Things you generally won’t find in Lukumi (Santeria):

1. Gemstones and crystals. The only time these really come up is when someone makes a very fancy and expensive mazo (beaded sash). But you won’t find gems and crystals used for their own sake, and we attach no spiritual meaning to them - except for coral. Coral is very important to us.

2. Dried herbs. We use fresh herbs. Dried herbs may be used in espiritismo but not in Lukumi, as we believe once they’re dry they’re dead.

3. Casting a circle. If you are at a ceremony and they start casting a circle, you are actually at a Pagan coven and not a Lukumi ilé. We have nothing even remotely resembling this practice.

4. Identifying as ‘witches’ (except as a joke). While North Americans have a Wiccan-influenced positive idea about witches and witchcraft, the traditional Lukumi view is actually very similar to medieval European ideas: that witches are a negative force on society, that witchcraft is harmful magic, that witchcraft is a selfish act and thus against our community-based mindset. We have a very specific kind of spirit referred to in English as “the Witches” known euphemistically as Iyami (”Our Mothers”), who are the negative ancestral female spirits, often in the form of birds, that rule over society. In Yorubaland they are a highly secretive all-female secret society of post-menopausal women, or so I’ve been told, and the impression I’ve gotten is that no one would openly state they are a part of it. We do not call on them and very, very rarely say their real name for fear of attracting their attention (Ajé is the proper name for them and you will see people outside Lukumi try to reclaim this a lot but let me tell you: if you say this during a ceremony you will get a reaction between either cut eye from every elder or fully being asked to leave the room - as an example, a Pagan godchild of mine was sitting around between ceremonies reading a book with witchcraft in the title and my elder kind of freaked out and told him to put it away and gave him a long lecture about it being inappropriate to bring it to ceremonies). Some Lukumi, particularly those who are also involved in Palo, reclaim the term “witch” as a joke and as a push back against the long history of Afro-Cuban religions being deemed witchcraft and outlawed (this has a very tragic and ongoing history in both Cuba and the United States). But in general, we bristle against having our religion compared to witchcraft.

5. Wearing all black clothing. This is highly unusual for Lukumi aleyos and priests as the colour black attracts negativity. If you turn up to a ceremony in all-black, you will not be let inside. The exception is for children of Warrior Orisha like Eleggua, Ogun, and Ochossi. They can wear whatever they want, though even most of these omo will not wear all-black to a ceremony. There’s one ebo we do in which wearing all-black is required, but that’s a different story.

6. Self initiations. They don’t exist in Lukumi or other Orisha-based religions.

7. Veves. If you arrive at a ceremony and there are chalk or cornmeal patterns on the ground, you are actually at either a Vodou ceremony or a Palo ceremony.

8. “Bring your own drum” drum circles. The drummers in Lukumi ceremonies are highly trained and drum with specific rhythms on specific kinds of drums in specific arrangements of drummers. The most important kind of drum is only played by people initiated to that drum.

9. Tarot cards. While many of us read tarot as part of espiritismo, tarot has no role in Lukumi. Our divination systems are Obí (which may only be cast by priests or with the guidance of a priest), diloggun, and Ifá. Both diloggun and Ifá may only be read by priests with specific kinds of initiations (Olochas read diloggun, Babalawos read Ifá) and with extensive training. More than a system of divination, these are the ‘mouths’ of the Orisha - they are the Orisha speaking directly.

10. Mojo bags. If you are using mojo bags, you’re actually doing Hoodoo not Lukumi. Our closest equivalent are niche Osain, but these are really quite different and look to be entirely beaded balls.

The Oracle of Diloggun, is one of the means of communication with the deities of the Yoruba Pantheon, the Orisa, with our ancestors, ancestors or Eggun, who provide help to our problems to face them positively; i.e., is used not only to know what is happening, but also to tell us you need to do to solve them, to ask for advice, to avoid any stumbling blocks in life, to heal.

The use of this ritual of communication between the Orishas and their children tries to get the spiritual development and the human material.

By the cowrie shell, they talk about all the Yoruba Orishas. The Oracle, is part of the exciting, deep and ancient philosophy, liturgy and practice magic - esoteric which takes place in the religion of the Orishas, and will refer to here, already that in this there is nothing that is not worthy of being exposed.

In the rite, participate in addition to the consulted the Babalosha and Iyalosha consecrated in Holy, the Babalawo does not use this system, since the Ifa Oracle system has a higher hierarchy and its Odus Stadium.

This divination system consists of 16 - cowries moneta - cowrie shells that removed the Fund, so that they have stability and to be released to fall on one side or the other, thus defining the signs of each spin.

The Odu of the Diloggún are 17:

OKANA (1) arises from Ofun Ofun (10) (10) born OSA (9).

Eyioco (2) was born in Ejiogbe (8) Ojuani Shobe (11) comes from Oche (5)

Ogunda (3) born of Oddi (7) Ejila Shebora (12) comes from Ogunda (3)

Iroso (4) comes from Ojuani Shobe (11) Metanla (13) was born in Oche-Ofun (5-10)

OSHE (5) was born in Ejiogbe (8) Merinla (14) born Eyioco-Obara (2-6)

Obara (6) was born in Ejilá Shebora (12) Marunla (15) born Ejiogbe-Osa (9-8)

Oddi (7) born of Okana (1) Meridiloggun (16) was born Ejiogbe Melli (8-8)

Ejiogbe (8) was born in Meridiloggun Yecú Yecú or Opira (16) (17) is born of Okana (1)

OSA (9) born Oddi (7)

.The ibbos are walkin for the determination of go them and Osobo, these are: EFUN (husk), OTA (small stone), Aye (medium marine snail), OWO (two tied Ocha snails), IGBIN (slug snail), EGUNGUN (small bone or vertebra), APADI (piece of earthenware) and OSAN (seed).

