Bata-drums

Bata-drums

An Afrocuban set of bata-drums consists of the small drum Okonkolo, the lead-drum Iya and the middle-sized Itotele. Traditionally in Havana they are made of rawhide only. 

Ere Obatala

Ere Obatala

Obatala literally means "King of white cloth". This drawing shows a traditional sacred statue of the Orisha, called "ere", carved out of wood and painted with white chalk, "efun".

Odide

Odide

Initiations into Orisha-worship make use of a red tailfeather of the African grey parrot, called Odide in Yoruba-language. It is a strong protection against witchcraft.

Ejife

Ejife

Cuban Olorisha use parted coconuts instead of kola nuts to divine. "Ejife" is the most positive sign of the oracle, it says “si, seguro, too bien, tienes ire”.  

Ogun Aladaa Meji

Ogun Aladaa Meji

Ogun’s praise name “Aladaa Meji” means “the one with two cutlasses”. It shows his warrior attitude as the god of iron and civilization. 

Ejire

Ejire

Obi, Yoruba for kolanuts, are used to communicate with Orisha. In divination they are cast and interpreted, this one is the most positive sign. 

 

Olorisa/ch/x/sha

Olorisa/ch/x/sha

Wherever you are, whether you speak and write Yoruba, Spanish/Lukumi, Portuguese/Nago or English - what is most important is your love to the Orisha! 

Omo Ayan

Omo Ayan

Ayan is the Orisha of the bata-drums and the name of a tree used for constructing the drum-shells. Ayan thus is “the wood that talks”.

Odu Meji

Odu Meji

Sixteen major double figures rule over the 256 possible Odu Ifa. Starting from left to right in lines, written in their traditional binary code. Can you name them all? 

Oshosi

Oshosi

Oshosi is a hunter-deity and a warrior, he accompanies his brother Ogun through the dense forests out of town. Oshosi is the one focusing their energy.

Afrocuban Ogun

Afrocuban Ogun

Ogun the fierce warrior and hunter wears his mariwo-skirt, made of palmfibre, and has some medicine in his gourds attached. He is holding an iron machete in his hand.

Ibeji Taiwo

Ibeji Taiwo

The Yoruba worship an Orisha of twins called Ibeji, literally this means “birth of two”. Taiwo and Kehinde are two traditional names given to twins only. 

Ibeji Kehinde

Ibeji Kehinde

The Yoruba worship an Orisha of twins called Ibeji, literally this means “birth of two”. Taiwo and Kehinde are two traditional names given to twins only. 

Ashe!

Ashe!

A very central word for Orisha-worship. It means “may it manifest” and is said at the end of prayers. "Ashe” also stands for the eternal energy that fills the cosmos.

Ogun Cruzado

Ogun Cruzado

One of Orisha Ogun’s praise names is "Aladaa Meji", meaning "the one with two cutlasses", in Spanish "machetes". One he uses to work on the farm, one to clear the road.

Garabato

Garabato

Elegba’s symbol in Cuba is the "garabato", a tool used in field work. It is a hooked staff from a Guayaba tree, turned upside down. Its shape reminds on the Nigerian Eshu carvings.

Kosi Kosi

Kosi Kosi

"No plants no Orisha" is the translation of this wellknown Yoruba-proverb. The healing power or "Ashe" of plants is essential for all rituals and for medicine used in initiation ceremonies.

Emi ni olorisa

Emi ni olorisa

Unifying the Orisha traditions worldwide in the four main languages of Orisha-worship: Yoruba, Spanish/Lukumi, Portuguese/Nago and English.

Oshun Bell

Oshun Bell

Oshun’s metal is brass, "ide" in Yoruba. Oshun-priests often wear jingling bracelets and carry bells. The sweet sound is announcing that Oshun’s coming! 

Afrocuban Yemaya

Afrocuban Yemaya

This shows an Afrocuban Orisha-dancer, with all the aspects and symbols used in ceremonies. Yemaya is the Orisha of the ocean in Cuba and her colors are blue and white.