Philosophical Odu Ifa - Practical principles for Living Eji Ogbe
Eji Ogbe is the first Odu in the Ifa literary corpus. Each Odu contains themes, stories, verses , proverbs, and guidelines for living.
We will Explore some of those found in Eji Ogbe
1. Creation: Ogbe Meji explains how the world was created by Olodumare, the Supreme Being, and how humans were created to live in harmony with nature. The Odu emphasizes the interconnectedness of all living things and the importance of respecting the natural world.
2. Destiny: Destiny is a central concept in Yoruba culture, and Ogbe Meji stresses the importance of understanding one's destiny in order to live a fulfilling life. The Odu teaches that everyone has a unique destiny and that it is important to develop a close relationship with one's personal deity (orisha) to fulfill that destiny.
3. Sacrifice: Sacrifice is an important aspect of Yoruba spirituality, and Ogbe Meji emphasizes the need to make sacrifices to achieve one's goals and maintain balance in the world. The Odu teaches that sacrifices are necessary to appease the gods and maintain harmony between humans and the divine.
4. Wisdom: Eji Ogbe is known as the "Odu of wisdom," and it emphasizes the importance of knowledge and understanding. Ogbe Meji is associated with the concept of "Iwa Pele," which means good character or moral behavior. The Odu emphasizes the importance of seeking knowledge and developing good character in order to navigate the challenges of life.
5. Family: Family is highly valued in Yoruba culture, and Ogbe Meji emphasizes the importance of family relationships and the need for individuals to work together for the common good. The Odu teaches that family members should support each other and work together to achieve their goals.
6. Unity: Eji Ogbe emphasizes the importance of coming together as a community and working towards a common goal. It stresses that we are all interconnected and that we should strive to support and uplift one another.
7. Balance: Eji Ogbe stresses the importance of balance in all things. It teaches that we should strive to maintain balance between our physical, emotional, and spiritual selves, as well as balance in our relationships with others and with the natural world.
8. Respect: Eji Ogbe emphasizes the importance of showing respect to others, especially our elders and those who came before us. It also stresses the importance of respecting the natural world and all living beings.
9. Responsibility: Eji Ogbe teaches that we are all responsible for our own actions and that we should take responsibility for our own lives. It encourages us to take action to improve our own circumstances and to contribute to the betterment of our communities and the world as a whole.
1. He who is covered in kindness, will be covered in money" This proverb means that whoever comes with a good heart will also come with wealth.
2. I've been gathering fruit from the house." This proverb means that one's deeds will determine the state of their home and community.
3. "Oro kan so wa l'eniyan, oro kan so wa l'orisa" - One word binds us to humans, one word binds us to gods" This proverb means that there is a specific message for each person, and a specific message for each deity.
4. "Eni ti o ba k'ileke si, o le'nu s'odo" - This proverb means that whoever wears a cloth can remove it, but cannot remove the dye from their skin.
5. "A kii f'oriburuku so'ya, ara eni kii y'o ma gba" - This proverb means that one should not wish ill fortune on others, as it will eventually return to them.
6. "Iku ya ju esin, oro kan l'oni" - This proverb means that death is more certain than a horse, and today's events are temporary.
1. "A tree without roots will fall." This proverb emphasizes the importance of having a strong foundation in life, whether it be in the form of family, community, or personal beliefs and values.
2. "The elephant is not aware of its own size." This proverb speaks to the importance of humility and self-awareness, and reminds us that we should not become arrogant or prideful, even if we have achieved great success or power.
3. "It is the child that has never traveled that says her mother is the best cook." This proverb speaks to the importance of experiencing new things and broadening our horizons, and reminds us not to become complacent or narrow-minded.
4. "The bird that flies too high will burn its wings in the sun." This proverb reminds us of the importance of balance and moderation, and warns us against becoming too ambitious or taking on too much at once.
5. "No one can tell the story of the market better than the person who sells there." This proverb emphasizes the importance of listening to and valuing the perspectives of those with direct experience, and reminds us not to discount the knowledge and wisdom of others.
The story of Obatala and Oduduwa: According to Yoruba mythology, Obatala and Oduduwa were two powerful beings who played a key role in the creation of the world. In Eji Ogbe, the story of their relationship is used to teach the importance of unity and collaboration in achieving great things.
2. The story of the tortoise and the hare: This classic fable, which is found in many cultures around the world, is also associated with Eji Ogbe. In this story, the tortoise and the hare engage in a race, but the slow and steady tortoise ultimately wins the race. This story is used to teach the importance of patience, perseverance, and humility.
3. The story of the three sisters: In this story, three sisters each receive a gift from the Orishas: one receives beauty, one receives wealth, and one receives wisdom. However, the sister with beauty and wealth ultimately suffer due to their lack of wisdom, while the sister with wisdom is able to navigate life successfully. This story is used to emphasize the importance of seeking knowledge and wisdom above all else.
4. The story of the palm wine tapper: In this story, a palm wine tapper is hired by a wealthy man to gather palm wine. However, the tapper is honest and only takes what he needs, while the wealthy man is greedy and takes more than his fair share. Ultimately, the tapper is rewarded for his honesty and humility, while the wealthy man suffers due to his greed. This story is used to teach the importance of honesty, integrity, and fairness.
Ways to Apply the wisdom of Eji Ogbe to daily life.
1. Seek knowledge and wisdom: Eji Ogbe is associated with wisdom and the importance of seeking knowledge. To incorporate this principle into daily life, one can make a commitment to learning and expanding their understanding of the world. This could involve reading books, attending classes or lectures, and seeking guidance from elders or mentors.
2. Fulfill your destiny: Eji Ogbe emphasizes the importance of understanding and fulfilling one's destiny. To incorporate this principle into daily life, one can reflect on their goals and aspirations and take steps to achieve them. It can also involve cultivating a sense of self-awareness and understanding one's strengths and weaknesses.
3. Practice sacrifice: Sacrifice is an important aspect of Yoruba spirituality and is often used to appease the gods and achieve one's goals. To incorporate this principle into daily life, one can make a commitment to giving back to the community and helping others. This could involve volunteering, donating to a charitable cause, or simply being kind and compassionate to others.
4. Build strong relationships: Eji Ogbe emphasizes the importance of family and community relationships. To incorporate this principle into daily life, one can make a commitment to building strong relationships with family members, friends, and colleagues. This could involve spending time with loved ones, offering support and encouragement, and being a positive presence in the lives of others.
5. Maintain balance and harmony: Eji Ogbe teaches that maintaining balance and harmony in the world is essential for a fulfilling life. To incorporate this principle into daily life, one can make a commitment to living a balanced life and taking care of their physical, emotional, and spiritual health. This could involve practices such as exercise, meditation, and self-reflection.
6. Practice humility: Humility is an important value in Eji Ogbe, and is seen as a key to maintaining balance and harmony in our lives. One practical way to practice humility is to cultivate an attitude of openness and receptivity, and to be willing to learn from others, even if we disagree with them.
7. Maintain personal hygiene: Personal hygiene is considered important in Eji Ogbe, and is seen as a way of maintaining spiritual purity and balance. One practical way to incorporate this principle into our lives is to establish a daily routine of personal grooming, including bathing, brushing teeth, and wearing clean clothes.
8. Respect elders: Respect for elders is considered an important aspect of Eji Ogbe, and is seen as a way of honoring the wisdom and experience of those who have come before us. One practical way to incorporate this principle into our lives is to seek out opportunities to connect with older members of our community, and to listen to their stories and perspectives.
Categories: Practical Odu Ifa