THE RISKS OF DISOBEDIENCE AND THE INCALCULABLE BENEFITS OF OBEDIENCE.

Ifá-Orisa: Honesty

The risks of disobedience and the incalculable benefits of obedience.

Sacred Odu-Ifá Okanran-Owonrin:

“If you do good or not, it is for your own benefit (this was the name of the awo) who consulted Ifa for Eke (the liar), son of Alara.”

“If you do good or not, it is for your own benefit (this was the name of the awo) who consulted Ifa for Ika (the wicked one), son of Ajaro.”

“The inner truth (honesty and truthfulness) confers more satisfaction than the lie (this was the name of the awo) who consulted Ifá for Ifárinu (Ifá sees and knows your heart), son of Òrúnmìlà”.

“Only Ifárinu obeyed the commandments of Ifá. Ifá knows the quality of your heart. Mother Earth knows who the wicked are (liars, dishonest and falsifying). Olodumare knows those who are truly good and who practice good. ”

Ifá’s story:

The three friends, Eke (the liar) son of Alara, Ika (the wicked one) son of Ajero, and Ifárinu (Ifá knows the quality of your heart) son of Òrúnmìlà, visited the babalawo previously mentioned to consult Ifá.

The goal of these three young people to consult Ifá was to inquire about their plans to travel to another town to carry out their religious activities and spiritual responsibilities, because Eke, Ika and Ifárinu were babalawo and wanted to know if they would succeed. They were babalawo qualified to perform the mysteries of Ifá, but they wanted to consult Ifá through other more experienced babalawo to know if they would succeed, and to know what they had to do to ensure success.

The older, venerable and reputable babalawo communicated the message of Ifá to the three young men. Ifá told them the following:

“Do good. Practice only what is good. Be honest; avoid the disorderly ambition to accumulate money quickly. Be obedient; Do not speak what you do not know, do not be treacherous and do not betray the trust that others rest upon you. And offer the ebo. ”

The first two young babalawo Eke and Ika reasoned that it was enough to obey the words of advice and that there was no need to offer the ebo.

Only Ifárinu fulfilled ALL that Ifá instructed. Ifárinu practiced Ifá’s words and advice and also offered the ebo.

Well, after the three young Babalawo received the message from Ifá they left for their trip to the town where they were going to establish themselves as competent babalawo and as doctors of traditional medicine.

When the three young Babalawo arrived at their destination they decided to visit the elders or elders of the town, to receive guidance and advice from them. The three young people had previously obtained information indicating that in order to survive in this new town successfully it was essential to have the blessing, support and participation of the elders and elders of this town.

It turns out that the three powerful elders or elders of this town were nobody but Esu, Ogun and Obatala! When they met the elders Esu, Ogun and Obatala, the three young Babalawo told them what their mission and intentions were. The three young people explained that they wanted to establish themselves in this town as babalawo and practitioners of traditional medicine. The three young men also wanted to obtain promise and guarantee from the elders that they would protect them in the event that the town was attacked by enemies.

The elders or village leaders, Esu, Ogun and Obatala told the young Babalawo that they did not have to fear or worry, just that they were honest, complete and truthful AT ALL TIMES.

We already see that the only condition that Esu, Ogun and Obatala imposed on the three young Babalawo to be able to give their promise and guarantee of complete and assured protection was, that AT ALL TIMES they were honest, complete and truthful. If the three young people practiced honesty, truthfulness and integrity at all times and at all times, they would be sure that they would prosper as babalawo, succeed at everything, and enjoy the perfect protection and support of Esu, Ogun and Obatala, in the event of a war against him.

Ogun said that he who committed himself through practicing honesty, integrity and truthfulness at all times, that he would save them in times of war or invasion.

Esu said that he who committed himself to practicing honesty, integrity and truthfulness at all times, that he would provide them with a ‘spiritual medicine’ (preparation) that would protect them and protect them from harm and danger, in the event of a war or invasion

Obatala said and stressed, that he who committed himself through the practice of honesty, integrity and truthfulness, that the infallibly would be his shield and that he would protect them, and that he would surely give them safe refuge in him. Obatala himself would be his shield and protection!

After receiving these words, promises and guarantees encouraging and assured of the three leaders, elders and elders of the Ogun, Esu and Obatala people, the three young Babalawo went in their respective directions to seek accommodation. They could have stayed TOGETHER as Imarinu suggested, but the other two young Eke and Ika wanted to settle in different locations in the town because they wanted to work ONLY and independent of the others. Each one settled down in his own place to begin with his spiritual, medicinal and advisory work.

One day Esu visited Eke (the liar), Alara’s son. Esu wanted Eke to prepare a special medicine for Ifá. Esu gave the recipe for medicine to Eke. The medicinal preparation consisted of leaves of the Seconsete plant and Atare pepper that had to be cooked with 10,000 cauries (small snails that were used as money. 10,000 cauries or 10,000 small snails were a good sum of money at that time). When these ingredients were cooked in an iron cauldron, the leaves of Segundosete, the pepper of Atare and the 10,000 cauries would turn into a black ash that resulted in a powerful medicinal preparation of Ifá.

At the time of Esu visiting Eke, Esu did not have all the ingredients to make medicine. Esu gave Eke the 10,000 cauries that had to be used in medicinal preparation. Esu also gave him additional money (cauries or snails) so that Eke could get and buy the Seconds leaves and the Atare pepper. After Esu gave him everything Eke would need to prepare the powerful medicine, he left.

After Esu left, Eke thought and said within himself:

“This old man (Esu) has to be crazy! How can Elder Esu expect me to put all this large amount of money (cauries) in an iron pot to burn it and reduce it to ashes! Surely Esu thinks I am dumb! ”

This way Eke was reasoning. Moreover, Eke went further in his corrupt thoughts and thought:

“Anything that is put in an iron pot and burned will turn into black ash. How will Esu know if I mix, cook and burn the 10,000 cauries, the Seconds leaves and the Atare pepper ?! I came to this town to make money and not to be a fool! ”

Eke thought there was no way or
possibility that the elder Esu could know if he had burned and made ash or not, the 10,000 cauries (large sum of money) that Esu gave him according to the instructions. Eke decided to keep all the cauries that Esu gave him and did not do the preparation according to Esu’s instructions!

Eke went to the field and cut and picked herbs that Esu didn’t tell him to cut. Eke put these herbs in the iron pot and cooked them until they became ash. Eke did not use the 10,000 cauries and also did not buy the Seconds and Atare pepper leaves! He stole all the money that Esu gave him and prepared a fake medicine.

At the same time Esu returned to Eke’s house to ask if Eke had prepared the medicine according to the instructions he had given him. Eke lied and said yes. “Very well Esu told him. Esu told Eke to keep the medicinal preparation until Esu needed it, and he would come back for it later when necessary. ” Then Esu left.

The next day Esu visited Ika (the wicked) son of Ajero and gave him the same task he gave Eke. He also handed him 10,000 cauries and additional money so Ika could buy and get the Seconds and Atare pepper leaves! Like Eke, he gave him the same instructions on how to prepare the medicine. Ika also stole and kept all the money that Esu gave him and also prepared a fake medicine. Esu returned to Ika’s house and asked if he had prepared the medicine according to his instructions. Ika lied and said yes to the venerable elder Esu. “Very well Esu said, keep the medicine until I look for it again when I need it.” Then Esu left.

You look like wicked people, unscrupulous, shameless and liars think and do the same !!

The next day Esu visited Ifárinu (Ifá knows the quality of your heart), son of Òrúnmìlà bara Agboniregun. Esu also gave him the same task and also made the same delivery of cauries.

After Esu left the house of Ifárinu, soon Eke and Ika arrived knocking at his door. Ifárinu opened the door and with great joy I invite you to enter, since they had not seen each other for a long time. Eke and Ika told Ifárinu that Esu had also visited them. Eke and Ika told Ifárinu not to be a fool and to keep all of Esu’s money! Eke and Ika told Ifárinu what they had done, because they mistakenly thought that Ifárinu was also going to do the same. They thought that Ifárinu had no values ​​like them. How wrong were Eke and Ika!

Ifárinu was surprised at their words, and as they advised him to stay with the cauries and prepare a false and ineffective medicine.

Eke and Ika insisted that they came to this town to make money and it didn’t matter if they made money through lies, theft and deceit !!!

Ifárinu reflected within himself and thought:

“Is it possible that Eke and Ika as soon as they forget what Ifá told them at the beginning of their trip? How is it possible that they have also forgotten what the three elders Ogun, Esu and Obatala had told him? How could Eke and Ika ignore the promises and guarantees that the elders in good faith gave him? ”

Ifárinu with much love, patience and fear for what might happen to them, I advise them to reconsider their decision and correct themselves, since they still had time to prepare the correct medicine according to Esu’s instructions.

I will not believe what followed, but Eke and Ika discharged their anger on Ifárinu using all the offensive and derogatory words they had at their fingertips and then left for their homes!

Well Ifárinu went to the sacred mountain and cut the ewe – the sacred grass – Second. He then took the Seconds leaves and put them in the iron pot, added the pepper of Atare and the 10,000 cauries (large sum of money) and put them under fire until everything was consumed in the pot producing the black ash that was the original medicine he sent to prepare Esu. The next day Esu arrived at Ifárinu’s house and asked if he had prepared the special medicine according to his instructions. Ifárinu replied with pleasure, joy, honor and satisfaction, yes, that he had prepared according to his instructions. “Very well Esu replied. Keep it until the day I ask you to. ” Then Esu left.

