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Orisa Worship Handbook

Oloye Awodele Ifayemi

Atunwase Awo of Ilobu Land


This book is dedicated to all of those who benefit from this document. May
your life be enhanced and may your faith in God be strengthened.
I acknowledge my lineage Ifatoogun of Ilobu. My brothers Baba Babalola
Ifatoogun, Babalola Kolawole, Babalola Awoniyi, Babalola Awodele, Babalola
Falade, Babalola Ifayemi, Babalola Opelade, Babalola Ifasayo, my Ojugbona
Chief Awosoji Ifadairo, and my dear friend and brother in Ifa Ayo Salami.
I also want to thank all my students whom over the years have inspired me
to write this and other books. To them I give my love, and admiration.

Awodele Ifayemi
Oloye Awodele Ifayemi
Awo Atunwase of Ilobu Land

DEDICATION AND ACKNOWLEDGEMENT ............................................................ 1
TABLE OF CONTENTS ................................................................................. 2
PREFACE ................................................................................................ 4
OMIMIMO RUBO (LIBATION) ......................................................................... 5

............................................................................. 6

ORIKI ESU ............................................................................................. 9


.................................................................. 10

ORIKI OGUN .......................................................................................... 10

FI ASE PE ORISA (SUMMONING THE ORISA) .................................................... 11

IKIN (GREETING THE ORISA) ..................................................................... 13
ORIKI (PRAISING THE ORISA) ..................................................................... 14

I - ORIKI OBATALA .............................................................................. 14

II - ORIKI OBATALA .......................................................................... 15
SE EBO (MAKING OFFERINGS) ..................................................................... 16

............................................................................... 16

OFFERING OF CANDLES .................................................................... 17

OFFERING OF INCENSE ..................................................................... 17
OFFERING OF FOOD .......................................................................... 18
OFFERING OF OBI (KOLA NUT) ............................................................. 18
OFFERING OF WATER ........................................................................ 18
OFFERING OF FLOWERS .................................................................... 19
ORGANIZED APPROACH TO MAKING OFFERINGS ............................................... 19
OFFERING OF CANDLES .................................................................... 19
OFFERING OF WATER ........................................................................ 20
OFFERING OF FLOWERS .................................................................... 21

OFFERING OF FOOD .......................................................................... 21

OFFERING OF OBI (KOLA NUT) ............................................................. 22
INTERPRETING THE KOLA NUT ................................................................. 24
ORIN (CHANTS FOR THE ORISA) ................................................................ 25
GENERAL ORIN ...................................................................................... 32
ADURA ................................................................................................ 33
GENERAL PRAYERS TO THE ORISA ................................................................ 35
CLOSING THE PRAYER ............................................................................ 37
WISDOM OF IFA ..................................................................................... 38
OFTEN ASKED QUESTIONS ......................................................................... 38
CLOSING MESSAGE ................................................................................. 40

Iponri Ti o wa




Taking a good look at our condition in the Diaspora, we as decedents of

Africans must reflect on our history. We must ponder on the journey which
our forefathers endured. It is because of their desire to survive and
overcome against all odds that we are here today.
Are we any different than our forefathers? I would like to say that we are
not. We have within ourselves all that glorious energy and will to endure the
harshest of conditions life may throw our way. We have the power within us
to overcome and conquer any and all obstacle because they are within us.
There is a tremendous spiritual energy working within the hearts and soul of
our people. This energy is stimulating our psyche to the point wherein we
can't help but believe there is truly a merciful God in the midst of all of this
worldly confusion. This dynamic and invisible force brings with it the
endurance and energy that will take us to live our life with purpose.
I understand and acknowledge that there are many of us who feel like they
have lost everything. Yet I say to them that it is the lack of knowledge of our
divine power and purpose that makes you feel that way. Fear is what deems
yourselves powerless. Yet the fear you are suffering from is the
responsibility of taking your destiny into your own hands. You have gotten
so comfortable at blaming others for your demise that you dare not take
control of your destiny for if you fail then there is no one to blame but
yourself. Yet this fear is ill founded and a lie. It is by taking charge and
ownership of your destiny that you will triumph over any adversity.

It is clear to see that in order to deal with our future existence, "it gotta take
a miracle". Well, we are a miraculous people by nature. We've survived
everything as a people and we're still moving on the move. Heck we even
had the honor of witnessing an African American as the President of The
United States Of America.
While reading this book, I want you to read with your inner eyes. Flow with
it! Allow your intuitive ability to guide your energies so that your character
can be shaped into a vessel that Oldmar can manifest into the world.

To the Yorb, the act of pouring libation is a divine act of love

towards the imole (angelic beings) and to all of heaven. Libation is the
act of sending and receiving power. This act of love is called "Mojuba",
which means "I pay homage". It is also called "Omimimo rubo", which
is a holy offering of water.
The pouring of libation entails the pouring of water while reciting
incantations and calling out the names of various ancestors and
deities. Mojubas can be classified under the category of incantations
called igede. Igedes are a class of incantations that involve the
removal of negative forces.
Some igedes can have a destructive effect upon things. However, the
igede chant that is used in the sphere of pouring libation, does not
have any destructive effects whatsoever. It calls upon the blessings
and protection of various heavenly forces. The act of pouring libation is
a ritual of purifying the home (ile), spirit (emi) and family (idile).
Mojuba should be the first act of the day. It is the first step in the
process of worshiping ones orisa/imole.
The act of pouring libation can be performed anywhere. It is usually
performed in front of one's altar or shrine. The aborisa (worshiper of
the orisa) should obtain a cup (glass, metal or earthen) and a bowl
which would be strictly reserved for this purpose.
Fill the cup with fresh, clean water. Hold the cup in the left hand. Dip
the two middle fingers of the right hand in to the water and sprinkle

the water into the bowl or upon the shrine as you recite the following:

