Meet Babalawo in Nigeria (Iseke, Oyo State), Awoniran Faniyi Omoyeni.

Meet Babalawo in Nigeria (Iseke, Oyo State), Awoniran Faniyi Omoyeni.

Please tell us about yourself.

My name is Baba Awo Awoniran Faniyi Omoyeni, I am the Oluawo of Iseke town here in Oyo.

What is Oluawo?

Oluawo means the head of Babalawos. Just as there are Imams who are the heads of all Alfas, or talking about Bishop for the Christians.

We use to hear of Araba, what is the difference between Araba and Oluawo?

There is no difference, Araba is the head of all priests, Oluawo is the head of all priests. A person that is very knowledgeable is enthroned as Oluawo and Araba.

Please who is the head between Araba and Oluawo?

Just as I said earlier, both are of the same category.

What is Isese?

Thank you very much, what we call Isese... The understanding of so many people about Isese is wrong. The voice that was voiced by Olodumare to the Irunmoles is what we call "Isese." Just as how an Ifa Stanza says, Ifa is the wisdom of Ode Egba, Orishas know the rest of the priest of Ijesa

(IFA PRAISE - click here to listen).

When God concluded the creation of this earth, he chose some Irunmoles to go and start a living on earth. We call them Orishas. When they got to the face of the earth, Olodumare gave them their various schedule of duty. But only Orunmila carried out his own schedule of duties while others were enjoying themselves. They were even mocking Orunmila for working instead of enjoying himself. Orunmila didn't listen to them. So when he (Orunmila) finished his work, he went to give Olodumare feedback, Olodumare was very happy, Olodumare therefore gave him "Igba Iwa" (the Calabash of good behavior), to show that he would be the head of other Irunmoles. The other Orishas however questioned Olodumare why he made Orunmila the head. Orisha Nla, Sopona, etc said they were bigger than Orunmila. Olodumare said yes, He reminded them of the instruction He gave them which they turned down. He told them that only Orunmila carried out His instruction which is known as Ise Too Se - Isese (Oni Ise Too Se meaning Onisese). Everyone one of us has a responsibility to work before we can become somebody i.e. successful. Oni Se Too Se mean Onisese.

Thank you. We do hear of the phrase "Isese Lagba," does this phrase only relevant in Yorubaland or the entire world?

If you have been following the Ifa Stanza that I praised earlier, Our ancestors used to say "What we would do is the master of what we would eat." You need to work before you can eat. This indicates that whatever one wants to become in life, such a person must have a job. This is why we say Isese Lagba, meaning, what we do is the master. According to how some people understand it they do think that Onisese is the best of all things. Though that can be said but, the real meaning is what we do is the master and is the determinant of what we can become in life.

Please tell us what Ifa is, what is Ifa, sir?

Ifa is the word that came out of the mouth of Olodumare, that was handed over to Orunmila. This word is what we call Ifa. We praise from our mouth, some people don't know, they mix Orunmila with Ifa. Orunmila is different from Ifa. The word that was given to Orunmila is what we call Ifa, Orunmila is the messenger.

Thank you. Does this Ifa look like the Bible or Quran that one can read by oneself without hearing from a Babalawo?

Ifa is different from the Bible and Quran, because what was written down and being read are the Bible and the Quran. Ifa is what one would have to memorize, which one would have to serve as an apprentice for many years. The extent to which one can learn fast would determine the period of learning from his/her Ifa Priest. Some can learn Ifa for 4 years and understand it, some can learn Ifa for 6 years and understand it, while some may spend 15 years learning it yet unable to understand it, because if it's not his calling, it would be difficult for him/her to understand it, because Ifa is a bit difficult to learn.

Thank you. Please we do hear that some are Babalawos while some are Olorishas, please what is the difference between Babalawos and Olorishas?

There is difference. The difference is that when you see a Babalawo, how to identify a Babalawo is categorized into 4 parts. When you see a Babalawo, you will see "Ide Ifa" on his neck or wrist, also you will see "Irukere" or "Iroke." In the olden days, Babalawos use to hand a bag where they pack their divination materials on their shoulder. These are ways to know a Babalawo. The followers of Orisha Nla do wear white cloth, white beads, they also cast 16 cowries, they don't cast with Opele, but Babalawos cast Opele or Ikin Ifa.

