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Ifa Lecture Monograph

Grade: Foundation
Module: 27
Topic: Obi, Parenthood
Contents
- The Roles of Parents
- Parent-Child Relationships

MOTTO: Exploring the Treasures of Ifa


Endorsed by: International Council For Ifa Religion
Strictly for IITI students only
Module 27

Roles of Parents

The task of being a parent is very challenging but very rewarding in the
end. Some parents find it difficult to go through the rigours of
parenthood and thus shirk their responsibilities. This task is a continuous
one that requires skill and planning right from the inception of marriage
till the time a child reaches maturity and even beyond. The planning
includes when and how to give birth, the number of children one plans to
have, raising the children, protecting, guiding and providing for the
children. Parents should also pay attention to different stages of child
development so as to be able to determine what role to be played at any
particular stage of child development.

For instance, the parent should be able to set rules for the child to act
and behave properly at the appropriate time such as when a child begins
to crawl, walk and talk. By so doing, the child will be able to understand
and imbibe of what is expected of him/her at a very early stage.

As the child grows and becomes more conscious of the environment he/she
lives in, he/she will become more curious and ask more questions
about the hows and the whys; and it is the responsibility of the parent to
respond satisfactorily to the childs questions. Parents should be able to
properly guide and equip their children in preparing them for
independence and becoming responsible adults in the society. The earlier
this is done, the better for the children because it can become a bit
more difficult when a child already reaches an adolescent stage when
he/she believes that he/she can make decisions on his/her own without
consulting his/her parents. This stage is the most delicate in the life of a
child; therefore, parents need to carefully assist the child in making tough
decisions and handling difficult situations.
It must also be borne in mind that children and youths do not only
emulate what they observe their parents doing, they also consider it
as the right and proper thing to do. Consequent upon this, it is
noteworthy to understand that children follow what their parents do
more than what the parents say or teach them to do. Whatever
behavior is witnessed in the home will more than likely be demonstrated
by the child later in life so we must ensure only positive behaviors are
witnessed.

The role of training a child morally in order to be a functional member of a


society and to qualify in being a true child of the Irunmole is mostly the
responsibility of the mother because of her spiritual connection to the
child. The main role of the father is to act as the head of the family and to
provide for the means of livelihood, and to serve as a symbol of
authority and discipline. In Ese kan ola (Irete-Otura), Ifa says:

Ire niwaju
Ayo leyin
Dia fun Iya Olokose
A bu fun Iya Okin
Awon mejeeji nii sobinrin Olofin
Won ni ki won waa rubo aseyori fun omo won
Iya Okin nikan ni nbe leyin ti n sebo o
Awon oju da
Oju ro
Dia fun Okin
Tii se aburo Olokose
Nijo ti Olokose yoo ran ni egbe to soro
Ebo ni won ni o waa se
O gbebo, o rubo
Nje oju da
Oju ro
A mOkin-in joye
Oju da o
Translation

Ire in front

Happiness from behind

This wa s I f a s d e c l a r a t i o n t o O l o k o s e s mother

The same was also declared to Okins mother

The two of them were Olofins wives

They were advised to offer b

So that their children would succeed in life

Only Okins mother complied

It is painful

It is regrettable

They were the Awo who cast Ifa for Okin

The younger brother of Olokose

When Olokose sent him on a difficult mission

He was advised to offer b

He complied

Now, It is painful

It is regrettable

We have installed Okin as the next Oba

It is painful

So a childs mother is the architect of a childs prosperity

Okins mother offered the prescribed ebo

And her child became prosperous


A childs mother is truly the architect of a childs prosperity

A childs mother is truly the architect of a childs wretchedness

Olokoses mother failed to offer the prescribed ebo

And her child became wretched

A childs mother is truly the architect of a childs wretchedness

In this Od, If explains that Olokoses mother was the first wife while
Okins mother was the second. They were both the Olofins wives. Olkoe
was the elder while Okn wa s the younger brother. Both of them were
children of lofin. The two wives went to consult If on behalf of their
children and were both advised to offer b so that their children would
succeed in life. Olkoses mother knew that, as a matter of course, if
Olofin died, her son would succeed him. Consequent upon this, she saw no
reason why she should offer the b as prescribed by the Babalwo.

On the other hand, Okins mother offered the b and began to give her
child intensive training as recommended by the Babalwo. Before the cock
crow every day, she would wake Okin up and send him to do farm work
together with the palace workers on the farm. All these, Okin endured
without complaint. There was no day that Okin would not wake up before
the cockcrow and there was no day that Olokose would wake up before
midday. With daily practice, there was no work Okin could not perform on
the farm and at home. He had adapted himself to all situations, good and
bad. Seeing Okin for the first time, nobody could ever believe that he had
royal blood flowing in his veins.

In the case of Olkoe however, he was enjoying the life of royalty, there
was nothing he could do on his own. He depended on everyone else to do
things for him. His mother ensured that all his domestic servants were at
his beck and call.
One day, Olofin died! True to prediction, all the kingmakers knew that
Olokose would be the next Olofin. All arrangements were in top gear to
install him as the new Oba and the kingmakers told him to meet them at a
grove about 5 kilometers away from the town before the first cockcrow
within 7 days time. Olokose knew that he had never woken up before
cockcrow in his life. He then told his mother what the kingmakers had said.
His mother knew that it would be very difficult, if not impossible, for her son
to arrive there on schedule. They discussed it at length and decided to
practice the wake-up time so that Olkoe would be able to arrive at the
destination on schedule. After four days of practice, they realized that the
exercise was fruitless because they had always slept off because it was
not their habit to wake up so early.

On the fifth day, Olkoes mother came up with an ingenious idea. She
told Olkoe to send Okin, his younger brother to go and collect
whatever the kingmakers wanted to give him; after all, Olkoe was the
elder brother and had the right to send his younger ones anywhere he
liked. Olkoe called Okn and told him as his mother had instructed him to
do. When Okin heard this, he went to his mother and told her what his elder
brother had instructed him to do. Okins mother advised him to go and
consult Ifa before he set out for the journey.

Okn went to Oju da and Oju ro for Ifa consultation. The two Awo told him
that his elder brother had sent him on an errand that had proven difficult for
the elder brother to do. They then advised Okin to offer ebo and to go on
the errand. They then assured him that he would not only succeed on the
mission but that his elder brother would live with regret, for the rest of
his life, for sending him on that errand.

Okn returned home and narrated to his mother what the Awo had told him.
The mother then offered all the b and asked him to wake up at least
two hours before the first cockcrow on the fixed date.
On the day, Okin woke up as planned and headed for the location that
Olokose had told him the kingmakers would be. By the time Okin got to the
grove, the kingmakers had gathered all the ritual materials and were waiting
for Olkoe (the ba elect) to be installed. Instead of Olkoe arriving, Okin
arrived. The kingmakers were taken aback. When they asked Okin why
Olokose had failed to come, he explained that it was Olokose who had sent
him to come and collect what the kingmakers wanted to give Olokose. The
kingmakers realized that anybody who arrives at the grove on the day
appointed must be installed as the new ba. All the ritual materials had
been completed so they decided to deliberate over this matter and quickly
decided to install Okin as the new Oba. Afterall, they argued, Okin too is still
a prince from the same royal house. They therefore had no option other
than to perform all the rituals for Okin and make him the new Oba.

