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YORUBA TRADITIONAL RELIGION BY OLUWOLE
Introduction

Looking at Yoruba religions, one must look at the entire area of Yoruba culture's exsistence. Yorubas are located basically in the southwestern part of Nigeria and in some parts of Benin and Togo. The history of the Yoruba religion seems to be somewhat of a controversial subject in most sources that deal with this topic. There was really no mention of when the religion started or the people because the beginning of their existence was always noted as being in Ife, the center where the Yoruba people descended from heaven. Ife is said to have been founded around a thousand years ago and there was some mention of the Yorubas might have descended from some middle eastern heritage.

As far as dealing with the actual religion's origin itself it only referred to that it was from a surviving religion of a "higher" religion. That religion is said to be from the Ancient Egyptian­Religion otherwise known as Khamet or Kemet. Being that the language of the Yorubas is so strongly tied to the culture there are many comparisons analyzed as to why there is a belief that Yoruba religion has been derived from Ancient Egyptian religion. For example, in Lucas's "The religion of the Yorubas" word comparisons are made. Such a comparison is made with the Ancient Egyptian God Amon: "The God Amon is one of the Gods formerly known to the Yorubas". The Yoruba words mon, mimon, "holy or sacred," are probably derived from the name of the God" (p.21).

Many of the sources which I encountered did not attempt to even approach the topic of the origin of the Yorubas Orisa (Orisha). The Orisha is one of the key spiritual elements of traditional Yoruba religion. It is an example of the many deep rooted meanings of the religion of the Yorubas. The Orisha, according to Baba Ifa Karade's "The Handbook of Yoruba Religious Concepts," are a series of Gods or divinities under the Yoruba's main­God, Olorun or Oludumare. Karade also argues that there are many striking similarities between the ancient Egyptians and the Yorubas. The Orisha are "... an expression of the principles and functions of divine power manifesting on nature"(p.23).

The actual word "Orisha" has a deep meaning itself. For example, the word ori is the "reflective spark of human consciousness embedded on human essense, and sha which is the ultimate potentiality of that consciousness." This gives a strong example of how strong language is tied to religion. This Ori is the aspect of the humans that is in a sense in control of their spiritual actions. The ori is divided into two which can be known as the ori apari and the ori apere. The ori apari represents the internal spiritual head and the ori apere represents the sign of an individuals personal protector. The common Orisha which seem to come up time after time are these major ones: Obatala, Elegba, Ogun, Yemoja, Oshun, Shango, and Oya.

Each of these gods has a specific purpose when dealing with the human spirit. Each of the orishas has a specifi color and natural environment associated with them. Obatala represents the embodiment of true purity of one's soul. Obatala is also said to represent ethical purity. Such purity is represented by pure whiteness. There is great measure taken to carry out the importance of this pure whiteness because the temples which worship the divinity Obatala have the color of white in all the instruments of worship. For example, the clothing of those involved with the worship in the temples are white. In addition, all the emblems are kept in white containers and the ornaments are white as are the beads for the priests and priestesses. Obatala is said to be the father of the Orisha and the divinity in charge of the carving of humans out of clay into the form they are today. He is worshiped or appeased to by his followers when they want children, revenge for wrong doings, cures for sickness.

Yemoja is the divinity that governs over all the waters or oceans. Yemoja is said to be the mother of all the Orisha. She is the water or ambiotic fluid in the mother's womb and the breasts which nurture a new born child. She is the Matriarchal head of the entire universe. Her natural environment are the salt water­oceans and the lakes and the colors associated with her are blue and crystal. There is much confusion concerning the subject matter as to who is the chief female divinity because the different sources represent different view points on this subject matter and this was really unclear.

Sango or Shango to non Yoruba speakers is said to be a human that is made into a deity. He was said to be the old ruler of Oyo that was hung because of his greed for power. Sango is the god of lightining in addition to being the Orisha of drum and dance. He is also known to change things into pure and valuabe objects. His followers come to him for legal problems, making bad situations better, and protection from enemies. His natural environment happens to be any place that has been struck lightning, and the base of trees. It is said that no god is more feared for malevolent action than sango.

Ogun is said to be the god of iron and basically everything that becomes iron. He is known for building or clearing paths for the building of civilizations and is the divinity of mechanization. Ogun is considered to be the holder of divine justice and truth. He is also said to be the executioner of the world. Natural environment are in the woods, railroads, and forges.