Omi tutu, omi tutu

Ona tutu
Ile tutu
Tutu Babanla
Tutu Ori
Tutu Emi
Tutu Aiye
Tutu Laroye
Kosi ku
Kosi rudurudu
Kosi idina
Ko si akoba fitibo ariku babawo.
Mojuba Oluawoodeorun, Eleda Eledumare,
Orisa gbogbo gbobgo gbogbo ta ji wa Eledumare
Mojuba Esu
Mojuba Ogun
Mojuba Ochosi
Mojuba Osayin
Mojuba Ojo Oni
Omuba Obatala
Mojuba Oduduwa
Mojuba Orunmila
Mojuba Ela
Moyuba Yemoya
Mojuba Agaju
Mojuba Oganran
Mojuba Oramfe, Jakuta (Sango)
Mojuba Oya
Mojuba Olokun
Mojuba Osun
Mojuba Gbogbo Orisa
Mojuba Gbogbo Orun
Mojuba Egungun kiki Egungun
Mojuba Babanla, Iyanla, Ara orun, etc.
Ase, Ase, Ase


Fresh water, fresh water, fresh water

to freshen the path
to freshen the house
to freshen the ancestors
to freshen the godhead
to freshen the soul
to freshen the world
to freshen Esu
May death be no more
May evil be no more
May obstructions be no more
So that worries and trouble are no more
Let us not see death and hardship any more
We pay homage to God who is beyond creation
The Creator and the owner of superlative power
God, who come into the world as all, all, all the Orisa.
We pay homage to Esu,
We pay homage to Ogun,
We pay homage to Ochosi,
We pay homage to Osayin,
We pay homage to Ojo oni (The owner of this day),
We pay homage to Obatala,
We pay homage to Oduduwa,
We pay homage to Orunmila,
We pay homage to Ela,
We pay homage to Yemaya,
We pay homage to Aganju,
We pay homage to Oganran,
We pay homage to Oramfe,
We pay homage to Jakuta,
We pay homage to Oya,
We pay homage to Olokun,
We pay homage to Osun,
We pay homage to all the Orisa,
We pay homage to all of heaven,
We pay homage to the ancestors,
We pay homage to the great fathers and the great mothers who are the
citizens of heaven, etc.

Each time that you say "Mojuba... dip your fingers into the water and
sprinkle it into the bowl. The libation can continue by honoring
members of one's family who have passed on. Call all the names of the
kings, priests, priestesses (living and deceased) of one's spiritual
lineage. This bowl of water can be placed upon your shrine or altar as
an offering.
When you pour libation with fresh water, the water becomes energized
with Ase and is therefore "holy water". It can be used for many
different spiritual purposes. Let your intuition guide you.
The next important step in the process of worshiping your Orisa is
removing hindrances and opening the way. This is achieved through the
invocation of the imoles/orisa, Esu and Ogun.
In all achievements in live; that is at the beginning of all enterprises
great or small, it is Esu and Ogun that must first be honored and
directed to assure success. Esu is seen as the "Opener of the gates of
heaven", so communication can be made without obstructions. Esu is
the special relations officer between Orun (heaven) and Aiye (earth). He
is the messenger between human beings on earth and the Imole in the
heavens. Esu is the bringer of obstacles and the remover of hindrances
along the path.
Esu is the active force behind all that is good and all that is bad. It is
Esu who must be acknowledge first so that in return he will cooperate
for your best interest and not work against you.
Then we come to Ogun; the Imole who cuts the mystical path from
heaven to earth, so that all the other Imoles may come to your service.
Ogun is associated with removing obstacles and clearing the way for
progress and prosperity to be achieved. gn's service must be
employed in all acts of worship.
One way that this process can be achieved is by paying homage to Esu
and Ogun as follows.
As you continue to sprinkle water from the libation cup, say the
following Oriki (praise song):


I ba rabo o mojuba
I ba rabo o mojuba
I ba rabo o mojuba
I ba kose omo deko
Elegbara Elegbara Elegbara
Omojuba Esu
Elegbara Esu lona
Odara Kolori eni ijo
So so so abe
Kolori eni ijo
Esu tiriri
Bara abebe
Tiriri Lona
Mojuba Esu
Oh great one, I pay homage to you
Oh great one, I pay homage to you
Oh great one, I pay homage to you
A young child does not approach Es
The owner of power, the owner of power,
the owner of power I pay homage to Es.
Elegbara Es on the road
Odara who has no head for dancing
The sharp, stubborn knife
Who has no head for dancing.
Es, the awesome one
The knife of power
The awesome one on the road
I pay homage to you Es.


Es mase pekun
Es mase pekun
Es mase pekun
Es jeki ahon mi
Ki okun bara bara bara
Jeki oro mi ni gba inu orun

Es don't close the door on me
Es don't close the door on me
Es don't close the door on me
Es may my tongue be filled with power, power, power
May my words be received in heaven.

