as a review and examination of a historical reality which has been a component of the Afrikan way of life from earliest times unto the present. We trust those few who may not be in agreement with us in this matter will not assume a hostile posture and discount all the other points of vital information in this book. And so with undying Black Love for all, ponder it will understand the true spirit in which it was set forth. Surely the Creator who revealed the divine light of understanding to our Ancestors in the past is the best knower and the best doer.