From the grove, they danced and sang until they arrived in town around
midday. It was the noise of the crowd hailing Okin as the new Oba that
woke Olokose and his mother up!

Okn then thanked everybody for their support and gave a special thanks to
his mother who he called the architect of his success. He said that if not for
the training she had given him, he would never have become the next
Olofin.

Olkose also informed the crowd that his own mother was the architect of
his misfortune. If his mother had given him adequate and appropriate
training as Okins mother had done, he would never have missed the crown
as he had done. Olkoe regretted this for the rest of his life.

If says that Oldmar has specifically given parents assignments to


carry out for their children. Another duty of parents is to give personal
hygiene to their children when he/she is growing up. They are to feed,
clothe, shelter, and train their children and also guard and guide them
in whatever steps they take in life until the children grow into adulthood.
Parents need to direct them towards the way of Oldmar and the
Irunmole by showing them good moral upbringing and leading by good
example, as children learn fast by imitating every action of their parents
more so than by hearing advice. All these are regarded by If as special
assignments or roles, which both parents must carry out for their God-
given children. In a stanza of tr-Alrb (Otura Obara), If says:

Owo omode o to pepe


Tagbalagba o wo keregbe
Ise ewe be agba ko ma se ko
O ni ise ti baba nse e fun omo
Dia fun Otura oun Obara
Nijo ti won nsawo lo sile kisi
Won ni ki won rubo
Ki won nifee ara won

Translation

The hand of a child cannot reach the shelf

While that of an elder cannot enter a bottle-shaped gourd

The task which a youth asks from an elder

Let the elder refuse not

There are duties which a father ought to carry out for his child

These were Ifas declarations to Otura and Obara

When going on a spiritual mission to K land

They were advised to offer b

And to love each other


It is clear from this Od that as we expect our children to perform certain
errands for us, so also are they expecting us to be of use to them.
Oldmar also expects us as parents to be the first to go on errands for
our children. By so doing, we will be justified to expect them to go on
errands for us when they are up to the age of doing so.

If says that mothers, with the support of the fathers, should do


everything within their means to give proper training and upbringing to
their children.

If says that a mother is the one mostly responsible for nurturing, caring,
supervising, guiding and training her children when it matters most. She
must make sure that she spends quality time with the children in
ensuring a better future for them. This however does not imply that the
father should not be involved in the upbringing. Fathers need to play their
role as well.

When parents forsake their responsibilities, the children are usually most
hit and they become victims of such circumstance. Ones career, job, and
economic standing are common reasons why adequate attention is not
often paid to a child and as a result, the child can end up in a foster
home. If says that nobody or any institution can adequately do the job
that was originally and primarily assigned to the biological parents. For
this reason, parents must strive to do the best for their children and the
community must ensure that parents are supported in keeping to their
parental duties.

Ifa says that if parents perform their roles for children, they will be
happy in the end. In j nk (gnd Mj), Ifa states that ones
children are ones beauty. If well trained, one will be happy in the end
and the children will be able to assist one during old age. In this Od,
If says:

Oko bagi seyin wa boloko


Dia fun Onirese ile
A bu fun tOko
Ebo omo ni won ni ki won wa se
Onirese oko nikan ni nbe leyin ti nsebo
Nje Onirese ire de
Oko irese, ire de
Onirese omo lewa
Oko irese omo lewa eni
Eni laye omo lewa
Oko irese omo lewa eni o

Translation

The stone hits a tree and returns to hit the thrower

This was the message of If to Onrs il

And also to Onrs oko

They were advised to offer b for them to be blessed with children


Only Onrs oko complied with the advice

Now, Onrs here comes all the good things of life

k rs, here comes Ire

Onrs, children are beauty

k rs, children are ones beauty

Owners of the world, children are beauty

k rs, children are ones beauty

In this Od, If states that children make one proud. A well trained child is
an asset to the parents. In this stanza, If tells us the story of Onrs
il and Onrs oko. They both went for If consultation and they were
both advised to offer b so as to be blessed with children. Onrs ile
felt that with riches, there was no need to offer such b since riches
would replace children.
Onrs oko on the other hand complied with the advice of the
Babalwo. He had children and toiled and suffered to train all his children.
In the end, when the children grew up, they took care of him during his
old age. He died a very happy and contented man.

In the case of Onrs il, since he had never had children to support him
during his old age, he died a lonely, sad, and dejected man. Below,
another stanza also addresses the importance of having children in ones
life because they will be like ones coverlet that will protect and look after
one especially during the later years of ones life. In a stanza of tr
Orire (tr-Ogb), If says:

Kugukugu ori Ade niifori jo Eegun


Kugukugu ori Eegun nii fori jo Ade
Ifa ti m oba mo oo sin
Ki n gbogboogbo
Ope bi mi o ba mo oo sin
Ki n totooto
Ki n la bi Akala Alakuta
Akala Alakuta lo gbogboogbo
Lo totooto
Lo lalaala
O fi gbogidi oje sowo
Gbogidi oje jejeeje
O ku bi abere okinni ide
Ewure ti e ri
Won kii wole
Ki won o jede
Aguntan won kii wole
Ki won o jate ileke
Kerekerekere lara Ireke ngbe
Ara Iwere won kii gun gogoogo
Onko egi yo gbodogi kanle
Dia fun won ni Igbeyin Aiku
Eyi ti yoo gbogboogbo
Eyi ti yoo totooto
Eyi ti yoo lalaala
Eyi ti yoo rereere
Eyi ti yoo biibiibi
Eyi ti yoo so omo re ni Omolaso
Jingindin-ringin o, omo laso
Bi n o lowo
Ma jokoo, ma fomo bora
Jingindin-ringin o, omo laso

Translation

The shape of the decoration on the head of a masquerade is like that


of a crown

The shape of the decoration of a crown is like that of a costume

Ifa, if I know how to worship you

Please let me live long

Ope, If I do not know how to worship you

Please let me last long

Let me live as old as Akala Alakuta

Akala Alakuta is he who lived to be so old


That he adorned his wrists with lead bracelets

The lead bracelets gradually dissolved until they looked like brass
needles
Goats, no matter how old they may be

Will never eat brass ornaments

Ewes, no matter how old they may be

Will never eat a bead tray

The Ireke people are short in stature

The citizens of Iwere land are generally never tall people

While those from Onko Egi land are tall and imposing

These were the declarations of Ifa to the citizens of Igbehin-Aiku,

Those who shall live very long

Those who shall grow very feeble

Those who shall become very wealthy

Those who shall attain the height of honour

Those who shall give birth to several children

And name their children mla (Ones child is ones coverlet)