Please concerning the 16 Cowries, what is the difference between the cowries and Ikin Ifa?

The difference is that 16 is the cowries, Ikin is from the palm tree which is different from the regular palm fruit, Ikin is not the regular palm fruit. The Ikin has 4 faces, so when there are plenty of palm trees somewhere one may not find the Ikin there, rather one would see that 3 faces, wherever you see the palm fruit with 4 or more faces, they are Ikin palm trees. All our elders in the olden days know that when Ikin fruit is added to the regular palm fruit to make palm oil, the palm oil would be useless.

Thank you. Baba, please we use to hear of offering sacrifice to Esu, this Esu is who the Abrahamic Religions are saying we should not associate with, why is it that this same Esu is who Babalawos associate with for deliverance?

Thank you. You know in Yorubaland, they say "the truthful ones are the wicked ones in town." Esu. If we are to talk about the savior of the people of this world, Esu is the one. For some reasons, whatever errand one may want to send, for instance, one facing problems of different kinds, when Ifa is cast, and such a person is asked to offer sacrifice, for him/her to be fine. Esu is the one to take the offering to the owner of heaven for the person to be fine. Esu does not care if the person is a Christain of Muslim. Even though the person had earlier abused him, he doesn't care because he knows he is working for Olodumare, he would carry out the task. So this is why I said he is even the savior of this world, because they have no knowledge about him is the reason why they say he is bad, Orunmila believes in Esu more because he is the most truthful.

Our people are now loving Isese which is our traditional religion, but some of these people are concerned about the cleanliness and neatness in Isese, we see that some of the shrines of our Babalawos usually have a particular deity stand where palm oil is poured, is this necessary or are there any other ways to do this for their shrines to be clean and neat?

Ehh, as you said, in the olden days, not only Babalawos, the people of the past according to the level of their exposure, neatness wasn't that common, but nowadays, there is neatness in all the Religions. When you go to some of the traditional religious temples, they are now taking care of their worship centers, you won't even find a corner where they do pour palm oil, they only worship and honor the Orishas. They pray for themselves, their countries, and others, that's what they go there to do, but it all depends on how neat an individual is that would determine how their place of worship would look like.

Thank you, we see that traditional religion is now spreading gradually, we are now seeing different Ifa temples around, please is this how it was in the past or is it the civilization that brought about its advent?

It has been in existence since the beginning, but the way it was practiced in the past is different from today. Priest gathering has been in existence since the olden days. Priest Gathering means a group of people in the street doing things in common, they gather together to pray in form of festival, this festival brings them together to pray for themselves and others. These are what they do in the past, but when other religions are coming in with civilization, they however began to do things in a more civilized manner like them.

In about 14 years ago, Professor Akinwunmi Isola, he informed Professor Wande Abimbola that UNESCO was reviewing African's Traditional Heritage, to check which ones shouldn't fade away, and the ones to fade away. Some countries have benefited, of which he wanted Baba Wande to attend. When he was told, he went there. On getting there, he confirmed the truthfulness of the information. He was told to go and come up with a write-up on Ifa for review, Baba Professor Akinwunmi Ishola and Professor Bade Ajua, it took them 2 months to come up with a write-up on Ifa which was taken to UNESCO, before UNESCO accepted it during Obasanjo's regime, Baba Obasanjo accepted it as well, and Oyo was chosen as the location to build it. That is why you see it here, thought this very location is a temporary site, the permanent site is along Iware road, there is about 1000 acres of land there.

The site is yet to be developed right?


Please what happens in this Ifa Heritage School?

We train people on the knowledge of Ifa, from Eji Ogbe to Ofunse, the 256 Odu Ifa are what they teach there, and some other explanation related to Ifa, Yoruba Language is taught there as well.

How can one become a student of this school?

Whoever is interested in gaining admission to this school must have completed his/her Secondary School education, such a person must be able to speak good Yoruba language, must also be able to speak English, when the two languages can be spoken fluently, such a person would be admitted. It takes 2 years to complete the studies.

