Friday, April 13, 2012

Oya: The Storm That Heals

Image via   
"Whirling Wind was the one who cast Ifa for Nine Skirts on the day she hear the cry, "Help, Oya, help me to change." The human held no pain and said, "My head is dizzy with ugly thoughts, my belly is hard with greed, my knees are weak with the weight of guilt, and the leaves will not cure me." Oya spun around on her toes. The human cried, "What must I do for you, Oya, what is the price for my cure?" Oya spun around on her fingers. "Must I give you all my gold? Must I surrender my ego? Shall I beg your forgiveness?" Oya spun around on her head. The human screamed and cried, "Please, Twirling Woman, Help me. Help me!" Oya flashed her dark mirror and said, "If you wish release, human, simply look into my mirror and change. You who need courage, look into my mirror and change. If you desire wisdom, simply look into my mirror and change. Power can be yours if you will look into my mirror and change." And so the human looked into the mirror and changed! "Oh Oya, my head is clear, my belly soft, my knees are strong. What must I do to pay you for this wonder?" Oya took a wide legged step and fanned her skirts just so. And all the curing leaves fell from the trees and laid a path before the human. Whirling Wind was the one who cast Ifa for Nine Skirts on the day she heard the cry. Oya smiled and said, "You who seek transformation need only look into my mirror...and change!"  -Pataki told by Luisah Teish, priestess of Oshun, in her book Jambalaya: The Natural Woman's Book of Personal Charms and Practical Rituals    

Monday, February 13, 2012

Offerings for Oya

"Oya" by Francisco Santos
Song for Oya from Oriente province, Cuba (lyrics from Oya: Santeria and the Orisha of the Winds by Baba Raul Canizares)

Hoy hay toque de bembe 
En el cabildo de Oya
En la fiesta que la brindan
Los hijos de Obatala
Iyankamae Iyankama-o
Si to me abres las puertas
yo to dara de come

English translation:
Today a feast is going on
In the temple of Oya
It is a feast being offered
by the sons of Obatala
Oh great Mother of the Dead,
Oh great ruler of death,
Clear my paths
accept my sacrifice

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Honoring Oya

                                                  Tambor Oya

                                           Baile de Oya by Grupo Oba Koso

Oya and Shango
Oya is transformation. She is the storm that pushes us to grow even when we are afraid. 

                                                        Maria Bethania sings for Iansa

This altar was part of an exhibition at the University of Rhode Island


Thursday, December 8, 2011

Oya's Altar Space

Oya by Thalia Took
Moving Towards the Darkness by Marissa Arterberry
Iansa by Marissa Arterberry
Oya.Yansa by Nakeisha Gumbs