It turns out that after several years the territorial enemies of the town where Eke, Ika and Ifárinu lived attacked the town. Everyone was correcting from here and there frantically looking for how to save their lives from the enemies that had invaded the town! Eke, Ika and Ifárinu were also thinking how they would save their lives! Suddenly Eke, Ika and Ifárinu were upset about the guarantees and promises that the leaders, elders and elders of the Ogun people, Esu and Obatala had given them. They remembered the promise and guarantee: that in times of war or invasion they would be protected without suffering any damage!

The three young men ran to the conciliar house where Ogun, Esu and Obatala were. When they saw the elders, they bowed in reverence and claimed the elders saying: “Protect us and save us from this war!”

Esu looked at Obatala, then looked at Ogun and then took the floor and replied to the three young babalawo, “You already have the infallible shelter that will protect you from all evil, danger and loss. That perfect protection is the special medicine that I ordered them to prepare. Go each one to your home, mix the ash with water and drink it and you will be saved from all evil. When you do this, you will come back later to thank us. ”

The three young people quickly returned to their homes. But Eke and Ika were, with good reason, scared and greatly worried because they knew that the medicine they had in their home was not what Esu ordered to prepare. They felt their days were numbered! Even so, Eke and Ika took the preparation in hope that they might be saved. Although Eke and Ika took the fake medicine they had prepared with hope of salvation, the two died, severely injured in that war! Ifárinu took the authentic preparation he sent to prepare Esu, (the medicine that represented truthfulness, integrity and honesty) and Ifárinu survived the war, without suffering any damages and losses !! When Ifárinu took medicine mixed with water, the power, virtue, promise and guarantee of Ogun, Esu and Obatala manifested in his life and was saved from damage, loss and death itself! How great are the Irunmole-Orisa and how deep their thoughts and ways!

Ifárinu gave Ifá glory by saving him through his good instruction, to which Ifárinu clung. He also went to visit the three elders to thank them and express genuine gratitude for saving him. Ifárinu then continued to prosper as a babalawo, as a traditional doctor, as a true son of Òrúnmìlà and as a true human being, truthful and noble.

Commentary:

The foundation of our Ifá religion is the truth. It was the truth and the adherence of únrúnmìlà to the truth that qualified Òrúnmìlà to stand out above all. It is with the power of truth, that Olodumare creates, guides, saves, governs and sustains all things that exist.

It is not possible for you to be a good human being, priest, priestess, father, mother, devotee, devotee, friend, friend or citizen, or citizen without imbuing truth, honesty and integrity as the foundation and anchor of your life .

Divine power, authority, grace and virtue (asé) is inseparable of truthfulness, honesty and integrity. Truthfulness or truth is the divine vehicle that receives, transports and dispenses the asá of Ifá-Olodumare and the Irunmole-Orisa.

This sacred instruction of Baba Okanran Owonrin teaches us many things. We must frequently reflect and meditate on it. Eke and Ika perished because they did not obey (did not practice) the moral and spiritual instructions and principles of Ifa and also did not offer the ebo. Truthfulness and ebo are indispensable and inseparable. Both have the same importance. The one does not work well without the other!

Eke and Ika were consumed by the love of money, pride and superficial and undeserved fame. They also surrendered to a supposedly “easy” life that was not subject to the morals, divine principles and spiritual demands of Ifá! How did Eke and Ika end ?! They forgot that a straight and noble life, and an impeccable reputation is of greater blessing and profit than the rampant accumulation of money! Remember that Eke and Ika were given adequate time to correct themselves and change. The punishment did not come overnight, but it undoubtedly arrived, and will reach the lives of all those who abuse and misuse the authority that únrúnmìlà (and the Irunmole-Orisa) has entrusted to him.

Ifá was very patient with Eke and Ika but after several years (2-3 years) it was time for Ifá to settle accounts with them. Eke and Ika were not only hurting themselves, they were also doing evil and deliberate damage to others. Imagine, as if lying and stealing were not bad in itself, Eke and Ika tried the impossible, tried to deceive, lie, steal and manipulate an Irunmole-Orisa !!! What madness !! To those who try to steal and lie to him; and try to manipulate Esu-Elegbara !!! Did you know that there are people, not ropes, who dare and try to deceive, manipulate, steal and lie to the Irunmole-Orisa as if the Irunmole-Orisa were human beings ?!

Eke and Ika did not receive or accept advice or notice from anyone! They remained rebellious, proud, stubborn, arrogant and recalcitrant until the end !! That is why there is a saying that says: “Goat that breaks the drum will pay with his own skin!” Aboru Aboye !!!

The power of truth is the mysterious and invisible power that guides, protects and sustains creation. The truth is the source, and it is the center of our life. He who goes against truthfulness, honesty and integrity is committing a moral-spiritual and even physical suicide, because he who separates himself from the truth is gradually disconnecting himself from the source of his life, his health, his intelligence, Your peace and your happiness.

When Eke and Ika abandoned the practical truth of Ifá and pushed the truth out of their hearts, they were committing moral-spiritual and even physical suicide. The spiritual is the root of the physical. First the spiritual and then the material. The spiritual world is the world of causes. The material world is the world of effects. If the root of the tree is sick the whole tree will die. If the tree root is healthy, the whole tree will live.

From the truthfulness, honesty and integrity come the divine power (asé), intelligence, health, peace and value (the meaning) of life. The truthfulness, honesty and integrity is what enables us to receive the asá of Ifá and the Irunmole-Orisa.

We must always ensure that we live in accordance with the noble and accessible instructions of Ifá, our Irunmole-Orisa and our elders of good and noble reputation.

Let us be like Ifárinu, who lived according to the words of Ifá, regardless of what others decided to do or not do. Eke and Ika decided not to follow the right path. Ifárinu was not persuaded by them. He was not convinced by the bad reasoning of Eke and Ika. Ifárinu did not allow any corojo to stain his spiritual white robes! He maintained his principles and integrity. Ifárinu discovered that when you support the truth, the truth will support you!

Ifárinu did not have a moral-spirituality that changed according to his circumstances and location. Ifárinu did not change its principles, ways and ethics for anyone. Ifárinu was not like the chameleon that is always changing its colors to match its scope. Yes! There are human beings chameleons! There are people who exercise in the “good” if they see that most of the people around them are from the beginning. At least they do it to pretend! But as soon as I change and lower the moral and spiritual realm they quickly and with pleasure are ready to get their hands dirty with lies, deception, manipulation, arrogance and disloyalty! These are unfounded people. They are ships at sea without a rudder, without destination or purpose! The waves and waves of pride, commercialism and superficiality push them and pull them from here and there! The winds of ignorance, lack of spiritual identity and the winds of great Njeje the pleasure of the people dominates them, but they do not seek the support and pleasure of Ifá and the Irunmole-Orisa, and therefore these unfortunate winds blow them from here and there, thus living in confusion, without direction, without clarity and without purpose.

When any human being practices what is contrary to righteousness, honesty, benevolence and compassion, he can be more than certain, that negative and undesirable repercussions will reach them according to the operation of divine laws. These divine laws exist outside of us and within us. This is the principle or the law of causality, or the law of cause and effect.

This law applies to every human being. But beyond this fundamental law of nature, there are other laws and spiritual principles that direct and govern the lives of babalawo, iyanifa, babalorisa and iyalorisa.

A babalawo, an iyanifa, a babalorisa and a babalorisa is or must be a representative of Olodumare and the Irunmole-Orisa. The babalawo, the iyanifa, the babalorisa and the iyalorisa that uses their knowledge and their delegated authority to try to manipulate, intimidate, control and force people are exposing themselves to the discipline, correction and punishment of the Irunmole-Orisa, above and in addition to what they will receive from the universal principle of causality! Always remember Eke and Ika!

The babalawo, the iyanifa, the babalorisa and the iyalorisa must be and must be people of good heart, honesty, simplicity and good will; and above all people of full integrity. Always remember that Ifá and the Irunmole-Orisa will never ask of you beyond what you can truly do. Obeying Ifa and the Irunmole-Orisa is not an arduous activity! On the contrary, obeying Ifa and the Irunmole-Orisa is something sweet, pleasant, simple and always within our personal capacity to do so.

Let’s be genuine, honest, clear and frank; and let’s be fair, impartial and equitable with everyone. I aspired to be like Ifárinu. Remember that Ifá sees with perfect clarity what is in you, and Ifá knows who we really are and how we are. Let’s be like Ifárinu. What we do does matter! It matters what we do, how we do it and with what spirit (attitude and disposition) we do it.

Olodumare sees everything we do and also weighs hearts. Olodumare impartially, equitably and in a dispassionate manner will compensate us for what we do: be it good or be it bad. Never forget Eke and Ika. They ran and ran but their bad behavior reached them! Never forget Ifárinu. His good behavior, his integrity, his humility, his truthfulness and his honesty reached him, blessed him, prosperous him and saved him!

Everywhere we set our feet, the divine mother -Onile Ogboduora- protector and guide of the earth sees and knows who we are, our motives and what we are doing. She will bless us if we persevere in good. But she will also correct us, even severely if necessary, if we persevere in lies, deceit and dishonesty.