Mojuba Ogun
Mojuba Ogun
Mojuba Ogun
Ogun osin mole
Ogun awoo a laka aiye
Ogun pele o
Obu Akaluusin lao
Pe Ogun Olubukun Asogun
Ogun onile owo, Olona awo orun
Ogun mo ona awo fun mi
Jeki ififun mimo ni serere
Ogun jeki ohun mi ni gbo inu orun
Ase Modupe Ogun
I pay homage to Ogun
I pay homage to Ogun
I pay homage to Ogun
Ogun, Prince among the angels
Ogun, the powerful one, the strong one of the world (heaven and earth)


The Prince among the angels

Ogun, I hail you.
Ogun, the lord that all worshipers call
Blessed be the worshipers of Ogun
One who owns the house of money and the mystical path of heaven.
Build the mystical path for me.
May divine communication be achieved.
May my words be received in heaven.


Now that we have poured libation, hence we have cleaned, refreshed

and purified the atmosphere and spirit. We have opened and cleared the
channel to the orun (inner planes). Now we can summon the imole/orisa
we desire to worship.
A word to the aborisa:
It is strongly advised that you only focus your efforts upon the Orisa
that you as an aborisa have been blessed to.
Note that the aborisa is one who have been blessed to or washed
("baptized") to their tutelary Orisa. However, the aborisa have not been
initiated into the mysteries of the Orisa system. Therefore, they are not
an Alufa (priest or priestess) of the Orisa system. It is not everyone's
path to follow that road.
The Aborisa's focus is thus concentrated upon the Orisa that governs
their head and/or their lineage.
As we attempt to summon the imole to our presence, how fast and how
strong the imole come depends upon the degree of power embodied in
our words. The aborisa will find that through diligent effort, faith and
devotion the words that we give out here will become infused with
power (bara). It is through your own efforts that you will achieve
efficiency and magnitude in your rituals. You will get back what you put


At this point, before you summon the Orisa/Imole, place the same two
fingers of the right hand into the bowl of water in which you have
already poured libation into. With the two wet fingers touch your
forehead (between the eyebrows) and run them from the front to the
back of your head. As you do this, say:
"Mo su re fun ori."
Jeki ori mi a gbe mi.
Jeki mo ri rere orisa mi
Mo su re fun ori.
I give blessings to my godhead
May my ori support me.
May I see the blessings of my orisa.
I give blessings to my godhead.
Note, that no Orisa blesses a person without the consent of their Ori
(godhead). It is important that you praise your godhead before you
begin to worship your Orisa. Ring bell three times (One should obtain a
bell that will be used strictly for Orisa worship).
Before going any further in the recitation of the prayers, please note
** (Name Orisa), means to say the name of the Orisa that you are
praying to.

, means to say the name of the Orisa that you are praying to.

These directions apply throughout the book. Please keep this in mind.
Name orisa, 3x (That is, call out the orisa's name 3 times), mo pe o 3x
Mo pe o sotito
Mo pe o iwa rere
Mo pe o ire
Mo pe o sawo
Wa de de wa,
Wa de de wa,
Wa de de wa,


(Name orisa), 3x (Name orisa), I call you 3x
I call you for truth
I call you for destiny
I call you for blessings
I call you for the mysteries
Come, come now, (Name orisa)
Come, come now, (Name orisa)
Come, come now, (Name orisa)

After the invocation, the aborisa now greets the orisa as follows:
Mojuba re, ______
Mojuba re, ______
Mojuba re, ______
Mojuba Baba or Iya mi
Mo ji mo ki o ______, orisa mi
Pele o orisa mi
Eni rowo np ba
Orisa sere o
Eni ko rowo a ja
Wara wogbo lo
I pay homage to (Name orisa)
I pay homage to (Name orisa)
I pay homage to (Name orisa)
I pay homage to my father/mother
I awaken and I praise (Name orisa), my orisa
I hail you, my Orisa
I have time to worship you
I have time to embrace you
One who does not find time to worship the orisa will find oneself in the
Mo ji mo ki, orisa mi


Mo ji mo ki, orisa mi
Mo ji mo ki, orisa mi
Ji ooooooo
Mo ji mo ki o
O ji'ire o
O ji ire o, orisa mi
I wake up and I worship
I wake up and I worship
I wake up and I worship
Orisa, wake up
I wake up and I worship
Good morning orisa
Good morning my orisa

my orisa (Name orisa)

my orisa (Name orisa)
my orisa (Name orisa)


We now come to the point of reciting the praise song for the Orisa. This
is a very important stage in the process of worship. The oriki holds the
mantric power that excites and expands the power of the Orisa that you
called upon. The Yoruba of south/west Nigeria believe that when the
oriki of the Orisa is recited it causes the Orisa to yield its power and
blessings to you.
The oriki of the Orisa that rules your head should be recited each
morning to increase ase the power of the Orisa in you and to receive its
blessings. It is through the use of the oriki that you can have a spiritual
union with the Orisa of your head.
In this work we will only present the oriki of the Orisa Obatala. We do
not have the time or space to present the oriki of all of the Orisa.

O ri n eru Ojikutu s eru
Oba n Ile Ifon, Alblase


Oba patapata n ile' Iranje'

O yo kelekele, O ta mi I'ore;
O gb a giri l'owo osika,'
O fi l'emi asoto l'owo;
Oba Igbo; Oluwaiye re e o,
Ke bi owu la, O yi l ala,
O sun l'ala
O fi koko ala rumo Oba 'Igbo.
The great king, very fearful The king from Ifa's town The king from
Iranje city.
He moves slowly and gives me some rewards and gifts.
He got a wrong thing from the evil doer.
He got good things from the evil doer and gave it to me.
He gave it to me, a righteous man.
The King of Igbo. The lord of the Universe The first on the white cloth
He sleeps on the white cloth He uses a white pot. The king of Igbo.

