[What makes West & Central Afrikan traditions so pan-Afreekan? feel moved to  repost hadithi like these kwasababu, there’s de immense value in harvesting our similarities as we acknowledge & honour those memories  in our ‘bones’]

….Dead chickens, dogs, en flowers serve as a reminder of an aspect of Cuban life that is inevitable even after death, one that has become even more necessary since de periodo especial  economico (special economic period): la necesidad de resolver, or the need to “resolve” tings. Although de dictionary definition of de word resolver is “to resolve”, in Cuba, survival means “resolving” tings in de broadest senseof de word. “Tengo que resolverme alimentos” means “I have to find a way to get myself some food,” to solve de omnipresent problem of food shortages…..

Resolver also implies relying on an informal network of people, both living en deceased, from all parts of one’s life; de more people one knows, de more likely one’s needs will be resuelto, resolved, efficiently. In its earthly context, resolver  means surviving “on top” of de frequent wreckage en ruin of everyday life in Cuba. In its spiritual context, resolver  means helping those who have passed on to the next world to rest peacefully, en persuading de dead to treat de living with care en respect rather than malice en envy. Because the muertos “gave birth” to de santos (los muertos parieron al santo), de wahenga (ancestors) must be consulted first not only in Santeria but other pan-Afrikan ceremonies.

In de context of dis re/post, practitioners of Santeria believe that de dead can influence de living en must be treated with respect, awe en kindness. All people carry a number of dead spirits with them, en these spirits can be beneficent, malicious, or any combination thereof. Through divination (usually with coconut shells or cowrie shells), a Santero can determine de nature, number, en occasionally de specific identities of the dead spirits who accompany his godchildren.

These spirit guides can also be summoned up by misas espirituales (spiritual masses), which are led by practiced morteras (literally, “deaders”; often women, those who can communicate easily with the dead)…..Although de dead are not considered as powerful as de orichas, they allow de divine potential of de

2009 - Tdot

orichas (orishas/orisas) to manifest itself, en they are believed to be capable of intervening in de lives of humans to effect certain acts of good or evil…..

Talking with the dead takes time and practice, say de elders, but once you talk with them, you can see them, too. They always see you.


…Since the beginning of the periodo especial economico in 1990, daily life in Cuba has become a constant struggle because of de increasing shortages in food, gas, electricity, transportation, en all sorts of material goods. The periodo especial economico is de official euphemism for de severe economic tailspin caused by de economic en political withdrawal of de former Soviet Union, which had for decades subsidized Cuba’s purchase of Soviet gas, oil, en machine parts, en had been paying roughly 3 times the world market price for Cuba’s sugar in an attempt to prop up de island’s failing economy. A chance to resolver one’s own personal oricha (orisha) becomes more attractive in this atmosphere of increasing hardship.

The chance to resolver  one’s material problems is directly related to de swelling ranks of Santeros and Santeras in Cuba: de chance to make some fula (Cuban/Kikongo slang for hard currency). Cubans aren’t the only ones who are becoming initiated into Santeria in

@godown arts centre

Cuba. Foreigners from Spain, Mexico, France, Canada, de United States, en other countries in Europe & South America arrive in Havana every moon for de seven-day initiation ceremony.

Cuba is fast becoming a primary destination for “religious tourism,” as it is considered an authentic source for de practice of Santeria, Palo Monte, Arara, en Abakwa…

  foh more of  dis check

[Chapter 7 – RESOLVER AND RELIGIOUS TOURISM IN CUBA Page 204 – 5…212….219 in

Divine Utterances      The Performance of Afro-Cuban Santeria by Katherine J. Hagedorn ]

Paukwa! Pakawa! Hadithi? Hadithi?

Kuna hadithi najua kuhusu Re/presenting the Wild [is the moon] Woman Archetype

In (not only) my experience, lead performers teach improvisational possibilities, ways to think about improvising on the archetypal structure, but only after the neohphyte has reached a basic level of performative

competence; that is, only after the student understands the basic aural, visual, and gestural components of a given archetypal praise song, rhythm or movement. This notion of a constantly moving target calls  into question what one might call the body of material to be taught. What happens when that body does not remain constant?  The implication is that what is being taught (and learned) is not necessarily a fixed repertoire of songs, patterns, dances, and the like, but rather a way of hearing and performing and conveying the structures that inform these chants, rhythms, and gestures in a meaningful way. What is being taught, ultimately, after the student learns to imitate the teacher’s gestures, is how to perform differently from one’s mwalimu.

sacred space

This idea of imitation leading to (improvisatory) difference is directly connected to the notion of performative intent. One learns the basic rules of performance and engagement with the other performers in order to know how to interpret and bend those appropriately. If one does not have the initial feel for a rhythm, for example, how can one improvise successfully from it?……

Rogelio Martinez Fure, the asesor (artistic advisor) of the Conjunto Folklorico…..A gifted student of both Argeliers Leon and Fernando Ortiz, his artistic vision has guided de Conjunto Folklorico for most of its institutional life, from  through the mid-1960s, en then again throughout the 1980s and 1990s. In a July 1992 interview, Martinez Fure stated that he considered Ortiz to be the single greatest influence on his institutional and intellectual work.

