Plagiarism and Santeria: Blatant Disrespect for Intellectual Property©

PLAGIARIMSI hardly need to establish my authority on this matter to write about it with full propriety, however, for the record I will. My professional and academic training is as a journalist. My career has afforded me ample on the job training and experiences in meeting people from all walks of life, from politicians to artist to everyday people facing extraordinary circumstances. They all had one thing in common; they trusted me to tell their stories with accuracy and respect. Besides being a journalist, I have also have the privilege to work with a well-respected publishing house and its writers in the field of religion, metaphysics and new age-oriented material to edit their books.

I have been editing books on the subject of Santeria and Afro-Caribbean religions for over 10 years. This has been an educating experience, and at the same time, one that has filled me at times with rage and indignation. I have come across manuscripts submitted to the publisher that were cut and paste versions of already published books. At first, when you start reading one of those manuscripts that potential authors are trying to sell as ‘new and fresh’ recently discovered collection of materials from unpublished libretas (notebooks kept by oloshas), you are excited and eager. Then suddenly you start to realize that these words are a touch familiar. A sinking feeling takes over me, then outrage as I walk to my personal library and find the book from where this ‘so called author’ has lifted word by word, chapter by chapter his/her new material. Of course, I make sure to document the plagiarism with the editorial house and the book never gets published because to do so is to honor a common thief, and of course a publishing house can be sued for plagiarism.

Why do people feel entitled to steal intellectual material and think they can get away with it? In the past it was easier to get away with this. Someone would go to Cuba and bring back a book published there, re-print it under their name and no one was the wiser. But today, we have the Internet, and at our fingertips a powerful search mechanism. Furthermore, it is easier to order books on-line in sources like Amazon from other countries.
Continue reading “Plagiarism and Santeria: Blatant Disrespect for Intellectual Property©”

Honoring Oshún and her Sacred Pumpkins

A plate of goodness, oven roasted pumpkin seeds.
A plate of goodness, oven roasted pumpkin seeds.

One of the best lessons I ever learned from my godfather Awó Jorge Puig Kaiser, Iwori Oddí is that it is a blessing to share a meal with family, friends and godchildren. Some of my best moments with him have been while having dinner. He not only enjoys the meal and always thanks the cook profusely, but he also likes to reminisce about his life back in Cuba, his friends and my favorite is to listen to stories about his godparents and other elders from the Island.

Often times when I am in the kitchen working on dishes for the orisha, I think of him. He does not cook, but he is always ready to offer to sample whatever is bubbling on the pot or roasting in the oven. Of course, you can imagine that I have no issues indulging the old man and letting him sample whatever he wishes.
Continue reading “Honoring Oshún and her Sacred Pumpkins”

Oddú of the Year 2013: Organising Committee for the Oddú of the Year in Cuba

Ó fe jèkí té Olúwo sè èla awo, èrí ikin la wa sé, ó fe jèki tè Olúwo sè èla awo, èrí ikin la wa sé èla awo.
Ó fe jèkí té Olúwo sè èla awo, èrí ikin la wa sé, ó fe jèki tè Olúwo sè èla awo, èrí ikin la wa sé èla awo.

This is the version that is used in my ilé, it comes from the Organising Committee for the Oddú of the Year in Cuba by the Miguel Febles Padrón, Awó Odí Ká House. It has been a practice for this group to gather for the last 26 years at their temple in Ave. 10 de Octubre #1059 and Josefina y Gertrudis, Víbora in the City of Habana, Cuba.

Once again, I believe this to be the first translation posted in English. Please have the courtesy to refer to blog.themysticcup.com if you use this translation.

—For Cuba and the World—
To all priests of Ifá, Oriatés, babaloshas, iyaloshas and iworos.

The ceremony was presided by priest of Ifá, David Cedrón, ‘Otura Sá’ with the support from priests of Ifá from all families in Cuba, their descendants around the world, the oddú was determined by the youngest priest present.
Continue reading “Oddú of the Year 2013: Organising Committee for the Oddú of the Year in Cuba”

Oddú of the Year 2013: United States by the Temple of Ministers Shango Eyeife

Letra del Año sacada en Miami
Oddú of 2013 determined in Miami, FL
The following oddú was done in Florida by the Temple of Ministers Shangó Eyeife in Miami.

Main Sign: Eyila y unle (12-8)
Arayé elesse eleddá (problems that emerge due to bad choices) Osobbo

It is recommended to always consult with godparents.

Main Orisha: Shango
Secondary Orisha: Yemayá
Accompanying Orishas: Eshu and Oshún
Refrains:
1. When my memory fails I will go back to the secrets
2. A king goes to war and wins.
3. Without a head there can be no crowning.
4. A spider does not let go of its web, it stretches it.
5. When a whistle rejects a voice it makes no sound.
6. If you do not speak no one will understand you.
7. If you do a favor that harms you, you act against yourself.
8. When there is no respect all is lost.

Sign of the Year 2013 Musundi from Cuba

Sign of the Year 2013 by the Bantu
Sign of the Year 2013 by the Bantu
It is not my common practice to re-post articles from other blogs on The Mystic Cup, but this one is of particular interest to me as a Palera. It has the Sign of the Year 2013 from the Palo perspective. You can find the original post on hedgemason.blogspot.com.

However, nothing has been altered from the original post and I did request permission before re-posting here.

I hope you enjoy reading it.

Originally, the Letra or divination reading of the year in Afro-Cuban traditions was an event which occurred within the confines of a spiritual temple, intended specifically for and shared only among the members of each individual house. It was a tradition which developed in Oricha temples and also in some Bantu (Congo religion) temples.
Continue reading “Sign of the Year 2013 Musundi from Cuba”