If I might quote Mos Def, this ain't a time when the usual is suitable. Many of the elements and devices used to enable Orisa Lifestyle to grow have become obsolete to the point of being self destructive. For example, initiation is not a panacea. All problems will not disappear when you're initiated. Just because you're initiated does not mean you will instantly know your destiny either. The reason for this is that Initiation does not mean change. It does not mean your habits are automatically reformed. Not everybody is a priest. Just because you're initiated does not make you a priest. Priests are born, not made. As the Cubans used to say, don't put a crown on a dirty head. Most of what people hope to achieve through initiation is actually best achieved through change of habit.
Also, anything and everything that is indigenous to Orisa Lifestyle can be found in some discipline of Yoruba civilization. If it is not found in Odu Ifa it's embedded in an Oriki, proverb or traditional craft. Whenever somebody uses foreign disciplines as the basis to either validate or invalidate Yoruba indigenous knowledge, something fundamental is missing and standards are being compromised. It is not acceptable for teachers to exceed their true knowledge bases by stringing together ideas with a little bit of Egyptian fantasy, a little Buddhism, a dash of quantum physics and a sprinkle of Joseph Campbell. Let the basis of instruction be Yoruba indigenous knowledge systems and let everything else enhance that basis. Ifa teaches us this way;
Let us do things with joy
Those who wish to go, let them go
Those who wish to stay, let them stay
Surely, human beings have been chosen
To bring goodness into the world
the all knowing one, priest of Orunmila,
Cast Ifa for Orunmila
He said that, one day, people would come and ask him a particular question
He said Orunmila should offer sacrifice
Orunmila heard and complied...
- Holy Odu IrosunIwori
Here, people wanted to be free from the cycle of rebirth. Orunmila advised them that they must first complete the mandate given to them by Olodumare, to bring about the Good Condition. As such, humans are obliged to uplift the unfortunate, use wisdom to govern the world well and mitigate the influences of witchcraft, wizardry and even Èsù. This is what characterizes the Good Condition.
Obafemi Origunwa, MA | ObafemiO.com