Infact, Martinez Fure’s well-known book Dialogos imaginarios, written in the mid-1970s and published in 1979, is an “imaginary dialogue” with Fernando Ortiz about the ideology and uses of “folklore”. Even in the first chapter of his book, Martinez Fure promotes the idea of stimulating the transformation and development of folklore, by “cleaning up the folk”…[the bigger point is] One cannot escape the massive influence of Fernando Ortiz in Cuba….and this post is a tribute to legends of dis diaspora of righteousness and imaginary conversations with honourable elders like….

It is useful to compare Martinez Fure’s vision and critique of [the uses of] folklore (and Afro-Cuban, or what Alberto calls “black”) with that of the responsible (head) of the CFNC  percussion department, Alberto Villareal,

Katherine Hagedorn asked Alberto about his understanding of the term folklore as it related to the work of the Conjunto Folklorico during a September 1992 interview. Alberto’s vision of folklore, like that of Fernando Ortiz, refers specifically to the religious performance traditions of Cuba`s African-based population:

We [the members of Conjunto Folklorico] are looking for a way for folklore to be a principal source in Cuba, because really, from the point of view of art, the principal source for Cuba is the Conjunto Folklorico Nacional….So every time that Cuba`s folklore is to be represented in other countries, they send us……Ofcourse, folklore has always been a little bit off to the side, which can be understood as the attempt to eliminate it by people who don`t understand how the Conjunto Folklorico was founded. There have been people who have wanted to eliminate the Conjunto, too, because they said we are religious, we are black – but now they know they can`t eliminate the Conjunto. Because no country can eliminate its folklore [emphasis mine]. To represent a country`s folklore is like representing its flag. They have finally realised this. So, for this reason, there has been more of an effort to educate foreigners than Cubans on the part of the Conjunto……

But if, as Mercedes Cros Sandoval (1979) asserts, Santeria is a “mental health care system” for the shock of exile, what does it mean that sacred intent is confused and conflated with criminal intent? Is it simply the

collision of cultural values, or is there something theologically valid about seeing crimes and misdemeanors in diverse pan-Afrikan rituals?

The physicality of sympathetic magic, in which one sheds the blood of a bird instead of the blood of a human, works because the stand-in or metaphor can be disassociated from the primary source only in a limited way before it loses its ritual and symbolic powah: blood is blood and flesh is flesh; wine and bread won`t do.

It is precisely the blood sacrifice that riles up nonpractitioners. In Hialeah, Florida, in Miame-Dade County (home to hundreds of thousands of exiled Cubans), only in 1993, after years of litigation, did the Church of the Lukumi Babalu-Aye (an institution dedicated to the practice of Santeria, led by obba Ernesto Pichardo Pla) finally win its case: the Supreme Court ruled that the animal sacrifice practiced in Santeria was protected under the Constitution`s basic freedoms of religious expression. In Cuba, even until the early 1980s, religious practitioners of Santeria were routinely arrested on their way to initiations….An important subset of the prisoners of colour who were freed and subsequently directed toward the United States in the 1980 Marielito exodus from Cuba were practitioners of Santeria…..


Only de relative recent en conscious emphasis on Cuba’s Afrikan origins has allowed its scholars to begin to come to terms with its history of annihilation and exploitation. Walterio Carbonell’s Critica: Como surgio la cultura nacional (1961) marks a turning point in the postrevolutionary Cuban understanding of de history of slavery. Carbonell suggests that de slave revolts, oral culture, en religious traditions of nineteenth-century and twentieth-century Afro-Cubans were de real roots of the Cuban revolution, thus implying that the legitimate successors to de revolution were, in fact, Cuba’s long-oppressed black population. Carbonell’s work was immediately banned and its author imprisoned, so threatening did de young revolutionary government find his suggestions….[na bado]

It is useful to consider Cuba’s role in de Atlantic slave trade to gain a more nuanced understanding of how de prevailing attitudes about Cuba’s black population at the turn of the twentieth century might have been influenced by de events of de nineteenth century. Some of de first enslaved African peoples landed on Cuban shores in 1511, en under Spanish rule, Cuba continued to import slaves until the early 1870s. The indigenous Arawak and Taino peoples were annihilated by Spain’s invasion en colonization of de island during the first two centuries of de slave trade.

Spain then imported African, Asian and Yucatecan labourers to “replace” the indigenous peoples who were to have worked on Cuba’s sugar, tobacco, and coffee plantations….


Widely varying interpretations of Cuba’s racial composition have fueled both prerevolutionary and postrevolutionary constructions of twentieth (& 21st) century Cuban identity…..of immediate importance here is that the conditions of nineteenth- and early twentieth century Cuban blacks are evoked and carefully shaped first as a socioeconomic nadir from which to improve, and later as  de basis for de revolution’s preliminary ideas of a national Cuban culture, many of which were manifest in the Teatro Nacional and the Conjunto Folklorico, along the lines of the performative structures set up by Ortiz na wahenga wetu…..

pamoja tunafika from the diaspora of righteousness to de Afreekan shores, sharing mo resources in cracking these codes to freedom, kwasababu The most important thing is to give the people confidence, to help them understand that they can at last define their own happiness, to enable them to decide on their own aims and understand the price to be paid. [Thomas Sankara]

hadithi hii imetoka Divine Utterances: The Performance of Afro Cuban Santeria  by Katherine Hagedorn

There’s a story I know, it’s about how….de town of Curaren is one of de most ancient in Honduras. It was  who knows how many years old when de Spanish arrived from de sea. And that was – let me think – over four centuries ago. Today Curaren still stands, de home of a famous church. De hadithi of dis church bears telling.