Chuck 16 cowrie shells the officiating, Babalosha and Iyalosha just must interpret the rest until 12, thirteen to sixteen number should be sent to pursue the inquiry with a Babalawo, because its result must be interpreted by Orunmila.

anonymous asked:

Can you explain the differences between Vodou and Santeria?

Hi there!

I can try! There’s a lot of stuff, but let’s see what I can sort out.

At base, Haitian vodou is the indigenous religion of Haiti and the Haitian people, also in present in Diaspora. There is also Dominican vudu, also known as 21 Divisiones, which is similar to a particular type of Haitian vodou, but is a separate religion, and there is African/Afa vodun, as practiced in the general Benin, Togo, and Ghana regions. They are all separate religions that have some similarities, but Haitian vodou is my focus. 

Santeria, also called Lucumi/Lukumi or Regla de Ocha, is an indigenous religion of Cuba that also has a wide Diaspora. Lucumi has deep roots in Yoruba traditional Orisa worship, and is related to any number of other Orisa faiths around the world–Candomble and Umbanda in Brazil, Spiritual/‘Shouter’ Baptist and Shango Baptist in Trinidad and Tobago, and others

Both religions came to their respective island homes via the Middle Passage. Cuba was home to many enslaved Africans from the territory of the Yoruba kingdom, and so the island became a home for those beliefs and the Orisa that came with them. Enslaved Africans from the Congo basin were also brought there, giving rise to various paths of the Palo religion as well.

In contrast, the island of Hispaniola, which is where Haiti is located, received an enormous amount of enslaved Africans from up and down the western coast of Africa and into the interior of the Congo basin. Accordingly, spirits from all those people made the Middle Passage, too–we recognize nasyons and spirits from as far north as modern day Senegal (and likely further, as there are spirits with distinctively Islamic names who may speak creolized Arabic and related languages in possession), as far south as the modern day Angola region, and deep into the interior of the Congo basin. Vodou also encompasses the divinities from Yorubaland in the Nago nasyon, though those spirits are distinctly Haitian in presentation and are not served in the same ways as Orisa may be in Orisa-focused religions. Songs for that nation of spirits often reference ‘orisa’/’olisha’ in the lyrics. Since it is often a point of confusion, Legba and Eleggua are not the same spirit despite similar names and functions–Legba originates in a different part of Africa than Eleggua. 

Haitian vodou also has spirits native to the actual land of Haiti, and I am not aware of something similar in Lucumi. We have spirits who live in the Nago nation who sprang up as part of the Haitian revolution and later developments in Haiti, and many of the Petwo spirits were born in Haiti as part of that process as well.

So, in a very simple and boiled down way, Lucumi and other Orisa worship religions are very focused on the divinties from Yorubaland, and Haitian vodou is a broader religion that encompasses a larger segment of African-derived and native-to-the-land spirits.

Our initiations are different–broadly, someone being made a priest in Lucumi is made to one spirit in that they emerge from the initiation chamber as a priest of Shango or Oshun or Oya etc, and may receive other spirits as they need them. Their heads are committed to that spirit, they only mount that spirit, and may have restrictions around how they can initiate other priests to other spirits. Their post-initiatory period of settling is longer than ours, and how they receive taboos from their spirits differ wildly due to the corpus of Ifa that is used to determine their life’s paths and prohibitions.

In vodou, our initiation process makes us priests across the board–as a priest, I can be theoretically mounted by any spirit who sees me as the most useful tool for what they would like to accomplish and I must be able to work with and for any spirit that shows up for me or shows up for a client. We don’t get an ita/life reading and, while our met tet/head spirit never changes post-kanzo, our head is not necessarily our closest or most active relationship. Our met tet is also a closely guarded secret–I would never disclose that info publicly, and it is not even known to all my brothers and sisters. I am a houngan asogwe/priest, not a priest of <my met tet>.

Divination is different–vodou does not use diloggun/shells, obi abata/coconut, opele, or Ifa for any divination–we use a specific set of playing cards (not Tarot, either). The role of initiator is different–the person who initiates you is your mama/papa, and you also have godparents as well who name you at baptism and who have responsibilities/you have responsibilities to. Ceremonies often have a similar format, but the mechanisms of possession can be different as are how drumming is conceived of, and a bunch of other detail-y things. The liturgical language of Vodou is Kreyol, with a sideline of French, and Lucumi speaks Spanish and Yoruba dialects. Vodou does not give collares/elekes/sacred necklaces–there is only one thing we wear that is beaded that denotes initiation, and it’s not really jewelry.

Proficiency and initiation in one doesn’t translate to anything

I hope this helps..? It’s pretty broad, and I am not sure if this is what you are looking for!