Oya is the divinity that is associated with the death or the rebirth into a new life. She is considered to be the wife of Sango. Oya is also known as the god of storms and hurricanes and has power over the winds. She is also the deity that is in charge of guarding the cemetary. Oshun is the deity of diplomacy and all giving or unconditional love. She is a river deity because she symbolizes clarity. She is the divinity of fertility and feminine essence. Oshun is said to represent the strenght of feminine love and the power of motherhood. It is she who is appeased when it comes time for a mother to give birth.

Elegba is the messenger of the deities and his major role is to negotiate between the other orisha and the humans and is very close to all the forces of the deities. He is in charge of giving from the humans to the divinities. Elegba is the one who tests the human souls. Even when worhsipping other divinities, he is also worshipped because of his important role in the Yoruba religion. Elegba can both punish and reward and is known for having great wisdom. He is also the divinity who takes the body upon death and the divinity that saves. Although he does not match the role exactly, he is what the western world would call the devil. Elegba is not evil.

It is particularly important to discuss the dieties because they represent such an important aspect of Yoruba traditional religion. The Yorubas have a deep and symbolic meaning attached to each of the divinities which is exhibited through prayer and worhsip. These divinities give the reader some idea of the powerful belief system of the Yorubas. Many scholars or anyone not familiar with the Yoruba system of worship which is based in the belief in more than one god, may see this religion as "superstitious" or "pagan".

The Yorubas have many festivals to give honor and praise to the many divinities within the Orisha system of belief. The Yoruba festivals are extremely elaborate and have much deep rooted meaning in practice related to them. Certain Yoruba towns have certain orishas which are honored. This is extremely important because it shows the diversity of yoruba culture and futhermore the differences of traditional Yoruba religion. It would be tedious and quite boring to examine and give an account of every single festival and the villages in which they take place because the Yoruba religion has so many towns. The topic could go on forever. However, I will give one account of this widely practiced aspect of Yoruba religion.

Among the people of Osogbo, the Orisa Osun is the center of the town's attention even though it is worshipped by the people in all areas of Yorubaland. The reason for this vast diversity may be due to the fact that there are major differences in the landscape of each of the villages where the Yorubas settled. Each orisa has a natural enviornment and a different emphasis may be put on a different orisa. For example, the reason why the people of Osogbo worship osun may be because their town was founded near a river and osun's natural environment is in fresh rivers and lakes. The historical legend or belief behind the worship of osun is that the people of Osogbo found it hard to find any fresh drinking water for the village. It was the divinity osun who gave the people of Osogbo fresh water. Osun has also been credited to give infertile women children.

In Yoruba traditional religion, life is circular. What is meant by this is in the Yoruba religion there is no such thing as death. Death is seen as a transition from the physical plain to the spiriitual plain. The life cycle of the Yorubas is very complex. Before an individual is born into the world, they choose a destiny with God (Olodumare)in heaven. The goal is to fulfill the destiny. There is one exception, once a child is born he or she forgets the destiny he or she has chosen. The purpose of this is for the individual to learn and gain wisdom for life in the spiritual plain. The Yoruba traditional religion believes in predestination. It is also important to point out that there is no hell in traditional Yoruba religion. The Yoruba believe that all one's wrong doings will be paid for and all good deads will be rewarded. Under the orisa system, the early cycle of life is called "morning". Morning of one's life spans from the time of birth to the age of fifty. It is in this time period that the individual learns and experiences life's most difficult lessons. This also the time where the Yorubas raise their families. The Yorubas believe that noone is a master in any area of life until they reach age fifty. The time period from the age of fifty until the transition into the spirit realm is called the evening. It is in this time period that individuals enjoy life the most. By this time most Yoruba men and women would have raised their children and have much free time to enjoy the fruits of their labor. The evening is a time period when the Yorubas prepare for their transition. Long life and family are the two most important blessings in Yoruba religion.

The Yoruba believe that there are three types of people: achievers, people who assist achievers, and bystanders. Whichever role one chooses dictates the �˜type of life that person will live. The babalawo is the most important figure in Yoruba religion on the physical plain. His role is one of great respect and experience. The Babalawo's training is long and indepth. It is said in some temples of Yoruba divination that Babalawos are said to stay in their temples for seven years before being released into the world to pracitce Orisha. The bablawo is the link between the divinities and man.

