Things to consider before starting the Path of Ifa Orisa.
Over the years, I’ve begun to see a lot of people flock to Ifa and Orisa only to be stung hard by some elder or situation they weren’t prepared for. Unfortunately there are frauds and insincere unethical priests out there. Ifa said in the Odu Eji Ogbe that the upright ones on earth number less than 20. The wicked ones more than 40, 000! So that holds true for just about any group of humans. But some things create more problems that if they we’re refrained from, it would produce a better experience.
- Stop being in a rush to start. The ego wants everything now and fast. We don’t realize how much the ego dominates our decisions and responses. The need to hurry up and get initiated is the number one reason people get scammed. Without knowing any better, you post something online and a host of scammers are prepared to inbox you with solutions to all your problems. You think..hey I finally got a African priest not thinking he may be a huge scammer. Oh sure.., he might even be initiated to Ifa but truth is…You don’t know him or her and all that you feel is just desire to get ahead.,,not truth. When the truth hit you that they could really care less about you but only about your bank account and milking you for every dime they can get, you are then hurt and disillusioned. But a lot of it is because you never really took the time to get to know them , their reputation, and you didn’t have anyone in your own country who could buffer the situation or even warn you,
- This brings me to another issue. Stop minimizing the support you might get from people in the African Diaspora to help you. There is a tendency to dismiss those who are in the United States or Diaspora and seek only someone who live in Africa. There are many good Iya’s and Babas on the continent. But… you must understand that there things you don’t know that you don’t know. One is that if they have never been outside of Africa, they are extremely limited on their knowledge of how the world works where you live and how Ifa works outside of Africa. This means they can do a divination but the ability to apply advice practically to your life and in your world will be lacking. The world in Africa is so culturally different than in America they are not able to relate… Even if you initiate, it will still be very difficult to actually get the training you need to function as a priest. Most do not have the skills or technology to teach in the Western way we learn. Most don’t have a formal education to be able to handle our detailed questions. So it is better to have an intermediary … One who is from where you are but have traveled and gotten familiar with the customs and people to navigate situations with continental Africans. They can protect you from scammers. They should have enough experience to be able to offer you training where you are so you can learn to be the priest you wanted to be. Not doing so will more often than not leave you with a great ceremony…a shrine..and not much else. You will be an initiate…but not have the tools or training to be a priest.
- Deal with your Ego and work on Self development first! There is a reason this was called Awo or a mystery system. It wasn’t for everyone. Everyone hasn’t cultivated themselves to actually do the inner work it takes to be a priest. (This includes some that are actually priests! )They are hurt and have issues they haven’t dealt with and seek this tradition to get power. They want status… and attention to cover up their issues. Then they get initiated and first thing they want to do is establish a public platform to be an expert in it. Easy access to social media has given the impression you can bypass working under an elder and just create an empire for yourself overnight . It’s because they haven dealt with their ego… and their shadow is a whole other thing. Be careful of such people and be careful of not becoming one of those people. It may give short term glory but long term embarrassment.
4. Begin to work with what you have available first. That means Ori, Egun, and Egbe. These strong pillars along with learning Obi Divination is often all that a devotee needs. They don’t require initiation and can be powerful tools for development and spiritual practice. Check out my book Isese Spirtuality Workbook to help you develop a practice in these. Its like 4 books in one and the only book written that encompasses all of these practice in one book! It can be found HERE