So I’m posting my booklist It’s a compilation I’ve aquired from listening to many speakers like bobby hemmitt, Bro. Panic, yaffa bey, Alim Bey, tons more etc etc. all these books have a purpose whether spirituality, history,magic, african history, enlightenment, melanin, alchemy, Mythology and more.. basically everything that falls into the “conscious” category. This is MY personal book list of what I’ve read/reading/wishlist so some of it may not work for u and some will. To each it’s own. Enjoy. If u have a question about one just ask. Oh and if by chance any of you guys are rich and would like to purchase me some of these books you can def email me and we can work that out. 😀😊☺😁😜✌

Knowledge is Power:
SubconsciousCelebrity’s book list:


• The Isis Papers - Frances Wesling

• The Hermetica - Peter Gandy

• Hermetica - Walter Scott
• Hermetica - Copenhaver

• Pagan Origins of the Christ myth -

John G Jackson (32pages)

• The Finding of The Third Eye - Vera Stanley Alder

• The Egyptian book of the dead - Muata Ashby

• Legends of the Egytpian Gods- E.A. Wallis Budge 

• The Sirius Mystery - Robert Temple

• Christianity Before Christ - John G. Jackson

• Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey

• Things Fall Apart - Chinua Achebe

• The ankh:African Origins of Electromagnetism - Nur Ankh Amen

• African Origins of Civilization Myth or Reality - C.A. Diop

• Without Sanctuary: lynching photography in America - James Allen

• Why Darkness Matters :The Power of Melanin in The Brain

• Behold a Pale horse - William Cooper

• From The Mother Land to the Mothership - Shurlene Wallace

• Secret Source - Adam Parfrey 

• Earth pleiadian keys to the Living Library - Barbara marciniak 

• Who’s who in Egyptian mythology - Anthony Mercatante 

• Psychic Self-defense - Dion Fortune

• Conflicting Genes Nuetranoids and Genocide - Amun re sen Atum re
 (brother Polight)

• Gnosis - Philip Gardiner

• Gnosis - Kurt Rudolph

• Yurugu - Marimba Ani

• 1984 - George Orwell 

• Cosmic Voyage - Courtney Brown

• The Martian Chronicles - Ray Bradbury 

• The island of Dr. Moreau - HG Wells

• The Alchemist - Paulo Coelho

• The Art of War - Sun Tzu

• The historical origins of Christianity - Walter Williams

• Metu Neter Vol. 1- (ALL) - Ra un nefer Amen

• Ma’at Philosophy - Muata Ashby 

• Ancient egytpian light of the world -
Gerald Massey 

• Pregnant Darkness Alchemy and the rebirth of consciousness - Monika Wikman 

• The Sufis - Idries Shah

• The historical Jesus and the mythical Christ - Gerald Massey

•The Coming Race - Baron Edward Bulwer Lytton

• Saturn: A new look at an old devil - Liz Greene

• Book of the Beginings - Gerald Massey

• The way of Hermes - Clement Salalman 

•The book of the law - Aleister Crowley

• The Rosicrucian Cosmo-conception 
- Max Heindel

• The God Genes - R.a. Waldron

• The kemetic Tree of life - Muata Ashby

• Echoes of an Old Darkland -Charles Finch

• Atlantis and Lemuria - Rudolf Steiner

• The Third Eye - Sophia Stewart

• Supreme mathematic African Ma’at 

• Lost cities and ancient Mysteries of the south - David Hatcher Childress

• Lost Cities of North & Central America - David Hatcher

• From Fetish to God - E.A. wallis Budge

• The Africans who wrote the bible -Nana banchie Darkwah

• Medical Apartheid - Harriet Washington

• The Conspiracy to Destroy Black Women - Kevin Mcnutt

• The Name Negro - Richard B Moore

• Phlilosophy and opinions of Marcus Garvey - Marcus Garvey 

• The Womans Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets - Barbara G Walker

• The Women’s Dictionary of Symbols and Sacred Objects - Barbara G Walker

• The first Americans were Africans - David Imhotep

• The Immortal life of Henrietta Lacks -

• Making sense of the Madness
- Joseph Chippalone

• Melatonin: your body’s own wonder drug
- Russel J. & Jo Reiter

• Armegddon Now: the end of the world A to Z - Jim Willis

• Basic Magick: a practical guide
- Phillip Cooper

• The Modern Alchemist
- Richard Alan Miller

• African Origin of Biological Psychiatry - Richard D King

• Melanin: key to Freedom - Richard D. King

• The Diloggun: Orishas, proverbs, sacrifices - Ochani Lele

• Ancient Christian Magic
- Marvin Meyer

• The Historical Origin of Islam
- Walter Williams

• Spiritual Cleansings & psychic Defenses - Robert Laremy

• Lakshmi : the goddess of wealth and fortune - devdutt pattanaik

• Dark light - Edward Bruce Bynum

• Cosmic memory - Rudolf Steiner

• Atlantis the Antideluvian world
- Ignatius Donnelly

• Astral Dynamics - Robert Bruce

• Temples of Light - Danielle Rama Hoffman

• Dirt: Social history…abuses of dirt
- Terence McLaughlin

• Elixer of Immortality - Robert E Cox

• The Destruction of Black Civilization - chancellor Williams

• The secret books of the Egyptian Gnostics - Jean Doresse

• The Astral Body - A.E. Powell

• The Metaphysics of Sex - Julius Evola

• The Theology of Time- Elijah Muhammad

• Other Tongues Other Flesh- George Hunt Williamson

• Stolen Legacy - George G.M. James

• Three Initiates: The Kybalion -Dover publications

• Kundalini for the New Age - selected writings of Gopi Krishna edited by Gene Keiffer