Is it a boarding school or days school?

Students rent apartment for themselves outside the school, because we are yet to build the permanent site for the school, this place is just a temporary site, by the time we move to the permanent site, hostels would be built for students, but for now, students would have to rent an apartment outside.

What are the plans on ground to build the permanent site?

Government hasn't take a step on it, because we have made an arrangement for the land since the time of Yar'dua, through a Baale Ilepe in Iseke town. He gave them the land then, Akala did the survey of the land and was sent to Abuja, Yar'dua himself wrote a letter to the Baale then to thank him. We are still expecting them to take a step to build the place, still yet undone.

Can you use this opportunity to talk to Government about the place?

I do not have anything to say, the owner of this project is the qualified one to do so, Baba Wande Abimbola. He understands how he started from the beginning, till how it got to Abuja, so if there is anything to say about it, Baba Wande is the one to do so.

We see that the whites are showing interest in learning Ifa, whereas some of our Yorubas are of the opinion that Ifa is only meant for us, how true is this please?

What you just said made me to go back to the UNESCO story, I remember when Baba Wande went to UNESCO to get this approval, something happened there, when they were reviewing the write-up, on the computer screen, when it gets to Ifa, some people rose up, to kick against it, they lied that Nigerians already wanted it to fade away, among the 21 judges on seat, the leader who was a woman, the woman was a princess from Sudan, she instructed those kicking against it to rise up, behold they are from the Arab country, the woman made them to understand that Nigeria is not the only country where Ifa is being practiced, maybe you do not understand that Ifa is for the entire world and not only for Nigeria, if it fades away in Nigeria, it can't fade away in the entire world. She seek indulgence of her co judges to let them understand that Ifa is for the entire world, she said all kings of this world has Ifa at home, even the kings in Arab countries, they know how they appease their Ifa, on this note, she said she accepted it, the Ifa is for the entire world and not only us.

Thank you Baba. Please do you still do Ifa Reading for people as our elder?

I do not have other jobs that I do, order than casting Ifa and praising Ifa for people, and offering of sacrifice for people, those are what I do.

How do you attend to your clients?

Whoever comes would speak to his/her money, and places it on Opele, Ifa would be cast to reveal the Odu Ifa, I'd hear what Ifa says and would be explained to the bearer, and the offering to offer for his/her problems to be solved. That's all.

People who are interested in getting initiated into Ifa do ask me for how it's completely done. Please tell us what Isefa/Itefa means and how can one get them. What's the price if you are the one doing it? How do you do it, sir?

Ifa Sise that we are talking about, Ogbe Ate talks about it, He who hasn't taken should come and take, he who has pressed should come and press, I took and I pressed, Eegun Ifa has finished? Eegun Ifa still remains more than enough. This cast Ifa for Orunmila who went to marry Odu, Odu gave birth to us, Odu takes care of us, people of this world, come and see the countless children of Odu. What Ifa Sise means is to have personal Ikin Ifa, it means one has collected Ifa. If such a person requested for it, professional Babalawos know how it's done. What is needed is Ikin palm fruit, not just ordinary palm fruit. When Ikin are gathered and washed, then when the spiritual rites are properly done, in the name of the person, the Ikin would be given to the person, it means such a person has Ifa.

When the person has the Ikin Ifa, then he/she can decide if he wants to take it to Igbodu which is called Itefa. The Itefa would enable the person know his/her life journey and the dos and don'ts which would be explained to the person accordingly. When the person performed Itefa, it means he has entered Igbodu, Itefa doesn't qualify such a person to be a  Babalawo, not at all, such a person has Ifa and appeasing him, that doesn't qualify the person to be a Babalawo, such a person can be a Christian or Muslim, but such a person can be appeasing his/her Ifa indoors. If the person is a Babalawo, he/she must perform Isefa and Itefa, the person must know his Odu and his dos and don'ts. Those are what Ifa tite and ifa gbigba stand for.

Please how do you do it for people, how much is it?