http://www.uga.edu/~aflang/YORUBA/PAPERS/OLUWOLE.html
Egungun, Egungun ni t'aiye ati jo! Ancestos, Ancestors come to earth and dance! "I'm sick of the war and the civilization that created it. Let's look to our dreams, and the magical; to the creations of the so-called primitive peoples for new inspirations." - Jaques Vache and Andre Breton "Capitalism is the astounding belief that the most wickedest of men will do the most wickedest of things for the greatest good of everyone." -John Maynard "You know that in our country there were even matriarchal societies where women were the most important element. On the Bijagos islands they had queens. They were not queens because they were the daughters of kings. They had queens succeeding queens. The religious leaders were women too..." -- Amilcar Cabral, Return to the Source, 1973
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quote:
Originally posted by Fagunwa:
Alafia OA
I am traveling right now so I don't have time to really respond to this completely, but there are some things that need to be added to it and others that need to be corrected. I'll be at home in two more weeks and will add my two cents then.

Great! That's precicely why I posted it. Thanks Fagunwa...
I feel like it's a beautiful system (Yoruba). However in "modern" time, I feel like this system could only stagnate our spiritual growth.
This should definitely be a requirement on the black curriculum, but not a social practice. I made these statements in an attempt to be educated and corrected.

I would replace the greek mythology and roman mythology in a heartbeat had I been given the opportunity.

Is there any literature surrounding the religion? Particularily dealing with passed down stories and traditions.
quote:
Originally posted by HeruStar:
I feel like it's a beautiful system (Yoruba). However in "modern" time, I feel like this system could only stagnate our spiritual growth.


Please explain why.

quote:
Is there any literature surrounding the religion? Particularily dealing with passed down stories and traditions.


I'll post some books when I have the chance...
In this system who governs our spiritual actions? How do we manipulate our emotions? What direction should we direct our will/actions? How do we cultivate our spirits? I don't see the answer to any of these questions in Yoruba tradition, that's why I feel like in this day spiritual growth would probably be stagnated by such a system?
There are certainly more thorough and better written descriptions of Yoruba cultures and religions available, but this description of Yoruba traditional religion is only an introduction to the religion. And unlike Christians who visit this site, Oshun's purpose for providing this information was not to convert members of the forum, but to inform us about Yoruba religion and how it relates to Yoruba culture. That is why the opening statement reads: "Looking at Yoruba religions, one must look at the entire area of Yoruba culture's existence." Therefore, this description of Yoruba religion and worldview should not threaten the values and beliefs that you have come to develop and it certainly should not cause you question the value of your own religion. If you find that Yoruba religion does not meet your satisfaction, its most likely because you are not from this area, have no cultural ties to the people there, and ultimately cannot identify with Yoruba culture. But just knowing that there are other belief systems out there, and more importantly, other ways of thinking and viewing the world, in my view, is beneficial.
Last edited {1}
quote:
Originally posted by HeruStar:
In this system who governs our spiritual actions? How do we manipulate our emotions? What direction should we direct our will/actions? How do we cultivate our spirits? I don't see the answer to any of these questions in Yoruba tradition, that's why I feel like in this day spiritual growth would probably be stagnated by such a system?


Why do you need an entity outside of yourself to "govern (Y)our spiritual actions"? How do you "manipulate (Y)our emotions now? You cultivate your spirit by doing what OA told you in another thread, developing IWA PELE meaning good character or smooth character. "Traditional Yoruba" is not a religion it is a way of viewing existence, it is a culture and if you are not born into it it takes years to become. We do not hand out tracks and you don't just come to real elders and say "teach me about this Yoruba stuff". It does not work that way. I don't need anyone's tithes or offerings. I am not Lukumi.
You could not possibly "be stagnated" by becoming an aborisha. You may be stagnated by your involvement in the Xtian, biblical,european derived life experiences. Look carefully at what you asked above and see what you would surmise about the spiritual developement of a person who asked YOU those questions. How seriously would you take that persons rebuke of your way of life?
Last edited {1}
quote:
Originally posted by Oshun Auset:
YORUBA TRADITIONAL RELIGION BY OLUWOLE
Introduction

Looking at Yoruba religions, one must look at the entire area of Yoruba culture's exsistence. Yorubas are located basically in the southwestern part of Nigeria and in some parts of Benin and Togo. The history of the Yoruba religion seems to be somewhat of a controversial subject in most sources that deal with this topic. There was really no mention of when the religion started or the people because the beginning of their existence was always noted as being in Ife, the center where the Yoruba people descended from heaven. Ife is said ( SAID BY WHO?) to have been founded around a thousand years ago and there was some mention of the Yorubas might have descended from some middle eastern heritage (READ ARAB HERE).