• The Confessions Nat Turner- William Styron

• Ruled By Secrecy - Jim Marrs

• Biographies of the Great Kings and Queens of Africa and Notable Black Men and Women - Lee John Smith/Deanna Williams

• The People Could Fly -Virginia Hamilton

• The Kybalion A study of he Hermetic Philosophy of Ancient Egypt and Greece

• The Serpent Grail - Phillip Gardiner

• Circle of Isis - Ellen Reed

• A People’s History of United States -aka-(white people ruin everything) - Howard Zinn

• Cosmic Trigger - Robert Wilson

• The People of the Secret - Ernest Scott

• The Ancient Power of the Flower of Life - Drunvalo Melchizedek

• Simulacra & Simulation - Jean Baudrillard

• Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos - H.P. Lovecraft

• Sun Gods in Exile - Karyl Robin Evans

• Oracle of the illuminati - William Henry

• The Perfect Sermon or Asclepius

• Angels Demon & Gods of the New Millenium - Lon Mili Duqquette

•The Golden Fleece and Alchemy- Antoine Faivre

• Vril, The Power of the Coming Race-
Edward Lytton

• Gospel of The Zodiac - Bill Darlison

• Lucifer Dethroned- William Schnoebelen

• Hermetic Magic- Stephen E. Flowers

• The Gnostic Scriptures- Bentley Layton

• Nag Hammadi Scriptures- James M. Robinson

• Basics of Magic -Chic Cicero

• The Golden Dawn Journal - Chic Cicero

• The Virgin Of The World : hermes trismegustes

• The Goetia - S.C. McGregor Mathers

• Universe Earth and Man - Rudolf Steiner

• The Cup Of Destiny - Trevor Ravenscroft

• The Apocrypha of Jannes and Jambres - Albert Pietersma

• The Astral Plane - C.W. Leadbeater

• The Solar System - A.E. Powell

• The Egyptian Mysteries - Arthur Versluis

• The Secret Teachings For All Ages-
Manly P.Hall

• The Monuments of Mars - Richard C. Hoagland

• The Tree Of Life - Israel Regardie

• The Fall Of America - Elijah Muhammad

• Brave New World - Aldous Huxley

• Two Thousand Seasons - Ayi Kwei

• Civilization or Barbarism -Cheikh Diop

• Ancient and Modern Britons - David Mac Ritchie

• The Diplomatic Relations Of The United States - Ray Irwin

• Encyclopedia Of Spirits- Judika Illes

• Trance : Formation of America - Cathie Obrien

• The Great Cosmic Mother - Monica Sjjoo

• The Gnostics - Tobias Churton

• The Cube of Space - Kevin Townley

• Meditations on the Cube of Space- Kevin Townley

• The Anatomy of the Body of God -
Frater Achad

• Astral Travel - Gavin & Yavonne Frost

• Mind Power into the 21st century -John Kehoe

• Lucid Living - Timothy Freke

• The Hidden Creator - Hilton Hotema

• Secret of Regeneration - Hilton Hotema

• The Great Red Dragon - Hilton Hotema

• The handbook of Yoruba Religios Concepts - Ifa Karade

• Yoruba legends - M. I. Ogumifu

• Wise Women of the Dreamtime - Langloh Parker

• Astral Travel - Robert Brute

• Siva : The Erotic Ascetic

• Daimonic Reality - Patrick Harpur

• The Dream And the Underwolrd -James Hillman

• The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious - Carl Gustav Jung

• Mysterium Coniunctionis - Carl Gustav Jung

• Aeon - Carl Gustav Jung

• Psychology and Alchemy - Carl Gustav Jung

• The Presence of Siva - Stella Kramrisch

• Hebrew Myths -Robert Graves & Raphael Patid

• The Black Sun - Peter Moon

• Equinox of the gods - Aleister Crowley

• Necronomicon - H.R. Giger

• What dreams may come

• Spiritual Technology of Ancient Egypt - Edward Malkowski

• Gnosticism - Stephen Hoeller

• The Devil - Jeffrey Burton Russel

• Cosmic Science of the Ancient Masters - Hilton Hotema

• Satan: the early Christian Tradition - Jeffrey button Russel

• Dictionary of Symbolism - Hans Biedermann

• Encyclopedia of Gods - Michael Jordan

• Dictionary of Deities - Patricia Turner

• Hindu Deities a Mythological Dictionary - Margaret Stutley

• Signs and Symbols of Primordial Man - Albert Churchward

• Gods of love and Ecstacy - Alian Danielou (shiva & Dionysus)

• Vodou Visions - Sallie Ann Glassman

• A Textbook code/system/ concepts …Victims of White Supremacy - Neely Fuller

• Palo Moyombe -Congo initiation spirits… - Carlos Montenegro

• Seth God of Confusion - Herman te Velde

• The Ancient Egyptian Buddha -Muata Ashby

• Enuma Elish - L. W. King

• Mornings of the Magicians - louis Pauwels

• Powers of the Orishas - Migene Gonzales-Wippler

• The Souless One, Cloning and Counterfeit Creation - Mark L Prophet

• The Egyptian Elements of the Old Testament - Amin Sharif

• The Souls of White Folk - Veronica Watson

• Ancient Sungod - Hilton Hotema

• The Black Goddess and the Unseen Real - Peter Redgrove

• Godwin’s Kabbalistic Encyclopedia - David Godwin

• The Book of The Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage - S.L. Macgregor