Some years after the Conquest, the Curarenes were ordered by the Spanish governor to build a church in their kijiji. The townsfolk were quite concerned at the thought of a fine church. At de thought of constructing it-piling stone upon stone upon stone upon-they quite contentedly fell asleep.

Time after time they put off the construction. At last, in a fit of rage, the governor decreed that if the church were not completed within a week, inside and out, upside and down, the town would be destroyed-totally destroyed.

It was a distressful business. “An impossible task,” groaned de mayor. De members of de town council beat their heads against de ground. Without doubt it was farewell to Curaren-Curaren de anshient, de beautiful, Curaren their home. A pity!

There loomed one hope. Their Indian neighbours to de north informed de town that the Enemigo Malo,the Devil, had himself fashioned the Bridge of Slaves in Guatemala. Surely de Curarenes could reach an agreement with him to build their church?

De townsmen shuddered. But- a decree is a decree. The church – or destruction.

It was done. The Devil wrote the contract, and the mayor signed it with the blood of his veins. Both parties were committed. On the one hand, the Devil was to construct de church, even to applying a coat of plaster  both inside and out. On de other hand, as his tribute, he would be presented annually with a certain number of unbaptized babies.

During the night of construction the Curarenes were under strict orders to stay inside their homes; only de mayor and town council would remain on watch to make sure the work was well done. The walls would be of stone masonry en the stone would be unadorned. No carving. No embellishment. Even the Devil had his limits. Ofcourse the church must be completed before the most diligent cock could crow his morning song, “Christ is born”; otherwise the work was forfeit.

One councillor rubbed his hands together. “No one can build a church in one night,” he whispered. “Even de Enemigo Malo. We are quite safe.”

But de mayor was troubled. “He’s a shrewd one. You don’t often hear of him losing a bet. And if he wins….” The mayor shivered. “I’m afraid he’ll manage. And then what?”

The councillors were silent. The “then what?” was too horrible to consider.

On de agreed-on night the work began at dusk. Enormous stones were heard to roll down from de hills. The demon workers hammered and cracked and chipped and smashed, making an infernal racket. Pikin cried. Dogs howled. Womben wept. De uproar within nearly equalled the uproar without. The hours passed, as de stone was sandwiched on stone, with lime smeared in between.

The Devil stood by, grimly counting the minutes. The walls rose – but not too quickly. Impatiently the Enemy ordered that to save time larger stones could be used to complete the walls. On went the roof and belfry. Up swung the bell. Splash went the plaster as it was mixed.

The race was as good as lost. The number of industrious demons guaranteed that. Already the interior of the church was plastered. Only the outside walls remained.

Where was morning? Was it lost among de shadowy hills of night? The councillors trembled from skull to tarsus, thinking of the terrible promise they made. Better that the Spanish had razed the village.

But just when the workers began slapping the plaster on the outside stones, there sounded the loveliest and most welcome of songs, the “Quiquiriqui, Christ is born!” A moment later it was followed by a thunderous clap as the enraged Devil fled to the Inferno with his legions.

The Curarenes sighed with tremendous relief. Then they looked about “Why is it so dark?” whispered one.

Perplexed, the mayor answered, “I don’t understand it. Not one silver thread of dawn do I see. De east is as black as the west, and both are black as – well, as night.”

“So they are, so they are,” croaked a voice from nearby. “I always wanted the chance to outsmart that old rascal.”

Holding a candle, Tia Luisa hobbled into view. Between cackles of laughter she told of her trick.

In her hut, which stood close to de church, she had remained awake throughout the night.

In one hand she held a candle and in the other a cock. When, well before dawn, the swishing sound of paintbrushes reached her ears, Tia Luisa had lit the candle. Then, naturally, the rooster had crowed.

The gruff old governor, visiting Curaren, approved the church. (He was not informed of either the bargain or the builders.) His only objections were that the largest stones were set at the top of the wall rather than at the bottom, and the church was well painted inside but not out.

The mayor explained that they had tried to plaster the walls, but the plaster refused to adhere and peeled away. As for de large stones, de governor could understand – the labourers had been in a hurry, a fiendish hurry (de mayor winked slowly), so that some of de stones were set ovyo-ovyo, here instead of there. But so what, de church had resulted altogether well, no?

“Oh, altogether,” replied de governor. Surely de labourers had toiled night and day? The work had gone particularly quickly at night, de mayor admitted.

And that is de hadithi of de church of Curaren. Except that not long ago a bolt of lightning struck de church, singeing the image of St.Luke

“Ah,” exclaimed an old lady, chuckling, “Satan has never pardoned us for winning that bet.”

[hadithi kutoka Honduras: reposted from Best Loved Folktales of the World, as selected by Joanna Cole]

Hadithi? Hadithi? Hadithi njoo….

Kuna hadithi najua bout vile dis dunia inafloat in space on de mgongo wa kobe, na kila mara mtu husimulia hii hadithi inabadilika, sometime’s de change is in de voice of de storyteller, but in all the tellings, dis dunia neva leaves de kobe’s back.