Jingindinringin o

Our children are our coverlet

Even if I have no money

I will sit majestically and use my children as a coverlet

Jingindinringin o

Children are our coverlet


Conversely, as parents do have roles to play for their children, children
too have roles to play for their parents. Ifa advises children to always
be respectful and obedient to their parents always, it is in their
own interest to do this for them to be able to have the blessing
of Olodumare. On this, in a stanza of Okanran Irete, Ifa says:

Afefe ni teri ewe oko ba


Efuufulele ni teri eruwa odan bale laro kuro ojo
Bi omode ba teriba fun baba ati iya re
Ohun gbogbo ti o ba dawole lati se a ma gun rere
Iwa a re a si tutu pese
Bi aya ba teriba fun oko re a jere bo oja
Dia fun Obatala Osereegbo
Nigbati awon omo eyin re ko esin re sile pe kini o le se
Nitori o ti di arugbo

Translation

The wind is it that bends the farm leaves


The gentle breeze is it that bends the savannah shrubs
If a child respects his parents
All his undertakings shall be successful
He will live a comfortable life
If a wife respects her husband
She will be successful in her undertakings
These were the declarations of Ifa to Obatala Osereegbo
When his followers deserted his religion
Simply because he had become old and feeble.
Other stanzas on the roles and behaviours of children toward their parents
are stated below:

Okanran-sode (Okanran Ogbe) says:

A kii se omo Babalawo ka ninu


A kii se omo Onisegun ka se aigborandun
A kii se omo Baale ka balu je
Dia fun Adekanmbi
Tii somo Okanran-sode

Translation

It is improper for the child of an adept If priest to display anger

It is unacceptable for the child of a proficient healer to show


recalcitrance

It is inadmissible for the child of a community leader to cause


chaos in the community

These were Ifas declarations to Adekanmbi

The child of Okannran-Ogbe...

Osa-Oloyan-an (Osa-Irete) says:

Agbara ko loko
O fi enu gbele o kan ilepa dodoodo
Dia fun Isese ti nse olori Isoro nIfe
Iya eni Isese eni ni
Baba eni Isese eni ni
Ori, Isese eni ni
Olodumare, Isese eni ni
Isese laa bo nIfe k atoo riire
E je ka bo Isese baba etutu
Translation

The flood has no hoe


It uses its mouth to dig the ground until it reaches the red soil
This was the Ifa cast for Isese, Traditionalism
Who is the highest form of worship
Ones mother is ones ee
Ones father is ones ee
Ones Ori is ones Isese
Olodumare is ones Isese
Isese is first propitiated in Ife before receiving all blessings
Let us propitiate Isese, the father of all propitiations

N.B: Ifa equates a childs Parents with all divinities such as Ori, Ogun,
Sango, Ile, Obatala, etc. If even says that a childs parents should be
viewed as the childs Oldmar. The type of respect one will give to the
Divinities and Olodumare are expected to be given to ones parents
especially ones mother.

In the stanzas below, Ifa states the consequence of being disobedient,


rebellious, and raising ones hand against ones parents. It is a taboo in Ifa
to exhibit any of these behaviors toward ones parents. Any attempt to do
so will be vehemently opposed by Ifa. In a stanza from Oyeku Logbe, Ifa
says:

Opa gila Awo ni


Opa gila Awo ni
Opa gila gila naa igi aja nii se o
Dia fun Oyeku
Ti yoo gbOgbe loju
Ebo ni won ni o waa se o
Nje talugbe ko o
Talusan ni o
Omo to lu Iya re daran
Talugbe ko o
Talusan ni o
Omo to lu baba re daran
Talugbe ko o
Talusan ni o
Omo to lu e gbo n re daran
Talugbe ko o
Talusan ni o

Translation

The Gila staff is an Awo


The Gila staff is also an Awo
Gila-Gila is the wood used for making rafters
These were Ifas declarations to Oyeku
Who shall slap Ogbe (his elder brother) in the face
He was advised to offer b
Behold! Elders cannot be beaten without repercussion
It has terrible consequences
A child who beats his mother attracts divine wrath
It is not without repercussion
It has terrible consequences
A child who beats his father attracts divine wrath
It is not without repercussion
It has terrible consequences
A child who beats his elder attracts divine wrath
It is not without repercussion
It has terrible consequences
In a stanza from Ika Meji, Ifa says:

Bi omode kekere ba nsawo ogboju


Bi o ba pade Ogbo Awo lona ki o gba o loju
Bi o ba pade agba isegun lona ki o je e niya
Bi o ba ri awon abore nibiti won ti nforibale juba fun Olodumare
Ki o doju won bole
Dia fun awon alaigboran omo
Ti won wipe ko si eni ti o le mu won
Eyin o mo wipe ajepe aye ko si fun omo ti nna ogbologboo Awo
Atepe ile ko si fun omo nna agba isegun
Omo to nna abore nibiti o ti nforibale juba fun Olodumare
Iku ara re lo nwa
Wara wara ma ni iku idin
Warawara

Translation

If a child displays rascality

Let him slap an adept Babalawo if he meets him on the way

Let him punish an established healer

Let him also push down an officiating priest supplicating to


Oldmar

These were the messages of If to the stubborn child

Who declares that nobody can question his actions

Dont you know that longevity is not for the child who slaps an adept
Babalawo

Old age is not for a child who punishes an established healer

A child who pushes down an officiating priest of Oldmar

Is simply looking for his untimely death


The death of maggots occurs rapidly

Very rapidly indeed

N.B. In Ifa, beating an elder includes physical beating, frowning upon,


ingnoring, avoiding, taking a scornful glance at, talking back, subjecting to
ridicule and odium, lying against, etc.

Parent-Child Relationships

It is always good to build positive and close relationships between the


parent and the child and also maintain open communication in order to
keep both the parent and the child connected throughout their stages of
development. This is very important in the upbringing of a child. The
parent-child relationship is dependent on the type of parenting styles
adopted by a parent.

For example, it will be difficult for a neglectful parent to maintain open


communication and build positive relationships because of parent un-
involvement in the childs affairs at all stages of his/her development. A
parent who is always authoritarian may sometimes find it very difficult to
maintain a close relationship with the child.

Parents should be able to exhibit love to their children, teach them their
faith and beliefs and the ways of Olodumare. They also need to let them
bond with them and spend quality time with their children in order to
foster a cordial relationship and also build confidence in them. By so
doing, the children will be less prone to negative peer influence and other
societal vices. Spending time with the children will also give the parents
the opportunity to understudy each of their children.

Parents should also allow the children to participate in discussions at home


and allow them to do some household chores.
Another important factor in building a parent-child relationship is the habit
of eating together as a family.

