Oggún in His 7 Year Simple Splendor

Oggún Addá Araí prepares his Shrine

Oggun is simplicity and he is also splendor. He is splendid in his love for his omó, in his strong and handsome disposition and in the way in which he devours life with great passion. Oggún is the simple pleasure of a hard day of work, of a task well done. Oggún is in the sweat rolling off the hot arms that forge humanity’s character.

Seven years ago my son had the blessing of becoming for life a member of the household of Yeguedé José Merced and his oyugbonakan Omíkuya, Modesto Martínez. His godfather worked tirelessly to ensure that every aspect of Oggún Addá Araí’s yoko osha was done by the book. I ran the kitchen, made the clothes for the iyawó and lots of brothers and sisters participated in the ceremony. Ventura Santana did a wonderful job with the pretty gourds painted as gifts for participants in the ceremony and we had really a wonderful time bringing Oggún into my son’s life. Every bit of work was worth it.

Today, I have left Oggún Addá Araí and his papa Elefunké do the shopping. Normally I do it, but this time around, the guys took over. They have been most of the afternoon running around markets brandishing their long list of fruits, candles and other things for tomorrow’s family feast. Traditionally we would do a huge to do about this day, but this year, since we are newly arrived to a new state and have yet to connect with the local Orisha community we have decided to keep it a family affair.

In a way this is good, because our 13 year old is the one in charge of the kitchen, from A to Z. He will come home from school, set up a roast in the oven, prepare sweet candied yams, coconut candy, amalá ilá for Shangó and the traditional black beans and rice.

I am not sure if to tremble of fear or to continue beaming with pride. I can only imagine the chaos that my kitchen will be as I arrive from work, the piles of dishes to be washed and the teen running around trying to do by himself all the cooking for his orisha for the very first time.

For tonight he has set the altar with a bit of help from papa and mama, he has lined up his cookbook, set aside ingredients and left an apron handy as well as nice sharpened knives (Oh my! Oggún in the house sharpen knives in hand…now I am really nervous).

Well, all I have left to say in this short post, as my supervision and perhaps a bit of help is needed around the orisha room is that I will try document the work in the kitchen. I will also take some photos of his altar set up which he decided he wanted quite Spartan and streamlined, no frills or fabrics, very warrior like indeed.

May the blessings of Oggún always fall gently on the path of his omó, particularly on the path of my young little baloggún.

Omí Toñí, proud mom of Oggún Addá Araí
Oní Yemayá Achagbá

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9 Responses to “Oggún in His 7 Year Simple Splendor”

  1. Noemi says:

    Congrats to your son! My husband has Ogun crowned too and I know how special this orisha is and how he takes care of his children.

    May your son bask in Ogun’s glowing love and have many many more ocha b’days.

    I wish we could attend and pay proper mofiribale.

    Omi Yale

    • Omimelli says:


      Thank you very much for your good wishes I will tell him and I know he will be beaming with happiness. He is very devoted to his orisha.


  2. Ann says:

    Wow! I’m impressed by his devotion and his planning (how many 13 year olds even cook for themselves these days?). I’m also happy to see new updates – I just found your blog recently and have been working through the archives.

    • Omimelli says:

      Hello Ann

      He really enjoys doing the right thing when it comes to his orisha. I am glad that you enjoy the blog. There is quite a lot of material to enjoy and I will continue to post as often as possible.


  3. Iyawo Ogun Fumito says:

    Congratuelations to your son! May Oggun bring him all the love and care he needs and deserves.

    Alafia, Iyawo

    • Omimelli says:

      Hello Iyawo,

      Thank you so much for your kind words.


      • Iyawo Ogun Fumito says:

        La bendicion!
        I just had one question that you might be able to help me with. My first anniversary is coming up and I was wondering what kind of foods to cook for my santos? My madrina has explained a lot, but she has forgotten to write down the recipes! Since she lives in Cuba and communication is a bit difficult at times I was wondering if you could help me out? Or maybe you can send your son to help me cook since his creations look fantastic! :)

        Thank you in advance, it is great reading your blog posts!
        Alafia, Iyawo

        • Omimelli says:

          Iyawo Ogun Fumito

          I am going to share with you some resources that will help you find those recipes you want. The first book that has awsome recipes is called Cocina Criolla by Carmen Valldejuli. She has there a lot of dessert recipes that you will need such as Tembleque, Arroz con Dulce and Dulce de Coco. The other resource you may want to secure is a book written by Willie Ramos on Orisha Addimu. You can find his book at eleda.org

          I believe the best way to learn to cook is by watching someone with experience or by doing, so do not be affraid to pick up a book and work the recipies out. If I was you, in planning a menu for your first anniversary, I would think of hearty meaty dishes. It is for an Ogun, a warrior…think of manly dishes and stuff that sticks to your ribs. Not the time to go Vegan for a party for Ogun. :-) Vegans, do not be offended…veggies are delish…but warriors need red meats.

          Good luck on your planning. Write your menu here and I will be glad to go over it and give you pointers.


          • Iyawo says:

            Thank you so much! The meaty dishes won’t be a problem since I’m experienced in cooking those, it’s more the sweets that I’m not so used to cooking. I will have a look at the books, I’m sure with some recepes I will be ok!
            I will keep you updated and will send some pictures of the results!

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