Oyeku Meji, the Winter Solstice , and the Darkest Night before Dawn

It’s the Holiday season and a number of religions are celebrating in their own way. Many are quite unaware that this season used to be tied to nature herself. This is the season of the winter solstice. Tonight is December 21 and it is considered the beginning of winter…at least in North America. It may be different things in different parts of the globe, but it is also the longest night of the year. December 21-24 are considered the longest nights because the time of sunset and sunrise is extended the most. On the 25th of December The Sun rises again and it is considered a rebirth because from that day on, the sun will stay out longer and longer until the longest day which is the Summer solstice. So this is where we get the birth of the son…but it’s S-U-N not son. Still, the time is significant because as the Ifa Orisa tradition seeks alignment with nature, this process of dark and light happens inside of us too…

So as this time is dark we must reflect on what the dark means. I’ve always hated the categories of dark and light. For one because people always made it out to be a good or bad, enlightened or baneful thing. Frankly I think it’s crap but these are world politics that support one group to justify injustice to another group so…. Anyway what the darkness brings to mind for me is Odu. Now Odu is many things to many people and in fact multidimensional. For one, she is the feminine force of divine wisdom who relays the Oracle Ifa. In African Vodoun Afa, she is Gbadu, daughter of Mawu who has 16 eyes. In Yoruba, she is called wife to Òrúnmìlà (considered a prophet or deity of wisdom too) and it is through her that Orumila taps the Oracle to communicate the message. One thing about Odu is that she prefers the dark. She is depicted with eyes closed where it is dark. Another symbol for her  is a womb…also a place of darkness, mystery, and sacred power. A sacred portal where a soul is nurtured and receives the veil of human form.  The darkness, is where we are not distracted by the outer trappings of the world like the ego who seeks to control and dominate. The dark is where divine light is Born and Wisdom lives. It’s not dreadful or baneful at all. It is where we all come from and will return to.

Then there is the Odu verse …(the sacred verse or teaching from the Ifa oracle ) Oyeku Meji. People sometimes fear Oyeku Meji because they associate it with death or the averter of death. While it can mean that, when it comes up, it is often something other than literal death. It’s significance is much broader than that. It could mean it’s a time to close doors, or a need to tap ancestral wisdom, or the darkness found with closed eyes in a meditative state. It can be death like the trees whose leaves fall but retains life to be reborn in the spring. Or the death of a child who leaves the mothers womb and spiritual world to be born into this one. It can be the end of a bad situation and the return of better days. As the opposite of the odu Ogbe Meji who is often associated with masculine and light, external, movement, Oyeku can represent the epitome of the feminine , internal stillness… like the darkness of the womb. Oyeku is associated with the name Atooro meaning from the very beginning. As such, Oyeku can represent the darkness of the ocean deep and Olokun and the darkness of Onile Mother Earth herself. The darkness of deep space and the triple blackness of the black hole that gave birth to this entire universe. Oh yeah it can go deep… very deep.

Oyeku Meji
Even if you move away from your position
I will not move
The foundation stones of the house must not fail the house.
The crown of the head must not fail the person at the market.
So I will not move away
And you will not move away
You are the light
I am the light
Twilight is just appearing in the sky
But some people thought it had already dawned
Cast Divination for Eji Oye
Who would Dawn on the earth like daylight

Oyeku Meji speaks of the time of darkness just before dawn… And that is what we find at this time of the year… Dawn being on the 25th… So during this time of darkness, if we are tuned to nature, we might find ourselves needing to shut down and go within. While many see the new year as January 1st, the new year is actually the 25th. So on those dark days before it, we can do what nature calls us to do…plant seeds… spiritual seeds for what we want accomplish next year. We take time to reflect on what has passed, what has been learned, and what needs to be done next. We fast or meditate and close our eyes to the distractions of the world. We enter the darkness behind our eyelids as we access the inner wisdom of our Ori. We write down goals and visualize them coming into being. We get Divinations to see what lessons are in store for us . We do rituals to tune into the pulse of nature.. We become still..settled like the Earth almost at rest untouched by time or space. We slow down our breath waiting in Heavenly peace in this silent night where all is calm. We tap the virgin part of our spirits and become receptive as a child receiving wisdom from our  inner mother. And we wait.. for the rebirth of light.