In a situation where there is love, harmony and good rapport


between the parent and child, such a child will feel secure with the parent
and will know he/she can always depend on the parent whenever the need
arises. In a stanza of Irosun Agunbiade (Irosun Odi), Ifa says:

Meji meji leja nbi


Meji meji leye nbi
Meji meji nimu nbi
Dia fun Agunbiade
Eyi ti yoo bi meji lore
Ebo ni won ni ko waa se
O gbebo, o rubo
Nje meji ti mo bi o
Ai binu omo, lomo temi nje

Translation

Fish produce offspring in twos (both sexes)


Birds also produce offspring in twos (both sexes)
The nostrils are created in twos
This was the Ifa cast for Agunbiade
The one who would give birth in twos, to both male and
female sexes
She was advised to offer ebo
She complied
These two children that I am blessed with
We cannot but show love to our children
Thats the responsibility of a parent to a child
In Oyeku Ojoooda (Oyeku Ogunda), Ifa advises parents to always
consider the potentials of their children before assisting them in choosing
their careers. One needs to be observant of a childs attitude, activities,
and abilities from childhood to adulthood. Ifa says that one should never
force a child to do any particular type of trade, study, or engage in any
profession. Rather, the child should be allowed to pursue a profession
that he/she loves and is good at performing. The stanza states thus:

Owo ti eni mo
Oun ni eni nse
Dia fun Babarinde
Omo adebiti sola
Ebo ni won ni o wa se
O gbebo, o rubo
Nje owo ti mo mo ni e je n se
Babarinde o de o
Omo adebiti sola
Owo ti mo mo ni e je n se

Translation:

Whatever trade one is good at


One should be allowed to practice it
This was the message of Ifa for Babarinde
The offspring of he who sets traps for animals and prospers in it
He was advised to offer ebo
He complied
Please, allow me to practice the trade that I am good at
Here comes Babarinde
The offspring of he who sets traps for animals and prospers in it
Please, allow me to practice the trade that I am good at
This is corroborated in Eji Ogbe, Ifa says that whatever we practice
from our youth will persist till old age.

Bi Olorun mi se da mi ni mo nse
Mi o sebi, mi o gbimoran sikun
Ki n ma baa bosi ku
Nitori owo ti a ba se lowuro
Timotimo nii mo ni lowo dojo ale

Translation:

I behave according to how God created me


I do no evil and neither do I harbor evil thoughts
Lest I die wretched
For what is practiced in our youth
Will persist till old age

Conversely, children too are expected to maintain cordial relationship with


their parents even after they have attained maturity. Children must relate
effectively to the extent of making sure that their parents welfare is well
taken care of. It is not too good for a child to be living in luxury while
his/her parents are living in abject poverty. A parent who has fulfilled
his/her responsibilities and duties by giving the child adequate training,
care, and socialization when the child had and knew nothing deserves to
be treated well in return when the parents reach old age and become
feeble. In other words, if ones parents took good care of one, it is only
right that when ones parents become old and can no longer take care of
themselves that the child now take care of them.

In a stanza of Obara Otura, Ifa advises us to take good care of our parents
in order for us to continue to receive their blessing and that of Olodumare.
If the child is living well and the parents are not, it is the responsibility of
the child to make sure his/her parents are living at the same standard or
better and never less than that of the child. The stanza states thus:
Baba n rinle, omo n gesin o

Dia fun Obara

Ti nrele Otura

Aye wa di rudurudu

Baba n rinle

Omo n gesin o

Translation:

The father is trekking

And the child is riding a horse

This was Ifas message for Obara

When going to the home of Otura

The world has turned upside down

When the father is trekking

And the child is riding on horses


Ifa Lecture Monograph

Grade: Foundation
Module: 28
Topic: Obi, parenthood
Contents
- Role Reversal
- Relationship between Parent
and Olodumare
- Single Parenthood

MOTTO: Exploring the Treasures of Ifa


Endorsed by: International Council For Ifa Religion
Strictly for IITI students only
Module 28

Role Reversal

Parent-child role reversal is a type of parent-child relationship whereby


parents make their children responsible for their actions and happiness.
The child begins to perform the roles of the parent and the parent acts as
the child. Some parents abdicate their responsibilities to the point where
the child begins to fend for himself/herself and later provides food for the
whole family. Several factors contribute to this; some of those factors
include economic hardship, physical or mental impairment of the parent,
ailment, ignorance, negligence, irresponsibility on the part of the parent as
a result of drunkenness, drug addiction, divorce/separation, etc.

The issue of role reversal can also occur between husband and wife
whereby the wife can end up taking on the responsibilities of the husband
based on the grounds stated above or sometimes because of economic,
social or political handicap on the part of the husband. In a situation like
this, the children are usually the victims when trouble occurs as a result
of the role reversal. The home, if care is not taken, may be torn apart in
the end. The mother and father must perform their respective roles and
duties for things to be harmonious. This is addressed in a stanza of Iwori
Okanran where Ifa says:

Asa ni o lapa ati mu jeun


Adie opipi ni o lapa ati forule
Dia fun won lOyoo oro o meko
Ti abo nrole e won
Gbogbo ohun ti won nse ko dogba
Ebo ni won ni ki won waa se
Nje Akuko o ko mo o
Agbebo lo nko
E o reyin i re bi yoo ti ri
Translation:

An eagle does not have arms to eat with


A featherless fowl does not have wings to fly to the roof top
These were Ifas messages for the people of Oyo in Meko land
When the women became the rulers and decision makers
And all their undertakings turned upside down
They were advised to offer ebo
Behold! The roosters are no longer crowing
The hens are the ones crowing instead
Have you not seen the grave consequence?

The same also goes for the situation where the child is made to perform
the role of parents while the parents are alive, hale and hearty.

It is true that the elders must make decisions for the youths but that does
not preclude the elders from seeking the opinions of the youths where it
matters especially when it is observed that such youths possess wisdom,
knowledge and understanding to deal with any situation they find
themselves. In a stanza of Ofun Oyeku (Ofun-Tena), Ifa says:

Bi omode ba logbon ninu


A fi tagbalagba lore
Dia fun Ofun
Ti yoo tena fun Oyeku
Ofun Ajitena Awo rere
Translation:

If a child possesses wisdom


He should share it with elders
This was Ifas declaration for Ofun
When offering his knowledge to Oyeku
Ofun Ajitena is really a benevolent Awo
In another stanza of Owonrin sogbe (Owonrin Ogbe), Ifa advises us to
always seek advice or opinions when and where necessary even when it
comes to seeking advice from a younger person or a child. Sometimes, one
may find such advice useful and worthy of praising. The stanza goes thus:

Bi a ba dake
Gbogbo ara eni nii banii dake
Dia fun Eegun
Ti nrode Oje
Ti yoo baa tode Oje wole
Bi a ko ba sina
A kii mona
Dia fun Eegun
Ti yoo rode Oje
Ti yoo ba tode Oje wole
Eyin omode yi, e o mu mi de koto
Ni koto, nibi taa ti wa
Eyin le o mu mi de koto
Nibi taa ti wa
Mode wonyi, e o mu mi de koto
Ni koto
Nibi taa ti wa