• God Wills The Negroe - Theodore P. Ford

• 5/5/2000: Ice The Ultimate Disaster - Richard W. Noone

• In Search of the Dream People -
Richard w. Noone

• The Book of the Goetia of Solomon the King - E. Crowley

• The Lesser Key of Solomon - Joseph H. Peterson

• The Pale Fox - M. Griaule

• The Serpent Shakti - Asha Auset

• The Greatest Story Never Told - Lana Corrine Cantrell

• The Rebirth of Pan - Jim Brandon

• International Meat Crisis - Harvestime Books

• The Call of Cthulu and Other Weird Stories - S.T. Joshi

• The Warlocks Book: Secrets of Black Magic - Peter Haining

• Encyclopedia of Black Magic - Cassiel

• Atlantis - Aleister Crowley

• The Sword and the Flute: Kali and Krsna - David R. Kinsley

• White Supremacy and Negroe Subordination - John H. Van Evrie

• Encounters - Edith Fiore

• Spirit Rapping Unveiled - Hiram Mattison

• Ego and Archetype - Edward F. Edinger

• Theosophia: Hidden Dimensions of Christianity - Arthur Versluis

• Kundalini, Evolution, and Enlightenment - John White

• The Opening of the Way - Isha Schwaller de Lubicz

• Tantric Visionsof the Divine Feminine - David R. Kinsleu

• Sex Magic, Tantra, & Tarot - Lon Milo Duquette

• The Moses Mystery - Gary Greenberg

• Moses and Akhenaten - Ahmed Osman

• The Serpent Grail - Philip Gardiner

• Paralell Myths - J. F. Bierlein

• Wonderful Ethiopians of the Ancient Cushite Empire - Drusilla Dunjee Houston

• The Emerald Tablet - Dennis William Hauck

• Scales of the Black Serpent
Basic Qlippothic magick - Michael W. Ford

• The Soul’s Secret - Hilton Hotema

• Nightshades - Jan Fries

• Typhonian Teratomas - Mishien Linden

• Qabalah, Qliphoth, and Goetic Magic - Thomas Karlsson

• The Biography of Satan: Exposing the Origins of the Devil - Kersey Graves

• The Chicken Qabalah - Lon Milo Duquette

• Hanuman, an Introduction - Devdutt Pattanaik

• Qliphoth, Esoteric - Edgar Kerval

• Drums and Shadows: Survival Studies among the Georgia Coastal Negroes - Georgia Writers Project

• Myths & Legends of Babylonia and Assyria - Lewis Spence

• The Mysterious Sphinx - Hilton Hotema

• Alchemy of the Soul - Lee Irwin

• Isis Magic: Cultivating a Relationship With the Goddess of 10,000 Names - M. Isadora Forrest

• The Golden Ass - Penguin Classics

• Time and the Technosphere - Jose Argüelles

• Magical Child - Joseph Chilton Pearce

• Infancy in Uganda - Mary D. Salter Ainsworth

• Yakub: The Father Of Mankind - Elijah Muhammad

• Melanin the Chemical Key to Black Greatness - Carol Barnes

• The Golden Age of the Moor - Ivan Van Sertima

• The Worlds Sixteen Crucified Saviors - Kersey Henry Graves

• Holy Harlots: Femininity, Sexuality, and Black Magic in Brazil - Kelly E. Hayes

• Aleister Crowley: The Nature of the Beast - Colin Wilson

• Who is This King of Glory? A Critical Study of the Christos Messiah Tradition - Alvin Boyd Kuhn

• Darkness Visible: Awakening Spiritual Light Through Darkness Meditation - Ross Heaven

• Aghora, at the Left Hand of God V.1 - Robert Svoboda

• Aghora II: Kundalini - Robert Svoboda

• The Science of the Dogon: Decoding The African Mystery Tradition - Laird Scranton

• The Cosmic Serpent: Dna & The Origins of Knowledge - Jeremy Narby

• Angels, Demons, & Gods of the New Millenium - Lon Milo Duquette

• The Road From Orion - Judy Kay King

• The Isis Thesis - Judy Kay King

• The Book on Palo - Don Demetrio (original publications spiritual books and supplies)

• Spirits of the Night - Selden Rodman

• Voodoo Charms & Talismans - Robert W. Pelton

• Voodoo Shaman: The Hatian Way of Healing and Power - Ross Heaven

• Complete book of Voodoo - (original publications spiritual books and supplies)

• Voodoo in Haiti - Alfred Metraux

• Voodoo Rituals: A Users Guide - Heike Owusu

• The Voodoo Quantam Leap: Alternate Realities, Power, & Mysticism - Reginald Crosley

• Polaria , The Gift of the White Stone - W.H. Muller

• Sexual Alchemy: Magical Intercourse with Spirits - Donald Tyson

• A New Orleans VouDou Priestess: The Legend and Reality of Marie Laveau - Carolyn Morrow Long

• Brazilian Palo Primer: Kimanda Recipes to Make You Win at Love, Money, Business, and Life - Robert Laremy

• Blood Magick - Seth

• Rituals and Spells of Santeria - Migene Gonzales-Wippler

• Egyptian Erotica: The Essence of Ancient Egyptian Erotica in Art & Literature - Joseph Toledano

• Egyptian Magic - Joseph Toledano

• Black and White Magic - Marie Laveau

• Wicca Candle Magick - Geri a Dunwich

• Cunt Coloring Book - Tee Corinne

• Secrets of Magical Seals - Anna Riva

• Creating Magical Entities - David Michael Cunningham

• The Magic of Believing - Claude M. Bristol

• The Wise Wound: Menstruation and EveryWoman

• Mysteries of the Dark Moon The Healing Power of the Dark Goddess - Demetra George