Alabalase; atatabiakun
Orisanl Ogirigbanigbo, alaye ti won nfi aye fun
Orere yelu agan wo
Atu won'ka nib i ti won gbe ndana iro
Ajnaku idugbangudu
Orisa n bni be eda
Oniwa pele aba' ni tori eni se
Oljo oko0 mi akanti oke t
Orisanla Obatala Obatala Alabalase
Alabalase one who gives command
Orisanla, the white orisa who owns the whole
He gives blessings of children to the barren woman


One who scatters those who are conspiring evil

One who is as massive as an elephant The orisa who is the one who
pleads for us before the creator
The gentle one who turns a bad head good
The owner of the day, who is as huge as the mountain ,
Orisanla, the great orisa, Obatala Obatala Obatala
The white orisa of authority

The oriki have now been recited. The orisa is excited and its heart is
open to you. Now we must make offerings to the orisa.
Offerings to the orisa may vary from the burning of candles or lamps,
offerings of water, flowers, food, kola nuts, and/or incense, to the
offering of a blood sacrifice of pigeons, hens, etc. In this work we will
present the simple process of offering candles, kola nuts, water,
flowers, food, etc.


The practice of animal sacrifice have been the practice of all the
religions of the world today at one point or another (Christianity, Lev.
9:8, Deu. 27:5, etc.). Note that Jesus was a human sacrifice. In Islam
sacrifice and offerings is the fifth compulsory act of Haji. In the
sacrificing of animals they may offer camels, cows, goats, etc. Amongst
the present day Jews the practice of blood sacrifice is very common and
similar to those of the Yoruba.
Note that offerings involving blood sacrifices should be performed by an
experienced priest or priestess. It involves the release of a great deal of
energy that attract many spiritual entities good and bad. One must
therefore be skilled in the techniques of tuning into the desired mode of
energy and excluding other forces that are not being invoked at that
time. We caution the reader that a blood sacrifice is no game. If you
play with fire, you will get burned.



In offering candles, one should be mindful of the corresponding color(s)

of the orisa. If you are not sure of the color of the orisa, offer a white
candle which is neutral.
Elegba, Es
Oramfe (Sango)
Aje Saluga

red, white and black, red and black

red, green and black
red and green
white, yellow
white, black and white
green and yellow, white
white and green
red and white, orange
blue and white
dark blue
green, white (in south/west Nigeria), yellow and amber
reddish brown
reddish brown
green and yellow

In fire burning (candles, lamps, etc.), the flame upon the altar serves
as a porthole through which the desired spiritual entity can manifest
through. The candle may be of any type. It is the color of the candle
that is important.
Note that the use of fire in worship is a practice amongst the Yoruba's
of south/west Nigeria who burn palm oil lamps to various orisa.
In olden days, especially amongst the Ibos, a sacred fire of logs, etc.
was constantly kept burning in honor of the orisa, etc. The idea of a
perpetual fire is an African concept that goes back to ancient Egypt.

Incense is offered to bless the orisa and to carry ones words to heaven.
Incense offerings can involve burning herbs, flowers and resins. In
burning incense be sure that the fragrance, herbs, etc., is conducive to
the energy state of the orisa.



Each orisa has its own menu and taste. Food offerings are common
amongst many belief systems. It is believed that every object has its
counterpart in heaven. Everything has its origin within. When offering
food the orisa receives the spiritual essence of the substance given. The
reader is here strongly advised to pick up a copy of "ONJE FUN ORISA"
(Food for the Gods) by Gary Edwards and John Mason.


Kola nut (obi)

orisa with the
(orogbo). The
and blessings.
important role

as a food item is used in the worship of almost all the

exception of Oramfe (Sango) who takes bitter kola nuts
kola nut is a sacred item which holds power, character
Kola nut in the system of south/west Nigeria plays a very
in every act of worship.

The offering of kola nut is a sign of love, respect, humility and

communion with the orisa, etc. It causes the orisa to humble its heart
and yield its power to the aborisa (worshiper). The kola nut to the
Yoruba is what the tobacco is to the Native American.


The offering of water (omi tutu) as in the libation, is offered to refresh

the orisa. It also serves as a magnetic medium that attracts heavenly
bodies. Like fire, it also serves as a porthole through which the orisa
may enter the physical world. It also acts as a reflective medium
through which the aborisa can pierce into the heavenly world.



Offerings of flowers like food have its internal manifestation. Flowers

are living creatures who serve as the vehicle of various orisa. Every
species of plants have what is called a genius. The word "genius" which
comes from the Persian word "geni" or "jin" meaning guardian spirit or
angel is the orisa ruling that particular species.


lily of the valley
blessed thistle, red carnations,eucalyptus
roses, yellow pom poms, vervain
orange blossoms, geranium
anemone, vervain

Before actually presenting your offerings to the orisa that you are
worshipping, you the aborisa should neatly lay out all of the items that
are going to be offered to the orisa in an organized fashion ahead of
The following is a simple, organized approach that can be used by the
aborisa when making offerings:

1} candles 2) water 3) flowers 4) food 5) kola nuts


Mojuba, (Orisa Name)

Mo se gba (Orisa Name) t'a ba tan
Na bo
I to r i' re
Emi tan na bo
Note: Light the candle and say the next line
Emi wa tan na ola Emi tn t' ire.