Translation:

If we keep quiet
All our problems will continue to be with us
These were Ifas messages for Eegun
When going to the Egungun parade ground
And when returning via Oje town
If we do not miss our road
We cannot know the road
These were Ifa messages for Eegun
When going to the Egungun parade ground
And when returning via Oje town
You children, you will lead me back to the gully
By the trench area
Where we all came from
You children, I rely on you to lead me back to the gully
By the trench area
Where we all came from

In the stanza above, Eegun had initially gone for Ifa consultation over
the success of his outing. Ifa advised him to always seek the opinion of
the youths; that by so doing, he would be successful in his outing. Eegun
offered the prescribed ebo. On the appointed day, he went out and after
sometime, he got lost and couldnt find his way back home. After spending
so much time wandering about, he finally saw some youths playing. He
approached them and asked them if they knew the way back to Koto, his
home. One of them responded yes. He then became happy for heeding
the advice of Ifa and that of the youths.

In a stanza of Ogbe Iwori, Ifa advises parents to train their children well
in order to ensure that such children are responsible citizens in the
society. Consequent upon this, a child who is humble enough to receive
knowledge, skills and experience especially from his/her parents will not
only become an asset to his/her parents but will also be reckoned with in
the gathering of elders and the community. These types of children will be
highly respected.

Ifa wi, o lo di ateyin-kede


Emi naa wi, mo lo di ateyin-kede
Dia fun Orisa nla Oseeremagbo
Ti yoo maa loo ko ede l'odo Orunmila lojo oroorun
Ebo ni won ni ko waa se
Translation:

Ifa declares that it is time to learn wisdom from those behind us


I chorus that it is time to learn wisdom from those behind us
This was Ifas message for Obatala
When going to learn wisdom from Orunmila every five days
He was advised to offer ebo

Orunmila and Obatala were good friends. They had been together for a
long time. One day, Obatala told Orunmila that he would like to study
philosophy, esoteric language and in-depth understanding of life with
Orunmila. After some deliberations, they concluded that Obatala needed
to come to Orunmilas house every five days to learn new things.

The first Orun came and Obatala went to Orunmilas house. He met
Orunmilas absence. He however met his seven-year old child who was at
home. After both of them exchanged greetings, Obatala asked the boy
where exactly Orunmila h ad gone to. The boy responded thus, Baba mi
ran asoawe kan lo ni which means my father has gone to sew one
strand of clothing material leaving behind the other strand unsown.

Obatala could make no sense of what the boy had said. What is that
suppose to mean child? The boy then responded by saying, Baba, if you
want me to tell you the meaning of this statement, you will have to pay me
by giving me two kola nuts with four lobes each and a bottle of liquor. Out
of curiosity, Obatala paid the boy. The boy then explained thus, As you are
aware, my father has two wives Osunfunnleyo and my mother. M y father
went out very early this morning and while he was gone, there was a little
misunderstanding between the two wives.

As soon as my father returned, my mother, the younger wife, complained


bitterly to my father about what happened in his absence. She cried and
wailed when narrating her story, giving my father the impression that she
had been abused and maltreated by Iya Osunfunnleyo the elder wife.
Instead of investigating fully what actually happened by listening to the
other side of the story and also interviewing those present when the
quarrel took place, my father descended on his elder wife and began
verbally abusing her. She wanted to explain her side of the story, but was
shouted down and never given the opportunity to say her own. If one
investigates something from the first party is it not wise to investigate
from the other when two parties are involved in any issue? That was why
I told you that my father has sewn one strand of clothing material lea ving
the other stra nd unsown.

When Obatala heard this, he knew that there was a lot of sense in what
the child had just said. He thanked the child and turned back to go home.
Before Obatala left, the boy declared, Baba, before saying anything or
taking any action on any issue always endeavour to hear all sides of the
matter. This will make you an impartial and a level headed judge.

Ifa wi, o lo di ateyin-kede


Emi naa wi, mo lo di ateyin-kede
Dia fun Orisa nla Oseeremagbo
Ti yoo maa loo ko ede l'odo Orunmila lojo oroorun
Ebo ni won ni ko waa se

Translation:

Ifa declares that it is time to learn wisdom from those behind us


I chorus that it is time to learn wisdom from those behind us
This was Ifas message for Obatala
When going to learn wisdom from Orunmila every five days
He was advised to offer ebo

On the next Orun, Obatala went to learn from Orunmila. When he got
there, he met his child outside the house. Good morning son, is your
father home? Good morning baba. My father has just gone out now.
Obatala then asked, Where exactly has he gone to? The child
responded thus, Okun aye fe ja o lo tun-un so meaning, the rope of
the world is about to break. My father has gone to tie it back together.
Again, Obatala could not make any sense of what the boy had said. He
asked the child to please explain himself. Again, the child told him to
bring two kola nuts and a bottle of liquor. Obatala did.
The boy then explained thus, Baba, there is a serious disagreement
between Oba Ajalaye and Oba Ajalorun which my father has gone to
settle. If this misunderstanding is left unsolved and allowed to
degenerate into full-scale contention, the very fabric of this world will
have its foundation shaken and existence on earth will cease or at the
very least be seriously threatened. In order to ensure that the rope
which Olodumare used to tie the world is not broken, my father has
gone to bring peace among these two divinities. Baba, cant you see
that any fight between Oba Ajalaye and Oba Ajalorun will certainly
break the rope used to hang this world in balance?

Obatala thought about this statement and concluded that what the child had
said made a lot of sense. He then told the child to extend his greetings to his
father when he returned. The boy then told Obatala before he left, Baba,
please remember, the rope of the world must never be allowed to break. Any
time you find two very important people engaged in a quarrel, any time
you find two or more major groups engaging in a misunderstanding or any
time you find two societies, communities, regions or countries engaged
in any quarrel, ensure that you bring peace before it leads to a full-scale
crisis or war. If you fail to do so, then you may end up witnessing the rope
of the world being broken. Obatala then said, Thank you my son. Greet
your father for me. I will be back on the next Orun.

Ifa wi, o lo di ateyin-kede


Emi naa wi, mo lo di ateyin-kede
Dia fun Orisanla Oseeremagbo
Ti yoo maa loo ko ede l'odo Orunmila lojo oroorun
Ebo ni won ni ko waa se

Translation:

Ifa declares that it is time to learn wisdom from those behind us


I chorus that it is time to learn wisdom from those behind us
This was Ifas message for Obatala
When going to learn wisdom from Orunmila every five days
He was advised to offer ebo
Again on the next Orun, Obatala went to Orunmilas house to study.
Again, Orunmila had gone out of the house. He again met the child at
home. He again asked where Orunmila had gone to. The child replied by
saying, Baba lo tun ehin aye se ni meaning my father has gone to mend
the world in preparation for the time he would no longer be around.
Obatala asked the child what this meant. Again the child asked Obatala to
procure him 2 kola nuts and a bottle of liquor. He did.

