Obatala and oya

Obatala and oya DEFAULT


This article is about the Yoruba deity. For the genus of spider, see Obatala (spider).

Obatala or Oshala (known as Obatalá in Nigeria and in Caribbean and South American Spanish and Oxalá in Brazil) is an orisha. He is believed to be the Sky Father and the creator of human bodies, which were brought to life by the smooth breath of Olodumare. Obatala is the father of all orishas (irunmole or imole). His principal wife is Yemaya.

Obatala was authorized by Olodumare to create land upon the water beneath the sky. Due to his efforts, the first Yoruba city, Ife, was founded. Obatala is Olodumare's representative on Earth and the shaper of human beings.[1]

According to the oral traditions of Ife, the mortal Obatala served as king of Ife during its classical period. His throne was lost to the lineage of his rival Oduduwa at some point during the 12th century CE.

Following Obatala's posthumous deification, he was admitted to the Yoruba pantheon as an aspect of the primordial divinity of the same name.

In Africa[edit]

Primordial Obatala[edit]

Obatala priests praying in their temple in Ile-Ife

According to the tenets of the Yoruba religion, Obatala is one of the oldest of all of the orishas and was granted authority to create the Earth. Before he could return to heaven and report to Olodumare, Oduduwa usurped his responsibility (due to Obatala's being drunk at the time). He took the satchel that Olodumare had given Obatala to aid him in creation and used it to create land on the primeval ocean. A great feud ensued between the two siblings.

Mortal Obatala[edit]

Oba Obatala was a king in Ife that was deposed by Oduduwa and his supporters. This is re-enacted every year in the Itapa festival in Ife. Ultimately, following the war between Obatala on the one hand and Oduduwa and his sons on the other, the latter were able to subsequently establish a dynasty with the former's reluctant consent.

It appears from the cult dramas of the Itapa festival that Obatala was a dying and rising god. He left his temple in the town on the seventh day of the festival, stayed in his grove outside the town's precincts on the eighth day, and returned in a great procession to his temple on the ninth day.

In the Americas[edit]


Obatalá (also known as Ochalá or Oxalá; Orichalá or Orixalá) is the oldest "orisha funfun" ("white deity"), referring to purity, both physically and symbolically as in the "light" of consciousness. In Santería, Obatalá is syncretized with Our Lady of Mercy and Jesus Of Nazareth. Obatalá is said to have an equal number of male paths as female paths, but more often crowns women in part because men are traditionally crowned in Ifá in many lineages.


In Candomblé, Oxalá (Obatalá) has been syncretized with Our Lord of Bonfim; in that role, he is the patron saint of Bahia. The extensive use of white clothing, which is associated with the worship of Oxalá, has become a symbol of Candomblé in general.[2] Friday is the day dedicated to the worship of Oxalá. A large syncretic religious celebration of the Festa do Bonfim in January in Salvador celebrates both Oxalá and Our Lord of Bonfim; it includes the washing of the church steps with a special water, made with flowers.


The snail Achatina fulica is used for religious purposes in Brazil as an offering to Obatala. It is seen as a substitute for the African giant snail (Archachatina marginata) that is used in Yorubaland because they are known by the same name (Igbin, also known as Ibi) in both Brazil and Yorubaland.

Offerings and Rituals[edit]


Animal offerings for Obatala usually consist of white hen, snake, pigeon, goat, slugs, snails, or guinea. Offerings that include alcohol, crab, or beans are not allowed. The color white is very important in the representation of Obatala, therefor food offerings consist of white rice, milk, cream, shredded coconuts, and white bread. Offerings should be bland and not consist of any spices. White clothing should be worn when celebrating Obatala and offerings should be made on clean white cloth.


Obatala is pictured wearing sparkling white clothes, a white crown, and a staff called an Opaxoro. This staff is generally made of wood from the atori vine. Another symbol of Obatala is the dove.

Oriki (praise names)[edit]

  • Oluwa Aye - Lord of the Earth
  • Alabalashe - He who has divine authority
  • Baba Arugbo - Old Master or Father
  • Baba Araye - Master or Father of all human beings
  • Orishanla (also spelled Orishainla or Oshanla) - the arch divinity

See also[edit]


  • Idowu, E. Bolaji: Olodumare: God in Yoruba Belief, London 1962.
  • Elebuibon, Yemi: Adventures of Obatala, Pt. 2.
  • Lange, Dierk: "The dying and the rising God in the New Year Festival of Ife", in: Lange, Ancient Kingdoms of West Africa, Dettelbach 2004, pp. 343–376.


  1. ^Tales of Yoruba Gods & Heroes by Harold Courlander
  2. ^van de Port, Mattijs (2015). "Bahian white: the dispersion of Candomblé imagery in the public sphere of Bahia". Material Religion. 3 (2): 242–274. doi:10.2752/175183407X219769. ISSN 1743-2200.
Sours: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E1%BB%8Cbatala