I light a fire to sacrifice to (Name orisa), so that we can see blessings.
I light a light to sacrifice to (Name orisa), for wealth.
I light for blessings. Ase
Note: Light the candle and then say:
Ki Oldmar gbe o
(May Oldmar receive it)

Note, water should be offered in a clear, glass bowl or in a bowl that

has the corresponding color of the orisa.
I b ase orisa mi ______
Mo orno re wa siwajuu re
Mo rbo omi tutu i
Lo mi so risa
Mo rubo omi tutu
La to ri re otito
La to ri re alafia
La to ri re ola
La to ti te itutu
I pay homage to my orisa, (Name orisa).
I your child come before you I offer water
We use water to talk to the orisa I offer water
That I may see blessings of truth
That I may see blessings of well being
That I may see blessings of wealth
That I may see blessings of coolness of the head.


Note: Place water on shrine and then say:

Ki Oldmar gbe o (May Oldmar receive it.)

I ba ase orisa mi ______

Mo ni ododo
Mo rubo ododo
La to ri re iwa rere.
I pay homage to my orisa, (Name orisa)
I have flowers
I offer flowers that I may see blessings of goodness.,
Place flowers on shrine and then say:
Ki Oldmar gbe o. (May Oldmar receive it.)

I ba ase orisa mi ___________

Mo ni onje re
Wa je hun, wa je hun, wa je hun
Orisa mi _______
Mo se bo si o
__________, gba se lowoo mi.
I pay homage to my orisa, (Name orisa)
I have your food
Come eat, come eat, come eat
My orisa, (Name orisa)
I make offerings to you
(Name orisa), receive my offering.
Here, the aborisa should place the food on the shrine and say:


Ki Oldmar gbe o (May Oldmar receive it)


Note: All offerings made to the orisa should always include kola nuts even if
a kola nut is the only offering made that day. Just before presenting an
offering of kola nuts to the orisa, they should be washed in a bowl of salt
water first.
I ba ase orisa,________
Orisa mi gbobi lowo kan
Ebora ki i ko ebe obi.
I pay homage to my orisa, (Name orisa)
Orisa receive my kola nuts
The orisa never turns down an appeal made with kola nuts.
Note: Place kola nut(s) on the shrine and say:
Ki Oldmar gbe o (May Oldmar receive it)
Note: At this point of the ritual the aborisa may split one of the kola nuts
into its four segments and cast than.
As you split the obi abata say:
"Obi ni won npa si oran olorun"
It is obi that is killed (split).
Once you have split the obi abata into its four segments, you will notice that
in the center of each segment there is a small nipple or navel. Take the
small nipple out and cast it upon the floor and say:
"Jeki emi se gun ota mi - May I subdue my enemies".


Then hold the four segments in your cupped hands and say:
Gbohun mi orisa mi
Gbohun mi orisa mi
Gbohun mi orisa mi
Ago obi
Ago obi
Ago obi
Obi ni ibi iku
Obi ni ibi Arun
Obi ni ibi idina, etc.
Ebora ki iko ebe fun obi
Hear me my orisa
Hear me my orisa
Hear me my orisa
Attention obi
Attention obi
Attention obi
It is obi that is used to avert death
It is obi that is used to avert sickness
It is obi that is used to avert obstacles
No divinity turns down an appeal made with obi
Note: With obi in cupped hands shake the obi as you say:
Akimoron, Akimoron, Akimoron (May the divine spirit come and assist us.)
The question that should be posed here is:
Was the offering accepted?
If the pattern that appear indicates a "yes answer, the aborisa should then
"Ariya!" (Expressing joy and gratitude).
A wa rubo ebo da no o (We make offerings and our offerings are accepted.)
If the obi pattern that appear indicates a "no" answer, the aborisa must then
cast to find out what other offerings must be added to those already offered.


You will consult on whether or not you should give more: water, kola nuts,
food, flowers, etc.
After casting five times with a continuous "no" answer, the aborisa should at
that point begin to pray to the orisa to accept the offering and pledge to the
orisa that you will place certain disciplines upon oneself, such as: fasting,
abstinence of sex for a certain period of time, controlling ones emotions,
performing certain rituals each day, etc.
After casting nine times and a no answer is still received, the aborisa should
then consult an experienced priest/priestess upon the matter. However, the
aborisa should move on to the next stage of the ritual.

The following are the general obi patterns. The explanations are not
1. llera
2. Aje
3. Ejire
4. Akoran
5. Ero
6. Akita
7. Obita

when one male lies open
when one female lies open
when a male and female lie open
when two males lie open
when two females lie open
when two males and one female
lie open
when two females lie open

8. Alafia

when all segments lie facing up

9. Oyeku

when all four segments lay face


health, triumph
wealth, money
friendliness, well-being,
crime, hardship, quarrel,
calmness, mildness, gentle,
success after hardship, more
effort, be resolute
living at peace, no quarrel,
no conflict, no exertion,
harmony, receptivity
well-being, righteousness,
truth, light, blessings
obstructions, hindrance, lack
of clarity, lack of insight; a
need for change; Go to Ifa,
consult a Babalawo

It is suggested that the reader read the following books:


NEW WORLD OBI DIVINATION by, Oloye Awodele Ifayemi, Awo Atunwase of
Ilobu Land


Mauge Ph.D.


