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 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
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.
In the modern internet-based society, cultural appropriation from African Traditional Religions occurs often in my opinion. Everything from eclectic Paganism adopting deities, to commercial Conjure claims of being an expert on Orisa traditions, to Neopagan Vodou have collectively jumped on the bandwagon of adopting practices derived from African religions. The argument can be made that persons seeking or claiming enlightenment do so with a clean heart and good intentions. There is nothing wrong with seeking truth.
Unfortunately seeking truth is not always what happens. If you need a tooth pulled, going to a student intern who read a book on dentistry and decided to begin yanking teeth for pay with rusty vice-grips seems to me like asking for pain and trouble. Appropriation is a spiritual equivalent.
One symptom of appropriation is the monetary aspect. Yes our beloved ATR faiths do charge for certain things and rightly so. It takes time, hard work, and experience to learn the correct way of doing things within each House or group. Derechos (fees) have to be paid. Would a person consult an expert in any other field without having to pay, or a doctor? However, monetary goals seem to be at the forefront of appropriation-based issues especially from commercial internet shop owners. Fraudulent “Damballah Elekes”, “Oya grave dirt bottles”, “Yemaya La Sirene Mojos” and “Pomba Gira Homosexual Love Gris Gris bags” among other silly things seem to be increasing on the internet in my opinion. This is an unfortunate aspect of appropriation as far as fabrication of things that do not exist within the traditions being supposedly drawn upon. Caveat Emptor, indeed. Continue reading “Appropriation from African Traditional Religions”
The Oddu of the Year is an interesting subject that gives us Santeros plenty to talk about for the month of January and the rest of the year. I remember when it was only one Oddu, the one done by the Comision de la Letra del Año in Cuba and we all waited eagerly to hear which Orishas came ruling for the year, that was before the Internet. Now, there are many different versions of the Oddu, in Cuba there are a couple and there are groups that prefer one over the other. There are also versions done by region which is quite reasonable because each country has particularities and their own sets of social and political issues that are addressed on those oddú. I guess you can look at it almost like a barometer for collective karma for the year…even if karma is a concept foreign to the Lukumi, or not part of our culture.
In our ilé we celebrate two anniversaries in the month of December. Mine is on December 12th and my husband’s is on the 13th. As you can imagine, there are tons of offerings set on the altar, particularly lots of fresh fruit. It is tradition in my ilé to share fruit with guests as they leave to go home, but having a double anniversary and a double shrine we had so much fruit that I had to find a way to use it creatively. Of course, some people pick pieces and use them for cleansings, but there are so many cleansings one can do. So I decided to create a few sweet treats for the Orisha and some to share with my family with the remaining fruit.
Since my father in Osha is Aganjú I always have plenty of pineapples and they usually take a bit to ripen, so I had 3 delicious pineapples in my hands today and inspiration to cook and offer a nice dish to my orisha and to make enough for my family to share. One of them, BBQ Pineapple Hot and Sweet Chicken, was only for the dinner table. The other one, Hawaiian Bread Coconut and Pineapple Pudding was a dessert and a sweet offering to the orisha. Pineapples are a favorite of to both Aganjú and Oggún, so you can certainly say that you can have One Bread Pudding and two happy Orisha.
By the way, it is good to mention that bread pudding is also a favorite of Obatalá. You can adapt a basic bread pudding to please most any orisha, substitute the fruit with mashed fruit bread for Obatalá. If you want to please Oshun, try using freshly roasted pieces of butternut squash and for Yemayá try substituting the coconut milk with fresh watermelon juice and serving it with watermelon simple syrup.
Hawaiian Bread Coconut and Pineapple Pudding
1 Package of Pineapple bread (12 pack dinner rolls)*
1 cup of coconut milk
2/3 cup of brown sugar
1 teaspoon of rum flavoring
1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon of nutmeg
½ teaspoon of lime zest
3 teaspoons of melted butter
1 cup of chopped pineapple
* You can substitute this kind of bread by any sweet bread rolls. I used King’s Hawaiian Bread Rolls.
Peel, core and mince the fresh pineapple. You will only need one cup of it. Place it in a large bowl along with the sugar, rum flavoring, cinnamon, nutmeg, melted butter, coconut milk and eggs. Break rolls into pieces and add to the ingredients. Mix with your hands, do not over mix. Pour batter into a greased soufflé mold (I used an additional 2 tsps. of butter for greasing the mold). Use the zest to top the mixture and then bake on a pre-heated oven for 50 to 60 minutes at 350°F oven.
This recipe is fairly simple and the results are quite delicious. You can add some chopped macadamia nuts to top the pudding for additional texture. If you want to make the offering extra special, try doing simple syrup (equal amount of sugar and water cooked together) spiked with rum and serve poured over the warm pudding.
I hope you enjoy this as much as I did working in the kitchen with my family and children, after all there are some offerings that are extra special when they carry the combined ashé of several santeros, and more so, when a family of santeros come together to work and thanks the orisha for the many blessings received over the last year.