Queendom: Which African Goddess Are You?
We have conquered another week! Wow what tenacity and drive you have!!.... I can say my week has been interesting and purposed filled. I hope as you draw your work week to a close you are able to let your hair down and enjoy the weekend;)
Now let's get into the topic at hand... I am a huge fan of Greek mythology, magical topics , the use of the imagination and spiritual history but it is so baffling to me to look at books, websites or art work and the presence of African influence is there but never the actual visualization of the African individual. I'm all for diversity but it makes me scoff to think that out culture is being used without us being seen. For some this is a win but for me it isn't. The information and photos that I'm sharing in this post are meant to inspire you!... When you read of these Goddesses, when you see their personas depicted in the beautiful art work..they are you..you are them.. My LCP ladies ...my friends...my sister..my mother...my aunt...my cousin . Below are 3 African Goddesses that were interesting to me.
Welcome to Goddessdom
Oshun maybe familar by default.. In Beyonce's Lemonade video, Beyonce so beautifully drops visual hints of her.
Oshun is the Yorùbá Orisha (Deity) of the sweet or fresh waters (as opposed to the salt waters of Yemaya). She is widely loved, as She is known for healing the sick and bringing fertility and prosperity, and She especially watches over the poor and brings them what they need. As Orisha of love, Oshun is represented as a beautiful, charming and coquettish young woman. In some tales She is said to be a mermaid, with a fish's tail.
The Yorùbá clans inhabit parts of western central Africa, in present-day Nigeria. Oshun is the Goddess of the river of the same name, and She is especially worshipped in river-towns. During Her yearly festival, She is said to choose one or more women dancers to descend into (much like participants in Vodou ceremonies may be "mounted" or "possessed" by a Lwa). These women then take new names in honor of Oshun and are thereafter consulted as healers.
Oshun was taught divination with cowrie shells by Obatala, the first of the created Orishas, and then She brought the teaching to humans. She was at one time the wife of Shango, the Orisha of storms, as was Oya the Orisha of the winds and tempests. Oshun is also said to be the mother of the birds or fishes.
With the African diaspora, Oshun was brought to the Americas, and adopted into the pantheons that branched out of the African traditions. In the Brazilian religion of Candomblé, which retains close ties with the Yorùbá religion, as well as in Cuban Santeriá, She is called Oxum. In Haitian Vodou She is an inspiration for Erzulie or Ezili, also a Deity of water and love.
Oshun, like the other Orishas, has a number associated with Her—five; a color—yellow or amber; and a metal—gold or bronze. The peacock and the vulture are sacred to Her. Offerings to Oshun include sweet things such as honey, mead, white wine, oranges, sweets, or pumpkins, as well as perfume.
Oshun in a reading indicates sweetness and good cheer, beauty and flowing joy.
Are you still with me..? This is some interesting stuff right?
Next I'd like to introduce Yemaya.
Yemaya is the Yorùbá Orisha or Goddess of the living Ocean, considered the mother of all. She is the source of all the waters, including the rivers of western Africa, especially the River Ogun. Her name is a contraction of Yey Omo Eja, which means "Mother Whose Children are the Fish." As all life is thought to have begun in the sea, all life is held to have begun with Yemaya. She is motherly and strongly protective, and cares deeply for all Her children, comforting them and cleansing them of sorrow. She is said to be able to cure infertility in women, and cowrie shells represent Her wealth. She does not easily lose Her temper, but when angered She can be quite destructive and violent, as the sea in a storm.
Yemaya was brought to the New World with the African diaspora and She is now worshipped in many cultures besides Her original Africa. In Brazilian Candomblé, where She is known as Yemanja or Imanje, She is the Sea Mother who brings fish to the fishermen, and the crescent moon is Her sign. As Yemanja Afodo, also of Brazil, She protects boats travelling on the sea and grants safe passage.
In Haitian Vodou She is worshipped as a moon Goddess, and is believed to protect mothers and their children. She is associated with the mermaid-spirits of Lasirenn (Herself a form of Erzulie) Who brings seduction and wealth, and Labalenn, Her sister the whale.