Let’s be true sons and daughters of Òrúnmìlà. Let us be true sons and daughters of the Irunmole-Orisa. And above all we are true sons and daughters of Olodumare. If we practice this teaching of Okanran Owonrin we could revolutionize our lives, our community and our world. This revelation of Okanran Owonrin is the ‘medicine’ we need. If we take this divine “preparation” she will give us life, health, protection, salvation, happiness and well-being. Why talk more about other things about Ifá if we are not yet firmly established in the central and fundamental truth of Ifá? This truth of Okanran Owonrin is the root, foundation and source of power and efficiency in everything that has to do with Ifa. It is not enough to read or listen to this teaching again and again. We have to commit to it, internalize it and live it. If we don’t do this, and we don’t want to do this, let’s not talk about Ifá, Òrúnmìlà or Orisa-Irunmole. Ifá is to practice it, live it and prove it.

Outside of practice, Ifá cannot live in our hearts and minds. Outside of practice there is no possibility of having and manifesting the power, grace and wisdom of Ifá. This truth of Ifá is the heart, root, foundation, anchor, primordial secret and the whole of the life of a devotee of Ifá. Ifá, and his power and wisdom, lives, dwells and resides in this truth. No ebo, no spiritual work, and no request to Ifá will be effective and fruitful if we do not begin in the consecrated practice, it would be and continued by Okanran Owonrin.

Just as Ifá testified of the promises of Eke, Ika and Ifarinu, Ifá also testifies of your promises. Just as Ifá testified that Eke, Ika and Ifárinu received their instruction, on this day Ifá also testifies that you have received your personal instruction. The same instructions that Elegbara, Ogun and Obatala give you On Eke, Ika and Ifárinu on this day also Elegbara, Ogun and Obatala give you the same instructions. Just as Elegbara, Ogun and Obatala testified to the promises of Eke, Ika and Ifárinu, on this day Elegbara, Ogun and Obatala also testify to your promises, your attitude and your actions.

If you pursue the path Eke and Ika you can be in complete security that what happened to them will also reach you. If you pursue the path of Ifárinu you can be in complete assurance that the great salvation, blessing and benefit he received will also receive and reach you. This together with Obatala and Ogun today invite you and tell you to take this ‘legitimate spiritual preparation’ of Okanran Owonrin.

I was going Olodumare. (We praise you, revere you and offer you a tribute to Olodumare through our attitudes, behavior and behavior).

May Ifa-Olodumare and Baba Okanran Owonrin bless you, keep and defend, today and forever! Àse.

~ Awo Òrúnmìlà Mark Casillas

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THE NATURE OF ÒRÚNMÌLÀ

The Vital Importance of Becoming Acquainted with and Knowing Òrúnmìlà:

Sometimes in life we are too wise for our own good. At times we are ignorant of that which is truly for our highest and best benefit. We neglect and ignore what is truly in our best interest. We unwisely long for and cling to things that do not, and cannot satisfy our hearts, and which do not strengthen and elevate our minds [life]. We often give up quickly on the spiritual path when we are beginning to penetrate into the real and are about to attain genuine understanding, achievement and progress. We impatiently trade in true progress for things which only fatten our ego and cause us to become stuck in repetitive, self-defeating and wearisome patterns of superficiality, pettiness and lack of substance which further makes our lives empty, hollow, unsatisfying and lacking in meaning. We trade our pure gold for valueless glitter. We are moving, but we are not going anywhere, and we are not making genuine progress in any direction because we are walking aimlessly in circles without knowing what our true destination [aim] should be and the way to get there. We want to be able to believe in the divine and in people again but we have been let down so much, disappointed and hurt by others that we have lost our confidence, assurance and willingness to believe and trust, even when we really want to. How do we remedy this and come out of this predicament?

We all need guidance and we all need an attainable and realistic ideal [purpose and aim] to inspire us, guide us and to give our lives meaning. We need to know our purpose for existing and we need to achieve this purpose. As followers of Ifá, we should know and have this guidance and ideal [purpose and aim] to inspire us, guide us and to give our lives a satisfying purpose. Where do we begin in our quest to discover this guidance and ideal? How do we begin to realize our innate desires for satisfaction, fulfillment and meaning in life?

We must begin by coming to know and understand the person and nature of Òrúnmìlà.

The divine irunmole-orisa and holy sage of Ekiti, our divine master Òrúnmìlà, is our guide, exemplar and ideal. He is our inspirer, protector, encourager and guide who reveals the path to us and walks alongside us as we advance in our journey of attainment. Òrúnmìlà Oba Atayese is the sure and reliable guide, because Òrúnmìlà is the embodiment of simple, unpretentious, guileless and honest behavior and thoughts. Òrúnmìlà is profoundly simple. His simplicity is of divine origin. His simplicity is born of wisdom, knowledge, understanding, vast experience and confidence. These qualities in Òrúnmìlà enable him to establish us in certainty, serenity, contentment, assurance, confidence and peace. Òrúnmìlà is the master of consistent good character and consistent noble behavior. Òrúnmìlà is loving and lovable. Òrúnmìlà is tender hearted but of strong will, tactfulness and determination. Òrúnmìlà is not a sentimental personality. His love and compassion are not wishy-washy, weak or soft. His love, sympathetic-understanding and compassion are stronger and harder than a diamond! Òrúnmìlà reveals to us the true meaning, value and greatness of being human beings. He unfolds before our understanding our divine dignity and our extraordinary greatness and potential.

The love of Òrúnmìlà is blended with, and inseparable from divine intelligence, sheer honesty, deep insight and a firm and truthful will. Òrúnmìlà has such an extraordinary, sweet and confidence inspiring personality and character. We never need be afraid of our past mistakes before Òrúnmìlà. Just like when you face the light of the sun and it casts a shadow behind you which cannot come before you, in like manner we can approach Òrúnmìlà and his light, without fear and/or worry. Òrúnmìlà will not allow the shadows of our past to come up before us. He will not allow our past errors or mistakes to hinder and obstruct our present and future progress, success and prosperity. Òrúnmìlà knows how to convert poison into medicine, and he knows how to relate to us as unique and individual persons. He knows our history, our origins and the factors that have made us who we are today. What is good he can make better. What was bad, he can correct, heal and make good.

The character and personality of Òrúnmìlà is such that when we are with him and before him, Òrúnmìlà makes us feel that we are the most important person to him, and we are! Òrúnmìlà is the one who loves us and counsels us better than our nearest and dearest loved ones. In the presence of Òrúnmìlà one only experiences a boundless love, sympathetic understanding, confidence, certainty, assurance and peace. All fear, worry, insecurity and anxiety melts away when we make real contact with Òrúnmìlà and come to know him. How can we meet and know Òrúnmìlà? Can we really know him and meet him in person? And if we can really know him and meet him how do we go about it?

Òrúnmìlà can be known and loved just like you know and love your nearest and dearest friends and kin. The first step is to make the firm resolve and determination to really know and become intimately acquainted with Òrúnmìlà Amuwagun. Unless there is a true and firm resolve [determination] to know him and walk with him we will not be able to move even a hairs length in the direction of Òrúnmìlà, and Òrúnmìlà will seem to us to be a distant personality and power whose friendship and nearness cannot be attained and enjoyed. If you do not want to really know [meet] Òrúnmìlà and you do not really intend to become his follower then he will always be hidden, unknown and concealed to you. But if you really want to know and see [meet] Òrúnmìlà, and you are intending to be a genuine student then there are many avenues available to you for you to know, see and experience Òrúnmìlà Awinrin in person [directly]. Every sincere human being can achieve this. If there is sincerity, genuine interest, devotion, simplicity and devotion in you, then you have the capacity and ability [all you need] to receive the personal vision [manifestation] of Òrúnmìlà. Then you will find out and know for yourself who and what Òrúnmìlà is. No one else will have to tell you anything because you will be knowing [seeing and experiencing] him yourself directly, continuously and realistically. Personally knowing Òrúnmìlà makes all the difference in the world. We should offer our friendship and loyalty to Òrúnmìlà and make him our best friend. Knowing Òrúnmìlà makes us authentic, fearless and partakers of a freedom which cannot be communicated in words and which must be personally, pragmatically and realistically known each one for himself or herself.

When you feel, hear and see the spirit, presence, power and person of Òrúnmìlà you will be blessed!!! As soon as you hear [experience] the voice of Òrúnmìlà your heart will be flooded with love, hope, gratitude, wonder, awe, courage and peace. You will experience something akin to a divine fire in your heart, which fills you, empowers you and surrounds you. Divine understanding and sympathetic understanding will arise in you. Clear seeing consciousness, divine power [ability] and penetrative insight will be your constant and faithful companions, guides and protectors. Your present character, inner condition-state and behavior will become qualitively [positively] transformed and sublimated. Your character and personality will become divinely sweet, attractive, harmonious, simple, authentic and magnetic. A spirit of loving friendliness, confidence and trust will emanate from you which will disarm others of their worries, fears and doubts and will fill them with renewed hope, inspiration and certainty of success. If you resolve to be true, authentic and real, then Òrúnmìlà will most surely agree to meet with you and reveal himself and share his wisdom, his ways and powers with you.

To meet, see, experience and know Òrúnmìlà there is no particular place, no particular time and no particular ritual required. In the eyes of Òrúnmìlà nobody is intrinsically unworthy because he knows our origins and our true divine personality and eternal identity. Òrúnmìlà knows what we are destined to become, and he sees us and relates to us according to our true divine nature, eternal identity and dignity, and not according to our present lot, circumstance or condition in life. Òrúnmìlà sees all, values all and loves all with the same intensity, hope, value and assurance. It is just a matter of our personal receptivity, desire, eagerness to know Òrúnmìlà, our earnestness, affinity and responsiveness to Òrúnmìlà. Do not be afraid to approach Òrúnmìlà. Whatever he reveals and whatever action he takes in regard to you will always be for your benefit, happiness, uplift and wellbeing. Do not let your mind be tainted, troubled or swayed by the baseless, valueless and unsubstantiated opinions of others. Know Òrúnmìlà for yourself.