Ifa Gbigba from me as far as I'm concerned as at today, such a person should have ₦30,000. It means Sefa, after Isefa, we would ask when the Ifa would come out from the oil, because when the spiritual rites are done, they would be inside the oil with other isefa materials. Then we would ask when it would come out among the standard stipulated periods, when the days or period is chosen, the person would buy the materials for the appeasement, because we would wash it and get them appeased, after the appeasement, we would hand it over to the person, then that is when the person would have full ownership of it.

Does that mean that the person has entered Igbodu?

No, he hasn't enter Igbodu.

Please whoever has the Ifa but yet to take it into Igbodu, what would he be doing with the Ikin at home?

He would be praying with the Ikin and be speaking to him. Our ancestors that named their children Ifaleti (Ifa Has Hears) didn't make mistake. Orisha Ifa has hears, when one truthfully talk to him, and pray in his front, whatever one ask for would come to pass.

Thank you Baba, your name once again.

My name is Baba Awo Awoniran Faniyi Omoyeni, I am the Oluawo of Iseke town (Oyo State).

Please give the viewers your word of advice and pray for them.

My advice to everyone is that, we should all be truthful to ourselves, because truth helps, when one is truthful, no matter how long it takes, such a person's life would be successful. May God lead us right. I use this opportunity to pray for those of you who came here, and the viewers, you life won't be destroyed.

(IFA INCANTATION - click here to listen).

Amen. Thank you, father.

My name is Baba Awo Awoniran Faniyi Omoyeni. I'm the Grand Ifa Priest of Iseke, Oyo State.

Please tell us about the Ifa chants on Ijuba (Salutations) and Iwure (Prayers) in congregational worship at Ifa temples.

I give thanks, according to your question, in Yoruba Land, eulogizing always come first. When you wake up, your father should be the first person you eulogize. I eulogize my father, Awoniran Alagbe.

(EULOGIZING HIS FATHER - click here to listen).

I eulogize Ifagbenro Alamu.

(EULOGIZING IFAGBENRO ALAMU - click here to listen).

In Yoruba culture, the first thing to do in the morning is to eulogize Ifa and the past Ifa priests. Some of the words that we use in eulogizing them are:

(EULOGIZING IFA - click here to listen).

The meaning is that before we do anything in life, we must eulogize the elders. And we believe that the eulogizing will make the proposed task a success. The end of the eulogizing earlier says something about what we do alone. If you carry out a task or deed alone without any eulogizing, such task can't be a.success. That's why we always eulogize the past elders or seniors in everything we do. That's one method of eulogizing.

Thank you clergyman. Please give us some examples of how you eulogize Ifa.

There are several methods of eulogizing in Ifa temple. When we are in the place of worship, there are several ranking divinities that we eulogize. Including the past ranking divinities. We usually eulogize all of them. (Mentioning Ranking Divinities). We usually eulogize all the ranking divinities. I only mentioned few. In fact, the ranking divinities that we usually eulogize are more than 40 in numbers.

Thank you. Can you please tell us more about the eulogizing, how it's being performed in your temple?

You see, about the temple... We, the chiefs of Ifa's dwelling are not among the worshippers. We have some councils that worship, their duty is to worship. We're only involved at some point where we'll have to pray. Maybe someone should pray for the city. Someone should pray for the King. Someone should pray for the country. Someone should pray for the state. Someone should pray for the women. Someone should pray for the children. That's where we (the elders) get involved.

Thank you, Father. Could you please chant this Ifa stanza for us and tell us about it: "Ifa ni n ki yin mere ntelu, Orunmila o ni n ki yin mesunlawe..."

Thank you. That statement only comes up in a gathering of the elders of the occult. Maybe when the King calls on all the occult for a festive celebration. Or maybe an elder of the occult invited the others for a festive celebration. Or maybe one of the chiefs in the palace calls on all the occult for a festive celebration. Or maybe it's time for the general Ifa festival. That's when we usually commend Iyere, that statement can be found in Iyere Ifa. The person who wants to commend Iyere must greet all the present occults. So when we say "Ifa ni n ki yin mere ntelu," that statement indicates that, the Ifa that is about to be eulogized, is for greeting everyone that comes from a long distance. Orunmila greets you all. That's what that statement means. Including those that are far away and couldn't be present, we use the statement to greet them all. Ifa ni n ki yin mere ntelu.

