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  • Writer's pictureIsaac Sierra (Ifa Tose)

THE HAND OF ORUNMILA

Updated: Sep 24





*Recommended 1st Initiation*

Lukumí Ifa/Osha Sacred Society

The Hand of Orunmila

**The following information might vary,

depending on branch traditions.






The hand of Orunmila is an initiation rite within Yoruba practice.

In this 3 day ceremony, the initiate first receives the "Warrior Orishas" (Eshu, Oggun, Oshosi, and Osun) for protection.

The initiate then receives his "Hand of Orunmila", which consists of Orunmila's sacred "Ajere" (mortar) which contains the sacred "Ikin" (sacred palm nuts) ,"Elekes" (necklace), and "Ide" (bracelet) [a.k.a. kofa, & ikofa].

Arguably more importantly, the initiate then

finds out their "True Destiny and Purpose for this lifetime".

In Yorubaland, it was/is preferred to find this out soon after birth, as it is considered wiser for the parents to know as early as possible how to best guide their child's life into alignment with their fullest potential by obtaining and applying this divine information.


And, finally, as part of this ceremony, it is determined which is the "Alaajo" ("Guardian Angel" or "Ruling Orisha") of each person; this would be the Orisha that is considered the archetypal Father/Mother of the initiate, and in fortunate cases, the initiate will eventually become a Priest/Priestess of said Orisha.

Once all of this is completed, the initiates are considered "Onifa" (ones who hold Ifa in their possession). This does not make the initiates Ifa priests/priestesses, but it indicates that they are now initiated with Ifa, and have access to and are protected by Ifa's sacred guidance.


To the Yoruba, to die before one's time would indicate that the individual was not aligned with their life's purpose. So, it is vital to recognize that by providing the codes to fulfill one's true destiny, Ifa dually grants the guidelines that give initiates the opportunity to escape an early, untimely death.



In Ifa's Sacred Literary Corpus, the book of Oyeku Meji indicates:


 The story goes, that there was a stage when human beings were being collected by Iku (Death) to go to heaven before their predestined time. The Orishas were also afraid and upset, until the day that Orunmila arrived. One day. when Iku didn't realize it, Orunmila went and took the hammer of death; Iku's favorite tool. As Iku noticed that the hammer had disappeared, he went furiously to Orunmila's house and demanded him to return the hammer. Orunmila rejected the request and said: "No, you were selected by Olodumare to take away the humans at their expired time, but you have made human beings die whenever you want instead." Iku answered: "But if they do not die, then the Earth dies". Orunmila said: "You have no right to take human beings before their time". But after long reflection, Orunmila recognized the logic in what Iku said... "If human beings never die, the Earth will die, because the Earth would not be able to feed them all". Therefore, Orunmila reached an agreement with Iku with the following condition: "I will return your hammer, but you must swear that you must never, and will never, take my children before their time truly expires; my children carry my sacred Ide in their left hand. All Ifa initiates have the Ide in their left hand." Thus the pact between Iku and Orunmila was made... that all of Orunmila's children would not be taken before their time.


*It should be responsibly noted that wearing the Ide itself does not automatically save one from an untimely death; but that it is in fact the individual's ability to apply the sacred information provided by Ifa (which is what the Ide truly represents), that really saves him/her.




* Scientific Insight :


Relating Olodumare (God) to a Universal wholistic systematic energy, an individual's consciousness could be interpreted as a procedural aspect of such energy, simultaneously manifesting as a purposeful existing function of intelligent energetic expansion and contraction (life and death).


The Hand of Orunmila ceremony is basically the point at which these expansions and contractions are captured, measured ,and calculated to best determine the upmost efficiency of a life according to it's true natural motive (Destiny).


"If we can establish that nature is in fact moving in a direction of a fully integrated and interconnected state of existence, then it would reveal that life is part of nature’s story — which is a story of a universe that has a goal, a purpose, and a destiny. Those words may irk skeptics and atheists, but to not use them would be to potentially obscure the true nature of reality. If the Unifying Theory of Reality is correct, nature is at once supremely teleological and entirely comprehensible in mechanistic terms."

*quoted from: - The Purposeful Universe: Why the Emergence and Continual Evolution

of Life and Intelligence are Inevitable Products of Cosmic Complexification



AŚE!

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