It is impossible to know Òrúnmìlà and not love him, trust him and obey him. Do not be afraid of your past. The moment your firmly turn your heart and mind to Òrúnmìlà your negative past will lose its power and influence over you. Òrúnmìlà will neutralize and transform all negative effects and he will turn them into positive effects. This is why Òrúnmìlà is called the one who turns our sorrow into joy!!! Òrúnmìlà turns our problems into victories, triumphs and blessings!!! Òrúnmìlà will strip away the negative imprints, impressions and mental-emotional and spiritual cankers that have had an adverse influence upon your life. If you are determined to know Òrúnmìlà then nothing and no one can stand in your way!! As soon as you make the determination to truly meet, see, experience and know Òrúnmìlà, at that moment Òrúnmìlà is present to you and his asé will work itself into your life, mind, spirit and circumstances. The moment you begin to seriously think about Òrúnmìlà, know that at that moment Òrúnmìlà is seriously thinking about you!! Òrúnmìlà is always thinking about and devising the best and efficacious means to enable us to come out of our troubles and transcend suffering. We only need to give Òrúnmìlà a chance to discover his traceless ways of bringing resolution to our problems and challenges!! Give your willingness to trust to Òrúnmìlà and he will not fail you! Give him what you honestly can and are able to offer him of your heart, sentiment and feeling, and Òrúnmìlà will accept this from you. Direct to Òrúnmìlà what measure of faith you have. What if you don’t have faith but you want to have this faith and confidence? Then offer to Òrúnmìlà your doubts, unclarity, worries, doubts, fear, mixed-feelings and uncertainty, and Òrúnmìlà will even accept this from you and he will purify, cleanse and empower these things and give them back to you in their positive transformative expressions.

Open your heart and mind to Òrúnmìlà. Just be yourself as you are. You do not need to Continue reading

The Root of The Problem

THE ROOT OF THE PROBLEM ACCORDING TO IFÁ

Aboru Aboye. Ogbo ato asure iworiwofun. Àse.

Today we are living in a world filled with strife, power struggles, aggression, in-fighting, callousness and indifference. Why? What is the cause? Where does the problem lie? Is the problem due to the particulars of the government under which we live? In part yes, but the government is not the problem. Is the problem due to the type of community and culture of which we are a part? In part yes, but our community and culture is not the problem. Who is the true culprit? Where is the root of the problem? Why so much deception, corruption and cheating in our world, in our communities, in our relationships and even within our homes?

When we have all the ingredients and elements to promote truth, honesty, justice, abundance and peace for everyone, why is our world seemingly arranged like a jungle where only the aggressive and strong survive?! Every man for himself! What does Ifá have to say about the present conditions of the world? What can be done to bring correction, healing and restoration to ourselves, our society and to our Mother Earth who is in great pain and anguish because of the way her children are living amongst themselves and because of the way they are hurting her and abusing her?

I would like us to consider two brief revelations from Ifá that will enlighten us and help us to find real solutions to these dilemmas.

(1) There is a very important episode in the life of the divine priest and holy sage of Iketi, our holy master, Òrúnmìlà, that reveals deep realities. Once Òrúnmìlà considered the issue of genuine friendship and he asked himself who were really his friends. Òrúnmìlà had helped countless people with diverse counsels, remedies, expedient means and skillful divine spiritual disciplines. Did people really appreciate him? Or did people just only want to take the benefits Òrúnmìlà had to offer? Did people really understand the fundamental root and essence of all Òrúnmìlà spoke and did, or did they give little importance to his words and only wanted what they wanted without acknowledging the kindness, intent, character and heart of Òrúnmìlà? How about you? Do you love and appreciate Òrúnmìlà? Don’t be quick to answer. Before you answer consider the rest of this story.

Òrúnmìlà wanted to know who were his real friends, who really cared about him. Òrúnmìlà really wanted to know in how many people could be found real love versus simulated, superficial and/or pretend love. Òrúnmìlà deviced a plan to find our for himself who were his friends and who really had genuine love. Òrúnmìlà also employed an expedient means to help people see themselves in the revealing mirror of Ifá, so that they could accurately ascertain for themselves what kind of people they really were and are. Òrúnmìlà, the divine priest and holy seer of Iketi, our holy master, decided to fake his own death. A call went out announcing the death of Òrúnmìlà. Messengers went out far and wide announcing the death of Òrúnmìlà to all the people. Countless people who benefited from Òrúnmìlà heard the announcement. Meanwhile Òrúnmìlà hid himself in his home to see how many people would come, to not only pay respects to his remains but to also see who would lament his death with deep hearts of gratitude and sadness at the death of the divine master Òrúnmìlà. Òrúnmìlà stood hidden, he watched and listened.

The only person who displayed true sorrow and lament because of Òrúnmìlà apparent death was Esu! The only one who displayed deep gratitude and genuine appreciation towards Òrúnmìlà was Esu. Esu cried and cried and bemoaned the loss of his friend whom he loved dearly. Esu was a loyal friend who demonstrated his love and loyalty by obeying the divine counsel and divinely revealed unselfish directives of Òrúnmìlà. Esu never forgot Òrúnmìlà after being benefitted by him. Esu was blessed and cared for by Òrúnmìlà, and in loving and appreciative reciprocation Esu blessed, assisted and came through for Òrúnmìlà in marvelous, astounding and traceless ways. Esu consistently demonstrated by his attitude, actions and response, his loyalty and friendship towards Òrúnmìlà.

I’ll ask you again. Do you love, respect and revere Òrúnmìlà? We saw what was the proof of Esu’s love, reverence and respect for Òrúnmìlà. Esu was selfless in his devotion and friendship towards Òrúnmìlà. Esu felt that he too had died when he heard the news of Òrúnmìlà’s death. Esu obeyed the clarion call of Ifá that came from the mouth of Òrúnmìlà. This was Esu’s proof and evidence. What is your proof?

Now this story is in part an allegory as well as a historical event between two divine personalities which is full of many deep, confidential and secret meanings. But for our purposes, the simple and plain meanings of this Ifá revelation is adequate because it teaches us that few people actually have fullness of love and gratitude within them. When they are put to the test they fail. Others are either almost completely selfish or their goodness is tainted in good measure by selfishness. Ifá says that genuinely good hearted people are a rarity in the world, and that truthful and honest people are rarer still!

(2) Let us move on to another episode in the life of the divine priest and holy sage of Iketi, our holy master, Òrúnmìlà. In Ose Irete the life of our divine master was in disarray. Everything seemed confused, mixed up and out of order. Òrúnmìlà was doing countless things but in all his doings he forgot the essentials and became absorbed in non-essentials. Òrúnmìlà went to find out what was going on in his life. Orunmila approached Olodumare vía Ifá.

Ifá-Olodumare basically told Òrúnmìlà that in all of his activities, works and doings he had become so preoccupied with so many things and demands, that Òrúnmìlà for a season lost sight of Olodumare. Òrúnmìlà was trying to do all kinds of things without being aligned with Olodumare and without counting upon Olodumare. Ifa told Òrúnmìlà:

“Make Olodumare your Father.”

In other words don’t forget the reality, presence and power of Olodumare. Do not forget the primacy of Olodumare and His livings guidance and instruction Ifá in your life! Guidance and instruction will only help you if you make it your own, and you live it and practice it from the heart, and from your own self-initiative and willingness. Ifá enters our hearts and lives only when we receive and practice the divine precepts of truth, the noble teachings of Ifá. Do not forget that the spirit of loving-kindness, rectitude and selflessness comes from Olodumare who supplies it to us. Do not forget that if you live disconnected from Olodumare it is inevitable that you will become selfish, aggressive, callous, unfeeling and indifferent. Do you love Olodumare? Do you love Ifá? What is your proof and evidence? Where can your love for Olodumare and Ifá be consistently seen?

Let us get back to the original question of why there is so much strife, aggression, deception, dishonesty, cheating and contention. Why are we abusing and taking advantage of each other, hurting each other, hurting our Mother Earth when we can live divine lives, beautiful lives, wholesome lives of good conscience and dignity?

Ifá has answered this for us. We have lost our divine affinity, experiential connectivity and sensitivity to things divine, holy, pure and true. We are spiritually malnourished and morally ill. And why this? Because we have forgotten Olodumare. We have forgotten to make Olodumare our father. Olodumare has ceased to be a living reality, power and person in our lives who has the right to command our obedience, loyalty and dedication.

Olodumare has become only a nice sounding name to us that we like to use when we want to feel ‘religious’ or when we want to deceive others with our false piety, but when it is time for us to make personal choices and decisions the reality of Olodumare and His instructions do not play an actual important part in our lives. He is not really our Eleda, Oluwo and Baba, because if He were we would be trusting and relying upon Him, we would we doing and practicing what is approved by him, and then our lives would not be so disorderly, empty and unsatisfying.