• Taboo: Sex, Religion & Magic - Christopher S. Hyatt

• Dragontime Magic & Mystery of Menstruation - Luisa Francia

• Star Walkers and the Dimension of the Blessed - William Henry

• Cosmic Radiation - Hilton Hotema

• The Great Law - Hilton Hotema

• The Way of the Orisa - Philip Johm Neimark

• Encyclopedia of African Religion - Molefi Kete Asante

• African Folklore An Encyclopedia - Philip M.Peek and Kwesi Yankah

• The Intellectual Adventure of Ancient Man - Henri Frankfort

• The Serpent Power: Ancient Egyptian Mystical Wisdom of the Inner Life Force - Muata Ashby

• Egyptian Hieretic texts transcribed - Alan Gardiner

• Ecstasy through Tantra - John Mumford

• The Gnostic Religion: The Message Of The Alien God and The Beginning of Christianity - Hans Jonas

• Apocolypse of The Alien God: Platonism and the Exile of Sethian Gnosticism - Dylan M. Burns

• The Serpent Power - John Woodroffe

• The Teachings of PtahHotep: The Oldest Book in the World - Hilliard III Asa

• The Acid- Alkaline food Guide - Larry Trivieri

• The Mahabharata

• Mysteries of the Mexican pyramid - Peter Tompkins

• Man’s Higher Consiousness - Hilton Hotema

• We Do Not Die - Hilton Hotema

• Ancient Secret of Personal Power: Tetragrammaton - Hilton Hotema

• The Magic Wand : The Caduceus - Hilton Hotema

• Ancient Future - Wayne Chandler

• Symbols Signs & Signets - Ernst Lehner

• Ancient Astrological Secrets of the Jews Revealed - Rueven Shomroni

• The Great Initiates - Edouard Schuré

• Synchronicity - Allan Combs

• Interpreting the Eclipses - Robert Jansky

• Sexual Astrology - Marlene Rathgeb

• Planetary Symbolism in the Horoscope - Karen Hamaker

• In Search of The Medicine Buddha - David Crow

On head marking

“I’m a child of Yemaya! I’m not in the religion, but I know it.”

One of the most attractive aspects of Lukumi religion is the idea of head Orishas - that each of us have our own Orisha who is like a parent to us. I, for example, am a child of Oshun. Most people in Orisha religion identify themselves first as a child of their Orisha, before anything else. Who your Orisha is says a great deal about who you are as a person (though it’s not always a like attracts like sort of situation, some people’s Orisha is the opposite of who they are in the world).

To outsiders, this is understandably attractive! Unfortunately, some people have misconceptions about what this means. The biggest misconception is that they think they can choose their Orisha. You can’t. Your Orisha is chosen before birth.

The other major misconception is that you can “just know” who your Orisha is. You cannot. There are only three ways to find out who your Orisha is: diloggun head marking from an Olorisha (preferably an Oriate - this is more than a standard reading), Ifá bajada from Babalawos, or from an Orisha who has mounted someone during a bembé (this needs to be confirmed by either of the previous two methods). These are the only ways to know who your Orisha is. Generally, though it varies by house, a person only finds out their Orisha when they are getting ready to become a priest in Lukumi. So, no, you can’t just find out for the sake of finding out - it is a step on the path towards becoming a priest and fully functioning member of this community, not a fun horoscope-like fact. In fact, knowing your Orisha too early can create more problems than it solves. The ceremonies to find out your Orisha basically make a promise to the Orisha that you’re going to become initiated - if you fail to fulfill this promise in a timely manner, let’s just say it’s not great.

“But I had a dream with Yemaya!! I love the sea!!”

Nope, not a valid way to find out who your Orisha is. Perhaps Yemaya has a message for you - the best way to find out is to get a diloggun or Ifa reading from a reputable Olorisha or Babalawo. In Orisha religion, we confirm everything via divination - there is no ambiguity, no room for “just feeling it.”

“I’ve always known I was a child of Yemaya!!”

Almost everyone I know who’s had their head marked thought they knew exactly who their Orisha was going to be. They sat down in the banquito on the mat thinking “Yes, this is going to confirm it all!” And the vast majority of them were shocked to find out who their Orisha actually was. I, for one, was convinced that Oya or Yemaya was my mother, but it turned out I’m a child of Oshun. What sits on top of your own head is often the hardest thing in the world to see.

“I met a Santera/espiritista/New Orleans Voodoo priestess/Rootworker who said I am FOR SURE a child of Yemaya!”

Unless they read that through diloggun or Ifa divination, they were just talking out of their ass. If they were a valid Santero, they might have made an informed guess, but most Santeros I know are terrible at guessing people’s Orisha unless we can look at a bunch of diloggun readings you’ve received over at least a year. Sorry. That’s just the truth.

I see all of this happen so much, especially on Tumblr where everyone is a cultural magpie trying to grab anything that isn’t nailed to the floor, and it’s a little frustrating. Often the people claiming this or that Orisha (for some reason, it’s almost always Yemaya, Oshun, or Oya - you guys know we have 401 Orisha, right?) have never even stepped into an Orisha ceremony or drumming.