Paukwa! Pakawa!

I remember so many stories starting wid one of de sacred orders of pan-africanism, Kenyan style!

Sometings were jus’ like dat, (whether ulikuwa ocha, mjini, pwani au mlima za Elgon na Kilimanjaro), sometings we understood, were indigenus to de land, en stayed on de continent, within our tribes en clans, slums en bourgeoise hubs, the spaces between our ‘school’ & ‘holy’ days, tribes of neo-colonial patterns.

Hii hadithi is about growing up in de arteries of Nairobi – (Matatu) Route 44 & 45; surrounded by de hoods of Baba Dogo, Kariobangi, Zimmerman, Githurai, Mathare, en de lavishness of Garden Estate, Kiambu, Muthaiga,Runda, the army barracks…..

Na bado moyo wa Afreeka ni shambani kama mwezi wapasua wingu, wachimbuka, waleta anga……

bunge la mwananchi

kama ni ukweli, what is the right way nyumbani?

I give thanks for Tdot en dis renaissance groove we (been) in, nashukuru wahenga wa Kobe Island, for allowing me/we to walk pon dis land, nashukuru their guidance en protecshun. Nashukuru wahenga wangu ninaowajua, wale sijui, na wale wanaonijua deeper than I know myself, I give thanks munavyotubeba.  Wa Mungu uwazi na wewe, ubarikiwe.

….De concepts presented here are by no means inclusive. They are merely de ones that [I, and] Tobe Melora Correal, as a student of [dis Bukusu, Swahili en] Yoruba tradishun making her [our] own journeys toward deeper understanding, feel are some of de most important. They are also among de fundamental metaphysical ideas that inform de core practices en daily experiences of practitioners around de world.

In de Yoruba (Bukusu en kiSwahili) cosmos, there is one Supreme Being – the source, the Almighty Owner of de entire universe, God – whose work on dis galaxy is carried out  by one Creator, whose work on Earth is aided by 401 gods en goddesses. Both Source (Olorun/Were) en Creator (Olodumare/Gulu/Mungu) exist in de invisible realm (Ikole Orun), while de “helper” god/desse/s (the Orisa) exist as divine immortals on Earth (Ikole Aye).

De energies of Source flow into en join with de energies of de Creator, which combined flow through en join with de manifold energies of de Orisa, which then flow through all that exists in Creashun.

Chapter 1                            In de beginning…..

Yoruba (en Bukusu) divinity actually begins before de mwanzo, with Olorun, de Supreme Being en  Source of de entire universe. According to Yoruba teachings, Olorun is so profound an intelligence en mystery, such an intense force, that we can never fully understand what IT is or how IT organizes en runs de universe. Although often referred to by practitioners as Father and He, Olorun is neither male nor female. For de sake of simplicity en also because it feels comfortable for me personally, I often use de feminine pronoun when referring to Olorun.

Ukweli ni, Olorun is an infinitely divine force that is minimized by assigning it either/or/any gender. Indeed, Olorun’s composition en potency are beyond de capacity of de human body to experience consciously with our physical senses.

Although de Supreme Being is beyond our intellectual en physical grasp, Yoruba teachings maintain a fundamental oneness exists between God en creashun. For Yoruba en Bukusu practitioners, holiness resides within all tings of nature, both animate en inanimate. People who look at life through an either/or  lens may have trouble with de concept of every single ting being at one with an indefinable entity that we cannot touch, see, hear, smell, taste, or fully explain.

How, they might ask, can someting be so elusive at de same time so integral to who en what we are? If we can neva physically experience or even describe Olorun, how can we find oneness with God here on Earth? How can we human beings live spiritually connected to de Supreme Being? How can we breathe God’s breath in every moment?

[Not only] The Yoruba [en Bukusu] path follows a both/and  approach to living, which allows for en embraces all facets of any situation, even forces that appear to cancel out each other. Dis ability to see multiple sides of tings makes it possible for us to accept de idea that God is near us en far away. It enables us to acknowledge that although God is mo powahful than we can envision or articulate, God is in our breath, our blood, en every moment of our daily lives…….

For de Yoruba, Olodumare functions as the creative divine intelligence, birthing en sustaining all matter. S/he does so without error en allows only that which has met hir approval to manifest.

Olodumare, like Olorun, is often designated as male, but like Olorun, Olodumare also transcends gender. De tendency to refer to Olodumare en Olorun as male is de product of partriarchal thinking en cultural systems. Because Olodumare represents de sacred womb of Creashun – en because womben create new life through their wombs – I choose to use de feminine pronoun for dis hadithi.

Nonetheless, please remember that although feminizing de Creator is, in a basic sense, appropriate to dis hadithi, it is not metaphysically accurate. While Olodumare and Olorun encompass both feminine en masculine energies, neither is exclusively male or female.

Na pia, while it is entirely appropriate to refer to Olorun, Olodumare, and Orisa as God, Yoruba teachings are very clear that there is only one source, Olorun. Olodumare and Orisa perform functions as extensions of Olorun’s unchanging Essence. Their divine powahs derive from Olorun; without Hir they could not even exist….

