Egbe = Heavenly Mates…

***EGBE-Self Spiritual Component***

Egbe also known as Alaragbo in certain areas designates the heavenly comrades or astral fraternities which are one of the pillars of the Yoruba indigenous spirituality according to which every human being possesses a “spiritual double” (Enikeji Orun) which is formed during the process of creation of the humanly body commonly referred to as “spiritual double” at the moment in which the primordial Source (Olodumare) infuses the vital breath (Emi) into the physical bodies from which we are separated at the moment of coming into existence in the earthly realm which remain in the primordial realm. Our Enikeji Orun organize themselves into fraternities or societies (Egbe) according to their affinity.

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Kutiro-Balafon-Sabar = Drums Ensemble…

 

***  Kutiro (Junkuran) – Gambian Tantango Drumming ***

Fabricated By: Chief Yagbe Awolowo Onilu Oakland CA

!!! Drum troupes play for recreational dances and various festivities. The Mandinka, descendants of the Mandeng peoples of western Africa, now reside primarily in Senegal, Gambia, and Guinea-Bissau. Among the Mande people in general, rhythm expressed as drumming is linked with all forms of movement, be it dancing, wrestling, procession, or agricultural labor. 

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The Speaking Power of Altars…

 

***An Altar In A House Of Worship To Honor Our Ancestors…

The word Altar comes from the Latin Altarium, meaning – high  and also to the Latin Adolere, which means – to ritually burn or sacrifice. Nowadays, the Altar is the place for non-sacrificial religious rites such as communion or weddings, and is a metaphor for offerings. They do not have to be big and fancy; they can be so subtle that even the people you live with can be unaware of their existence. The purpose of an Altar is an area of focus. Here is a small area within your home which serves as your outward spiritual focus. It reminds us that there is far more to life than the everyday striving for survival and success. It is a place where the small objects that are sacred and meaningful to us can be gathered together and treated with respect.

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GELEDE = Powerful Mothers…

           !!! Awon Agba =  Mothers *  Ancestors * Deities…

Masks and other visual forms associated with these cults contain imagery evocative of Male supremacy and vengeance. Gelede imagery, in contrast, exemplifies another approach to the Mothers.
The following text from the ancient verse of the Ifa oracle known as Osa Meji re-creates the mythic origin of the Gelede masquerade. Greetings were their secret among the Ijesa Ifa told Orunmila when he was going to the grove of the Eleiye (witches), He must put on a mask, a head-wrap and leg rattles. He obeyed, he put them on, he arrived at the grove of the Witches and he was safe. He rejoiced in dancing and singing- “I have covenanted with Death, I will never die. Death, Death no more, I have covenanted with sickness, I will never die. Death, Death no more.”

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Libation = Myth & Divinity…

            **Libation Is A Powerful Spiritual Science**

 Cultural survival is not about preservation, sequestering indigenous peoples in enclaves like some sort of zoological specimens. Change itself does not destroy a culture. All societies are constantly evolving. Indeed a culture survives when it has enough confidence in its past and enough say in its future to maintain its spirit and essence through all the changes it will inevitably undergo. 

“Pour libation for your Father and Mother who rest in the valley of the dead. God will witness your action and accept it. Do not forget to do this even when you are away from home. For as you do for your parents, your children will do for you also”

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TREES = Rituals & Ceremonies…

 

“It is their belief that when a family member dies, their spirit resides in the natural environment to watch over their kin, relay messages to and from God, and grant blessings, wishes, and requests.”

In Africa the practice of Tree worship is based on the belief that Ancestor spirits live in the Trees and forests as well as any other natural formations that are considered peaceful.

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Blood Sacrifices = To Make Sacred

  *** BLOOD SACRIFICE ***

Blood is not just Blood, it is a Sacred essence. Blood that flows to the breast to give Mother’s milk, Blood that flows to the testicles to bring the Sperm of life.

Blood Offering

***Prayer is a form of communication with a Deity or other Spiritual being. Words addressed to a deity usually offer praise or seek guidance, blessing, forgiveness, fertility, victory, or protection. Like prayer, sacrifice is a form of communication with a deity for similar purposes. The word itself means “to make holy.” As distinct from prayer, sacrificial offerings include objects of value and symbolic significance that are given to the gods to earn their favor. The gifts can take many forms, becoming sacred themselves through ritual consecration. The Gods might be offered the most desirable foods or provided with the finest vessels, carvings, tools, and weapons. Historians, however, have often regarded blood sacrifice as the most powerful way to appease the Gods. It was not unusual for societies to engage in both animal and human sacrifice, although the historical trend has been toward a sharp reduction in the latter…

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BELLS = Points of Passage

***BELLS = SUPERNATURAL ENCHANTMENT… 

From very early times, there has been a link in myths and legends between Bells, water and spirits.  Water was seen as the element that joined the world of the living and the world of the dead. Spirits could make contact through water and the idea of spirits coming out of the sea would not have seemed strange. It was also believed that the spirits of people who died suddenly or violently, or who had not had a proper burial, would not rest and would wander the earth. This included the many sailors who were drowned in stormy seas; their bodies were often never found.

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EGUNGUN: Ancestral Spirits…

***Egungun = Life After Death 

***The concept of Life and Death transcends physical notions of Noise or Silence. It has a metaphysical dimension that is reflected in these words: Those who are Dead are never gone – They are in the brightening Shadow and in the thickening Gloom – The Dead are beneath the Earth – They are in the quivering Tree – They are in the groaning Wood – They are in the flowing Water – They are in the flowing and still Water – They are in the Hut; they are in the Crowd – The Dead are not Dead.

!!! The African, confronts Death with the Rhythms & Music of life !!!

               Light as a feather! This is how softly your Ancestors might speak to you. And this is why you must listen intently – not just with your ears, but with every fiber in your being. They spoke to you yesterday, they speak to you today, they will speak to you tomorrow and they are speaking to you right now. But you’ll never hear them unless you are willing to sit in silence, to hear the powerful messages that are landing as gently as feathers.

Opa Iku

Egungun is regarded as the collective spirits of the Ancestors who occupy a space in heaven, hence they are called dwellers of heaven. These Ancestral spirits are believed to be in constant watch of their survivors on Earth.

EGUNGUN MASQUERADE: Is the resounding voice of Egungun – The compatriot brother of Oro – The death of loved ones is unbearable – while they detest us joining them untimely? The day of its initiation into the realm of Ancestors by “Ikurarafin” is unknown to Man, while that of its sibling remains a mystery to Woman. The gap between human past and present is unmeasurable, It is unfathomable to human brain, but the chain of continuity will not let go. We are here on Earth living the purpose we know not, while you were there with full and perfect knowledge. The communication between the dead and living is unimaginable because no human can stand the radiating glory of Ancestors, necessitate the reason for their superlative decorated regalia called “Eku”. We are far from you, but close to you in spirit. Accept our offering of Akara, that we might receive your blessing to achieve what you do not live to achieve.

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ZANGBETO = Enforcement & Order…

 !!! Zangbeto Masquerade Have Supernatural Powers !!!

Zangbeto are the traditional Vodun guardians of the night in the Yoruba religion of Benin and Togo which are known as the “Night- Watchmen”. As a nominal, it represents a group of men who are involved in policing the community and who also double as members of Zangbeto as a cultural Masquerade group during public performances. Zangbeto is also used to convey the notion of a socio-cultural phenomenon made up of a series of beliefs and practices. As an institution, it is backed by an oral history that accentuates its origin as an Egun concept, not an alien or imported one. Sources consulted on the origin and history of Zangbeto asserts that it has existed before we were born and was handed down to us by our forefathers .

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