As far as dealing with the actual religion's origin itself it only referred to that it was from a surviving religion of a "higher" religion ( WHAT WOULD THE HIGHER RELGION BE?). That religion is said to be from the Ancient Egyptian­Religion otherwise known as Khamet or Kemet(THAT DAMN LUCAS!). Being that the language of the Yorubas is so strongly tied to the culture there are many comparisons analyzed as to why there is a belief that Yoruba religion has been derived from Ancient Egyptian religion. For example, in Lucas's (HERE WE GO)"The religion of the Yorubas" word comparisons are made. Such a comparison is made with the Ancient Egyptian God Amon: "The God Amon is one of the Gods formerly known to the Yorubas". The Yoruba words mon, mimon, "holy or sacred," are probably derived from the name of the God" (THE JAMAICAN WORD IRE IS THE SAME AS THE YORUBA WORD FOR GOOD FORTUNE SO JAMAICANS ARE REALLY YORUBAS LOL!)(p.21).

Many of the sources which I encountered did not attempt to even approach the topic of the origin of the Yorubas Orisa (Orisha). The Orisha is one of the key spiritual elements of traditional Yoruba religion. It is an example of the many deep rooted meanings of the religion of the Yorubas. The Orisha, according to Baba Ifa Karade's "The Handbook of Yoruba Religious Concepts," are a series of Gods or divinities under the Yoruba's main ­God, Olorun or Oludumare. Karade also argues that there are many striking similarities between the ancient Egyptians and the Yorubas. The Orisha are "... an expression of the principles and functions of divine power manifesting on nature"(p.23).

The actual word "Orisha" has a deep meaning itself. For example, the word ori is the "reflective spark of human consciousness embedded on human essense, and sha which is the ultimate potentiality of that consciousness." (THIS IS JUST WRONG)This gives a strong example of how strong language is tied to religion. This Ori is the aspect of the humans that is in a sense in control (THIS IS JUST WRONG)of their spiritual actions. The ori is divided into two which can be known as the ori apari and the ori apere (THIS IS INCOMPLETE). The ori apari represents the internal spiritual head and the ori apere represents the sign of an individuals personal protector. The common Orisha which seem to come up time after time are these major ones: Obatala, Elegba, Ogun, Yemoja, Oshun, Shango, and Oya.( THIS IS TRUE IN THE DIASPORA)

Each of these gods has a specific purpose when dealing with the human spirit. Each of the orishas has a specific color and natural environment associated with them. Obatala represents the embodiment of true purity of one's soul. Obatala is also said to represent ethical purity. Such purity is represented by pure whiteness. There is great measure taken to carry out the importance of this pure whiteness because the temples which worship the divinity Obatala have the color of white in all the instruments of worship. For example, the clothing of those involved with the worship in the temples are white. In addition, all the emblems are kept in white containers and the ornaments are white as are the beads for the priests and priestesses(IN THE DIASPORA). Obatala is said to be the father of the Orisha and the divinity in charge of the carving of humans out of clay into the form they are today. He is worshiped or appeased to by his followers when they want children, revenge for wrong doings, cures for sickness.

Yemoja is the divinity that governs over all the waters or oceans. Yemoja is said to be the mother of all the Orisha. She is the water or ambiotic fluid in the mother's womb and the breasts which nurture a new born child. She is the Matriarchal head of the entire universe. Her natural environment are the salt water­oceans and the lakes and the colors associated with her are blue and crystal. There is much confusion concerning the subject matter as to who is the chief female divinity because the different sources represent different view points on this subject matter and this was really unclear.

Sango or Shango to non Yoruba speakers is said to be a human that is made into a deity. He was said to be the old ruler of Oyo that was hung because of his greed for power. Sango is the god of lightining in addition to being the Orisha of drum and dance. He is also known to change things into pure and valuabe objects. His followers come to him for legal problems, making bad situations better, and protection from enemies. His natural environment happens to be any place that has been struck lightning, and the base of trees. It is said that no god is more feared for malevolent action than sango.

Ogun is said to be the god of iron and basically everything that becomes iron. He is known for building or clearing paths for the building of civilizations and is the divinity of mechanization. Ogun is considered to be the holder of divine justice and truth. He is also said to be the executioner of the world. Natural environment are in the woods, railroads, and forges.

Oya is the divinity that is associated with the death or the rebirth into a new life. She is considered to be the wife of Sango. Oya is also known as the god of storms and hurricanes and has power over the winds. She is also the deity that is in charge of guarding the cemetary. Oshun is the deity of diplomacy and all giving or unconditional love. She is a river deity because she symbolizes clarity. She is the divinity of fertility and feminine essence. Oshun is said to represent the strenght of feminine love and the power of motherhood. It is she who is appeased when it comes time for a mother to give birth.