You can love the Orisha - that’s wonderful! But please, don’t claim to be something you are not. If you’re really interested in honouring the Orisha, you will follow the protocols they themselves have established over hundreds of years through the hard work of their priests who’ve had to survive so much (slavery, ongoing police persecution, murder, deportations, the Mariel boatlift, etc.) to keep this religion alive. The most important thing in Afro-Diasporic religions is respect. Please, have some respect and I promise it will pay off in the end.



Who is the Aleyo?

A believer not initiated in Santeria.

Who is the Ooni?

It’s someone like the pope from the catholic religion, for the Yoruba religion.

What is an Ebbó?

It’s a ceremony bestowed by the Orishas to a person to change his/her spiritual energy.

What is odu, sign and letter?

The three elements of the oracles (Ifá, Diloggun and Obi) use to make predictions and divinations.

Who is the Apeterbí of Orunmila?

All daughters of Oshun and Ololodi that have Ikofafun and Kofá of Orula.

What is Ikofafun or Kofá of Orula?

This means that the woman has her Guardian Angel defined and a sign of the oracle of Ifá. Ikofafun is the highest rank a woman can reach in Ifá, since women can’t be Babalawos or Olúos.

What is Awofakan or Hand of Orula?

This means that the man has his Guardian angel defined and a sign of the oracle of Ifá.

The Awofakan is an Ifá user and it’s like a cleric rank, he’s in his way to be Babalawo.

Who are the Babalosha and Iyalosha?

Babalosha is for men and Iyalosha for women. This person reads the oracle of diloggun and had met two characteristics; first completed his/her stage as Iyawo and then consecrated another person in osha.

What is the Oracle of Ifá?

It is the supreme oracle and with this the Babalawo can communicate with Orula and all other deities from the Yoruba pantheon.

What is an Omo Alañá?

It means “Son of Aña”, and only men can be sons of Aña. It’s the name given to all men who plays the Batá drums on ceremonies.

What are the Batá drums?

They’re three sacred drums used to communicate with the Orishas and to pay tribute to them. The biggest drum is called Iyá, the medium drum is called Itótole and the smallest is called Okókolo.

Who is Aña?

He’s the Orisha who lives inside the Batá drums. He carries the messages from the drums to the Orishas and Olodumare.

What means to ‘make saint’?

It’s also called ‘consecrated in osha’. It’s the most important ceremony in the religion and it consists in consecrate the person to his/her guardian angel. A year after the ceremony this person will be able to escalate ranks in the religion.

Why do people make saint?

You can consecrate in osha for a lot of reasons, to achieve harmony, health, protection and equilibrium within yourself, with the world around you, all divinities and your own destiny.

Who determines if a person should make saint?

As everything else in our religion, Olofi and the Orishas are the ones calling the shots.

What is a Bóveda Espiritual?

A Spiritual Vault is a table with a white cloth over, it should be in a very private place for you and there you’ll work with your spirits and forefathers from your cuadro spiritual.


senoritacomoestas  asked:

What kinda work have you done within yourself to address the fact that you're a white person practicing a religion or belief system derived from the African Dispora/ as I understood a generally closed religion? Do you have dissonance or qualms around it or have run into issues with it socially?

That’s a good question! I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about this. When I first got into the religion, I started reading a lot of critical race theory - from bell hooks to Angela Davis. I felt like I needed to better understand race and racism if I was going to be part of an Afro-Cuban religion, and I’m so glad that I did all of that self-education. It’s helped me understand my own privilege as a white person and the many issues affecting the largely Afro-Latinx community that practice the religion. It’s led me to a commitment to these issues as an activist, and a practice of constant self-reflection (I am by no means a perfect person and like all white people I mess up). I have made some particular decisions around the public space I take as a result (ie, I don’t write books on the religion, and I generally refuse speaking gigs about it, etc. because I figure a white person does not need to be the public face of a Black religion).

I’ve thought a lot about cultural appropriation, and read a lot of theory about it - the understanding I’ve gained from that is that cultural appropriation is when outsiders enter and steal, co-opt, and attempt to change a cultural practice to suit their needs, often for profit (see, for example, plastic shamans selling fake Native crafts and ceremonies), and separate from the actual community who is being stolen from. My involvement in Lukumi is not that - I am an active part of a ilé (house/community), working with the permission of that ilé under the direction of my elders, and I converted and practice exactly as the religion prescribes. Many people convert to different faiths, and this is what my experience has been: a conversion.

The community is not closed - I’ve never heard anyone in Lukumi communities say that it is. That term “closed” comes from Neopaganism, as far as I can tell. This is an increasingly common misconception about Lukumi, though. A quick look at the history challenges this idea completely (check out the book Santeria Enthroned for a very long take on the history, or Santeria: From Africa to the New World by George Brandon for a shorter take). The religion has always been open to a variety of different people since it coalesced in mid-19th Century Cuba. This originally began when Africans of different (ie non-Yoruba) ethnic groups were intermarrying with Yoruba people in Cuba, then expanded to include white Cubans and Chinese indentured servants, largely through intermarriage. By the end of the 19th Century, many of the cabildos were racially mixed, and Cuban newspapers noted with racist displeasure at the numbers of white Cubans becoming ‘entranced’ by the African religion. This racial integration continued into the 20th Century, and sped up considerably since its arrival in the United States following the Cuban Revolution. Now many houses are racially mixed, and there are people of all races in the religion.