Now that we have cast the obi and the will of the orisa have been made
known to us, let us now begin to sing blessings and sing prayers to the
Music, song, dance, etc., finds its true and highest application in the realm
of African (non- western, American Indians, etc.,) spirituality. As in the case
of the Yoruba, music (song) is a spiritual medium used to induce higher
"altered states" of awareness. It serves as a ritualistic tool for invoking,
stimulating and setting in motion divine heavenly forces.
There are numerous songs, chants, Orin used in the realm of Yoruba
(African, etc.) worship to the many orisa. As the various orisa have their
oriki (praise names) which are recited by priests/priestesses of any given
orisa; there are also rhythmic chants and songs used in connection with
each orisa that are chanted during worship.
These chants are not only chanted to induce a higher state in the spirit of
the aborisa, but also to, excite and enchant the orisa itself. It is said that
when the chants are sung, the orisa become happy and dances. The chants
influence the orisa to come and accept the sacrifices. You will find that most
Yoruba Orin are short and to-the-point. Therefore, each Orin is chanted in
repetition, with each orisa having its particular tempo.
Usually Obatala, Osun and Yemaya are sung with a slower, mellow,
continuous tempo. Orisa like Es, Ogun and Sango are usually sung with a
tempo that is very fast and energetic.
The Orin may express ideas and concepts that praise the orisa, thank the
orisa, beseech the orisa, call the orisa or move the orisa to elevate you or
give you divine assistance.
In this work we give a few Orin that are very simple to master. Relative to
their rhythms say to you, as a wise Benin priest once said to me,


"If you have truth inside, what comes out of you is best."
Study the chant, sit and meditate upon it (asaro) and let the orisa give you a
rhythm. This is the African way.
Following are a few Orin to work with.
This is an old Obatala Orin that is commonly sung in Nigeria to praise the
power of Obatala.
Alabalase - Alabalase
Alabalase Alabalase
This Orin is sung to Obatala for children, family, prosperity and blessings.
Iku ti iba ni igbele
Fola ran ni;
so emikansoso digba eniyan
So mi dirun
So mi digba
So mi dota - le - legbeje eniyan
The powerful are who dwell with a person and makes them prosperous.
One who has Ase.
You who multiply one into two hundred
Increase me into four hundred
Increase me into two hundred
Increase me into one thousand, four hundred and sixty persons
This Orin is a very popular one. Its rhythm will not be hard to come upon. It
is used to praise Obatala. It is; a very powerful and sacred chant.
Ile gbo gbo ile orisa


Ile gbo gbo ile orisa

Orisa na iye aye o
Ile gbo gbo ile orisa
All the earth belongs to orisa (Obatala)
All of the earth belong to orisa
The great orisa owns all of the Universe
All of the earth belongs to orisa
This Orin is chanted to Esu/Elegbara to excite Es to come and assist you in
your endeavors.
Iba kose omo deko
A young child does not confront the owner of power.
This Orin is chanted to excite Esu/Elegbara and to invoke his presence.
Esu tiriri
Esu the awesome one
This Orin is chanted to call upon the assistance of Ogun, to have blessings
bestowed upon them.
Ogun j in o


Ogun, bestow blessings on me!
This Orin is chanted to Ogun to remove obstacles and to forge in oneself
stamina, endurance and fortitude, etc.
Gbonrangandan, gborangandan ni a iro ada
Gbonrangandan is the sound Ogun makes when he strikes the sword (as
when a blacksmith forges a sword).
This Orin is chanted to excite and praise Osanyin and is usually sung when
gathering fresh herbs in the forest.
Osanyin, Elese kan ju elese meji lo
Ewe' gbogbo kiki Ogun
The one-legged man who is more powerful than a man with two legs, who
turns all leaves into medicine.
This Orin is chanted to invoke the presence of Osun and to call upon her
Ore yeye o
Yeye Kaare
Yeye mi Ladakoju
Yeye mi Awedewemo


Oh gracious mother
Mother Kaare
My mother of two crowns
Mother who washes children who washes brass
This Orin is chanted to praise and to invoke the powers of Osun especially to
assist you and protect you from a great enemy.
Osun Aburaolu
Osun, the one who the king cannot exhaust
This Orin is chanted to praise Yemaya and to call upon her blessings.
Pele o Yemaya
We praise Yemaya
("Ple o" is analogous to saying "Halleluyah")
This orin is chanted to praise Yemaya and to ask her to bring you abundance
and children.
Yemaya enite kun tewe
Yemaya, the fisher whose net overflows with babies


This Orin is chanted to call down the presence of Oya and elevate ones self
to her divine status.
Awa o yigi yigi
Ako ku mo
We are almighty.
We have transcended death.
We are one with Oya.
This Orin is chanted to Sango in his praise name Olu Sonso. This Orin
invokes the powers of Sango to come and set matters right.
Olu sonso
Bi oba da ki orun baje
Olu sonso a tun orun se
If it should happen that the heavens should spoil, it is Olu Osonso who will
turn it right again.
The Orin is chanted to Oramfe to praise him for his great power and to
harness his power.
Oramfe ko manamana jade
Oramfe, cast forth your lightening.


This Orin is chanted to Oramfe to praise him and to invoke his power.
Oramfe oju orogbo
He has eyes like bitter kola nuts.
This Orin is chanted to Ela to praise Ela and to harness his power.
Ela to tn ori ti ko sunwn se
Ela, who turns a bad head good
Who turns the world right side up.

Ifa te ju mo mi
Owo mi ire o


Ifa look upon me. Look upon me with blessings.
This Orin is chanted to Ifa/Orunmila to harness his power and to call upon
his blessings.
This orin is chanted to Oduduwa to praise her and invoke her presence.
Oduduwa yeye mimo


Oduduwa, the great holy mother

Who influences all of heaven
This orin is chanted to Oluorogbo to invoke his presence and his power.
Oni se lekun ojo oni
Oluorogbo okun aja laiye
Oluorogbo okun aja lorun
Owner of this day
Oluorogbo, the cord of the universe
Oluorogbo, the cord of heaven


This orin is chanted in the worshiping of Yemaya, Osun, Oya or Oduduwa

(any of the female orisa). It invokes the presence of the orisa to initiate you
into their mysteries.
Iya mbe mi sawo
My mother is making me into a divine mystery (an initiate).