(SOME OTHER GREETINGS - click here to listen).

And all that too. We use those statements to greet our people who are present in an occasion and those in far places.

(EULOGIZING IFA - click here to listen).

That's it. You see, that statement is being recited during sacrifices. For example, if Ifa is being eulogized during a sacrifice, it's a must to also eulogize Ofu and Iwori which is like his brother. That's why there's a saying that says, After greeting someone, you must greet the associate too." That's where we use that statement. It can't be found in Iyere, it's not from Iyere. It can be chanted during sacrifice. After Odu Ifa has been eulogized, and we want to eulogize his associate too. For him to help (as a brother) in taking the sacrifice to the kingdom of heaven. That's when we say: If we don't eulogize the elder one, we don't eulogize the younger one. If we don't eulogize the father, we don't eulogize the child. After greeting someone, you must greet the associate too. So that's where the statement comes from.

I want to ask you something sir, it's like a controversy on the internet. We interviewed someone who made it known to us that, Ifa can urge someone to convert to a Muslim. Please, help us shed some light to it.

They are not the same. They are not the same at all. You see, what I think about that is that, there was one elder called Awolowo Amole Onifa, may his soul rest in peace. He said something one day in the presence of the elders of the occults. The statement shocked the elders. But they asked him to explain, so they felt relieved after the explanation. What was it? Statements like these was disclosed. Elder Awolowo said the AKEYOs were the ones who left Ifa in ruins. They were surprised and asked him, what did you just say? Elder Awolowo repeated himself, he said the AKEYOs were the ones who left Ifa in ruins. They said in what way? He said in the genesis, one person can eulogize 100, 120 or 200 eulogies. There was always a scrimmage among them when they got to Opon Ifa. Nobody wants to be the first to eulogize because the superiors are supposed to be the last. So when the first person already eulogized about 40 out of the 80 that the last person relied on. He will be left with 40, he's going to be the last to eulogize, and he wouldn't want to be disgraced. So after eulogizing the genuine 40. He'll start adding some other things so that he can eulogize something like 100, in order to defeat the other person. That's how Eyo was tampered with.

Some of the elders doesn't bother to do research about Ifa. They only follow what they heard or what they were told. I asked an elder a question one day. He was eulogizing a ranking divinity. Then he was saying something like Laillah-ilallah. Then I asked him, I said Orunmila casted Ifa for every single language that he spoke. So what about this Laillah-ilallah that you just said? He said that's what he heard from his father. I said why didn't you ask your father about it then? I said let me ask you a question. The ranking divinities had left this world for how many years before the arrival of Prophet Muhammed? What does Prophet Muhammed's journey has to do with Orunmila? Because they've left this world for about 500 years before the arrival of Prophet Muhammed. So how did they ran into each other to share the same language? Then the elder was just looking at me. I said, that's what you don't know. The people who wants to steal from you was telling you that your knowledge is also in the Quran. Then you started introducing some other things. Orunmila's language is completely different from the Quran's language. So Orunmila never asked anybody to be performing "Solat" (Islamic way of praying). Ifa can only ask you to continue with your father's religion. So if the person is from an Islamic home, that means Ifa has shown him the way to continue with his father's religion. But Ifa (Orunmila) will never ask you to start performing Solat.

Our profession is to promote our culture and religion, so that the coming generations won't go astray because of civilization. Someone like you can help us with some words of wisdom that can restore everything. In a situation like this, where we hear things like: Ifa says this, Ifa says that.

Please where and how can we get the authentic Ifa's message?

Thank you. Actually, there are truths, and we all know that. But the thing is, we don't want to believe the truth. If we want to act on the truth. Let's view it from this point. It started with the government. The position of a traditional devotee in the government, in order to promote the traditional religion. They usually appoint Muslims or Christians to this positions. So tell me, how are we going to convince the government that this thing is real? Because the person being appointed doesn't have the knowledge about it and he's not even interested. And he wouldn't want something like that to progress or develop.