Elegba is the messenger of the deities and his major role is to negotiate between the other orisha and the humans and is very close to all the forces of the deities. He is in charge of giving from the humans to the divinities. Elegba is the one who tests the human souls. Even when worhsipping other divinities, he is also worshipped because of his important role in the Yoruba religion. Elegba can both punish and reward and is known for having great wisdom. He is also the divinity who takes the body upon death and the divinity that saves. Although he does not match the role exactly, he is what the western world would call the devil. Elegba is not evil.

It is particularly important to discuss the dieties because they represent such an important aspect of Yoruba traditional religion. The Yorubas have a deep and symbolic meaning attached to each of the divinities which is exhibited through prayer and worhsip. These divinities give the reader some idea of the powerful belief system of the Yorubas. Many scholars or anyone not familiar with the Yoruba system of worship which is based in the belief in more than one god, may see this religion as "superstitious" or "pagan".

The Yorubas have many festivals to give honor and praise to the many divinities within the Orisha system of belief. The Yoruba festivals are extremely elaborate and have much deep rooted meaning in practice related to them. Certain Yoruba towns have certain orishas which are honored. This is extremely important because it shows the diversity of yoruba culture and futhermore the differences of traditional Yoruba religion. It would be tedious and quite boring to examine and give an account of every single festival and the villages in which they take place because the Yoruba religion has so many towns. The topic could go on forever. However, I will give one account of this widely practiced aspect of Yoruba religion.

Among the people of Osogbo, the Orisa Osun is the center of the town's attention even though it is worshipped by the people in all areas of Yorubaland.(OH MAN THE OSUN RIVER IN IN OSOGBO!!) The reason for this vast diversity may be due to the fact that there are major differences in the landscape of each of the villages where the Yorubas settled. Each orisa has a natural enviornment and a different emphasis may be put on a different orisa. For example, the reason why the people of Osogbo worship osun (IS THIS PERSON SAYING THERE ARE NO OMOOBATALA IN OSOGBO?)may be because their town was founded near a river and osun's natural environment is in fresh rivers and lakes. The historical legend or belief behind the worship of osun is that the people of Osogbo found it hard to find any fresh drinking water for the village. It was the divinity osun who gave the people of Osogbo fresh water. Osun has also been credited to give infertile women children.

In Yoruba traditional religion, life is circular. What is meant by this is in the Yoruba religion there is no such thing as death. Death is seen as a transition from the physical plain to the spiriitual plain. The life cycle of the Yorubas is very complex. Before an individual is born into the world, they choose a destiny with God (Olodumare)in heaven. The goal is to fulfill the destiny. There is one exception, once a child is born he or she forgets the destiny he or she has chosen. The purpose of this is for the individual to learn and gain wisdom for life in the spiritual plain. The Yoruba traditional religion believes in predestination. It is also important to point out that there is no hell in traditional Yoruba religion.(TRUE) The Yoruba believe that all one's wrong doings will be paid for and all good deads will be rewarded. Under the orisa system, the early cycle of life is called "morning". Morning of one's life spans from the time of birth to the age of fifty. It is in this time period that the individual learns and experiences life's most difficult lessons. This also the time where the Yorubas raise their families. The Yorubas believe that noone is a master in any area of life until they reach age fifty(OR BECOME GRANDFATHER). The time period from the age of fifty until the transition into the spirit realm is called the evening. It is in this time period that individuals enjoy life the most. By this time most Yoruba men and women would have raised their children and have much free time to enjoy the fruits of their labor. The evening is a time period when the Yorubas prepare for their transition. Long life and family are the two most important blessings in Yoruba religion.