It is precisely because Yoruba tradition recognizes de singular greatness of Olorun that de Orisa are so important to practitioners.  We acknowledge ourselves as de children of Orisa, who are de watoto of de Creator, who is the child of Source, de Supreme Being. We understand that all pouring of divine maji – from Olorun to Olodumare, through de Orisa, en into Creashun – has endowed all maisha with de sacredness of de One Source. We realize that de Orisa are immediately responsible for filling our dunia en each of us wid Olorun’s magic.

Because we know dis about de Orisa, we revere them and we thank them. We pay speciall attention to them through our rituals en shrines, in private en in community, because our relationship with Orisa keeps us mindful of de powah, beauty, en presence of Olodumare. In loving Orisa, we acknowledge the flow of Olorun’s essence running through our lives.

For de Yoruba (en other traditions), de more intimately we know Orisa, de more intimately we know God…ase….

[revised excerpts from one of mi favourite books, zawadi kutoka mama wangu wa tatu] Finding Soul on The Path of Orisa by Tobe Melora Correal. mama ubarikiwe.

Siku Ya Nne: Hello 2004!

1.    Pan-Afrikan Curriculi

Hapo zamani za kale, ilisemwa Ukistaajabu ya Mussa utaona ya Firauni na kuna story najua bout migrashuns ya wa-bantu kutoka mashariki, kaskazini, magharibi na kusini ya Afreeka, na the spaces between akina mama kama Mekatilili wa Menza, Nana Yaa Asantewaa, Wangari Maathai, Ambuya Chiweshe en de great grand-mother of us all, Auset….

rain queen

‘Whether you call her Asiis (Kalenjin) or Aset (the Sudanic Luo) or Ast (the pharaonic Copts), she is the essence of the Nilotic monotheon – whose plethora of divine manifestations appear to the uninitiated as “many gods” and “many goddesses”……

There was only one Deity, Asiis, whose name the Hellenes corrupted into Isis. The Canaanites called her Astarte or Asherah, the Israelites Astoreth or Esther, the Akkadians Ishtar, the Vedic Indians Iswara or Usha and the Gauls Oestre or Easter.

Spreading out of the Nile, she dominated religious thinking from the Limpopo to the Dnieper, from the Hwang-ho to the Shannon, from the Irrawady to the Senegal and, beyond the great sea, to the Arkansas and the Orinoco.

As the “Morning Star” (Venus), Ast was also the origin of such celestial words as “aster”, “Sterne”, “etoile” and “star” itself….’

…Scholars who really understood de mystery of Ast(arte) recognized in her one of de ancient prototypes of the Virgin Mary. In Syria and Nubia her sacred dramas celebrated de rebirth of the solar god from de Celestial Virgin each 25th of December. A newborn child was exhibited, while de cry went up that de Virgin had brought forth…….

2.   Wahenga walinena, leo ni leo asemaye kesho ni muongo…….

According to de Kikuyu myth of origin, God/dess created the primordial parents, Gikuyu and Mumbi, and from Mount Kenya showed them the land on which they were to settle:
West from Mount Kenya to the Aberdares, on to Ngong Hills and Kilimambogo, then north to Gabatula. Together, Gikuyu and Mumbi had ten daughters—Wanjiku, Wambui, Wanjiru, Wangui, Wangeci, Njeri, Nyambura, Wairimu, Wamuyu, and Wangari —but they had no sons. The legend goes that, when the time came for the daughters to marry, Gikuyu prayed to God under a holy fig tree, migumo, as was his tradition, to send him sons-in-law. He instructed nine of his daughters—the tenth was too young to be married—to go into the

forest and to each cut a stick as long as they were tall. When the daughters returned, Gikuyu took the sticks and with them built an altar under the migumo tree, on which he sacrificed a lamb. As the fire was consuming the lamb’s body, nine men appeared and walked out of the flames.Gikuyu took them home and each daughter married the man who was the same height as she was, and together they gave rise to the ten clans to which all Kikuyus belong. (Even though the youngest daughter, Wamuyu, did not get married, she did have children.) Each clan is known for a particular trade or quality, such as prophecy, craftsmanship, and medicine….
[reposted from:http://greenbeltmovement.org/w.php?id=50]3.   Deconstructing maps to mlangos of no return

cote d'ivoire

Kuna hadithi nyingine najua bout bridges, kutoka moyo wa Afreeka to de diaspora of righteousness, kama mwezi na omens. Literally, signs from de moon. Arts of divination were generally under de aegis of de ancient moon Goddess….

Any omen was numinous, a word derived from nu-men, another Latin rendition of Moon-spirit. Nu-men was the Roman counterpart of Mana.

 Both werds meant revelations emanating from de Moon mama…..

Mana may be compared to Hindu Maya, de Virgin Goddess whose name was “powah”, and Arabic Manat, de Goddess whose name was “fate” and who represented de Triple Moon. In archaic Europe, Mana was de Moon-mama who gave birth to de race of man-that is, of woman, which is what man originally meant.

Mana or Mania became a common name for the Great Goddess as Creatress and Queen of Heaven (moon), because it was intimately connected with de mysterious powahs of womben, like de mwezi itself…


Upper Egypt used to be called Khemennu, “Land of De Mwezi.”….Ashanti people had a generic term for all deities, Boshun, “Mwezi”…Iroquois folks called her “De Eternal One”….ancient rulers of de Tutsi were named (after) Mwezi, “Moon”….

