Conversations with Ori
When it reached the top, it burst through to what I can only describe as a massive light….Being…. Or..maybe a star being.. In any case, there was an iridescent light that was so bright but didn’t hurt my eyes. Having remembered such being described in books about death, it became apparent this is what I was seeing… And…it..she..was talking to me. Or maybe I was talking to it first but we were in communication. It was an unmistakable link between us. We were separate and one at the same time and the communication was telepathic. Or maybe more like a transmission of ideas. In fact, while I tried to “talk” through words and ask questions, I was interrupted by a communication that she wasn’t used to talking to me that way. It was relayed, telepathically in that there were no words… Just thoughts between us.
Being a long time student of esoteric philosophy and studying various traditions around the world, I can honestly say that it wasn’t till I embraced Ifa that I had such an experience in such fullness. I’ve been through the Kemetian and Kabalistic meditations and experienced the peaceful state of Ausar or Kether. I’ve done the Hermetic initiations with the Middle Pillar attained the knowledge and conversation with my Holy Guardian Angel …or so I thought till now. I’ve done years of chakra meditations…. And while the experience had remnants of all of those traditions, the one most close to what I experienced with my Ori this time was one that comes from another binary divinatory spiritual system.. Using the Chinese I Ching… That system maps the energetic body as the Tan Tian or Dantian.
What makes it so similar to what I experienced is that it is mapped out like the Spiritual body in Ifa Philosophy that make up the Ori. The Ori has numerous components and sub components. For the purpose of this article, I’ll focus on the triune nature of the spiritual body described in Ifa. While I’ve seen it described differently by different people, the three that stand out are Ori inu, the Emi, and the Iponri. Ori Inu is found in the naval area…just as the lower tan tien is found. The Emi is Spirit or breath and found in the Okan or Heart area. The Iponri is the Ori of our Destiny and found in the crown or head. In all fairness, I’ve seen the Okan or Heart described as separate from the Emi but that’s a subject for another day. What is important is the triune area of the body.
The tan tian is described as residing in the navel, the belly, and the chest in some areas and the navel, chest, and the head in other areas. They align it with the reproductive, digestive, and respiratory processes. Other sources say the upper burner relates to thought and higher consciousness, the middle to emotions, spirit, and breath, and the lower with regeneration and centering. What I see in Ifa’s application of this triune complex is through the Ori’s association with Obatala.
Of course, I’m still flushing this experience out. It’s a process to innerstand Ori on a universal level from the inside out. Ori is primary to Isese, another name for our tradition, and it’s essential to grasp how it supersedes everything else. It’s our personal Orisa…divine self..and connection to Olodumare. Ifa scriptures make it clear over and over that nothing happens without Ori and our success in life depends on our alignment with it. In the west, this concept was lost in the middle massage until the early nineties. Awo Falokun Fatunmbi wrote the book, Iwa Pele: Search for the Source of Santeria and Lukumi in 1991 which described his initiation into Ifa in Africa and shared the importance of Ori. While the idea feeding and cleaning the head and crowning Orisha was present, the idea of Ori, as a whole and as above all Orisa was not mentioned or spoken of in mass in the diasporic traditions. Come to think of it, neither was Iwa Pele. But, that too… Is another story for another day.
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