ochanilele (ochanilele) wrote,
ochanilele
ochanilele

For Juan Carlos: Refreshing the Front Door

Many say there no rituals in the Lucumí faith addressing God, who we know as Olódumare; however, everything we do in this faith begins with God. Those who know how to pray in the Lucumí language know that at the beginning of every prayer we say, “Mojuba Olófin. Mojuba Olorún. Mojuba Olódumare.” Those who cannot pray in Lucumí but pray in Spanish say, “Con la bendición de Olófin. Con la bendición de Olorún. Con la bendición de Olódumare.” Finally, those for whom English is their only language pray, “With the blessings of Olófin. With the blessings of Olorún. With the blessings of Olódumare.” Olófin is, say some, an avatar of Obatalá, the eldest of all the Obatalá, and is “God on earth.” Olorún is the symbol of Olódumare in the daytime sky, the sun, and is the dispenser of ashé on earth. Finally, Olódumare is God himself, unknowable directly but still involved through earthly affairs by the orishas on earth. With everything we do, we acknowledge God before beginning; that in itself is an act of worship.

 

Yet there is a simple ritual we can do on a daily basis, all of us (even aborishas), to worship Olódumare and bring freshness to our lives. It is a custom born in the odu Ojuani (11 mouths). Simply, it is the custom of refreshing the front door before noon.

 

It is simple in practice: take a gourd filled with fresh, cool water to the front door. Open the front door wide and stand just inside the door frame facing out. Look up at the sky while pouring the water out in three dashes while praying:

“Shuba meta die omi tutu ilekun mi. Gbogbo ilé tutu. Orí tutu. Okán tutu. Ashé tutu. Gbogboti waní ilé tutu. Awo arikú babawa.”

 

In English it means (liberally): “I pour fresh water at my front door three times. All my house is fresh. My head is fresh. My heart is fresh. My ashé is fresh. All who come to my house are fresh. The mystery of long life, without end.”

 

Finish with the simple phrase, “Mojuba Olófin. Mojuba Olorún. Mojuba Olódumare. Mojuba Olojoni. Oni odun mocuedun.”

 

In English it means (liberally): “I pay homage to Olófin. I pay homage to Olorún. I pay homage to Olódumare. I pay homage to the owner of this day. Today, I greet you.”

 

It’s a short ritual. It’s a short prayer. Sometimes the simple things we do, the uncomplicated ebós we offer, are the ones that bring us the greatest blessings.

 

Ilé mocuó!

Ócháni Lele


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