Nigeria Indigenous Religion Assessment – Tribune Online



Indigenous African religions establish strong links between the lives of humans and the world of ancestors. Man is thus able to maintain constant and symbiotic relations with his ancestors, understood as intimately concerned and involved in their descendants.

Many Nigerians follow the teachings of purely indigenous religions. Most of these religions share the idea that a Supreme God created the earth and its inhabitants, but left people to decide their own path in life. Followers of the traditional Yoruba religion believe that hundreds of minor spirits or gods have taken the place of the Supreme God to influence the daily life of individuals. Many Yoruba slaves who were taken to the Caribbean and the Americas brought this religion with them. There it was used as the basis for Santeria and voodoo.

Traditional Yoruba religion includes Sango, Oya, Ori, Yemoja, Ogun, Osun, Obatala, Esu, Ifa, Egungun, Gelede, Sigidi, Elegba, Amadioha in the igbo language means (god of thunder), Ala (goddess of earth) and more than a hundred gods hail from the eastern region, while the northerners identified primarily with the Islamic religion, although they worshiped Maguzanes or Bor in pre-Islamic times.

The Ogun festival, which also takes place every year, also involves sacrifices. Before the ritual and celebration, the priests take a vow to refrain from cursing, fighting, making love, and eating certain foods, so that they may be considered worthy of Ogun. At festival time, they make offerings of snails, kola nuts, palm oil, pigeons, and dogs to appease Ogun’s destructive wrath.

Ori (known as Orí in Latin America) is a Yoruba metaphysical concept. Ori, which literally means “head”, refers to one’s spiritual intuition and one’s destiny. It is the reflective spark of human consciousness grounded in human essence, and is therefore often personified as a full-fledged Orisa.

In the Yorùbá religion, the Sàngó is one of the most popular “Orisa”. He was a strong ruler and a remarkable magician. Sango was the third king of the kingdom of Oyo. He succeeds Ajaka, son of Oranmiyan who seems to have been a weak ruler. Its symbol is a two-pointed ax, which represents swift and balanced justice. He is the owner of Bata (Double Head Drums), as well as Music, Dance and Entertainment Arts in Yoruba Culture. In the Lukumí religion (Olokun mi which means “my dear”) of the Caribbean, the sango is considered as the central point of the religion because it represents the Oyo people of West Africa.

Sango had three wives; Osun, (a river goddess) was his favorite because of her excellent food, Oba (another river goddess) offered Sango her ear to eat. He despised it and it became the Oba River, which merges with the Osun River to form dangerous rapids. Finally, Oya (Sango’s third wife) was a shrewd woman who stole the secret of Sango’s powerful magic.

Oba was Sango’s first and legitimate wife; Osun, his second wife, and Oya, his third wife, whom he made his queen. Osun played a trick on Oba out of jealousy. She tricked Oba into telling him that if she could cut off a piece of his ear and offer it to Sango as part of his meal, he would love her even more. Oba, excited by this information, ran to his home to prepare Sango’s “Amala”, his favorite dish. She cut off her ear and mixed it with Sango’s food. While Sango was eating, he saw the ear in the food and was furious thinking that Oba was trying to poison him. Sango chased her from his house and Oba ran crying. She fell to the ground and turned into a river that is still worshiped to this day. She became the patron saint of marriage (as “Orisha”) and is believed to destroy marriages that abuse either partner.

Historically, Sango brought prosperity to the Oyo Empire during his reign. It is associated with the sacred animal, the ram, and with the colors red and white. The sango is revered in Haiti, as a god of thunder and time; in Brazil, it is known under the name of Xangô; in Umbanda, like the very powerful loaNago Sango; in Trinidad as Sango, god of thunder, drum and dance; and in Cuba, Puerto Rico and Venezuela – the Santeria equivalent of Saint Barbara, he is known as Changó.

Sango deployed his magical powers by directing lightning towards his own home, killing his wives and children. He got angry and walked into the ground alone in Ira after the incident; he was deified as the god of thunder and lightning. Sango, as claimed, did not hang himself. Sango’s followers went to another village to acquire magical powers and furiously returned to destroy Sango’s enemies in old Oyo.

Obatala or Osanla (known as Obatalá in Nigeria and in Caribbean and South American Spanish and Oxalá in Brazil) is anorisa. He is believed to be the father of heaven and the creator of human bodies, which were animated by the gentle breath of Olodumare.Obatala is the father of all orishas (irunmole or imole). His main wife is Yemaya.

Egungun Festival is a festival celebrated by the Yoruba people, celebrated every year and passed down from generation to generation. It is believed to help develop trade and commerce and generally binds the people of Yorubaland regardless of their religious beliefs. Members of society dance in the markets, wearing their masks to represent the deceased spirits of their ancestors, which spirit to worship is uniquely decided by Ifa Oracle.

The Yoruba’s Gẹlẹdẹ Show is a public display of colorful masks, which combines art and ritual dance to entertain, educate and inspire worship. Gelede celebrates the “Mothers” (awoniyawa), a group that includes ancestors and female deities as well as elderly women in the community, and the power and spiritual capacity of these women in society. To focus not only on fertility and motherhood, but also on correct social behavior within Yoruba society.

Yemoja – mother of the fish children

Yoruba mythology, she is considered one of the 16 Orisas (gods) sent by Olodumare. (The supreme god).

Yemoja descended on a rope to create the earth with other Orisas (gods).

She is considered the figure of motherhood and is revered by sterile women because she can give them children. It is believed that the first mortal men were born from her.

Yemoja is often described as a loving and caring mother who can become temperamental and violent if she is crossed.

She is the goddess of fertility and protector of pregnant women and their children.

Yemoja is the goddess of water bodies and is the protector of people who work and travel on the sea. She is the head of the company Gelede (society of mothers)

In woodcarvings, she is depicted as a mermaid. Every year, a festival is held in his honor, where sacrifices of corn, yams, porridge and other foods are offered to him. New members are also initiated.

Many stories have linked her as the bride of the gods

like, Okere, Obatala, Erinle and OrisaOko. She is also the mother of Ogun, Sango, Dada, Ibeji, and many other gods. She is described as having

huge breasts to breastfeed her many children. Its symbols are cowries symbolizing wealth, fish, a mother carrying a child, multicolored crystal beads, a pigeon and white clothes.

Yemoja is still worshiped today, and it exists in other countries like Cuba, Uruguay, Haiti and Brazil.

If a religion? It is a spiritual system based on the belief in three main components: the Supreme Being (Olodumare), the spirits (Orisa) and the ancestors. Olodumare is also known by other names including Eleda, Eledumare, and Olorun. “Ifa includes magic, the use of traditional medicines and the worship of the dead.

Like Christianity, Judaism, and Islam, Ifa is monotheist, but its supreme creative figure, Olodumare, shares power with dozens of subsidiary deities.

  • Adefaye, a culture and museum specialist, sent the Ibadan piece.


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