As a principle of renewal, atunse can be staged and concentrated through the strategic use of ritual and ceremony. In Orisa Lifestyle, there are numerous rites of passage that begin at the moment of birth and celebrate certain early steps in a baby's growth and his or her welcome into the world. Then, at the various stages of life such as marriage, initiation, annual orisa festivals and burial, one will experience atunse.
These rites of passage are not uniform, and vary within the diverse traditions of Orisa Lifestyle. Some may involve extensive chanting of verses, sacrifices drumming and dancing. Others are simple, private affairs involving a couple, with or without friends, other family families or a religious person such as priest.
Here, let me emphasize the fact that atunse is not to be considered as an end in and of itself. It is better understood as a means of social recognition, as well as the passage of a person (or group) from one significant stage of life to another. Various elements of atunse and rituals of life's passage are mentioned in the Holy Odu Ifa, one of the most ancient repositories of sacred text in the world.
Amongst the lineages known as ONIFA (custodians of Ifa), the atunse-related rites of passage are generally characterized as formal ceremonies, punctuated by recitation of oracular hymns, chants and ethical teachings, which intend to orient the individual to that which is considered part of OMOLUWABI (right action, integrity, duties to family members or society in general).
OMOLUWABI, The Complete Human Being
According to the visionary goal of the Orisa Lifestyle Academy, which aspires to help bring about the Good Condition, Ifa says that there are four pairs of character traits that make one Omoluwabi:
Every year, members of the Orisa Lifestyle Academy's spiritual community will gather to perform rituals and ceremonies in recognition of collective and personal ATUNSE. Learn more about ATUNSE!