Oshun/Ochún, Oya/Oyá, and Oba/Oba

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  • Title Pages
  • Dedication
  • Illustrations
  • Informants
  • Foreword
  • Preface
  • Acknowledgments
  • Note to the Reader
  • Prologue
  • Introduction
  • Santería's Transformations
  • Olodamare/Oludumare, Olorun/Olorún, Olofin/Olufin
  • The Origin of Good and Evil
  • Orishas/Orichas
  • Obatala/Obatalá and Oduduwa/Odudua
  • Orunmila/Orúnmila, Orunla/Orúnla, Orula/Orúla
  • Elegbara/Elegguá, Eshu/Echú
  • Shango/Changó
  • Oshun/Ochún, Oya/Oyá, and Oba/Oba
  • Olokun/Olokun and Yemonja/Yemayá
  • Shopono/Babalú Ayé
  • Ogun/Ogún
  • Osanyin/Osain
  • Oshosi/Ochosi, Orisha Oko/Oricha Oko, Ibeji/Ibeyi, Aganju/Agayú
  • Conclusion to Part 2
  • Paths of Obatalá
  • Paths of Elegbara, Elegguá, Echú
  • Paths of Changó
  • Paths of Ochún
  • Paths of Yemayá
  • Paths of Babalú Ayé
  • Paths of Ogún
  • Glossary of Lucumí and Spanish Terms
  • References
  • Index
Sours: https://florida.universitypressscholarship.com/view/10.5744/florida/9780813030203.001.0001/upso-9780813030203-chapter-17
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Obatala feared for his daughters and their well being , so he called them one by one and sent them away from the kingdom each to their own destination .

He called on Dada first , since I no longer trust your elder brother I will send you to a place where you all will be safe and each one of you can become queen .

Dada, you will live where beings have their Eleda ( brain). Never again will anyone see your face and you will be respected. You will only leave when the person passes to Ile Ocu ( the house of the dead ) and their body passes back to the earth.

(Dada was the only one of Obatala's daughters never to have a husband or children)

He called on Jeggua/Yewa , you are my most beautiful daughter , you represent virginity and I can not have anyone taint what you possess. The safest place for me to send you is to the Ile Ocu ( house of the dead ) anyone entering or leaving must ask your permission , you will possess the secret to life and who shall die and live.

He then called upon Oya , You are someone special and important , you will be in charge of the oxygen in order for all to live for this you will become the Ofecista ( Olodumares secretary ) . You will manifest in the air , and be the one to bring the souls to your sister Jeggua/Yew in Ile Ocu . and all will have to come to you in matters of egun.

Obatala now called his youngest child to his side, Mi omodei ( my daughter) You shall reign over all learning skills, you will have the mission of teaching all on earth and your brothers and sisters intelligence and culture. Obatala saw in Oba Nani the woman who all desired her beauty was envied by her sisters .

Oba started her mission teaching each the following

Oggun- to be a blacksmith

Oshosi - The hunt

Ozun- to stand firm in life

Asojano - to cure illness

Nana Buruku - to shine brightly in the night skies

Oba and Oya where inseparable they where the closet of sisters, But Oya always envied Obas beauty .

It was here that Yemaya and Obatala began populating the world once more although Obatala never recovered from the abuses of Oggun towards his wife and children , He became Foryurbe ( crazy)

Oggun retired to the mountain and begin his life as a blacksmith , he drank heavily and disrespected all women for he blamed them for his dishonor and curse .

**this was the time that mental illness was born in the world
Sours: https://sites.google.com/site/theyorubareligiousconcepts/obatala-fears-for-his-daughters
Can an Orisha come to you without a formal initiation?

Wemilere: Parade of the Orishas

Saturday, February 16, 5 PM

Free & Open to the Public

A is the Yoruba word for celebration. This celebrates eight of the most revered orishas (deities) in Yoruba culture: Elegba, Ogun, Ochosi, Oshun, Yemaya, Shango, Oya, and Obatala. The Yoruba peoples originated in Southwest Nigeria. As part of the African Diaspora, Yoruba culture and religion spread throughout West Africa and around the world, including Cuba and the United States. There is a flourishing community of Yoruba practitioners in Philadelphia.


The orishas portrayed in this afternoon’s performance include:

Elegba, orisha of roads and doors, who stands at the crossroads of the human and the divine. Nothing can be done in either realm without his permission.

Ogun, an ironworker, laborer, hunter warrior who wields a machete. He is the protector of his people.

Ochosi, an archer, an unerring marksman and the lord of justice. Ochosi hunts for the truth. He carries a crossbow in his hands.

Oshun, goddess of sweetness and love, who succeeds in returning Ogun to his people after a long absence by tempting him with dances and honey.

Yemaya, goddess of the ocean and rivers, including the River Ogun. Her name means “the mother whose children are the fish.”

Shango, god of thunder and lighting, who is one of the most powerful and feared orishas.

Oya, a fierce warrior and ruler of storms and winds. She assists people with transformations. Her name means “she who tore.”

Obatala, king of the white cloth. He dances with a white horse’s tail in his hand. He promotes peace and compassion, as well as clean living and clarity of thought.

The event starts with 10 minutes of drumming by the Afro-Cuban Rhythms. / Les invitamos al concierto gratis con este de . 

Following the live performances we will be screening a 12-minute documentary by the filmmaker Aidan Un. Un’s film follows Kulu Mele’s 2018 visit to Cuba, where they immersed themselves in Cuban culture and worked with the renowned Afro-Cuban dance and drum company, Ballet Folklórico Cutumba. Kulu Mele studied with Cutumba in preparation for the development of Kulu Mele’s 50th-anniversary production, Ogun & the People, which will premiere in Philadelphia in of 2019. This afternoon’s performance will conclude with an audience and artist Q&A.

Choreography by Dorothy Wilkie; Music arranged by John Wilkie; Costume Design by Dorothy Wilkie.

PhilAesthetic: AAMP Celebrates the African Diaspora in Philly has been generously supported by a grant from PNC Arts Alive.

Learn more at www.aampmuseum.org/ Saturday, February 16, 5 p.m. Free & Open to the Public

Major support for Ogun & the People has been provided by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage.

Sours: https://tallerpr.org/wemilere/

And oya obatala


Can an Orisha come to you without a formal initiation?


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