The child then said, my father has been receiving signals that he is being
summoned by Olodumare to return to Ikole Orun in due course time. He
knows that some of the elders in his family are not in good terms. He is
convinced that if he departs the world while this altercation is still going
on, these elders will surely tear each other apart when he is no longer
around to serve as a control for them. That is why my father has gone to
the family compound to settle all the rifts and return life in the family to
normalcy. Dont you know that when there are unresolved rifts in any
family, before the head of the family departs, such a family stands the
chance of disintegrating at the slightest chance? The head of the family will
then stand condemned forever and ever.

When Obatala ruminated over what the child had just said he agreed with
him completely. He asked the child to extend his greetings to his father
and turned back to go home. Before leaving, the child said, Baba, please
ensure that all unresolved crises in your household is resolved amicably
before you return to the great beyond. You have worked hard and done
well while on earth; do not let crisis like this rubbish all your good works.
You need to leave a great legacy behind; it is equally important for you to
leave behind children and followers who will continue where you have left
off. This can be done only when there is love, understanding, and
cooperation.

Ifa wi, o lo di ateyin-kede


Emi naa wi, mo lo di ateyin-kede
Dia fun Orisanla Oseeremagbo
Ti yoo maa loo ko ede l'odo Orunmila lojo oroorun
Ebo ni won ni ko waa se
Translation:

Ifa declares that it is time to learn wisdom from those behind us


I chorus that it is time to learn wisdom from those behind us
This was Ifas message for Obatala
When going to learn wisdom from Orunmila every five days
He was advised to offer ebo

On the next Orun day, Obatala again went to Orunmilas house to learn.
He vowed that he would become one of the most knowledgeable Irunmole
of all time. When he got there, again Orunmila was not at home. Where
has your father gone this time, Obatala asked Orunmilas son who was
always at home. In his response, the child said, Iya mi lo fa okun aye ati
torun. Boya taye lo maa ja moo lowo ni tabi lorun ni enikan ko mo. Baba
mi lo lati moju too meaning my mother is pulling on the chord of Aye
(earth) and Orun (heaven) with her hands right now. Whether the chord of
Aye is the one that will eventually remain in her hands or that of heaven,
nobody can say for certain. My father has gone to take care of this.

Obatala could make no sense of the statement. In order to get the full
explanation of what the child had said, Obatala himself without any
prompting, gave the child 2 kola nuts and a bottle of liquor. The child then
said, My mother is in labour right now. Nobody can predict the outcome. If
she has a safe delivery, then the chord of Aye is the one that eventually will
remain in her hand. On the other hand, if she dies in the process then the
chord of Orun is the one that has remained in her hand. To ensure that it is
the chord of Aye that remains in her hand, my father has gone to where she
is to oversee things himself.

When Obatala heard the explanation of this child it occurred to him that
even if he had met Orunmila on all the times he had been coming, he
would not have learnt something different. He concluded that as elders
have their wisdom, youths are not totally bereft of wisdom and
understanding. Obatala then said, Ok child, tell you father that I am no
longer coming. You have given me enough wisdom for a lifetime.
As he turned to go, the child said, Baba, any time your wife is pregnant,
ensure that you give her all the things that will make the day of delivery
relatively easy and convenient for her. Do so for all the wives of your loved
ones and clients as well. By so doing, people will have cause to come and
thank you for a job well done. That is what my father does all the time.

Ifa wi, o lo di ateyin-kede


Emi naa wi, mo lo di ateyin-kede
Dia fun Orisanla Oseeremagbo
Ti yoo maa loo ko ede l'odo Orunmila lojo oroorun
Ebo ni won ni ko waa se
O gb'ebo, o ru'bo
O de'le Orunmila
Baba ko si nile
Nibo ni Baba lo?
Omo re ni Baba oun ran asoawe kan lo ni
Ifa wi, o lo di ateyin-kede
Emi naa wi, mo lo di ateyin-kede
Dia fun Orisa nla Oseeremagbo
Ti yoo maa loo ko ede l'odo Orunmila lojo oroorun
Ebo ni won ni ko waa se
O gb'ebo, o ru'bo
O de'le Orunmila
Baba ko si nile
Nibo ni Baba lo?
Omo re ni okun aye fe ja
Baba oun loo tun-un so
Ifa wi, o lo di ateyin-kede
Emi naa wi, mo lo di ateyin-kede
Dia fun Orisanla Oseeremagbo
Ti yoo maa loo ko ede l'odo Orunmila lojo oroorun
Ebo ni won ni ko waa se
O gb'ebo, o ru'bo
O de'le Orunmila
Baba ko si nile
Nibo ni Baba lo?
Omo re ni Baba oun lo t'eyin aye se ni
Ifa wi, o lo di ateyin-kede
Emi naa wi, mo lo di ateyin-kede
Dia fun Orisanla Oseeremagbo
Ti yoo maa loo ko ede l'odo Orunmila lojo oroorun
Ebo ni won ni ko waa se
O gb'ebo, o ru'bo
O de'le Orunmila
Baba ko si nile
Nibo ni Baba lo?
Omo re ni iya oun lo fa okun aye
Ati orun
Boya t'aye lo maa ja moo lowo ni
Tabi t'orun ni
Enikan ko mo
Baba oun lo ree moju too
Ero Ipo, Ero Ofa
Eyin o mo wipe omode gbon
Agba naa gbon
La fi mu'le aye ro ni ndan?

Translation:

Ifa declares that it is time to learn wisdom from those behind us


I chorus that it is time to learn wisdom from those behind us
This was Ifas message for Obatala
When going to learn wisdom from Orunmila every five days
He was advised to offer ebo
He complied
When he got to Orunmilas home
Orunmila was not at home
Where has he gone to?
Orunmilas child responded that his father had gone to sew one strand
of clothing material, leaving behind the other strand unsown
Ifa declares that it is time to learn wisdom from those behind us
I chorus that it is time to learn wisdom from those behind us
This was Ifas message for Obatala
When going to learn wisdom from Orunmila every five days
He was advised to offer ebo
He complied
When he got to Orunmilas home
Orunmila was not at home
Where has he gone to?
Orunmilas child responded that the rope of the world was about to
break and his father had gone to tie it back together
Ifa declares that it is time to learn wisdom from those behind us
I chorus that it is time to learn wisdom from those behind us
This was Ifas message for Obatala
When going to learn wisdom from Orunmila every five days
He was advised to offer ebo
He complied
When he got to Orunmilas home
Orunmila was not at home
Where has he gone to?
Orunmilas child responded that his father had gone to mend the world
in preparation for the time he would no longer be around
Ifa declares that it is time to learn wisdom from those behind us
I chorus that it is time to learn wisdom from those behind us
This was Ifas message for Obatala
When going to learn wisdom from Orunmila every five days
He was advised to offer ebo
He complied
When he got to Orunmilas home
Orunmila was not at home
Where has he gone to?
Orunmilas son responded that right now his mother was pulling the
chord of heaven and earth in her hands
Whether the chord of earth is the one that would eventually remain in
her hands or that of heaven nobody could say for certain
My father has gone to take care of this
Travelers to Ipo and Ofa
Dont you know that the wisdom of both youths and elders arewhat
Olodumare combined to establish governance in this world?