The government doesn't even want the truth, because if they want the truth, they would've chosen the right religious person for the religious position. That's where the problem started. If that kind of position is being held by people who has the knowledge of Ifa, they would've been shedding some light to it for the government to know the truth. And the government can easily make it known to the public that this is a way. When some are saying this is a way, but the government says it's not a way, then it's going to be hard.

Thank you elder. Since we already know that in Nigeria and other African countries, the governments has been brainwashed to only believe in Islam and Christianity. Please what do you think the coming generation can do about this?

What we can do is to be praying to God. This is why I said that, if we think about it well, we'll see that these 2 religions (Islam and Christianity) only came to us to steal from our elders. First of all, when God created the world, he created the ranking divinities (Irunmole). The ranking divinities were the first beings to exist. And they've been living for a very long time. They were the ones who introduced Kingship and Chieftaincy. And how a town is being governed. As young as I am, I was grown to witness some Kings and Chiefs who were devotees of the ranking divinities. But when this religions came, they cunningly disallow traditional worshippers to become the King. So some Kings doesn't even know the importance of sacrifices. Meanwhile, sacrifices is like the pillar of a town. If you want a town to be good, you'll have to offer sacrifices. Christians and Muslims are the ones becoming the King these days. And after becoming the King, they don't want to hear anything like traditional religion. They are supposed to understand that there were Kings before these religions were introduced. But now, they've disallowed all the traditional worshippers in becoming the King. So that's where the power is. They've retrieved our powers from us.

If a Traditional Worshipper is into politics, the government will be happy about it. But if such person plans to contest for a political position, that's when they'll remember that he's a sacrificer. Then they'll condemn him and stop him from getting to the position. So, they've ruined everything already, only God can make things right.

Due to who you are in the society, please say something about this: The younger generations of Yoruba people are fond of complaining that our ancestors were not supposed to allow the white people to introduce those religions to us.

Thank you. Those that are saying that doesn't understand. The elders' says you can't be wiser than your deceiver. If we think about the way they introduced the religion to us, it's not like they just come and start telling us to do this and do that. I read one book, written by Abiola. He talked about the advancement of the white people. He said (in the book) that, when the white people advanced, Alaafin Abiodun was the King. He said Alaafin Abiodun was the one who approved and welcomed them. He said when they arrived, they saw things that surprised them. The first thing they saw was that. Alaafin was running his system of government just like the white people. Because they saw that Alaafin had Army Barracks just like the white people. Their barracks were located in the bush, Alaafin's barracks were also located in the bush. He said the white people came along with their armies. Then they observed that when they shoot Alaafin's Armies, it's not always effective. But when Alaafin's Armies shot them, it's always effective.

Meanwhile, they didn't believe in supernatural powers. They believe in training. So they requested for one Army from Alaafin's Armies to train their own Armies. Then Balogun Adekunle was assigned, and he was receiving a few pennies as salary. So Adekunle was training the Guest Armies. Then the white people started pondering on the fact that Alaafin already has a way of running his system of government. They considered the other Kings that were under Alaafin back then as Governors. They considered the Baales as Local Government Chairmen. They considered the Husbands as councillors. They considered the Oyo Mesis as National Assembly. The White People was like, these people are understanding and wise already. If we educate them with civilization, chances are, they'll enslave us in the future. So they went back to bring religion. After bringing religion, they camped all the children. They told them to bring their children for education because it's free. They didn't struggle with the elders about religion. So after camping the children, they started teaching them things including religion. As they were teaching them religion, they were persuading them that. When you're grown and educated, don't worship your father's Sango. If you do, God will punish you. And you should stop worshipping Oya, if you don't, you will burn in hell fire. Stop taking part in all these Egungun Ceremony. Because they don't want the children to have the kind of superpowers that the elders have. So that the children won't be close enough to the elders to inherit the powers.

That's what they kept doing until they trained the children to believe in their religion. The same children were the ones who were sent to their own elders. So the children started opposing their own elders that God doesn't love what you're doing. You'll end up burning in hell fire. Just to make sure that the powers were being eradicated. That was how the white people maneuvered us. It's not like they just came and asked us to start doing this or that, they maneuvered us.

