Being a master of iwa: The true and spiritual meaning of being an oluwo – a master, expert practitioner and owner of iwa.
Everyone can be a superior person, a moral person, a person of good character, but a great many are unwilling to be. Most people are seemingly ‘good’ for convenience purposes, to maintain appearances, to comply with social pressure or due to fear of loss due to public disapproval. There are few authentic men or women of iwa in today’s world. Iwa is the spirit and power that sustains, nourishes and governs the creation and iwa is the power that connects us to and gives us entrance to the divine spiritual world. Iwa is a divine, progressive, eternal energy, primordial intelligence and power that has no beginning and no end. When we are connected to this eternal power, energy and intelligence, we express this reality by good thoughts, good words, good actions, lofty demeanor and trustworthy behavior. These are the signs and symptoms of the presence of iwa in the life of a human being. The morality of a great many today is like the rise and fall of the mercury in the thermometer, it is like the changing colors of skin of the chameleon. Instead of being actually good, sincere, genuine and honest; people today feel virtuous and great pride in themselves by merely acting and pretending to be good, sincere, genuine and honest! Few people today know what real honor, divine knowledge, iwa and integrity are. No one needs to be a petty person, a self-seeking person, a fake-person, but that is what many are and want to be. To be sincere, faithful and respectful, to be amiable, harmonious and upright, to promote the worthy and praise the good, to benefit beings according to what is appropriate: all such things are the deeds of a superior person, a moral person, of a person of iwa. Such deeds are not hard to do. But people are unwilling to pursue this noble path from the heart — why?
To be devious, tricky and arrogant; to be coarse, rough, violent, lustful and deceptive; to speak of the shortcomings of others, to speak of the flaws of others while not acknowledging the excellent qualities in others. To elevate oneself at the expense of others. To hide ones own many flaws and shortcomings and to praise ones few virtues before others; are not such things the deeds of a petty person, of a hypocritical person, of an arrogant person, of a fake-person and of a self-seeking person. What is the benefit in practicing such a petty, hollow, superficial and meaningless life? Yet people are determined to live in this useless and meaningless way — why?
If you are a superior person, a person of genuine iwa, compassion and humility, the people will irresistibly be pleased with you, the irunmole-orisa will help and support you, and misfortune will not occur. You will seek and secure spiritual fulfillment, prosperity, fortune, and riches and you will gain much, because the spirit of honesty, kindness, iwa and good-will will support you and will cause your honest efforts to yield satisfying results.
But if you are a petty person, a manipulating and controlling person, an unfeeling person, a zig-zagging person, a person lacking iwa, integrity and honor, the people will mistrust you, the people will hate you, the people will see right through you and will not trust you and support you. The irunmole-orisa will be angry with you and will detest you, the irunmole-orisa will not take you seriously and will not listen to anything you have to say, your name will stink to the irunmole-orisa, the irunmole-orisa will withdraw themselves and their benefits from you, your person will be a taboo to them; and disaster, shame, dishonor and calamity will come to you. Your good fortune and your life span will be cut short, and you will suffer many losses.
Being an oluwo in the truest and highest sense is a rare and extraordinary attainment. It is a rare attainment and achievements reserved for the dedicated few. A true oluwo does not become an oluwo by mere socio-religio exercise. A true oluwo does not become an oluwo by the power of the purchasing power of money or due to the connection with worldly friends. A true oluwo is formed not only due to divine steps and activities in this life, but is formed due to the momentum and continuity of spiritual progress and efforts carried over from past existences. The true oluwo is one who is able to successfully guide and heal others. The true oluwo is able to win people over with his simplicity, love, honesty, wisdom and straightforwardness. The genuine oluwo does not lord it over people. The legitimate oluwo is not moved by the praises, flattery or verbal abuses of anyone because an oluwo is not conceited or self-absorbed. The destiny of an authentic oluwo is to selflessly serve others without arrogance, conceit, corrosive pride and airs of superiority. Oluwo is not a superficial title but is an earned state of being. Oluwo is the spirit of divine wisdom, grace, kindness and intelligence manifested in our world in a human form. Oluwo is more than human, the true oluwo is a divine being who hides his divine identity and glory and is only interested in illuminating others and in delivering people from their doubts, confusions, sorrows, sufferings and afflictions. The bonafide master, practitioner and owner of iwa is permeated with divine ase, gracefulness, serenity, contagious enthusiasm and the sentiment of the divine irunmole-orisa. A divine oluwo knows how to install and activate the spirit of wholesome self-esteem, confidence, kindness, hope, gentleness, and clarity in people. An oluwo abides in imperturbable peace, serenity and clarity. An oluwo sees things from the root and is not taken in by appearances. An oluwo is empowered to inspire trust, confidence and love in people. Oluwo or master, expert practitioner and owner of iwa is the embodiment of wisdom, power and compassion. Oluwo is a state of being, consciousness and manner of life. This divine state and condition of life is what gives elegance and attractiveness to ones knowledge of Ifá. This divine state and condition of life is what gives effectivness, power and authenticity to ones spiritual activities, rites and rituals. This divine state and condition of life is what attracts the irunmole-orisa and their blessings, guidance and power into ones life. The state and condition of oluwo is what makes makes a babalawo a babalawo, a babalorisa a babalorisa, an iyalorisa an iyalorisa and a genuine human being into a true divine human being. The status and condition of oluwo is not only related to Ifá practices, methodology, chants, priestly services and oracular practices. A person can know much Ifá, can know how to conduct and officiate all the mysteries, rites and rituals of Ifá and yet not have the oluwo state and condition of divine spirituality. There is many oluwo in name only but not in the actual reality and power of what oluwo means and stands for. Oluwo state and condition is what gives these practices meaning, power, credibility and efficacy. The oluwo state of being and inner condition of life transcends all religious practices, religions, sects, mysteries, names and titles; and is the heart and core of true saving knowledge. An oluwo does not have to go out to seek of anyone, nor does an oluwo need to promote himself, because his mastery and accomplishments in iwa ase will go out far and wide and will speak for him and will attract all good and auspicious things to him. Oluwo is not a temporary title that one earns or purchases from other human beings, but it is a spiritual attainment, condition and state of being that one has earned and that one discovers; and that others discern that one is firmly established in. Everything that such an oluwo blesses, oversees, institutes and approves will unfailingly prosper. Aspire to be such a master, expert practitioner and owner of iwa. Aspire to be a master of yourself and not others. Learn how to discipline, master and control your own life and you will be well on your way to true mastery, advancement and divine attainment. An oluwo exists to serve and not to be served. An oluwo does not praise himself to himself or before others. An oluwo delights in and glories only in displaying and exhibiting the eternal spirit and power of iwa in extraordinary, original, beneficial, practical and wonderful ways. An oluwo loves humility, meekness, moral courage, truthfulness and holy living. An oluwo is a being of few words but of great, meaningful and magnificent actions; and when an oluwo does speak, he speaks according to the truth of things, he speaks with depth and gracefulness, the oluwo speaks to benefit, uplift, encourage, admonish and empower others. An oluwo does not deliberately draw attention to himself. An oluwo does not speak about himself but about the ways of truth, kindness, harmony and holy wisdom. The words of such an oluwo penetrates to the depths of the hearts and minds of his listeners and brings about a great change and transformation in their attitudes, perceptions and manner of living. This is the true, confidential, spiritual and transcendent meaning of oluwo, a master practitioner of iwa and a true lineage holder and child of the primordial and all embracing iwa.