In Olodumare there is only order, health, life, peace, joy, truthfulness, honesty and satisfaction. When we are connected to Olodumare we enjoy and have all that He has and is. This is the teaching and reflection that Ifá brings to us this day. Olodumare is very real. He is the Lord, King and Owner of all. He is always vigilant and fully aware of all we think, intend and do. He rules over all. We are accountable to Him and towards each other. We owe Him our allegiance, loving obedience and dedication.

Òrúnmìlà acknowledged this in his own life. Òrúnmìlà did not look around to wait and see if others were going to make of Olodumare their father before he made his decision to arrange and order his life according to the joyful, life giving, meaningful and purpose giving instructions of Ifá-Olodumare.

Let us follow the teaching of Ose-Irete and the example of Òrúnmìlà. When we change the world will change because we are the world! When we are clean, sincere and honest to that degree the world will be clean, more wholesome, orderly and peaceful. If we get rid of malice, enmity, aggression, jealousy, envy, greed and pettiness from our lives, then little by little these things will cease to be in our world, in our personal lives and in our homes.

We are all children of Olodumare by creation, but Ose-Irete challenges us and invites us to become children of Olodumare by a personal and deliberate choice of our own will, to conform our lives to the spirit, principles and holy teachings of Ifá, in all the aspects, relationships, duties and facets of our lives.

When we do this, then only can we call ourselves the true, awakened and mature children of Olodumare. Only then can WE make of OLODUMARE ‘OUR’ FATHER. If we do not take the initiative to cleanse and purify our own life then we forever lose the right and moral authority to complain about and condemn the injustice, corruption and dishonesty in others.

How can you complain about and condemn the injustice, corruption and dishonesty in others if you yourself are involved in unjust, corrupt, unclean and dishonest practices?! How can you combat and correct corruption, injustice and dishonesty in others if you have not yet rid yourself of these unwholesome tendencies and defilements?

If your life and heart are not being cleansed by the knowledge and spirit of Ifá because you are not willing to accept the knowledge and spirit of Ifá, then you must be informed that you are condemning yourself in your condemnation and complaint against others. Did you know this!?

This message is for one and all. Compare yourself only to the requirements of Ifá-Olodumare and not to what people do or do not do. Look at your life only in the revealing reflective mirror of Ifá.

Compare yourself alone with Òrúnmìlà and not people, and you will know if the standard and quality of your life are leading you to genuine happiness-satisfaction-success or not.

To follow the noble standard and example of Òrúnmìlà is to follow, love and obey Olodumare.

How can we say that we believe in, trust in and and love Ifá-Olodumare and yet not do what He instructs us to do? Only Ifá-Olodumare are completely trustworthy, dependable and reliable. We must learn to trust in Olodumare and we must cultivate a disposition of joyful faithful obedience to His commands which are always intended for our genuine peace, happiness and wellbeing.

“When we are alone, asleep and there is danger, illness or evil of any kind, it is only Olodumare who awakens us and guides us, so as to avoid and avert the loss, illness, sorrow and pain. It is Olodumare alone who takes up our burdens so that our burdens seem light and bearable to us. Whoever has no relative or friend his confidence lies in the heavenly Olodumare.” ~ Holy Odu Osa-Irete (Osa Oloyan-an)

It is wisdom and power to cling to Ifá-Olodumare in trust and obedience. The spirit and asé of Ifá gives strength, comfort, assurance and confidence to the faithful, obedient and loyal devotee.

“Ifá I seek your protection; Ifá I cling to you tight for health, strength and life…” ~ Holy Odu Owonrin-Ogbe (Owonrin S’ogbe).

When we deliberately, intentionally and wholehearted pursue (obey) Ifá then only, are we true and complete children of Olodumare. We when are humble and acknowledge our need to listen to Olodumare (Ifá), and we acknowledge that we are limited, finite and not as smart as we pretend to be or think we are; and we dispose ourselves to do and practice what Ifá enjoins, then we have made Olodumare our Father.

“Ifá I am not the perfect planner (I am not really as clever as others think I am). Only you Ifá can organize things better (No one plans better than you).” ~ Holy Odu Ejiogbe

The outcome of our adherence to Ifá will always be attended by incalculable blessings, benefits, peace, security and joy. Ifá always blesses us beyond what we asked for and beyond our expectation. We will ultimately discover that there can be no better joy, satisfaction, achievement and delight than that of making of Olodumare our Father.

“Olodumare I have awakened to truth that you are my father and that I am your literal son (daughter). I accept (acknowledge) you and embrace you as my father. Protect me my compassionate Master (Gbami o, oluwo mi) through my adherence to Your divine discourses and instructions. All my hopes are on You my divine master and father (gbami oluwa mi).” ~ Holy Odu Ose-Ika

“Olorun (Olodumare) you are the supreme and only shelter and refuge. You are the giver of all kinds of protection, safety and deliverance. You alone are the bestower of fearlessness and assurance.”
~ Holy Odu Owonrin Sogbe

“Olodumare is the King worth depending upon.”
~ Holy Odu Oyeku Ogunda

Ifá has spoken. Is there anything that need be added to the above teachings of Ifá-Olodumare? How sweet, direct, elegant and inviting Ifá is. Be blessed, stay encouraged and take care.

Aboru Aboye. Ogbo ato asure iworiwofun. Àse.