Ifa advises us that we need not over-rely on the fact that only elders will or
can share their knowledge with one another. We also need to make use
of wisdom, wise counseling, advice or guidance from anyone who can share
it with us. Whether that person is an elder or a youth does not really
matter. What is important is for us to use the idea shared with us in a very
positive way.

Moreover, if it is noted that a particular child or youth is knowledgeable


and wise, such a child can be co-opted and placed among the elders. This
is not to say however that the youth should push or force himself on the
elders. In the stanza from Otura Onimu (Otura Irete), Ifa says:

Ki baaje-baaje o maa baa je niso


Ki awa o maa tun se bo leyin
Dia fun Abere
A bu fun Obe
Awon mejeeji jo n jija agba
Ebo ni won ni ki won waa se
Translation:

Let the Spoilers continue to spoil things in front


We shall continue to mend them from behind
This was Ifas message for Abere (the Needle)
The same was also declared for Obe (the Knife)
When they were both fighting for supremacy
They were advised to offer ebo

Although Abere, the Needle, had not exhibited his potentials, he was well
loved by all. One day, Obe, the Knife, called Abere and asserted that Abere
was too small, too inexperienced, and too frail to stay in the same place, or
move in the same group with him. What is the meaning of this? We have
been moving together without any problem for a long time. Why this now?
Abere queried. Obe answered, That was before. Now, I hate your face. I
can no longer bear to have you around me anymore. You are worthless and
useless!

Abere could not believe his ears. The development made him very sad
indeed. He however made it clear to Obe that Olodumare had given him his
own talents and potentials which were quite different from those of Obe.
This only annoyed Obe the more and he set aside a date so that he could
exhibit his potentials so as to show Abere that they did not belong to the
same class.

On the appointed day, bundles of clothes were rolled out. Obe set out to
cut them into pieces. Before long, he finished. All the clothes were in bits
and pieces. After this, those present demanded to know of what use the
rags, bits and pieces could be put into. Obe was at a loss on what to do
next. He left the scene in a state of confusion. Those present packed all the
pieces and dumped them in the refuse site.

When Abere saw all these rags, bits and pieces, he was strongly convinced
that those materials cannot and must not be left to waste. He knew that
they could still be made useful. He looked for thread and began to knit the
rags together. He made Dansiki shirts, trousers, agbada, buba, kembe, fila,
dandogo, etc for men. He also made gele, head-gear, iro, wrappers, buba,
scarves, blouses, underwear, stockings, etc for women. What had hitherto
been considered a waste was now turned into useful commodities.

What was thought to be useless was made to be valuable by Abere. When


the people saw this, they concluded unanimously that Abere was by far
superior to Obe. They then said:

Abere o waa de o, egbon Obe


Bomode kekere ba gbofa
A deru fagba
Abere o, egbon Obe

Translation:

Here comes Abere, the Elder brother of Obe


If a youth is well versed in Ifa
He will be dreaded and respected by Elders
All hail Abere, the Elder brother of Obe

As from that moment henceforth, the potentials of Abere, the Needle


became well known to all.

Also in another stanza of Otura Ofun, Ifa shares another situation in where
something may occur that may bring about role reversal and can place a
youth in a position normally attributed to an elder.

Apa lawo ode Igborimola


Ola Amokun awo ode Ijesa
Pantiri o kejo lorun awo ile Olofin
Awon meteeta nrele Olofin loo gbawo
Won kifa nile Olofin
Won o jafa
Won kibo
Won o jabo
Won ki tititi
Won koregenden nile Olofin
Olofin o sepon
Bee ni o woye
Isu to fi kana ko tuu
A romo awo looni o
A romo awo
Seketepeere, a romo awo
Ogbon ro mi ninu sasa Awo ode Egba
Aseseru ewe ako nii sewe segisegi awo won lode Ijesa
Ka ko ni loran ka gbagbo, awo won lOyoo oro meko
A ri baba loni o
A ri baba
Seketepeere, a ri baba

Translation:

Apa, the resident Awo in the land of Igborimola


Ola Amokun, the resident Awo in the land of Ijesa
Pantiri o kejo lorun, the resident Awo in the household of Olofin
These three were going on a spiritual mission to Olofins palace
They recited many Ifa stanzas in the home of Olofin
Yet they couldnt reveal the relevant messages of Ifa
They also used the Ibo (determinants)
Yet all was to no avail
They recited many Ifa stanzas
They failed woefully to identify the problem of Olofin
He refused to show appreciation by tapping the Opon Ifa
He refused to touch the Iyerosun to honor the Awo
He did not use the yam that he cooked to prepare pounded yam for
the Awo
We have an Omo Awo (Ifa apprentice) today
We have an Omo Awo
Seketepeere, the Omo Awo
Ogbon ro mi ninu sasa, the Awo in Egba land
Aseseru ewe ako nii sewe segisegi, the Awo in Ijesa land
Ka ko ni loran ka gbagbo, the Awo in Oyo
We have seen our father today
We have seen our father
Sekete-peere, We have seen our father

In the stanza above, there were three Babalawo named; Apa lawo ode
Igborimola, Ola Amokun Awo ode Ijesa, Pantiri o kejo lorun Awo ile Olofin
who went to cast Ifa for the Olofin. They casted Ifa and recited a series of
Ifa stanzas in order to reveal the messages of Ifa to the Olofin but
unfortunately, they were unable to pinpoint the actual problem of Olofin and
the reason for him consulting Ifa.

On their way home, they met Sekete-peere, the crown prince of Olojee-
Okoso, the little lad asked why they returned so early from the palace of
Olofin. They narrated the whole story and the outcome to him. In his
response, the lad was able to pinpoint the problems of Olofin and why he
had consulted Ifa. He then advised them to go back and tell Olofin. They
complied. When they shared the new messages to Olofin, he became very
happy that they were able to solve his problems at last. He then gave them
a lot of gifts.

On their way back home, they met the little lad again and began to sing the
following:

A romo Awo looni o


A romo Awo
Seketepeere, a romo Awo
Translation:

We have an Omo Awo (Ifa Apprentice) today


We have an Omo Awo
Seketepeere, the Omo Awo

There and then they met with the following negativities namely: Ogbon ro
mi ninu sasa Awo ode Egba, Aseseru ewe ako nii sewe segisegi Awo
won lode Ijesa, and Ka ko ni loran ka gbagbo Awo won lOyoo oro
meko. These negativities asked the three Awo why they were singing and
what had occurred. The three Awo narrated their story to them. Suddenly,
the negativities charged the three Awo and urged them to change their
song in a way that would acknowledge the skill and wisdom of the young
lad who had helped them. According to the negativities, their mission at
the palace of Olofin might not have been accomplished if not for the
assistance of the young lad.