  1. Fasade Oshun Banke

    There are no coincidences! In my current research and writings, I refer to the science of what occurs in nature; The Science of Spirituality, to understand Ifa and the spiritual principles of Ifa. In the last few years science has finally discovered “dark light”, “dark matter”, and “strings of light ” that attach themselves to all things including humans which form the basis of what is called “Innate Intelligence” or in religious terms “Divine Intelligence”…Our Connection to the Universal Divine Energy. This energy is “feminine and retracts. Without this “Dark Energy” scientists state that we could not exist. It is using the “Dark Energy” and “strings” that we create our own realities.

    In my current writing I use the Concept of Black Holes, Worm Holes as an analogy for understanding Oyeku Meji. Because of the Popularity of Star Trek and Star Wars; most people have some basic understanding of what these are. What most don’t understand is that these phenomena of nature; of physics, are filled with immense light but the gravitational pull of energy is so strongly pulling in a different direction that they are not seen on this side of the opening. This side of the “eye” of the worm hole that opens.

    What scientists theorize is that if a human body entered through a worm hole, the body would dematerialize into a pulse of light and stretch to the opposite side of that worm hole and rematerialize in a form consistent with the dictates of the “strings” on the other side” of the opening. Of course, this has not been tested yet, however the discovery of Strings and Dark Light, Dark Matter explain the discrepancies in both Einstein’s physics of matter and gravity and holes in the theories of Quantum physics.

    If these theories are true, and I believe they are, then God is not “out there” but we are intricately interwoven with an immense “God Force of Creation”. I was recently informed by a friend that there are eight major areas in our Universe of immense “Dark Energy” that are just beginning to be investigated. I have not investigated this piece yet, so I simply state this and will update later. However; if this is true, when these eight are paired with a theorized “opposite opening” we get 16 openings or 16 “eyes”. ” In African Vodoun Afa, she is Gbadu, daughter of Mawu who has 16 eyes which open and allow light; energy, to pass from one dimension to another” (from the posted article). How about that!

    Our Ancient Ancestors had a much deeper understanding of our “natural universe, our “Nature” and our part in it than we currently recognize! The 16 Olodu symbolize the energies manifesting in our environment, whether we consciously understand them or not. The Omo Odu; the 256 passages are based on the mathematical principles of probability and are used to predict the probability of what will occur when these “energies” change from one to another (The Movement of Odu). The determination of “ire” or “ibi” indicates whether the combined energies will impact us in a way that enhances or disrupts us. i.e. Will the transformer on the electric pole continue to regulate the amount of electricity coming you into your home in a safe manner, or will the transformer crack and blow the house up and possibly your neighbors a well.

    The binary code used for computers is based on the 16 Ifa tetra grams of Olodu IFA. Our Ancient ancestors; understood how energies work, and translated that into a way for us to understand. Understanding that Ifa is based upon the understanding of the physics of nature takes the unnecessary “mysticism” out of our spiritual tradition. One does not have to be a physicist to Understand Ifa. One does need to understand the “energies” described by Odu. The mysticism then becomes directed to seeking to understand the magnificence of Creation and our part in it.

    Understanding that our spiritual tradition is based upon science takes the influence of various religions out of our tradition which presents conflicting perspectives of who and what “God” is or is not out of the equation. Ifa holds the individual accountable for what manifests in one’s environment and one’s relationship to God as the individual evolves to understand What God is not! I emphasize “What God is NOT!” Most of us have absorbed the religions of our captors and enslavers. They did that for a reason; to control us and disempower us from embracing our divine essence and divine relationship to “God-Goddess all that is” however one perceives that in the moment. Our perception of God changes as we allow ourselves to evolve and grow in alignment with that divinity as we understand the universal laws off physics which surround us and define our understanding of nature.

    So back to Oyeku Meji
    Oyeku Meji, the dark side of the side of the cowrie; from this perspective then, does indeed describe a pulling in of energies, a transformation and manifestation into something new. Death is not a permanent condition but rather a passage; as you would, to transform into something new. Whether you want it or not, Oyeku Meji indicates one needs to retract from what they are doing and from the outcome that is preparing to occur. Change your current “destiny”. Minimize whatever harm is going to occur. Enter the worm hole, become light, be replenished and rebuilt and become reborn as someone new. There is no negative in this. Oyeku Meji as “The Averter of Death” indicates that whatever you are doing or creating is a no-no and could hurt you and as painful as it may be for you at the time; one must let it go. You will emerge stronger and better for the experience. Destiny will change.
    How intelligent and wise were the Ancients.
    cp 2017 Fatu Judy Henderson | Fasade Oshun Banke

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