Thank you, Elder. May you live long. We've observed that Isese and Ifa has been gaining some recognition worldwide. But some of the Yoruba people and some Ifa Priests on the internet (Facebook, Tiktok etc) are doing things that can ruin the reputation of Ifa in the future. Please what can we do to prevent Ifa's reputation from ruining in the hands of the current Ifa Priests.

Ifa can never ruin. It can never ruin. You see, Ifa's issue. He who understands will know that Ifa can never ruin. One Ifa spoke that:

(EULOGIZING IFA - click here to listen).

Ifa has made us understand in that statement that Irunmole's religion can never ruin. What Ifa was saying in that statement was that, the world is changing. We can only focus on what life turns to us. If it turns black, we can only see black. If it turns white, we can only see white. What's happening right now is God's will. With time, life will turn back to Irunmole's religion. And when it turns, Yoruba says a lie can travel a thousand miles while the truth is still putting on its shoes. The honest ones will benefit from it while the liars will be the losers, when the light comes.

Thank you, Elder. Please help us to tell the people who doesn't know how to go about the Orisha religion. Because we've been hearing people saying we don't want to be Muslims or Christians anymore. What are we going to do to receive God's blessing? Should we start going to Ifa Priests often or what?

You see, it's not a must to visit Ifa Priests before you talk to God. It's not until you visit a Sango's devotee or Oya's devotee before you talk to your God. If you observe the statement that Ifa uttered the other time:

(EULOGIZING IFA - click here to listen).

Can you see how Orunmila arranged it? What he said was that: Our mothers that gave birth to us are ASESEs to us. What we call "Asese" are the Ranking Divinities (Irunmole). The reason why he chose the Mother first was because we first existed in our mother's wombs. That was where we spent 9 months before we came to life, we were feeding and bathing with her serum until we came to life. And after coming to life, we continue to feed on her serum until we're grown. That's why he chose Mother to come first. After that, it's the Father. The 3rd is our destiny. Orunmila included himself as the 4th. As long as you're a Yoruba person, if you're not into anything like Egungun, Orisha, Ifa, etc. When you wake up in the morning, after Eulogizing your Mother and Father, pray for all your needs, your prayers will be answered. Because you came to life through them. And as long as you're eulogizing them, your prayers must be answered.

Thank you, Elder.

You said earlier that Ifa has been in existence before the arrival of white people and civilization. But some people are saying making use of Gin for prayers was introduced due to civilization. Can you shed some light to it please?

That's what it is. It was civilization. And the civilization is not good enough. That's one of the signs that we're lost, we're no longer on our way. When I was a kid, you can only find Gin or Schnapps in the palace. We have our own hard drinks. The likes of Oti Oka, Oguro, Sekete, Emu, Agandangidi, Burukutu, Oti Ikin. All these hard drinks had been in existence since day one, which our elders was making use of. When civilization arrived, that was when we agreed that these hard drinks are the best. Meanwhile, all these hard drinks has no benefits for us. If we observe, all the Ifa's Eulogizing where we make use of the hard drinks are just myths. It's not in the Ifa's speech. Ifa mentioned Oti Oka, Oguro, Emu, Sekete, etc.

(EULOGIZING IFA - click here to listen).

Ifa says that. And it talked about other hard drinks too. But Ifa didn't talk about the non-native drinks. Unless it's just a myth, it's not in the Ifa's speech. And if we think about it well, all these things are extremely dangerous. A lot of youths that are supposed to be enjoying their lives have died due to hard drinks consumption.

I asked about this the other time, but I'll like to ask again sir. Our forefathers had much knowledge about the Ifa's speech. But we don't know maybe if we don't have the compilation of this Ifa's speech, hope Ifa is not going to be forgotten by the coming generation?

It can't be forgotten because Ifa's teaching continues. Some are learning Ifa but can't cope, while some are learning nonstop and understanding. All what it takes to learn Ifa, some people are enduring and learning. That's one thing. Secondly, some of our people that are civilized have published books about Ifa. Some of the books may contain errors. And some are just perfect. So things like this won't allow Ifa to be forgotten.

Thank you, Elder. Can you also please help us to publish one book sir? Is it in progress sir?