De Moon Goddess created time, with all its cycles of creashun, growth, decline en destruction, which is why ancient calendars were based on phases of de moon en menstrual cycles….Few religious symbols occurred in so many diverse contexts as symbols of de mwezi.

In de runic menological calendar the mwezi sickle stood for de festival of Harvest Home, which de Scots called Kim – from Koreion, moon-virgin Kore-which Christians renamed the Feast of Our Lady of Mercy. In Gaul the crescent moon stood for de druidic Diana. Crescere meant “to grow”, a form of Latin creare, to produce, to create. Hence de crescent. Modern France still makes them, en calls dem croissants, “crescents,” colloquially known as “moon-teeth.” …..

[revised excerpts from The Woman’s Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets, (as compiled by) Barbara G. Walker]

4.   Wom(b)ans Knowledge of Reality: Iri ukabi itiri Gikuyu. What is in Maasai is not in Kikuyu.

mermaids of de south

The next major determinant of de quality of Wo/man’s life depends on what s/he believes is real. Whether they have articulated it or not, everyone operates from certain ideas regarding what is real and what isn’t. The exposition of Cosmology in de ‘Metu Neter’ [en other indigenous Afreekan oracles] has shown us that reality encompasses a range of states of energy/matter from de unformed, hence imperceptible, to de finite and restrictive physical matter that we are well acquainted with…And that all “beings” are in reality the percolation of one original consciousness through each separate form in the world.

Imagine sunlight flowing through glasses of different colours. The same colorless light will come out yellow, through one, red through the other, and so on. In each case it will have different qualities and limitations, yet they are all separate expressions of the same entity.

In addition, it is important to realize that there is no separation, cannot be any separation

 between the whole (holy!) light entering de glass and de light fragment (of a particular color, wave length etc.)  leaving de glass on de other side. This is de message, stripped of poetry, of  The Tree of Life….

Unlike Western education which seeks to teach people to make better things, the Afreekan traditional educational system aims at making better people…..the exact manner in which de spiritual cultivation of wo/mban is to be undertaken…is shown, once more, by de Tree of Life and de metaphorein (incorrectly called myth) of Ausar, which, incidentally is de oldest recorded initiation doctrine known to (wo)mankind…


According to de hadithi, in de most ancient of times a Kamitic king named Ausar discovered de method of raising his consciousness to de highest division of his spirit, and increasing his spiritual powah to its highest potential. As a result he was able to bring civilization—a spiritually controlled way of life—to de people, with its accompanying social harmony, peace, and prosperity….

It wasn’t long before his youngest brother, Set—symbol of the dedication of our intellectual faculties (logical en artistic) to de service of de sensuous, en emotional nature—became jealous

of all the adulation and homage paid to Ausar. Driven by his lust for powah, en de rebelliousness of de animal spirit against de order en laws imposed by Ausar, Set, with de assistance of a confederacy of no-gooders, killed Ausar. They then hacked his body into fourteen pieces, en scattered them all over de land. It is said that a shrine to a Deity emerged at each place where a part of his body fell. Those with understanding will grasp what is implied regarding “polytheism.”

With Ausar out of the way, Set usurped de Kingship, en proceeded to terrorise de world.

He created de first empire—rule of a foreign powah over others—en replaced the system of maintaining social order through moral cultivation with a policing system; as symbolised by the fragmenting of de body of Ausar into pieces, he separated religion from de state, education, separated God/dess from nature, from Man, separated spirit from physical matter, de divine from de mundane—in short, he alienated Man from God/dess, de world, and himself….

akina dada na mama wa mwezi

Everyone, deities included, feared him. He was invincible in war and violence, which were his chief means of settling differences, as well as de objects of his worship. No one opposed him. many even  basked in de material pleasures with which he bought them off—all except Ausar’s two youngest sistas—Auset and Nebt-Het.

They searched for, en found de dismembered parts of Ausar’s body, reunited them, wrapped de body in white linen (as a mummy), en buried his body at de bottom of de river. They set for his protection, de great Serpent Kematef (Kundalini).

Some say that with werds of powah given to her by Tehuti, others say that with Ausar’s choicest part, she immaculately conceived a son—Heru—to Ausar, who as a legitimate heir to de throne could challenge Set, who had usurped it. And as in

the Christian myth, which was copied from de Ausarian metaphorein thousands of years later, Set, hearing about de birth of a king who could challenge his reign en save de kingdom, sent his agents out to find en kill de child. But Auset was able to elude them en raise Heru to manhood.

Grown into full manhood, he engaged Set in a series of battles that lasted for hundreds of years. Victory slipped in and out of de hands of each combatant. But this stalemate was a victory to Set, for as long as morality and spirituality did not rule de world, he was achieving his goal.