This orin is chanted in the worshiping of Obatala, Ornmil, Ogun, Oramfe

(Sango) or Es, (all of the male orisa). It invokes the presence of the orisa
to initiate you into their mysteries,
Baba mbe. mi sawo
My father is making me into a divine mystery (an initiate).


This Orin is chanted to bless your orisa.
Olukbukun, (Name orisa)
Blessed be (Obatala, Oduduwa, Osun, Yemaya, etc.)
For more information on Orin, the reader is advised to pick up the following
HERBS OF THE ORISA, by Olaoluwa Fasade
ORISA SAYS SPEAK, by Olaoluwa Fasade
ORIN ORISA, Songs for Selected Heads, by John Mason
GUINEAS'S OTHER SUNS, by Maureen Warner-Lewis


In the Spirituality of the Yoruba, prayer (adura) is essential. Yoruba like all
of your indigenous wisdom traditions of Africa is based upon the power of
the word (Ofo Ase). In the wisdom of the Yoruba, the word is sacred and the
word is truthful. Within the word, there is a holy, mystical force called bara.
It is this holy primordial force that sets Ase in motion. It is bara that is the
language that the Irunmole understand and obey. It is bara that is the true
source of nourishment for the orisa. When we pray with a one-pointed mind
and righteous heart, our words become potent with bara and our prayers are
Prayer is the means by which the aborisa enters into communion with the
Irunmole (all the heavenly beings). Thus, it is through prayer (adura) that
we are able to influence the orisa to act on our behalf. The aborisa should
know that when we pray, it is the orisa that rules our head that hears and
carries or transmit our request to Oldmar.
Oldmar has the final sanction of the blessings you request. The Yoruba
awo (sage) says:


"Ase i owo Oldmar.."

"It is the power or hand of Oldmar that has the final sanction".
It is through Oldmar that the orisa has the full power to grant you your
request. Prayer (adura) may be said at any time, any place and under any
circumstances. However, formal prayer is done before one's altar that has
been consecrated to the orisa.
In most cases the content of our prayer reflects our personal life experience.
The adura (prayer) may be for money, love, children, health, protection, etc.
The awo says, _ the greatest request is iwa, that is divine character. Divine
character is wisdom, unlimited knowledge, potency, truth, righteousness,
Ase (power), children, health, etc.
A word to the wise: Pray for the things you need more so than the things
you want. Your needs are the foundation for getting all the things that you
The keys to effective prayer are as followed:
1. Concentrate (arojinle) when you attempt to pray. It is important that you
focus your attention upon your prayer. You must become at one with
your words.
2. Pray with faith. Most people pray with it in mind that their prayers will not
be answered. When you pray see your prayers being answered.
3. Be consistent. When you pray, keep your subject or object of prayer in
mind. Spend 15 - 30 minutes praying for one thing. Pray every day at the
same time, for the same thing, until you see your prayer really manifest
in your life. Write your prayers down and say the same thing over and
over again.
4. Pray with emotion. Feel the desire of what you request. Pray with a
burning desire to receive your wish.
5. Act upon your prayer. Some people may pray for money or a job. There
are those who pray for a job and never leave the house. If you pray for
health, then make an effort to heal yourself. Eat right, change your


lifestyle or habits that have aided in the manifestation of poor health,

Sit down and meditate and plan how you can make your prayers (your
request) manifest. Know that the orisa is working through you to achieve
your prayer.
6. When you pray, be specific; be to-the-point. Know what you want and
how you wish to receive it. For example: If you are praying for money,
specify the amount and the avenue through which you want it to come.
7. Language is important. Master the Yoruba language which is a power
language that holds bara. At least learn to pray in Yoruba.
8. Sometimes instead of praying for the things you want directly, pray for
the discipline, knowledge, wisdom and power to manifest your desire.
9. If your desire is wealth, request of the orisa to bestow upon you the
knowledge and wisdom needed to achieve wealth.
10. Ask the Orisa to give you the Iwa (the character) that will give you the
things that you are praying for and the character that will attract to you
the things that you need.


Mojuba ______ orisa mi
gbohun mi, gbohun mi, gbohun mi,
Orisa adodo ni
_______ orisa mi, imole mi
Gbo adura mi ______orisa mi
0 ______ orisa mi li ojo ti mo ba pe
da mi, da mi, da mi ______ orisa mi
O _____ olowoo mi gbe mi
Olwoo mi gbe mi gbe mi enia ni mi gba ni
_______ dide aiye. Ati gbega mi
Si iwa re _______ gbega mi, gbega mi
Si asemimo re gbega mi si otito re _______


Jeki emi se otito

_______ ba mi se otito. Ase.
I salute you (name orisa) my orisa
hear me, hear me, hear me.
Orisa of my righteousness
(Name orisa), my orisa, my orisa
Oh (name orisa) , my orisa, on the day that I call
to you, answer me. Answer me. Answer me.
(Name orisa), my orisa
0 (name orisa), my lord, help me, my lord help me, help me.
For one expects help from ones orisa (repeat this sentence several times).
(Name orisa), come into the world and elevate me to your divine attributes.
(Name orisa), elevate me to your holy power. Elevate me to your truth.
(Name orisa), may I live truth.
(Name orisa), command me to live truth. Ase.
O _____ orisa mi ki n ri je ki n ri mu
______ orisa mi iree mi gbogbo ni wara ni wara
O _____ iwo orisa mi o so ola mi di pupo.
Oh (name orisa), my orisa, may I have food May I have drink.
(Name orisa), my orisa, bring me all of my good fortune. Bring me all of my
good fortune.
Oh (name orisa), you my orisa, shall increase my wealth greatly. Ase.
Orisa ti ngbe ole ko si, nilari apa eni ni igbe ni
There are no gods that support a person in their laziness; one's greatest
support is one's own arms.