ifa key

IFÁ IS THE ONE WHO SAVES HUMANITY

 The Concept of Saving and Salvation in Ifá.
Aboru Aboye. Ogbo ato asure iworiwofun. Àse.
Holy Odu-Ifá Iwori-Osa teaches us the grand truth that:
IFÁ IS THE ONE WHO SAVES HUMANITY.
How does Ifá save us? What are the ways in which Ifá saves us? What does saving and salvation mean within the context of the Ifá-Orisa tradition?
Today I would like to share with you the four main ways in which Ifá saves us, but before speaking on the four ways in which Ifá saves us I want to first of all define and make clear what is meant by saving and salvation within the context of Ifá understanding and experience.
The reason I want to explain this matter on saving and salvation is because I am aware that there will be many people of different spiritual cultures and faiths who will be reading these words who have their own peculiar understanding of what saving and salvation is or means. I will speak on saving and salvation from the Ifá perspective and then I will continue with today’s consideration.
The Ifá conception of life is based on the principles of fundamental goodness, personal-dignity, celebration of life, wholesome self-esteem, harmony, gratitude, optimism and the inherent sacredness [goodness] of humanity. The Creator [Eledumare] has created mankind in goodness, innocence, purity and nobility. The things we choose to think and believe about ourselves can and will have a constructive or destructive effect upon our lives. How we perceive ourselves and how we perceive our relation to the Creator and creation is all important. Ifá reveals that human beings enter this world in dignity, innocence, without guilt and with a wholesome and wonderful nature.
Consider what Ifá teaches us in Holy Odu-Ifá Ejiogbe:
***The honorable and good way Olodumare created me in, in that way of honor and goodness I am walking. I do what is good and right. I refrain from evil and I don’t practicing lying [I practice honesty], so that I won’t die a wretched person, because the things we practice [cultivate] in our youth will catch up to us in later years. This is the revelation of Olodumare for those who practice [who have chosen to practice] truthfulness and for those who [have chosen to] indulge in wickedness. Only the truthful and upright will succeed and triumph.***
Ifá does not teach us that human beings are born ‘sinful’ or disconnected from their Creator. Such an idea or belief would dishonor our Creator and it would stain and poison our awareness of the Creator’s wisdom, tenderness, goodness, love and perfection. Such an idea or belief would psychologically sabotage our ability to take full responsibility for our lives and it would put us in an awkward, contradictory and confusing dysfunctional relationship with our Eleda [our Creator]. Such an idea or belief is also incompatible with the power, principle, ability and gift of free moral agency. In other words, how can someone be held responsible for an unwholesome nature that he or she did not choose nor was able to avoid?! Let me put it in a humorous way: How can we blame chocolate for not tasting like vanilla? How can someone live their life with confidence and joy if he or she has persuaded themselves or has been persuaded by someone else that they are sure to ‘fall’ at any moment or at some point?!
Ifá does not suscribe to such contradictory, counterproductive, psychologically damaging, toxic and hurtful ideas or beliefs. To put such ideas and beliefs in the mind of an innocent and defenseless child, adolescent, or an adult human being is to hurt, destabilize and sabotage him psychologically, emotionally and spiritually. There are many variants of these kind of negative, self-defeating, damaging and pessimistic thoughts and/or beliefs in various spiritual cultures and belief systems.
I am happy to say that Ifá is not one of these pessimistic belief systems. Western Culture has been heavily influenced by some of these beliefs which have been ascribed to ‘Christianity’. How Christianity came to adopt such ideas is a topic for another day, but the person of Jesus of Nazareth never taught such things and never weighed down the minds and hearts of people with such contradictory, pessimistic and arbitrary beliefs. The words of the great master Jesus of Nazareth also coincides with the above revelations of Ifá. Jesus said and taught that A GOOD MAN FROM THE DEPTHS OF HIS HEART BRINGS OUT GOOD THINGS AND THAT A WICKED MAN FROM THE DEPTHS OF HIS HEART BRINGS OUT WICKED THINGS. These words of the great master and teacher Jesus would be meaningless and untrue if human beings were born ‘sinful, evil or inclined to malice’. Human beings are not inclined to malice, they are inclined to happiness, dignity and peace. I don’t know about you but I have never woken up in the morning desiring and intending to be the worst human being I can be. I have always desired and intended to be the best that I can be. Jesus taught, BLESSED ARE THE PURE AT HEART BECAUSE THEY WILL SEE GOD. How could anyone be pure at heart if they were born intrinsically ‘sinful, evil or inclined to malice’? Jesus taught that, THOSE WHO ARE COMPASSIONATE AND FORGIVING WOULD BE FORGIVEN AND THAT THOSE WHO ARE INDIFFERENT AND UNFORGIVING WOULD BE TRAPPED BY THEIR OWN INDIFFERENCE AND UNFORGIVENESS. How can someone be forgiving if they were born intrinsically ‘sinful, evil or inclined to malice? So you see Jesus never taught such contradictory, confusing, sabotaging and backward teachings. He taught that people choose their character and that people determine the quality of their heart. We make ourselves good or bad.
Human beings have only ONE CREATOR and ONE ORIGINATOR of everything they are as human beings: Eledumare. Eledumare has not made any mistakes nor can anyone frustrate His perfectly laid out plans. Everything is moving perfectly according to His divine dispensation. There is a perfect and flawless plan and perfect chain of events running throughout creation. What we are experiencing as human beings is a part of that perfect plan.
When we objectively look at other Abrahamic belief systems like Judaism or Islam they also have their own variant of belief in regard to humans beings having something intrinsically negative or harmful within them.
When we consider the grand majority of Eastern Religions and/or Eastern Philosophies we will clearly see that they also are heavily laden with pessimistic ideas about life and human nature. According to Eastern Philosophy human beings are born in ‘maya’ in illusion, and to them life is something dreary, bleak, depressing and something to deny and run away from. The grand majority of eastern religions and philosophies are escapist in nature. Life and existence according to them is called ‘samsara’. Samsara means wearisome, tiring, aimless and pointless. To these systems life is not an intrinsically good thing. According to them it is better to deny life and escape! The more positive philosophies among them will at least acknowledge the goodness of the human soul but for some strange reason they account the human body as something negative. So they divide their own hearts and minds by all of these silly, foolish and self-defeating hair-splitting arguments, categorizations and conclusions! Ifá teaches us that all of the human being is one indivisible bundle of goodness, as befits the Sublime Creator Eledumare who created us. The whole of the human being is sacred, good and wonderful.
Ifá is a 100% optimistic, positive, holistic, and uplifting religion, philosophy and manner of life. Ifá explains things with such depth, clarity and reality that Ifá bestows immediate emotional, psychological and spiritual healing and correction to anyone who takes the time and makes the effort to consider and study Ifá. Ifá explains the positives and negatives of life within a context of positivity, optimism, dignity, divine achievement and satisfying meaning.
Contrary to pessimistic belief systems, pessimistic religions and pessimistic ideologies, Ifá teaches us that beyond all appearances humanity is fundamentally good, noble and divine but this goodness, nobility and divine nature has to be cultivated, practiced, developed and perfected [matured]. Our intrinsic goodness does not develop by itself or on automatic, we have to apply our will and effort because it is the maturing of our will, thoughts, intelligence and emotions that Ifá is gently encouraging and developing in us. Ifá reveals that we enter this world in innocence, but in an initial beginning state of immaturity, or we have our beginning in an undeveloped state or condition. Our sole constitution is of the nature of ogbe [light, life, increase, fluidity, progress and movement] but in his infinite wisdom Olodumare adds to us the training element of oyeku [darkness, death, decrease, solidity, resistence and inertia]. To what end does Olodumare do this? To create the basis of choice, achievement, fulfillment and satisfaction. To create the basis for free moral agency. To create the basis and criteria that enables us to know and determine what is good and bad, proper and improper and what is correct or incorrect.
We are divine seeds of pure goodness which have been planted in the soil of adversity, challenges, negative-resistance and difficulties so that we can discover our innate divine nature and develop our intellectual, moral, emotional, reflective and spiritual muscles. The provisional and [temporary] negative aspects of life are the necessary and needed contrast that will enable us to grow, develop and flourish as children of Eledumare. The provisional and [temporary] negative aspects of life are the sparring partners and spiritual weights that we train with to develop our innate but yet undeveloped and uncultivated noble qualities, powers and abilities that are yet to be matured [perfected]. And it is in this sense of maturing that the words saving and salvation apply in the Ifá conception of life.
Salvation in Ifá is not about switching out one nature for another. Salvation in Ifá is not about running away from life or trying to escape from life. Salvation in Ifá is not about fearfully trying the gain the love and favor of God because God already loves us and favors us. We relate to Eledumare in a spirit of love, gratitude, trust and awe. Eledumare can and will disclipline and chasten us when needed, even with severity [intensity] when the occasion calls for it, but he can never do us any harm. Even the apparent ‘hardness’ of Eledumare is pure love, goodness and good-will. Eledumare created us for Himself and He will see us ALL through [in His own way and time] to PERFECTION AND EXCELLENCE.
Salvation in Ifá is about immersing ourselves in the reality of life as it is, and embracing life to make a better life for ourselves and others. Salvation in Ifá is about discovering and nurturing our singular noble true-self and our singular noble-nature which we refer to as IPONRI. Ifá is about walking and relating to Eledumare as our best friend, companion and wellwisher. If we practice the good we will experience the good. If we practice what is bad then our own unwholesome actions will reprove and punish us.
Everything exists to help us in our development, unfoldment and growth. We are now individually and collective exactly as Eledumare intended. We begin in weakness and we end in strength. We begin in ignorance and we end in complete and well-rounded understanding. We begin as earth bound ‘caterpillars’ but we end up as sky bound ‘butterflies’.
Yes, there is some pain, sorrow and sadness on the journey but everything is not pain, sorrow or sadness. There is also joy, enthusiasm, excitement, friendship, love, inspiration and satisfying effort and achievement. The negativite aspects of life that we see and experience outside of ourselves and within ourselves are for our benefit, enhancement and growth. Saving and salvation in Ifá refers to all of that which we experience in the process of realizing the purpose and meaning of our existence: Ifáyelele.
Having explained the basic Ifá conception of life I will now proceed to the main topic under consideration. While I could go on to elaborate on more related topics but I think I will leave it here since I do not want to make this message too long and I do not want to lose the focus, patience and interest of the kind readers.
I will briefly share with you now the four main ways in which Ifá saves.
[1]: Ifá saves us [enlightens, assists and helps us] by making known to us in clear, experiential and reasonable ways the principles, understandings and ways of conduct by which we are to live our lives. How much pain, emotional strain and psychological stress could have been avoided in our lives if we lived honest, quiet and productive lives? How many troubles, mishaps and headaches could we have been saved from if we followed Ifá’s advice to not involve ourselves in things that do not pertain to us and in things that are none of our business? How many unsavory things would we be saved from if our conduct, behavior, manners and demeanor were according to the good teachings and example of Ifá?
[2]: Ifá saves us by exercising the power of divine manifestation in our lives to deflect hurtful, useless and dangerous things, people, situations, circumstances and antagonistic energies from our lives. Ifá saves us by exercising the power of divine manifestation in our lives by attracting to us positive, success bestowing and opportunity granting situations and circumstances. Ifá saves us by attracting good, wise and useful people to our lives. Ifá saves us by leading and guiding us to render relief, aid, help and benefit [or salvation] to others. When we take care of others, others will take care of us. When we save others, others will save us. Through mutual collaboration, benevolence and effort we advance and gain.
[3]: Ifá saves us by giving us a sound, healthy, profound and truthful outlook, perspective and understanding of life, and our place in it. Ifá saves us by correcting and removing erroneous, untruthful, immature and injurious views and beliefs from our minds and lives. Ifá saves us by removing the negative imprints of past unwholesome conditionings, traumas and impressions. Ifá implants within us through accurate knowledge and through the bestowal of àse, an understanding, experience and comprehension of our true nature, our lives in relation to one another, and our lives in relation to Eledumare that is so inspiring, empowering and uplifting that once we have this we are fixed in our course of forward progress and attainment. Ifá is so sweet, clear and satisfying that the heart and mind naturally and with cheer responds to the wholesome and uplifting attracting and drawing power of Ifá.
[4]: Ifá saves us from disillusionment by giving us a true hope, by giving us an understanding of what we should actually be expecting in life and from life. Ifá does not give us false hopes, neither does Ifá give us a vision of unrealistic and/or unrealizable expectations. Ifá teaches us in truth what our expectations of ourselves and others should be. Ifá saves us by making it clear and without sugar coating it that in life we will not be able to avoid all undesirable and painful things. Ifá saves us by communicating to us that there are certain experiences, both pleasant and unpleasant, which have been programmed into our lives that we will not be able to avoid. These occurrences fall within the category of that which we call destiny. In Ifá destiny does not mean that everything in our lives has been pre-determined. Ifá does not teach us fatalism. Our lives are our own and we are always free to choose a positive, useful and productive life, and we are also free to choose the way we respond to life’s challenges, sufferings  and difficulties when they appear. Destiny in Ifá means specific things that Eledumare has chosen for us to experience that we cannot avoid. Ifá saves us by deflecting calamity, illness and mishap from our lives, but Ifá also saves us by explaining to us that some negative experiences cannot and will not be defected, but what Ifá will do during these periods of challenge and adversity is to infuse and empower us with àse, so that we are made strong and resilient so that our mind, emotions and spirit will be fortified so that we can endure the challenge and adversity with calm, courage, serenity, composure and a contented mind. Ifá can extinguish a dangerous and out of control fire and/or Ifá can give us the power, strength and protection to walk through that fire without getting scorched [by the difficulties, problems, conflicts and challenges of life]! When we come out on the other side of the fire we will not even have the smell of smoke on us!!!
So, Ifá saves us by deflecting difficult, painful and challenging things from our lives, and Ifá saves us by giving us empowerment to calmly endure the difficulty, pain and challenge with composure, patience and a joyful attitude until it passes.
Only by undergoing this process of growth and development which is marked with moments of pain but which is also permeated with joy, happiness and satisfaction will we be able to enter into, enjoy and be established in Ifáyelele [the perfected or matured state].
Ifá gbe wa ooo!
Aboru Aboye. Ogbo ato asure iworiwofun. Àse.
Stinginess, Indifference, Ingratitude

IFÁ-ORISA: Most People Life Problems are Caused by their own Stinginess, Indifference and Ingratitude

Ifá-Orisa: Not all problems, setbacks and life difficulties are due to witchcraft, bad spirits or divine decrees. Most problems are self-created and avoidable. There is no spiritual-curse, bad-spirit and negative-witchcraft worse than being a stingy, indifferent and unappreciative person:

Aboru Aboye. Ogbo ato asure iworiwofun. Àse.