Eventually Heru learned of de existence of a Deity that Set could not bother, who remained aloof of de events going on in de world. This, Deity, Tehuti, it was written, was de only one that could guide Heru to a sure victory over Set. Heru sought

 his guidance, and was thus able to defeat Set. It was not accomplished militarily, but in de court of law, where Set was tricked into accepting the very laws that he had deviced to enslave others—“maintaining law and order,” he called it. As one of Set’s strong points was communication his penalty was to serve as de wind that propels de boat of Ausar—i.e to disseminate de wisdom of Ausar en Auset throughout de worlds

[revised excerpts from The Metu Neter Vol.1, The Great Oracle of Tehuti and the Egyptian System of Spiritual Cultivation by Ra Un Nefer Amen]

Our last Tambor at 109 Vaughan Road is for the Orisha Erinle (Inle), tonight from 8 – 11pm.

Erinle is one of the Warriors whose domain is riverine and is a giver of Abundance and is a Healer like the Orishas Osanyin and Obalu (Babaluaye). In fact he is the physician to the other Orisha.

He is sometimes called “the Fisherman”
In the Lukumi faith Erinle is also considered to be a patron of gay people.

In most paths his colours are blue, green, yellow and coral.


Inle is the orisha of health and all medical healing. Inle’s house resides near the coastlines of where the river and 
oceans meet. Inle is a man with fine features as of a woman. He has long silky hair that he puts in 7 braids and wears the finest clothes. For him to look as elegant as he does, he also became the patron of homosexuals. Inle was not, on the contrary as he is married to Abata. Inle has had relations with Yemaya and Oshun. His knowledge of all medical herbs and sticks is very abundant. He learned a lot from Osain and has put his knowledge to use, taking care of the needy and the sick. He is a very humble man and is always tending to ones that are in need of him. Inle as well is a

hunter and a great fisherman. He walks with a tall staff and his fishing hook. He enjoys to sit alongside the waters with his best friend Ochosi and they both catch fishes with ease. Wherever Inle is at, you can always find his best friend Ochosi nearby in hunt. These two go hand in hand. They love to sit at the rivers and drink and converse. Inle is represented in Santeria in a bluish green tureen in which there holds the secrets of Inle. He takes a trident in front of him, who is the spirit of Boyuto. Before his marriage to Abata, Inle had a relationship with Yemaya and due to that, Yemaya speaks for Inle. Inle is not crowned directly on the head of his children. What’s done is Yemaya oro Inle. This means that they are initiated into Yemays’s realm with the additional knowledge of the orisha Inle.

The Pataki of Inle

Inle was walking alongside the seashore noticing the different herbs that grew at the edge of the woods. He was gathering and studying each and every one of them to see what there purpose was in his medical magic.

He was dressed very exotic as he always did, drinking his fine wine and his sweet cakes. He sat on a rock that sat near the ocean and was doing what he does best which is study. He suddenly heard a splash in the water that startled him, but when he turned to look there was nothing there. Days passed by and the same incident kept happening. Not to his knowledge that this splash was being made by the great queen of the ocean, Yemaya. She always knew the time Inle came by to sit on the rocks to study his herbs. Yemaya was intrigued by the beauty that Inle had and deeply wanted to know more of him. Within the days that she saw him, her intriguement fell into love and lust for him.

After Yemaya got her nerves together she saw Inle sitting on the same rock in which he always sits on. Inle heard the splash, but since he was already immune to the fact that every time he turned around there was nothing to see. But this day when he turned, he saw a beautiful mermaid with long black flowing hair with pearls and diamonds that adorned her neck and breast. He was infatuated with this that he kept staring as Yemaya’s body glisten in the sunlight. Yemaya swam close to Inle and said hello in which Inle could not respond because he was gasping for words to respond. Yemaya giggled and asked him his name. He responded to her with his name. They both started to engage in conversation and Yemaya told him how she has watched him walk alongside the seashore everyday. Inle asked her if it was her that he would hear everyday making splashes in the water. Yemaya responded yes and she told him she was just noticing him from afar.

Everyday these two orishas met at the seashore on the rocks and conversed until one day Yemaya leaned to him and gave him a kiss. Inle who was waiting for this was very excited for the great ocean mother was in his grasps. Inle asked Yemaya if she would like to come and live with him in his house as his wife to enjoy the earth’s scenery and life. Yemaya told him she would love to but she was a queen and her castle and reign was the ocean. Inle told her that it was impossible for him to go with her because he could not breathe under water as she could. Yemaya smiled and reminded him who she was. Yemaya grabbed Inle’s hand, and brought him into the water. Inle was very nervous and with a caress of her hand, Yemaya passed her hands over his mouth, nose and lungs. He embraced her and they both kissed as they submerged into the water. Inle at first was scared, seeing that his was going deeper and deeper in the ocean water. Yemaya smiled at him and told him to breathe as she gave him the secret to breath under water. Inle did as she said and they both descended to Yemaya’s castle.

Weeks passed by and the lovers were inseparable. Yemaya showed Inle every loop and crack of the ocean above and below. She took him to where Olokun resided. She took him to parts of the world that he has never seen. She even took him to the river water where her sister Oshun lived. When Oshun saw Inle, she was wrapped in his beauty as well. Yemaya continued to take him everywhere and showed him all the riches and gems that she contains. All her secrets that no one has seen, Inle viewed them all.