Now we come to the closing. We must now seal our destiny and blessings.
We shall proceed as follow:
Modupe orisa mi _____________
Bi ire ba wole e jeki a na suuru si
Bi inu ba le la le ju ire o wogbo
_______ jeki emi ri ire
Emi o yin o______orisa mi jeki ire
imole mi
Bi a dupe ore ona
A gba omiran, Ase
May blessings enter the house.
Let us be calm in reaching for it
If we are impatient, blessings will enter
the jungle!
_______ orisa mi modupe modupe modupe
Olukbukun _______ orisa mi
Moji mo ki orisa mi
Imole wale mi ati otito jokoo ti mi o
A je wole mi ola jokoo ti mi o
______ my orisa, I thank you, I thank you
Blessings be upon my orisa.
Light entered my house and truth sat down with me
Wealth entered my house and honor sat down with me.



1. "S otito se re re. Emi se otito, n imole igbe."

Live truth do good. It is living truth that the orisa support.
2. "Iwa ni orise, bi a ba-ti hu usi ni ifi gbe ni."
Character is like a god. If we behave right, it supports us.
3. "Iwa nikan l'o soro o. Iwa nikan l'o soro o."
Character is all that is needed. Character is all that is needed.
4. "A ki ini otito ni inu ki a gve awo ika si ikun."
One who has truth inside, do not put wickedness in his belly.
5. "Orisa bi ori kosi."
There is no orisa greater than ori.
6. "Orisa ti ngbe ole kosi, nilori apa eni ni igbe ni"
No orisa supports a person in their laziness.


Q. What is the best time to worship the orisa?

A. The best time to worship the orisa is at sunrise, as practiced in Nigeria. At
sunrise the ethers are clear. The atmosphere have not yet become cluttered
with the thoughts of the masses who are still asleep or just waking up. At
sunrise a new day is being born. You want to infuse that day with the energy
of the orisa, etc., who is invoked to work on your behalf throughout the day.
Q. Is it necessary that one receives the five Elekes or should one receive
only the Elekes of their orisa?
A. The five Elekes are the banner of Santeria. It is not the practice of the
Yoruba tradition of south/west Nigeria to receive the five Elekes. One
receives the Elekes (usually at birth) of the orisa that rules their head or
their lineage. In most cases they only receive one Eleke, Nigerians find it
surprisingly humorous to see Orisha worshipers in America wearing so many


Q. How often should a blood sacrifice be done to the orisa?

A. As it is practiced in south/west Nigeria, blood sacrifices are done to ones
orisa as the result of an oracle reading (Ifa, Dilogun, Obi, etc.), at annual
festivals, etc. It is not done indiscriminately. Know that the true and highest
offering to the orisa, is to live truth (se otito).
Q. Why must we worship the orisa? Why not go directly to Oldmar?
A. It is the practice of the Yoruba of south/west Nigeria to praise and
worship Oldmar (God, Almighty). However, the Yoruba like most spiritual
systems of life, have a go between. The Yoruba awo (sage) says that,
"Oldmar is too awesome for the human mind to comprehend and behold.
Therefore, Oldmar gave us the imole (the orisa) who are his/her
servants. The various orisa are the messengers of God that communicates to
the human soul God's will.
Keep in mind that the orisa are what the Christians called angels and arch
angels. Let's draw an analogy between Christianity and Yoruba spiritual view.
In the Christian religion, Jesus is the go between. As Jesus is the child of
God Almighty, so too are the orisa who are Oldmars children.
As Jesus is the messenger of God Almighty, so too are the Orisas; who are
the servants of Oldmar.
The Christians go further to say that Jesus is God. The Yoruba awo believe
the orisa in essence is Oldmar who is praised as the
"Orisa gbo gbo gbo gbo gbo ta ji wa Oldmar"
Oldmar who comes as all all all the orisa.
Oldmar's power is manifested in and as the orisa, and is respected as the
power of God. To respect and honor the orisa is a sacred act towards
Oldmar, the Most High. It is through the orisa that we receive God's
goodness and find salvation. Ase
Q. How can one find out which orisa is their spiritual guide?


A. You can get this information by going to a competent/experienced

Babalawo. They will use the Oracle of IFA which has the authority to
accurately determine your orisa.
Q. Can the orisa be used for evil?
A. No, the orisa do not advocate evil deeds. The orisa will abandon the
aborisa who seek to employ them for evil expression. In the Yoruba system
there are the 401 orisa. The left side of heaven control the right side of
things in the physical world. They are the powers of good, truth and
righteousness. Then there are the 200 orisa on the right side of heaven who
control the left side of things in the physical world, they are the evil ones,
when one call the orisa to do evil. They are the ones that come to the
aborisa. To do this opens yourself up to repercussions you will regret.


This book was published to deliver a very practical way of worshipping ones
orisa. We express the purpose and the importance of one knowing how to
communicate with the subtler part of their being.
In the Yoruba tradition it is important to have a format by which to organize
your prayers and spiritual sessions. Traditionally one did not need a format
because the worship of ones orisa was a way of life which naturally took
place as one developed.
Given our present day environment and situation, we as a people realize we
must become more in tuned with the invisible, dynamic and everlasting part
of our being.
This book has given you a step by step format of how to connect with your
spirit through prayer.