One of the things that one unfortunately and often witnesses in today’s spiritual arena is that when someone approaches a spiritual practitioner to receive answers, solutions and guidance, the spiritual practitioner will tell the person 90% of the time if not more that his or her problems are due to ‘witchcraft’ or the influence of ‘negative spiritual influences’. Lucky for the inquiring person that for a nominal fee of ‘x’ amount of dollars the ‘spiritual practitioner’ always has the solution, rite and/or ritual to undo the ‘witchcraft’ and/or has the means to vanquish the unwanted spiritual energy, or has the wisdom and power to repair/fix the problem, no matter what it is! The problem can be spiritual, emotional, psychological and/or medical but don’t worry because these ‘spiritual practitioners’ always have the solution to your problems!!! The truth of the matter is that a great many ‘spiritual practitioners’ are nothing more than fraudsters and charlatans who are living in a very dangerous fantasy land of their own making!!! These charlatan ‘spiritualists, priests and priestesses’ are in the business of selling imaginary solutions to other people’s very real spiritual, emotional, psychological and medical problems! These charlatan ‘spiritualists, priests and priestesses’ are often delusional people, psychologically unwell people, and emotionally unstable people who believe in their own lies and who also believe in their own make-believe, deceptive and fantasy solutions and remedies. These crafty charlatan ‘spiritual practitioners’ are there only to make money by hook or crook. These shameless and deluded charlatan ‘spiritual practitioners’ are there to make money at the expense of your spiritual, emotional, psychological and medical health!! The default and go to answer of these fraudsters and charlatans is to ALWAYS tell their unfortunate clients that their problems are caused in part or entirely by ‘witchcraft’, ‘bad spirits’ or other similar causes! Ignorance combined with undeserved trust and a willingness to believe in such backward and deceptive people will spell disaster, grief and suffering to all parties concerned and involved, including the charlatan ‘spiritual practitioner’.

While there is no doubt that at times the lives of people can be temporarily obstructed, hindered and adversely affected by the influence of negative energies and/or by the malicious/envious/sabotaging intent or ‘witchcraft’ of others, in most cases the cause of people’s problems lies elsewhere. There is no ‘negative-witchcraft’ and/or ‘negative-spirit’ worse than one’s own STINGINESS, INDIFFERENCE and INGRATITUDE! Yet there are some people who like to be told that the cause of their problems and failures is ‘witchcraft’ or ‘bad spirits’ because as long as the cause of their problems or failures is ‘witchcraft’ or ‘bad spirits’ then they no longer have to honestly look at themselves and the wrong way in which they have been living their lives. As long as the convenient cause is ‘witchcraft’ or ‘bad spirits’, that gives them an ‘excuse’ to not take charge of their own lives and do the work of correcting, improving and reforming themselves. Such people will gladly pay a charlatan and fraudster to tell them [convince them] that the problem is not them, but that the problem and failure in their lives is due to ‘witchcraft’, ‘curses’, the ‘evil-eye’ or ‘bad-spirits’. Superstitious thinking or a superstitious mentality is a curse unto itself!!! A superstitious person is the author of his or her own fears, worries and anxieties and is easily taken advantage of, controlled and manipulated by human spiritual predators [the charlatan spiritual practitioner, priest or priestess].

Let us learn some Ifá today. Let us learn something from Ogunda Meji. This lesson is for those of us who are spiritually mature and/or for those who want to spiritually mature and grow through the power of truth, honesty, actuality and reality.

In Ogunda Meji we will learn how King Olofin was the architect of his problems through GREEDINESS, STINGINESS and acts of UNGRATEFULNESS.

Holy Odu-Ifá Ogunda Meji:

“Oju o kan won laaro

Lale, lale loju n kan won

A difa fun, Òrúnmìlà, Ifá n ro omo

Agbonniregun,

Ifá o lowo ti o fi te omo re nifa.”

“They are never in a hurry in the morning. But they are hurrying up at night. Ifá consultation was performed for Òrúnmìlà. Ifá complains about Agbonnireguns son. Òrúnmìlà has no money with which to initiate his own offspring”.

At one time prince Olofin really needed and wanted the help, guidance and assistance of Òrúnmìlà. Long-story-short Òrúnmìlà helped prince Olofin and made it possible for prince Olofin to become the king of Ootu-Ife. Now because of the help that Òrúnmìlà gave to prince Olofin he was now a King living in affluence, luxury and abundance. When Olofin became king, Òrúnmìlà needed the help of King Olofin. Òrúnmìlà speedily approached the king because Òrúnmìlà needed to BORROW some money from King Olofin to heal his sons illness which would be remedied thru initiation. On the advice of Elegbara, Òrúnmìlà went to see king Olofin to ask him for some assistance. You would think that after all Òrúnmìlà did for him that the King would just give Òrúnmìlà what he was asking for since it was not a large sum. The King spent daily and in useless, unnecessary and unpractical things much much more than what Òrúnmìlà was seeking to borrow from him. You will not believe this but King Olofin told Òrúnmìlà that he would LEND him the requested amount, only if Òrúnmìlà could provide a guarantor as collateral! Elegbara [Esu Odara] brought one of his sons called Atapatase to serve as colateral and guarantor, and to serve the king as a servant until the time that Òrúnmìlà would pay back the borrowed money! After all Òrúnmìlà did for him he asked for collateral and a guarantor before granting the loan!!!

One day Elegbara visited Atapatase and gave him a hoe which he instructed Atapatase to be using hereafter. [***The hidden meaning of this action by Atapatase of using the hoe on the Kings land meant that the King was digging a hole for himself for his disrespectful, indifferent and inconsiderate actions towards Òrúnmìlà, Òrúnmìlà’s son, Esu Odara and Esu Odara’s son***] As soon as Atapatase began using the hoe to work the land of King Olofin immediately several catastrophes began to befall the entire household of King Olofin. One of the catastrophes was that one of King Olofin’s sons, who was called Abolowopowo, fell seriously ill. [***Because the King did not have sympathy for the illness of Òrúnmìlà’s son, his own son was also experiencing the same illness***]. The more Atapatase worked the field the more ill did Abolowopowo become. King Olofin sent for the royal babalawo and the babalawo revealed the Odu Ogunda Meji. Ogunda Meji revealed that one of the king’s servants was responsible for the bad happenings and that this servant needed to be stopped immediately. The son of Elegbara, Atapatase was identified as the apparent ‘cause’ and was told to stop working, but Atapatase, son of Elegbara refused to stop working and said:

“Oju o kan won laaro

Lalaale loju n kan won

Hin…n

A difa fun, Òrúnmìlà

Ifá n romo Agbonniregun

Hin…n

Ifá o lowo to o fi te omo re nifa

Hin…n

Abolowopowo n lomo Olofin o

Hin…n

Atapatase lomo Esu Odara o

Hin…n

A ki i ma maa yani lofa ka ma sinni o

A ki i ma maa yani lofa ka ma sinni

Ee

A ki i ma maa yani lofa ka ma sinni.”

Translation:

“They never hurried in the morning. It was in the night that they were hurrying up. Yes. Ifá oracle was consulted for Òrúnmìlà. Ifá complained about Agbonirregun’s son. Yes. Òrúnmìlà has no money to initiate his son [and thereby heal him]. Yes. Abolowopowo is the son of Olofin. Yes. It is not possible for a servant to not serve his master. Yes.”

Meaning:

[***This verse of Ifá means and refers to the heart condition of some people that when they are in need of help and assistance they are quick to come to see you expecting you to help them. And without fail and with genuine sympathy for their situation you lovingly and repeatedly help them and assist them to the best of your means and ability to resolve their problems, but on the one rare occasion when you need them or are counting on their help they refuse to help, or they give you many excuses for not helping you. Or if they do help they do it with reluctance, they make you feel like a nuisance. When they needed you, you did not belittle them or make them feel that they were a nuisance. As a good friend, devotee and priest you made their many problems your priority, but they on the other hand gave no priority or importance to your singular problem or situation. They were quick to ask you for help but after you helped them their sense of gratitude and indebtedness was short lived. On the other hand when you needed them, they avoided you and left you and your situation for ‘later’ that is IF they were able to rustle up some time at all!! When they need you they will call you many times or they will show up at your home or wherever you may happen to be. But when you need them they are nowhere to be found.***]

Let us continue with the Ifá story and lesson.