It is not an uncomplicated situation! I’ve seen some bad behaviour from both white and non-white outsiders entering the religion, unfortunately. But the Orisha, through both possession and the oracles (diloggun, Ifa, and Obi), have made it clear that they want to expand. For example, an Oshun came down at a drum I was at once and started talking about how she wants to “speak every language,” meaning she wants to be worshipped around the world. I’ve heard of similar stories of Orisha from coast to coast across the US.

While the religion is not “closed,” it isn’t exactly open either. It’s a religion based on initiatory status - only when a person is initiated as part of an ilé are they really a full part of the religion. The general attitude in the community is that the Orisha know what they are doing, and if the Orisha don’t want someone to be part of it, they have ample opportunity to say so. During the initiation ceremony itself, there are dozens of divinations that are done, at each of which the Orisha can (and occasionally have!) sent people packing. It’s not meant for everyone, but it’s up to the Orisha and, to a lesser extent, the elders to decide who is supposed to be there.

The community has always been welcoming to me, at least racially (there have been some issues with my being trans from time to time but that has been changing dramatically over the past few years). There are lots and lots of white people in the religion. And Asian people. And Middle Eastern people. And Native American people. It’s very mixed these days. The community my ilé works in near LA is largely Mexican.

Outsiders, however, are another story. I get some flack from people who are not part of the religion. Which is maddening because they don’t know the first thing about it, but are purporting to tell an active priest what’s what. The issue here is that outsiders are approaching the religion as a purely political issue, ignoring the voices of the community itself and also the very real input of the Orisha. My elders get so mad about it - to question my initiation is to question their decisions, which in this extremely hierarchical religion is basically A Very Uncouth Thing. As a result, like many other practitioners, I am becoming increasingly selective about where and when I discuss the religion and with whom. Outsiders just don’t understand.


An Orisha who represents the Earth and the work of agriculture and cultivating. Related strongly with Oggun and Olokun. He comes from the territory of Saki, west of Oyo. The arbiter of disputes, especially amongst women, considered judge of disputes amongst Orishas. He is who provides food to the world, as being the Earth.

The father of the land, knowing the secrets of farming and maintaining the harvest and crops fertile. He maintains the stability of life through his plantaion. He tends to the crops on a daily basis to ensure good harvest.

Ensuring the prosperity of harvests, messengers are the bees and Orisha Oko represents fertility and prosperity. Barren women come to him and he forms the trilogy with Oke and Oggue. He is responsible of the harvests, the rain, the inner fire capable of splittling land and animals.

He has two personalities of day and night. In the day, he is a pure and perfect man. At night, he disguises as Iku. He receieves the corpses which he gives to Yewa and Oya sent through Babalu Aye. His name comes from Yoruba Orisa Oko (Orisha of work).

Orisha Oko is not directly received to the head and he is done through Yemaya Oro Orisha Oko due to the curse of Ibu Agana. His numer is 7 and his colors are pink and sky blue. His feast day is March 22 or May 15. He is syncretized with San Isidro. His sacrifices are male goats, roosters, and pigeons. A strong and affecionate father, protecting the hard workers. Living in the backyard of the priests home.

Orisha Oko is a child of Obatala and Yembo. Husband of Olokun, also having relations with Yemaya who he convinced to receive the secret of the Yams and give to his son Chango. He speaks through Diloggun Eyeunlke(8), Eyioko(2), and Oddi(7).



The Divine Moon

“Regla de Ocha houses, ensure that Eleggua is the mediator, he knows God, Ori, the Orishas and Eggun, he knows them as well as "anyone”. When using the tutelary Orishas Diloggun, it is because they argue that the Orishas are not “vassals” of Orunmila, but are independent agents of divination that have the right, the highest authority, responsibility and the last word, to guide and determine the direction and destination of the heads that they govern. This is opposite to what dictates the standards of the rule of Ocha/Ifa for being contradictory to the Odu of Ifa, since for that God assigned each Orisha a role and this is seen even in Nigeria".   © 2012: Of the chapter: Regla de Ocha o Regla de Ocha/Ifá: ¿Cuál Escojo?. libro:Comprendiendo Nuestras Tradiciones.Autores: Oluwos Leonel Gámez Osheniwo y Aguila de Ifá.


Yemaya was married to Orunmila, great fortune teller from the land of Ife, who performed miracles and had a large clientele. By then, Orunmila was intimately connected to the secret of the cowrie shells (diloggun), Yemaya, mistress of the sea, fish, cowrie shells and all marine, I communicated; He, in turn, interpreted those secrets through Oddun and legends.

It happened that one day Orunmila had to make a long and tedious journey to attend a meeting of the Awo he had called Olofi, and as it took longer than Yemaya imagined, she ran out of money, so she decided to apply her technique and her wisdom to consult those that needed help.

When someone came to look for Orunmila for consultation, she said that not to worry and that she would use the diloggun oracle. Teller was born, their predictions were a great success and the Ebo saved many people.

Orunmila, on the road to his house, heard that there was a fortune teller and miraculous woman in his village. He, like odd - all human beings-, disguised and wondering where the woman lived, came to his own home. Yemaya, discovered, said to him: “Did you think I was going to die of hunger?” So he, enraged, took her in front of Olofi, wisest of the wise, who decided that Orunmila register with the Ekuele, the Ekin and Até IFA, and Yemaya would dominate diloggun. But he warned orunmila when Yemaya came out in the Oddun, all Babalawos tended to pay homage, with forehead touching the Board and say: Eboada Fi Ebbo.