The Yoruba believe that there are three types of people: achievers, people who assist achievers, and bystanders(NOT TRUE). Whichever role one chooses dictates the �˜type of life that person will live. The babalawo is the most important figure in Yoruba religion on the physical plain (I HATE THE WAY THIS IS PHRASED. THE AWO IS LIKE A REPOSITORY FOR THE MYSTERY OF IFA HE IS THE LIBRARY. THIS DOES NOT MAKE HIM "MOST IMPORTANT") . His role is one of great respect and experience. The Babalawo's training is long and indepth. It is said in some temples of Yoruba divination that Babalawos are said to stay in their temples for seven years before being released into the world to pracitce Orisha (IFA). The bablawo is the link between the divinities and man.(THIS PHRASE NOT TRUE AT ALL. AWO'S ARE NOT CATHOLIC PRIESTS OR PASTORS. ORI IS THE LINK BETWEEN IRUNMOLE AND MAN.

http://www.uga.edu/~aflang/YORUBA/PAPERS/OLUWOLE.html



I am very sorry for the incompleteness of my remarks. I wanted to write something about this until I arrive back in the arms of my beautiful wife. I will strive to do better when I can stretch out. I put my remarks in (CAPS) only to make them easier to see. I am not yelling except for that last phrase of his. Sorry.
quote:
Originally posted by HeruStar:
I feel like it's a beautiful system (Yoruba). However in "modern" time, I feel like this system could only stagnate our spiritual growth.
This should definitely be a requirement on the black curriculum, but not a social practice. I made these statements in an attempt to be educated and corrected.

I would replace the greek mythology and roman mythology in a heartbeat had I been given the opportunity.

Is there any literature surrounding the religion? Particularily dealing with passed down stories and traditions.



The times are not so modern. If I could speak of the things I am seeing on my trip... well if this modern man is a model for the height of the human spirit. I like the E.E. Cummings poem as his true description better. OK I'll write the first 2 lines:

"Pity this busy monster, manunkind,

not.Progress is a comfortable disease: your victim(death and life safely beyond)

plays with the bigness of his littleness
-electrons deify one razorblade into a mountain range".

If you can get the rest of the poem do it is quite the thing.

There is much written about IFA and I laugh heartily at most of it. But Ogunwande Abimbola is great. Especially "IFA WILL MEND OUR BROKEN WORLD". IFA is taught to initiates mouth to ear, it will only be written incompletely leaving it's true essense for those who put in the years and demonstrate the IWA that entitles you to learn.You will find patakis but you will only understand a small portion of what they are saying about the human condition. I have been initiated for 40 years (no jokes I was 7) and I am just beginning to learn.

I would respectfully suggest that you have less of an opinion about something you know nothing about and ask more questions. It will serve you better.
I just love spiritual women

I hope my comments came across as inquisitory instead of as a matter or fact opinions.

If not, I apologize.

I've studied the Metu Neter indeptly, and I've always had an interest in Yoruba, mainly because of the Caananite connection. That's why I asked for literature. I suspected that most of the Truth in the religion was passed down by mouth to ear, and I think I would be becoming an innitiate for all the wrong reasons.

One line sparked the my interest in Yoruba. The same line is the reason why I fell in love with spoken word and followed with hundreds of poems of my own.

"Is yo' name Yemeya?... Nah it's got to be Oshun" <-- Love Jones

The reason it sparked an interest is because I didn't have a clue who Tate was talking about in the movie. I felt like I was standing on the outside of a world revolving with black spiritual intellectuals. It's o.k. to be ignorant and oblivious. But it was embarrasing to have my African detatchment flaunted in my face.

Could you please please direct me to any one piece of literature pertaining to Yoruba... preferebly your favorite.
quote:
Originally posted by HeruStar:
I just love spiritual women

I hope my comments came across as inquisitory instead of as a matter or fact opinions.

If not, I apologize.

I've studied the Metu Neter indeptly, and I've always had an interest in Yoruba, mainly because of the Caananite connection. That's why I asked for literature. I suspected that most of the Truth in the religion was passed down by mouth to ear, and I think I would be becoming an innitiate for all the wrong reasons.

One line sparked the my interest in Yoruba. The same line is the reason why I fell in love with spoken word and followed with hundreds of poems of my own.

"Is yo' name Yemeya?... Nah it's got to be Oshun" <-- Love Jones

The reason it sparked an interest is because I didn't have a clue who Tate was talking about in the movie. I felt like I was standing on the outside of a world revolving with black spiritual intellectuals. It's o.k. to be ignorant and oblivious. But it was embarrasing to have my African detatchment flaunted in my face.

Could you please please direct me to any one piece of literature pertaining to Yoruba... preferebly your favorite.


If this is directed towards me I am not a woman. To save you some money I would say go to Awo Falokun's website (Awostudycenter.com). If you want books buy his, Falade's or Fama's. Let me know how you make out. Oh and leave that Caananite stuff out of my culture if you are truly seeking and not trying to be disrespectful. For me that's would be like me telling you I am really interested in African American culture because of it's N-word connection. The way you would feel when you heard that is how I feel when I read that phrase.

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