Yemaya rules over the surface of the ocean, where life is concentrated. She is associated with the Orisha Olokin (Who is variously described as female, male, or hermaphrodite) Who represents the depths of the Ocean and the unconscious, and together They form a balance. She is the sister and wife of Aganju, the God of the soil, and the mother of Oya,Goddess of the winds.
Our Lady of Regla in Brazil may be linked to Her, and She is equated elsewhere in the Americas with the Virgin Mary as the Great Mother. In parts of Brazil She is honored as the ocean Goddess at the summer solstice, while in the north east of the country Her festival is held on February 2nd (a day that is also associated with Her daughter Oya, as well as being the feast day of the Celtic Bride ), with offerings of blue and white flowers cast into the Sea.
Yemaya's colors are blue and white, and She is said to wear a dress with seven skirts that represent the seven seas. Sacred to Her are peacocks, with their beautiful blue-green iridescence, and ducks. The number seven is Hers, also for the seven seas.
Alternate spellings: Yemanja, Yemojá, Yemonja, Yemalla, Yemana, Ymoja, Iamanje, Iemonja, Imanje
Epithets: Achabba, in Her strict aspect; Oqqutte in Her violent aspect: Atarmagwa, the wealthy queen of the sea; Olokun or Olokum as Goddess of dreams
Also called: Mama Watta, "Mother of the Waters".
The third Goddess that graces this post is Oya.
Oya is the powerful Yorùbá Orisha of the winds and tempests. She is considered either the sister of the Orisha of storms Shango, or one of His three wives, with Oshun and Oba. She can manifest as winds ranging from the gentlest breeze to the raging hurricane or cyclone. She goes forth with Her husband during His thunderstorms, destroying buildings, ripping up trees, and blowing things down. Oya is known as a fierce warrior and strong protectress of women, who call on Her to settle disputes in their favor.
As the Orisha of change, She brings down the dead wood to make room for the new, and She uses Her machete or sword to clear a path for new growth. She is believed to watch over the newly dead and assist them as they make the transition from life. She is equated with the Vodou Lwa MamanBrijit , Who, like Oya, guards graveyards.
Oya is the Orisha of the Niger River, and Her violent rainstorms are said to be its source. Like Oshun, She is worshipped not only in Africa but in Brazil, where the Amazon is said to be Her river, and where She is equated with the Virgin Mary as Our Lady of La Candelaria. Oya, who is an Orisha of a very fiery demeanor, also seems to have a far-flung connection with the Celtic Bride or Bridgit, both in Her Vodou counterpart Maman Brijit, and in Her associated Catholic saint, Our Lady of La Candelaria, whose feast day, February 2nd, is shared with Bride.
Oya's attributes are the sword or machete and the flywhisk, and Her animal is the water buffalo, in Whom She sometimes manifests. Her mother is said to be Yemaya, the Great Sea Mother. Oya Herself is said to be the mother of nine children--Egungun and four sets of twins.
Her number is nine, Her color is burgundy or purple, and Her metal is copper. Offerings to Oya include eggplants, coins, red wine, and cloth.
This card in a reading indicates a time of upheavel or sudden change, of a destructive and chaotic but necessary nature. This destructive clearing makes room for vibrant new growth. Stormy emotions and tempestuous circumstances may whirl around you: hang on!
Alternate names: Oya-ajere "Carrier of the Container of Fire," Ayaba Nikua "Queen of Death," Iya Yansan "Mother of Nine," Ayi Lo Da "She Who Turns and Changes," Oia, Yansa, Yansan.
My LCP ladies chime in.. Which Goddess resonants With you? Do you feel a connection? Maybe even poweror strength??? As you finish out your week or ever find yourself feeling discouraged think of this post, the goddesses and know you have the power to keep going!!!
All of the above Goddesses are super badass so I would like to believe I carry a piece of them all withinme.
"A Goddess is a woman who breaks the mold
She is who she wants to be and she offers
no apologies."-Lisa Maria Roseti
Make sure Like, Share and Comment!!