Months passed by, and Inle was gliding through the ocean noticing the everyday fishes that swam with the current at the same time in the same place. Inle was sitting near a coral and he saw Elegua who swam up next to him and Elegua noticed that something was wrong with Inle. He’s seen Inle everyday and he noticed that everyday that goes, by his face changes more and more. He asked Inle what was the matter. Inle looked at Elegua and started to tell him that he loved Yemaya but he was not happy where he was at. He was missing his home upon land. He missed the different tree life of the dry land. The birds, the flowers, the different animals, the things that meant a lot to him on the dry land. He missed helping the people with their sickness and he felt bored where he was at. Elegua told him to follow his heart and to be honest with Yemaya. 

A few more days pass and Inle’s demeanor had changed and now the great queen of the ocean is noticing his actions. She asks him what’s wrong but he tells her that he is alright. Confused and worried, she goes to where Elegua is and asks him if he knows what’s wrong with Inle.

 Elegua looked at Yemaya and told her that he didn’t remember what Inle had told him. Yemaya looked at Elegua and told him if she gave him some sweets, will he remember. Elegua jumped up and said yes. Yemaya gave Elegua his sweets and Elegua proceeded to tell Yemaya that Inle was not happy living down here in her watery domain. He went and told her that Inle missed his life on the dry lands. Yemaya was taken back and sort of hurt that her husband felt this way. She was determined to see him happy and if letting him go back to the dry land makes him happy, then she would grant him what he wants.

She approached Inle and asked him if he missed where he came from. Inle told her that yes he did indeed miss the life he had. He told her that he does love her but there’s nothing for him to do down here. No one here needs his expertise here. It’s the same routine everyday, all day. Yemaya asked Inle if he would like to go back to the surface and continue his life. He put his head down and responded to her, yes. Yemaya with a stern face grabbed Inle by his hand and started to ascend to the ocean surface. She took him to the same spot where they met by the rock. When Inle saw the seashore he was happy and he told Yemaya that he does love her but he just can’t deal with the solitude of the ocean. Yemaya nodded her head and told him she understood. Inle was about to jump on the rock, by the seashore when Yemaya grabbed Inle and ripped his tongue out of his mouth. Inle in pain wondered why Yemaya did that. He made signs to her as in why. Yemaya replied to him that she did this so he can never tell anyone about her domain under the sea. She said that her riches and secrets are for her and for the watery world that she lives in. Since he could not bear to stay with her after she introduced him to that lifestyle, then he will not have the tongue to say what she holds far under. And from now on, you can and will only talk through me. Your children will also be my children and initiated through me. With a twinkle from her eyeshe started to swim to the middle of the ocean laughing.

Inle saw Yemaya in the distance as she descended back to her kingdom. He then went back to his home where everyone asked where he was. Since he could not talk, he just nodded his head. He lived mute without the world understanding him.

Inle’s feast day is September 29 which is the same day of the catholic Saint Raphael. Inle loves all fine foods and drinks. He loves precious stones, art, music and the love of healing. His necklace that is worn by the priests of Inle is made up of blue, yellow, green and coral beads. It’s also adorned with multiples precious stones. The children of Inle are usually quiet individuals. They seem to love the medical field and they are known to be nurturing people. His children are made like I said above, through the secrets of Yemaya. To initiate him the person must have Ochosi next to him throughout the entire ceremony. He eats rams, roosters, quails and pigeons. All of his animals are white due to white is pure and clean. He is the patron of doctors and hospitals. He is the medical doctor of Santeria. If you look at Inle’s trident, you will notice that it’s the same symbol used today by all and every medical faculty across the world. It’s a staff that contains 2 serpents wrapped around it.

The family of Inle 


She is the wife of Inle. His helper. You can associate her with the nurse that aids the doctor. She is the one that helps Inle in all of his medical cases. In some houses or ramas, she lives inside the same tureen with Inle and in other’s, she lives in a separate tureen that lives right next to him. Both of these ways are acceptable.


He is the spirit that walks with Inle and he guards the vision of people. He is represented by the fishing pole and the trident that is placed in front of Inle. He is the orisha that brought silver to Obatala. He is also the orisha of mirages (mirages of the desert and sea), He is also known to help people with their vision and also helped Ibu Olodi (path of Oshun) in one of her battles which is the reason why she takes everything double.

Laro/Logun Ede

He is the son of Inle with Oshun. He as his father is an androgynous orisha and contains the secrets and riches of his father.


He is one of the helpers of Inle. He is represented by the fishing hook that one puts on the fishing pole to catch a fish.


He is also a great friend of Inle and accompanies him everywhere.

[post compiled by Beth Peart Weekes]

K is for….[revised excerpts from The Woman’s Encyclop(a)edia of Myths and Secrets]

The Shrine of the sacred stone in Mecca, dedicated to the pre-islamic Goddess Manat, Al-Lat (Allah), en Al-Uzza, the ‘Old Womban’ worshipped by Mohammed’s tribesfolk the Koreshites.

The stone was also called Kubaba, Kuba or Kube (not so randomly connected to Kobe), and has been linked with the name of Cybele (Kybela), the Great Mother of the God/desse/s.

The stone bear the emblem of the yoni, like the Black Stone worshipped by votaries of Artemis.

Now, through the syncretism of afreekan and arabic religions, it is regarded as the holy center of Islam, and it’s feminine symbol has been submerged within palimpsests of patriarchal histories, though priest/esse/s of the Kaaba are still known as Sons and Daughters of the Old Woman.