After King Olofin identified Atapatase as the apparent cause of his household problems he ordered Atapatase to stop working. Atapatase refused to stop working until both Òrúnmìlà and Elegbara were invited. It was then that King Olofin realized his great mistake, ingratitude and indifference towards Òrúnmìlà and his sick son, as well as his lack of consideration towards Atapatase, the son of Esu Odara. He then and there begged them for their forgiveness, made rectification and reparations. Now the King understood that he alone was the sole and true cause of all the mishap, calamity, illnesses and setbacks which were manifesting in the palace among his family. Fortunately for King Olofin, Òrúnmìlà forgave and pardoned him. King Olofin then gifted to Òrúnmìlà two-hundred she-goats, two-hundred dried fishes, two-hundred bush rats and two-thousand cowries.

What does this lesson teach us. This lesson teaches us that there is no worse ‘witchcraft’, ‘bad spirit’ and/or ‘spiritual curse’ that one’s own stinginess, indifference and lack of gratitude. An unappreciative attitude will ruin your home and relationships and make everything dear to you ‘sick’ and ‘ill’. Our own ungrateful and thoughtless actions will surely catch up to us, bringing sorrow, shame and affliction to ourselves and our household. It is better to be appreciative, grateful and generous. It is better to remember the kindness of others and compensate them [help them] when they are in need, especially when we are in a position to help and give relief. May we in a timely manner wake-up, open our eyes and correct [rectify] ourselves. There is no ‘witchcraft’, ‘bad spirit’, ‘evil eye’ or ‘spiritual curse’ worse than being a stingy, indifferent and unappreciative person.

May Òrúnmìlà Ajana Ekun be pleased with us. Àse.

May Òrúnmìlà Ajana Ekun protect, defend and illumine us. Àse.

May Òrúnmìlà Ajana Ekun grant us forgiveness and pardon, as he did to the people of the land of serenity [tranquility]. Àse.

May Òrúnmìlà Ajana Ekun envelop us in his love, sympathy and strength. Àse.

Aboru Aboye. Ogbo ato asure iworiwofun. Àse.

~ Awo Òrúnmìlà Mark Casillas

super_power

THE DIVINE SUPER-POWER. THE UNFAILING SACRED TALISMAN OF THE WISE

Aboru Aboye

In devotion to Ifá and the irunmole-orisa iwure [prayer] holds the place of greatest importance. Nothing in Ifá and irunmole-orisa devotion can work and/or be successful without iwure. Without iwure no ebo will be received, accepted and approved. In the absence of iwure no connection can be made with the irunmole-orisa. Ifá recitation is an expression of iwure. Our traditional songs of praise are also expressions of iwure. Our personal requests and petitions before Ifá and the irunmole-orisa are an expression of iwure. Our sacred rites and rituals are expressions and extensions of our iwure. Iwure is that which sustains you and gives foundation, stability and rootedness to your life. Iwure is that which attracts the blessings of goodness from the unseen realm and causes them to become manifest in our realm of action.

In our wonderful Ifá tradition the experience, quality and concept of iwure is very different from that of other traditions or faiths. Iwure is not begging the divine to help us out or do us a favor. Iwure is not attempting to bribe, barter and negotiate with the divine. In Ifá and esin orisa ibile we do not practice iwure from a position of fear, worry, guilt, coercion or anxiety. We begin our iwure by understanding and knowing that we are greatly cherished and loved by the divine, and that we are fully accepted by the divine as we presently are. We begin in a state of fundamental goodness, dignity, innocence and worthiness.

Iwure is an invisible, unassailable and very real meeting place between two or more friends who love, respect, understand, appreciate and accept each other as they truly and honestly are. No guilt. No fear. No worry. No anxiety. No pretense and no pretending. Just genuine friendship, acceptance, love and trust. Iwure is our longing for and affinity with the divine. Iwure is the manifestation of our response to the attracting power of the divine realm. Iwure is our sensitivity, responsiveness and receptivity to the divine àse. Iwure is the opening up of our hearts and our desire [willingness] to entrust ourselves to the irunmole-orisa who in turn are the expressions of Olódùmarè. Iwure is the vessel that is able to receive unto itself and retain the energy, love and strength of the irunmole-orisa. Iwure is also the sentiment of awe, love, attraction and respect that we have for the divine.

Olódùmarè and his emanations the irunmole-orisa only desire our friendship, nearness and confidence. Once the love of the divine pierces and enters our hearts our trajectory to assured success, happiness and victory is set, and nothing can obstruct or hinder us any longer. Many people ask me from where do I get my understanding, knowledge, wisdom, strength, inspiration and sublime feeling for things. My answer to this question is iwure as explained above. Everything is included in iwure. Everything needful and good flows from and comes from iwure. In iwure there is power. In iwure there is comfort and wisdom. In iwure there is sweet communion and empowerment. In iwure their is clarity. In iwure there is unassailable protection and safety. Iwure is not only the spoken words but the intense feeling, longing and attraction to the sacred, awe-inspiring, holy and divine. Iwure is the intense desire to clearly understand and apprehend the divine reality and to pattern one’s life according to that understanding. If you carefully observe and analyze all the things that we practice in Ifá and in esin orisa ibile you will discover that all we do exists as a support to iwure or as an expression of iwure. Without iwure there is no Ifá, no isese and no esin orisa ibile. Iwure is the sincere, honest and pure heart that is reaching out in hope to make contact with the sublime, beautiful and joy conferring energies of creation. Iwure is our intention and effort to take hold of the rope of life that has been extended to us. Iwure is our response and reaction to the great and wonderful love, comfort, strength and encouragement that we receive from the orisa. In iwure immediate and direct contact is made with the sublime energies, powers and intelligences of nature.

This is a deep, wonderful and glorious mystery. [***In our Ifá tradition the word mystery does not mean something unknown or unknowable. The word MYSTERY in Ifá and esin orisa ibile means something that can definitely be known by us but only through our own direct and personal experience of it.***] This direct or personally known [directly experienced] reality is what we call mystical experience or mystical knowledge. The knowledge here refered to means experiential awareness [direct perception] and not intellectual information. This knowing is the knowing of the heart. This mystical experience and mystical knowledge [understanding] is what people are really looking for and needing when they initiate. This mystical experience and mystical knowledge [understanding] is what sincere students want to receive [and need to receive] from their study and practice of the secret [confidential] teachings of Ifá and esin orisa ibile [the noble way of the orisa]. This mystical experience and divine knowledge [direct experiential comprehension] is what sincere students and initiates are expecting to receive, looking to receive and experience as a result of their personal association and interaction with their mentors [initiators]. When the mentor and initiator is mature and experienced in this mystical knowledge he or she can communicate this experience successfully to his or her students with understanding, depth, inspiration and clarity. If the mentor [initiator] has not had or experienced this mystical knowledge or has not matured in his appreciation, understanding and comprehension of this knowledge assuming that he or she has had the experience, then he or she will not be able to communicate satisfying truth, strength, hope and spiritual meaning [reality] to sincere students. He or she will not be able to satisfy the spiritual needs and the legitimate expectations of the student in any measure.

This truth explains why many initiates quickly lose their spiritual respect for their initiators and elders. Over time many lose much of their fervor for the tradition because they find that there are in fact relatively few people who have and share the sincere fervor and lofty goals [thoughts] that they had when beginning their journey. They discover very early and very quickly that they made many assumptions that proved to be false and disheartening. Many good hearted people come to Ifá and to Orisa with great expectancy and hope as they should. They come with great trust, enthusiasm and faith in their mentors, elders or initiators but soon after initiation many discover that their chosen or recommended mentor is himself or herself in need of mentoring. They discover that their chosen or recommended mentor or initiator is not spiritual at all and has no spirituality and no divine knowledge to impart!! This happens more often than not! These sincere people came looking for people whom they took to be wise people, who might be able to answer their questions and help them resolve their life problem only to discover the people that they took to be wise elders know nothing of true spirituality, that they have no answer for themselves much less for others, and that instead of helping them to find relief from their troubles they only added to their problems, troubles and worries!!! This is why one must take ones time in seeking out a mentor and initiator. One must first get to know people well over an extended period of time before making any type of spiritual decision in regard to accepting someone as a mentor and/or initiator. Let us continue with our topic of iwure.

The true understanding and purpose of things can only by apprehended by this direct experience. This direct experience can only be had by constant association with the divine and divine people. The connecting link between us and the divine and divine people is iwure or divine conversation, communion and fellowship. Love blended with iwure equals true-faith and authentic spirituality. Iwure is the bonding of the spiritual and invisible hearts of two or more persons.

Cultivate your iwure. Recite your Ifá prayers with feeling and clarity of understanding. Speak frequently, honestly and truthfuly with your chosen Orisa and trust fully what you receive from that contact. The Orisa will enlighten, guide and instruct you with gracefulness, sweetness and comfort. Eliminate the middle man. Go straight to the source. Perfect yourself in iwure and you will know and experience wonderful and extraordinary blessings and divine manifestations. Strengthen your bond with the Orisa and with genuine devotees and your life will be filled with satisfaction, contentment and understanding. Be the kind of devotee that you wish others would be or should be. Do not allow others or what you see around you to set the standard of spirituality, excellence and acceptability. Set a higher standard than the mediocre one which you see in most places and abide by that higher standard by the strength of iwure and noble conduct and you will become a true leader eligible to assist, guide and empower others.