In the Ifa/Orisha traditional practice (a way of life, instead of a religion), whenever someone receives Ifa or Itefa, (as it is called in Yoruba land ) which is the initiation, they receive a life reading and this is done depending on the Odu which comes out during initiation. The Odu which comes out in Itefa is the person’s life path or destiny. Within the Odu, imagine it to be like a book of your life or your life’s journey, you may even liken it to what is refereed to as the Akachic record (which I do not like to reference it to because it is way deeper and vast, but for your better understanding this will help), it contains many chapters and verses about your life path, struggles, do’s and don’ts. The Odu comes out in Itefa by competent Babalawos, and it comes as a coded language which only they can interpret, it is marked from right to left as is shown above.
The do’s and don’ts are called Taboos, which will be explained to you as it written into your Odu. Taboos are very important for you to follow because according to Orunmila owner of the sacred Ifa oracles which are called Ikins which are used to bring forth Odu’s, if you adhere to your taboos, you will have a easier journey here on earth. To disobey your taboos can make one leave the earth untimely, become ill, barren, run mad, the possibilities are endless. Someone may have a toboo of never living in a house where iron can be seen protruding from anywhere on the house or building, we may not understand why this may be and it is not for us even to know. It maybe that anyone who disobeys this may have sickness in the body, or may lose a child or lose a limb, who knows? but it would be foolish to tempt it. The Odus tells many stories about the person, and they will be told during Itefa which last for ten days by several Babalawos who will be participating into chanting the verses they each know from this particular Odu, or your life book. The day these things are told is called the day of your Ije which is the Seventh day of initiation(E-jeh), Ita is on the third day (E-tah) I will explain this another time. It is impossible for one Babalawo to know all and even if there are ten Babalawos there in attendance, you will still not hear everything, also not everything within the Odu is pertaining to you, so it is important that the Babalawos there can fit what belongs to the initiate through their competence as trained Awos, and usually they do.
The story below is one such story or Pataki of Obara Meji, man or woman can receive Obara Meji, it depends who it falls for. So do not let the reference to HIM, concern you. This Whole Ifa cosmology is complex to those who have no idea of it, so I will try to simplify it as much as possible. The Picture used in the post is the way Obara Meji is written in code when it falls to earth from right to left. In the story below, it tells of how the children of Obara Meji will have long life, and how it came about, enjoy. This is one of Obara Mejis journey here on earth, as time goes by I will post more and other stories also.
Obara Meji encounter with his enemies
Obara Meji was very famous while he walked the earth, his fame and popularity soon began to evoke envy and enmity. He was soon to realize that success breeds envy and envy evokes animosity which begets enmity. Generally people do not fall in love with those who excel them.
The more the elderly divine priest from whom Obara appeared to have stolen the show lost no time in plotting his downfall. Meanwhile Obara meji’s guardian angel appeared to him in a dream and gave him a preview of the machinations of the plotters. When he woke up, he invited two awos (Ifa priests) to make divination’s for him. Their names were
Oni bara, Ola Bara , Eshisi Bara
Eeku ookii Ku so otin
Eye bara, kii ku si asi
1: The fly which does not get greedy, never dies inside a wine container. 2: The fly which flies high up in the air, and who is not tempted by the baits on the low ground, does not get caught in a gum trap.
They advised Obara Meji to make a sacrifice with a cock and a hen. He made the sacrifice which explains why he triumphed over his enemies, after they had tried on earth and failed, and they also reported him to the elders of heaven. Meanwhile an itinerant was visiting Ife (e-fay, a town in Nigeria, where Orunmila first lived) and he stopped by the house of Obara Meji, who extended elaborate hospitality to the visitor. the name of the awo was Eroke Ule Abiditirigi. When the man made the libation divination, he warned Obara that a messenger was being sent from heaven to fetch him. He was advised to give a he-goat to ESU (Eh-shu) and a goat to Ifa. Not only did the awo do the sacrifices for Obara, he also did traditional clearance, (Ono Ifa), for him. He prepared the relevant medicine for him to be taking everyday.
Five days later, a Tiokam came from heaven to arrest Obara Meji. When the Tiokam flew on top of Obara’s house, he called on him to prepare to go to heaven. In an Icantational reply, Obara told him that his father had told him before his death, that he was leaving for heaven to answer the early call that would have taken him (Obara) away from this world, and that his father said that he was not to leave the world until a tree Aro produced leaves, and until the roots of the parasite plant called Afuma (which grows ontop of trees) touched ground——-and until Elaa shed it leaves. Obara Meji collected the tree plants and gave them to Tiokam to give to the King of Death, who sent for him in heaven.
When Tiokam delivered the message in heaven to the King of Death, he ordained that Obara Meji would have to get lost on earth never to know his way back to heaven. That is why Obara is said to have lived on earth for about 260 years and in the end he had to beg God to accept him back in heaven. If the children of Obara Meji are able to prepare this ono Ifa, they must live to a ripe old age
From the works of Mr. C. Osamaro Ibile
From Benin City, Nigeria
A fi ọ́ jọba ò ńṣàwúre o fẹ́ jẹ Ọlọ́run ni?….Yoruba Proverbs!
You have been crowned a king, and yet you make good-luck charms; would you be crowned God?
(Being crowned a king is about the best fortune a mortal could hope for.)
All religions are valid as long as it teaches peace and love…Obara Meji!