The thing is, you know if you want to do anything in this life, if you don't have a helper, it's going to be hard. I wish I can publish a book, but there's no helper. That's why I haven't published any. It's not like I don't have the understanding to get it done.

For the sake of the people that will be watching you after the interview. If you want to publish a book, is it going to be about Ifa or something else?

Ifa's book of course. There are a lot of things you can write about. You can write about Ifa Eyo. You can write about the ways you can use to cast kola nut. You can write about how to worship each Ranking Divinities (Irunmole). For example, Most of the youths of these days are mixing things up. If you want to perform Head Propitiation, there's a Ifa that you must eulogize to perform it. If you want to perform Ifa Propitiation, there's a Ifa that you must eulogize to perform it. If you want to perform Osun Propitiation, there's a Ifa that you must eulogize to perform it. If you want to perform Oya Propitiation, there's a Ifa that you must eulogize to perform it. If you want to perform Ogun Propitiation, there's a Ifa that you must eulogize to perform it. It's not like we're just doing the eulogizing for nothing. So if you publish a book about that, and enlighten people on each Propitiation. That's something.

Thank you, Elder. As you're saying it, I'm keeping it in mind. I'll still ask about how you plan to do it. You know, books about Ifa are different. And what you talked about is what we love also. The way each Propitiation is being performed. Let me start from the Ifa's book, is it possible for you to help us write about all the existing 256 Sacred Parables (Odu Ifa), with some chapters and verses?

The thing is, if we're going to write about all the existing 256 Sacred Parables (Odu Ifa). You already know that it's going to cost a lot of money. The easiest way is that, if at all you're going to do that, you'll have to do it step by step. Something like, Oju Odu Merindinlogun (16 Sacred Parables), just like what Elder Wande first did. After Oju Odu Merindinlogun...

(QUOTING SOME PARABLES - click here to listen).

It's 16 also.

(QUOTING SOME PARABLES - click here to listen).

It's also one Amulu. So if you do it that way, the total of the books will be 16. Then after doing that, you can compile the whole books all in one book.

Understood, Elder. We've heard you, we'll work towards it. We don't even know that we can come and visit you for something like this. Now that we've asked and you've made it known to us that it can be done if there's enough money. Thank you, Elder. Please do you have any advise for the Yoruba people worldwide?

The advise that I have for the Yoruba people is different from what we've been talking about, but it's still part of it. I urge all the devotees of Irunmole to go into politics. The reason is that, our elders says: you're not there, but you're asking how it was distributed.  Whatever they give you is what you must be contented with. Not being into politics is not helping us. If we think about the fact that they are condemning us. Yoruba says, when a caller keeps calling nonstop, then you will definitely hear the call. So when the devotees of Irunmole are plenty in politics, then we'll definitely hold some positions in the future. When we're being able to hold some positions, that's when we'll be able to fight for our rights. Just like I said earlier. Muslims and Christians are the ones holding the positions that we're supposed to hold. It's because we're not into politics. They can't call someone who is not a politician for such. The grace that Elder Wande received was that he was an Associate Professor, he was brilliant. That grace was why they were inviting him into politics. Everybody cannot experience that kind of grace. And he was even into politics already. He had been into politics since he was in school. So I urge all the devotees of Irunmole to try to go into politics, so that we can get our rights.

Thank you sir. Please pray for us sir.

I use this moment to pray for the citizens altogether. Men and women, adult and children. May this year be a year of joy and not a year of sorrow (Amen). All the negativities in this year shall not be our portion. Only the goodness shall be ours (Amen). Our to-and-fros shall be delightful (Amen). Especially those of you that came to interview me. You will not go astray. You will not misspeak (Amen). Your to-and-fros shall be delightful (Amen). May you not say what will put you in danger (Amen). The words that will make you wealthy shall not die inside you (Amen). By the special grace of God, the progress of Irunmole and Yoruba's culture is what you want. May you be progressive in life. You will not go backwards (Amen).

(EULOGIZING IFA - click here to listen).

Your life will not be bitter. You will not experience sadness (Amen). And Nigerians altogether, it shall be well with us (Amen).



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