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Hacking Life, the Universe, and Everything

Through Afro-Cuban Ifá, Santería’s High Priesthood

By Frank Baba Eyiogbe

The rain is slicing down in sheets and it has become difficult to see the road as my Padrino Miguelito and I slow to a crawl along the carretera, or highway, cutting through the Cuban countryside on our way to the Marianao home where I would be performing the deep divination to see what oddun my Orí would be born in.

A huge storm had suddenly made its appearance about half an hour before we left the casa particular (private home) we were renting for our visit. “I’m not going to say a word about what oddun I’ll be coming with today,” I said cryptically to my wife before leaving. Being a child of the oddun or Ifá sign Baba Eyiogbe I was more than a little familiar with the tempests that erupt when a major power such as Ifá, Olófin, or Orí is born in that sign. On the other hand, I did not wish to tempt Echu, the capricious Oricha who opens and closes all roads and doors in life at his whim, so I did not directly voice my suspicions.

The storm worsens and lightning strikes closer and closer to the carretera on which we are traveling. When the storm reaches the point of becoming a serious danger, Padrino Miguelito begins to recite the prayers for two Ifá odduns (signs) that would work in conjunction to calm the storm. Within five minutes the rain has completely stopped, the clouds have cleared, and the sun was now shining as if the storm had never existed.

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