For many years I prided myself on being assertive, aggressive, and someone who championed not only my cause but also the cause of others. I knew that innately I was extremely compassionate, but there was another side to me. A side that had a temper. Perhaps it had to do with my Astrological star, but my temperament always had to do with defense.
For all my life I had only myself and my children, and so to survive, I had to be assertive. I never took “no” for an answer and would challenge anyone who forced me or someone else to take what we did not want. I defended myself and anyone else, whether I knew them or not.
While driving through the rough roads of Nigeria, I would see Area Boys unfairly demanding money from someone else, or the day’s profits of a bike man being taken away from him. I would demand the driver to stop the car right now, pull his window down and proceed to curse and disgrace the Area Boys. They were always shocked because I would often end up cursing in patois, but I would challenge them and anyone else who took what did not belong to them.
Most people who did not understand me would see my aggressive behavior and call it wicked or egotistical, but my first instinct was always to defend and protect.
But then the Ifa oracle gave me an order. At odd times, it would tell me that no matter what I saw, or how much it hurt me, I should not react in anger. Mind your words, mind your temper, Ifa told me. For a person such as I who believed that in order not to be walked all over, I had to insert my assertiveness.
So Ifa’s advice was difficult to practice. I could not become angry if someone has used the toilet and brought me a glass of water afterwards. According to Ifa, I had to kindly accept the glass of water no matter how much I was dying inside, and throw it away when the person has left.
I even silently quarreled with Ifa for giving me this message – but I knew I had to adhere.
Well as hard as it may be, I have been trying to practice Ifa’s advice, but I have realized something. This new calmness… this new found patience (though I am not 100% there), the idea of not reacting to every bad word or insult thrown at me, the life that I see before me everyday has been better, far more positive and far more peaceful.
I realize that the old me, although I needed her to protect me, was more intense and not free enough. But the new me sees life, or understands life much better than before. So, this has now made me look at those who are naturally cool, calm and collected. Those who make almost nothing bother them, those who will have their right in their hand but for the sake of a peaceful life will remain calm and allow the barking dog continue to bark.
What a beautiful life it is to live as such.
Here are some things that you should keep in mind. They will assist you on your spiritual journey and they will enable you to overcome many adversaries, whether they be internal or external.
Put YOU First
No matter what is happening in your life, always choose yourself first. Think about you before you react to something negative – what will happen after you make this decision? This is not a selfish advice. If you can not be good for yourself, you can not be good for another person.
Often times we make decisions based on what someone else thinks, or how you believe they perceive you. Many times other people want to project themselves or their character onto you, and you will now begin to doubt yourself, if you are too weak, if you are too strong, if you are too aggressive etc.
When I was 120lb my older sister would tease me and call me fat or “Bigga” as we say in Jamaica. She would hang her head outside of her window and shout these names at me in front of all the boys, and I would hang my head in shame. I was not fat at all, but my older sister hated me and I did not know and so I was ashamed of myself until I became wiser.
Remember, twins and triplets are born one by one, so we all have our own path to walk. Always choose yourself.
When There is War, Good Things Are On Its Way
This may be a tough one because when temperaments begin to fly, often times people can not think straight. There is something universally that affects every human being on this planet and that is: when you are about to be blessed with whatever material thing or even love or something sweet, fight or obstacles will first appear. If you find yourself quarreling or fighting with someone, or if it presents itself to you at unaware, please try your best to remember my words: avoid it. Goodness is around the corner for you!
Not too long ago, a friend in Jamaica needed my assistance. So I sent about $500 to them via Western Union. My friend went to the WU to pick up the money but he was told his name was spelled incorrectly and thus could not collect the money.
Wait – let me stop for a moment.
Prior to me sending this money, this person had been quarreling with his wife for over a week and called me to complain about her. I warned him: “Do not argue! something good is coming to you. Please do not argue.” I had no idea that the “something good” was going to be coming from me.
