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The Yoruba regard Olodumare as the principal agent of creation. According to a Yoruba account of creation , during a certain stage in this process, the "truth" was sent to confirm the habitability of the newly formed planets. The earth being one of these was visited but deemed too wet for conventional life. After a successful period of time, a number of divinities led by Obatala were sent to accomplish the task of helping earth develop its crust.

On one of their visits to the realm, the arch-divinity Obatala took to the stage equipped with a mollusk that concealed some form of soil ; winged beasts and some cloth like material. The contents were emptied onto what soon became a large mound on the surface of the water and soon after, the winged-beasts began to scatter this around until the point where it gradually made into a large patch of dry land; the various indentations they created eventually becoming hills and valleys.

Obatala leaped onto a high-ground and named the place Ife. The land became fertile and plant life began to flourish. From handfuls of earth he began to mold figurines. Meanwhile, as this was happening on earth, Olodumare gathered the gases from the far reaches of space and sparked an explosion that shaped into a fireball. He subsequently sent it to Ife, where it dried much of the land and simultaneously began to bake the motionless figurines. It was at this point that Olodumare released the "breath of life" to blow across the land, and the figurines slowly came into "being" as the first people of Ife.

For this reason, Ife is locally referred to as "Ife Oodaye" - "cradle of existence". The term is also translated as "Deities" or "Divinities" or "Gods".

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Orisha s are revered for having control over specific elements by nature, thus being better referred to as the divinities or Imole. Even though the term Orisha is often used to describe both classes of divine entities , it is properly reserved for the former one. Eshu is the Orisha of chance, accident and unpredictability. Because he is Olorun's linguist and the master of languages, Eshu is responsible for carrying messages and sacrifices from humans to the Sky God.

Also known for his phallic powers and exploits. Eshu is said to lurk at gateways, on the highways and at the crossroads, where he introduces chance and accident into the lives of humans. Known by a variety of names, including Elegbara. The Yoruba believe in Atunwa, reincarnation within the family. The names Babatunde father returns , Yetunde Mother returns , Babatunji Father wakes once again and Sotunde The wise man returns all offer vivid evidence of the Ifa concept of familial or lineal rebirth.


There is no simple guarantee that your grandfather or great uncle will "come back" in the birth of your child, however. Whenever the time arrives for a spirit to return to Earth otherwise known as The Marketplace through the conception of a new life in the direct bloodline of the family, one of the component entities of a person's being returns, while the other remains in Heaven Ikole Orun. The spirit that returns does so in the form of a Guardian Ori. One's Guardian Ori, which is represented and contained in the crown of the head, represents not only the spirit and energy of one's previous blood relative, but the accumulated wisdom he or she has acquired through myriad lifetimes.

At the end of that life they return to their identical spirit self and merge into one, taking the additional knowledge gained from their experience with the individual as a form of payment. According to Professor S.

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Akintoye, the Yoruba were exquisite statesmen who spread across the globe in an unprecedented fashion; [10] the reach of their culture is largely due to migration—the most recent migration occurred with the Atlantic slave trade. With them, they carried their religious beliefs. The school-of-thought integrated into what now constitutes the core of the "New World lineages": [10] [11] [12] [13]. The Vodun faith, which originated amongst a different ethnic group the Gbe speaking peoples of present-day Benin , Togo , and Ghana , holds influential aspects on the African diaspora in countries such as Haiti and Cuba , also New Orleans , Louisiana in the United States.

Yoruba "Chrislam" includes two distinct religious movements, one called Ifeoluwa founded by Tela Tella in the s and 80s [16] and another called Oke-Tude founded by Samson Saka in In many places there has been intense competition and higher levels of tension within and between different confessional groups. Ifeoluwa "Love of God" recognises both the Bible and the Quran as holy texts , and practices "running deliverance," a distinctive practice of spiritual running likened to Joshua 's army circling Jericho , or the practice of Pilgrims circumambulating a Church for Palm Sunday or the Kaaba , and Jews around the Synagogue during Sukkot.


In contrast to other Chrislamic sects, Tela Tella, while claiming to believe in both the Qur'an and the Bible, says they are incomplete, and is writing his own book called the "Ifeoluwa Book". Oke Tude Oketude in Ogudu a northern suburb of Lagos , founded by Samson Saka in , is slightly less recognisable to mainstream Christianity, resembling more interfaith worship with three different sessions or services that take place on Sunday.

The first is a Muslim session, then a Christian session, and finally there is a joint session that Saka leads. During this he stresses the similarities between Christianity and Islamic beliefs. In Latin America , Yoruba religion has been on intense Syncretism with Christianity , Indigenous religions and Spiritism since the first arrival of African immigrants.

In Brazil, the religion of Umbanda was born from the rich interaction of beliefs that Latin America provided. Followers of Umbanda typically consider themselves Monotheistic , but honor Catholic Saints and Orisha as manifestations from god or as Tutelary deities. Umbanda worship also include elements from Native South American rituals such as the ritual use of Tobacco and communication with the spirits of deceased Indian warriors Caboclo.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Religion of the Yoruba people of Africa. Sacred sites. Legendary figures. Oduduwa Oranyan Moremi Ajasoro. Main article: Olodumare. Main article: Orisha. This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. May Learn how and when to remove this template message. Main article: Yoruba history. Iroko Academics Publishers.

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Yoruba Religion and Medicine in Ibadan. Translated by George E. Ibadan University Press. Lagos, Nigeria: Macmillan. Ikeja, Nigeria: Longman. Ifa Speaks.. Retrieved 8 April Retrieved Tales of Yoruba Gods and Heroes. Crown Pub. A history of the Yoruba people.