Disclosure: What follows is my own highly opinionated, intensely felt, not necessarily correct, and perhaps at times alienating view of Odu, and what they mean.
The Osi-Opon is found in the western quadrant of the Opon-Ifa. This represents the world, as it exist outside your immediate surroundings – friends, extended family, neighbors, associates, business colleagues, etc. The Osi-Opon is the “Not-I” in the aforementioned “I/Not-I” equation. Being the opposite of Otun-Opon, the Osi-Opon represents death, completion, and the place of transformations.
The water element and the setting of the sun represent this quadrant, heralding the closure of the physical and cosmic day. Emotions are also found within this section of the Opon. Kinetic energy returns to its source to be transformed into potential energy once again. It is through the gateway of Osi-Opon that this return takes place. Physicality gives way to death. The final transition is made. The area from the sternum to the pelvis region falls under the auspices of the Osi-Opon.
This quadrant deals with the invisible world and governs those things that are obscured from view. The Osi-Opon is represented by the sacred Odu Oyeku.I have said that each quadrant of the Opon-Ifa represents a way to spirit. The way of the Osi-Opon Odus is the way of love. Love is so powerful an energy that Emmet Fox, the Christian theologian, tells us that with enough love, there is absolutely nothing that cannot be accomplished, no barrier that cannot be broken down, no wall that cannot be scaled, no situation that cannot be reverse. If we look around us in our everyday lives, we see expressions of this all the time.
I don’t know how many of you have seen the film or read the book “My Left Foot“. They dramatize a clear example of the power of love in the perfectly true story of a man born with so crippling a disease that he had no control over any part of his body but his left foot. Eventually and with great difficulty he taught himself to speak, but as a child he seemed mentally defective as well. Here was someone who might have been tossed aside as a total loss, a human being the Spartans would have abandoned on a mountaintop to freeze or starve to death within hours of his birth. Yet this person became an accomplished writer and painter. He married and lived as normal a life as the restrictions of his physical body allowed. The limitations on his life were all physical; they weren’t spiritual, they weren’t emotional, and they weren’t mental. What freed him? The love of his mother. It was her refusal to give up on him, her refusal to believe that he was hopeless, her insistence that he be treated with respect, and her patience in the way she spoke to him, even before she believe that he could understand, that ultimately redeemed him.
However; the Osi-Opon Odus do not represent love alone. They represent emotions in general, negative as well as positive. I am not in favor of hatred. I am not in favor of jealousy. I do not advocate resentment. I am not saying that it is wonderful to be in despair. What I am saying is that all of these emotions exist. And because they exist, they must be acknowledge and permitted expression along with all the rest of human experience cataloged by the 256 Odus which make up the sacred text of Ifa.
Oyeku represents the senior feminine principal in the universe and serves to balance Ogbe’s overtly masculine energies. This Odu brings powerful Ancestral wisdom, support and protection. Blockages may be implied, although in some cases one may be “blocked” for their own good. Restrictions are actually safe guards. Oyeku allows one to shed that which is no longer needed. The energies of dynamic transformation and transition run through this Odu, which is also closely related to the cycles of life.
Great prosperity can be found through this sign, but it is a prosperity that comes about through respecting the natural order of things. Oyeku’s increase come over time. This Odu reminds you that all things will eventually return to their source and that nothing lasts forever. Oyeku represents the unknown, those components that reside just beyond one’s field of vision.
In a state of “Ibi“, Oyeku may denote a condition of total blockage by elements that one is unable to perceive. Dangerous secrets may be circulating and you are advised to be careful of their presence. Under the influence of Oyeku in a state of Ibi, you or your situation may have fallen pray to a “black out,” a total loss of vision and direction. Insanity and corruption are possible. Oyeku is an Odu that walks with Death and is the gatekeeper to this ultimate transformation. In its most extreme states Oyeku brings immediate cessation, a termination of expression and existence.
Owonrin brings with it the energy that enables one to break away, especially from the elements of one’s past that have hindered movement and success. Release leading to liberation and evolution is a fundamental element of this Odu. It is important to look at the path ahead, not at the road already traveled. The answers cannot be found in the past. It is time to develop a new vision of the future.
You must understand how your choices impact your future and determine the blessings or challenges you experience. It is imperative that one’s destiny be discovered and pursued without interruption or disturbance. Owonrin may also indicate a state of negativity changing to positivity, the transformation of bad into good.
When Owonrin come in a state of “Ibi“, it indicates that the individual or situation at hand is bogged down with the weight of the past. Refusal to let go of that which “has been” gives rise to a state of bad fortune and imbalance. Owonrin when in Ibi, can signal bad judgment and the risk of jeopardizing one’s good fortune due to this imparted thinking. The individual that sews the seeds of negativity will feast on the bitter harvest of their crops.
Osa is an Odu whose energy is highly active and brings with it sweeping change and the benefits such modifications impart. This Odu marks increased communication, dialog, interaction and exchange. These newly initiated avenues of correspondence might either bring blessings or disruption, depending on the orientation of the Odu.
Osa is the ultimate antithesis of static energies. It is entirely impossible, and undesirable , to maintain a fixed position when this Odu appears. Osa asks one to sacrifice their current condition of stability in order to establish a new foundation. Osa is the reminder that one shouldn’t get too comfortable where they are. Changes are just around the corner! Osa’s contrary nature marks tumultuous currents of energy that find the individual living in the eye of the tornado. One’s affairs are unsettled, constantly in balance.
When Osa comes in “Ibi” it signals a swift reversal of fortune – that which was once good quickly becomes bad. The exchanges that were potentially beneficial now only serve to distract and confuse. Humility is learned through a swift blow from the hand of the stochastic forces of life. Lastly, Osa portends damages that are incrementally increased by someone running from their problems, rather than facing the source of conflict.
Irete communicates a time when prosperity and riches may be discovered and conveyed to the individual. Whether the abundance is monetary or spiritual, and increase is on the way. One may have to pass through the trials of life in order to realize this prosperous condition, but through divination the requisite elements may be gathered.
Irete also encourages you to find within yourself the source of sustenance and energy during difficult times. This Odu embodies the libertarian spirit and elevates one above the forces that attempt to ride roughshod over you. The forces of oppression, both within and around you, can be conquered under this Odu. Humility becomes the key to success in various situations and you may have to yield in order to gain.
When Irete’s orientation comes in “Ibi“, there are forces that seek to undermine you or the situation at hand. Insidious elements seek to gain entry or perhaps have already taken up residence. Like Odi, pressure is a key element in the equation and this stress causes resistance and may eventually lead to a total breakdown.
The forces that encroach on the individual do so through the open doorway created by this pressure. Their visit may bring injustice and difficult energies that wear you down. Fatigue sets in and disables further activity. The remedy is a period of rest necessary to allow you to gather the internal resources required to break free from the oppression.
Support our work by buying this eBook
Tags: osi-opon, oyeku-meji, owonrin-meji, osa-meji, irete-meji