But he could not help himself and he quarreled with his wife everyday that week.
Now back to Western Union. After they told him his name was spelled incorrectly, I called WU and had the name changed. When he returned to the Western Union, they told him that they had already refunded the money back to me, and thus he could not collect it. I called WU again and they told me that it would take at least 24 hours for me to receive the money in my account before I can send it again. So we waited until I could send the money again.
When he went to collect the money again, each Western Union center that he found (about 6) told him that they did not have enough money to pay out. We were now both frustrated. I could not help but tell him I told you so. Here was the money, so close, but he could not collect it. He waited until the next day to go, and while he was on his way to another Western Union, he got two flat tires.
To sum it all up – it took about 5 days for him to eventually collect this money. I know to him this was a lesson learned.
Always remember, if you are expecting something good or even if you are not, know that quarrel and fights STOP progress BUT they are great indicators that something good is coming… if only you can control your temper.
Deceit Can Block Your Way
Now there are many people who pride themselves on the ability to deceive others and get away with it. However, to be honest, no one gets away with anything because the Universe is always watching. Now, many people complain about their life and that things are not going good for them in one way or the other. But at the core of their personality – they are not honest. They deceive, lie or cheat others, especially those who are trusting of them.
Now the trust is where problems will come for the deceiver. So just imagine – everybody has their own Head (Ori in Yoruba, or your inner consciousness). Michael is in America and he trusts his own family very well, and he pities them because they have never had a real home before. He is now in a better position and he will send all of his money to his family in his homeland to purchase a land and materials to build their new home. By the time he returns home to see the progress, there is no land, no property, not even a story about what happened to the money he has been sending.
Now, we may feel sorry for Michael, but those who should be pitied are those who have deceived him. Why? Because Michael’s family, for the rest of their lives, whatever makes them happy or whatever is relevant in their lives – they will never enjoy it. The consequence of their deceit will fall like a heavy hammer upon their head and only because Michael trusted them.
So his innocence becomes his defense.
Betraying someone’s trust has great consequences more so than what people call ‘Karmic Debt’. In short, it is not the wrongdoing that causes the consequence, it is the betrayal of an innocent’s trust. You can liken this to throwing a baby out of a window.
A Message Is Always Confirmed
While on my spiritual journey and about to wake up, as I have written in many posts before, the message that came to me was Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. I first got this message when someone sat in my chair in my hair salon and told me that this was what the Pastor preached last night in church.
Two hours after my client left, another client came. She told me she loved her hair and that she was on her way to church because the pastor had told her a beautiful message that said ‘Seek Ye The Kingdom of God and All His Righteousness and all others will be added onto you’. At first it did not hit me that this was a confirmation of a message meant for me, but everyday for about 3 months someone would come into my salon with this same message. I finally realized that this was not normal, and so when the last person told me the message I covered my ears and ran down the street.
God had a message for me which was “Wake up. It is time.”
So the next time you hear a message as simple as someone telling you about buying a green pair of shoes, and then by the end of the day you see a commercial about a green pair of shoes – know that this message has been confirmed.
There are many gems to write here but as the post will become too long I will stop here. But always watch for signs in life. Life speaks to us. We are not alone and we are not on our own. Embrace your spirituality and become wise to specific symbolism that nature or strangers or family or even animals will pass along.
What you must know is that not only do these gems help you in life, but they help you to advance spiritually, and I pray you all advance to where you ought to be, if even following these simple gems. Pass them along.
Dídákẹ́ lerin dákẹ́, àjànàkú ló lẹgàn. /
The elephant is simply unpretentious; its lordship of the forest isn’t in doubt.
Obara Meji is a spiritualist, Ifa-Orisa practitioner, and teacher of metaphysics. Since 2011 she has used her online platform to share her personal experiences to those seeking answers about spirituality. Her teachings will expand into short stories, novels, and public speaking to continue her mission of bringing enlightenment to the world.