Immediately, they changed their song to the following:

A ri baba loni o
A ri baba
Seketepeere, a ri baba

Translation:

We have seen our father today


We have seen our father
Sekete-peere, we have seen our father
Relationship between Parent and Olodumare

Parents, according to Ifa are representatives of Olodumare to their


children. They should be viewed as physical gods that a child sees,
respects, obeys, and who control the home, protect them, guide them, and
provide for the needs of the family. While Olodumare remains the unseen
God that controls the universe, the role of the parent is to act as an
intermediary between the child and Olodumare. Parents must always be
willing to intercede on a childs behalf and always make sure that
Olodumares wishes, guidelines, laws, and precepts are handed down to the
children and followed.

In a stanza of Eji Ogbe, Ifa emphasizes the importance of a parents role


vis--vis their relationship with Olodumare. One of the many obligations of
parents in the world is to raise and support their children. Even when such
parents die, their spirits can still be invoked in order for the dead parents
(spirits of the parents) to intercede and make requests on their childrens
behalf in the court/palace of Olodumare in heaven. In this stanza from Eji
Ogbe, a child who was in distress and was experiencing difficulties was
advised to go and propitiate his dead parents (father and mother) in order
for their problems to be solved. The stanza goes thus:

Osan ni o san pe

Oru ni o ru pe

Oru ni o kan baba mesin lese pin-pin-pin

Dia fun Iya eni

Iya eni ntorun bo wale aye

Dia fun Baba eni

Baba eni ntorun bo wale aye

Dia fun Ori eni


Ori eni ntorun bo wale aye

Dia fun Ikin eni

Ikin eni ntorun bo wale aye

Yoo waa gbeni nigbayi o

Iya eni kii gbeni i ti

Yoo waa gbeni nigbayi o

Baba eni kii gbeni i ti

Yoo maa gbeni nigbayi o

Ori eni kii gbeni i ti

Yoo maa gbeni nigbayi o

Ikin eni kii gbeni i ti

Translation:

Daylight cannot be on for too long

Midnight cannot be dark for too long

Oru ni o kan baba mesin lese pin-pin-pin

These were Ifas messages for Iya Eni (ones mother)

When coming from heaven to the earth

The same was also declared for Baba Eni (ones father)

When coming from heaven to the earth

The same was also declared for Ori Eni (ones head)

When coming from heaven to earth

The same was also declared for Ikin Eni (ones Ifa)
When coming from heaven to earth

We shall continue to receive her support

Ones mother cannot help but support one

We shall continue to receive his support

Ones father cannot help but support one

We shall continue to receive his support

Ones Ori cannot help but support one

We shall continue to receive his support

Ones Ikin cannot help but support one

In the following stanza, the first two lines highlight the importance of having
good parents that support one especially when things are not going well. Ifa
also classifies parents, but especially mothers, as deities worth propitiating.
Hence, the Yoruba wise saying that goes thus: Orisa bi Iya kosi, meaning:
There is no Orisa like ones mother. In a stanza of Ika Meji, Ifa says:

Opelope ejika ni o jewu o bo


Opelope wipe o ri iye ire to bi o fun baba ire
Dia fun Oosanla Oseeremagbo
Ti nsunkun oju Aworo ohun o bare o
Ebo ni won ni ko waa se
O gbebo, o rubo
Ko pe ko jinna
E wa bani bayo, e waa wore o
Nje asiri ti Oosa pamo
Nikoko lo wa
Translation:

Let us thank the shoulders which do not allow the dress to fall off our
body
Let us thank the fact that a good mother gave birth to us to a good
father
These were Ifas declarations to Oosanla Oseeremagbo
When lamenting because his disciples were not succeeding
He was advised to offer ebo
He complied
Before long, not too far
Join us in the midst of all the Ire of life
Behold, the secret kept by Obatala
It remains a secret!

Mothers and Fathers are also parts of what Ifa terms as Isese. Isese in
simple terms means the source or root that caused our emergence on
the surface of the earth. That is why it is not advisable for one to forget
Isese (the source) lest he/she not suffer grave consequences. Hence the
saying that goes thus: Odo to ba gbagbe orirun, gbigbe ni yoo gbe,
the river that forgets its source is doomed to dry up with time. On the
other hand, if one appreciates and acknowledges Isese, his/her
undertakings shall be success. Let us look at a stanza from Osa-Oloyan-
an (Osa-Irete) where Ifa says:

Agbara ko loko
O fie nu gbele o kan ilepa dodoodo
Dia fun Isese ti nse olori Isoro nIfe
Iya eni Isese eni ni
Baba eni Isese eni ni
Ori eni Isese eni ni
Olodumare, Isese eni ni
Isese laa bo nIfe ko too riire
E je ka bo Isese baba etutu

Translation:

The flood has no hoe yet digs the ground deep enough to hit red sand
This was the Ifa cast for Isese (Traditionalism/Root)
The head of all propitiation in Ife
Ones mother is ones Isese
Ones father is ones Isese
Ones head is ones Isese
Olodumare is ones Isese
Isese is firstly propitiated before we can be blessed with Ire
Let us join hands to propitiate Isese, the highest form of propitiation

Single Parenthood

This is a situation whereby a parent cares for a child without the physical,
mental or spiritual assistance of the other biological parent. Such a parent
ends up with the responsibility to singlehandedly raise a child till the child
reaches maturity. This style of parenthood is not favoured by Ifa at all
but Ifa understands that there are circumstances where single parenthood
is inevitable and will guide one in how to move forward. Examples of some
events that occur that cause single parenthood are: separation, divorce,
distance between the father and the mother, illness, negligence on the part
of either of the parents, death, incarceration, etc.
In these types of situations, the responsibility of two people is now being
carried out by mostly just one person. Children under single parenthood
run a high risk of becoming wayward unless and of course, a parent is
blessed by the special grace of Olodumare and/or the parent has a high
level of courage, discipline, and determination. Single parents can also be
lucky enough to have extended family, and friends to help in the
socialization and caring of the children.

Although children raised by both parents and who have the support of
extended family also run the risk of becoming wayward, Ifa still asserts that
having both parents is the most ideal situation. Either way, Ifa advises to
always try to maintain, sustain and retain a marriage rather than allowing
it to break up. Before marriage separation or divorce occurs, many options
should have been exhausted beforehand. Marriage in Ifa is not something
that one simply jumps into or out of easily. For this reason, Ifa should
always be consulted before marriage. Consultation also helps in the
maintenance of a marriage.