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Araminta’s Place–Calling Forth All the Good!

We know we must seek to liberate our minds and illuminate our souls in the face of the 400 years of mental bondage, conceptual incarceration, and the epistemic violence of systemic racism with its systems of dehumanization. Within that aim it is also important to reconnect with the wisdom traditions of our African ancestors without whom we would not be. So this Wednesday I am focusing on a teaching from the ancient sacred text, Odu Ifa. I am choosing the 78th Odu, 78:1 to share because when I asked the ancestors to show me where my work developing Optimal Psychology fit if it was in line with their design, this is what they revealed to me.

I knew from the teachings of the ancient sage Djhuti from classical African civilization that chance is a law unrecognized. With that in mind I let the book fall open to the page which was to be my confirmation, the page opened to 78th Odu Ifa, 78:1. For those who know anything about my work around the theory of human development called Optimal Psychology (OP) or Optimal Conceptual Theory (OCT), you will know I did the happy dance upon reading this odu.

It was the perfect affirmation, I could not have found a better summation if I had written it myself. I share this story to confirm that our ancestors are always with us, never forsake us, and as they taught we are a part of something much greater than ourselves. Special thanks and appreciation to my beloved immediate ancestors whose names I know: Fay and Harold, Rena and Harry, Rowena and Eili. We are all One with Creative Source, Divine Spirit, Supreme Being, and have the blessed assurances of Great Black Mother Goddess. All praises to those who came before us to light the path and lead the way, all the chosen ones…

78th Odu

One day all kinds of people, good people and those who do not allow good in other people’s lives gathered together.

They went to Orunmila.

They said: “Coming back and forth to earth tires us, Orunmila.

Therefore, please allow us to rest in heaven.”

Orumila said: “ You cannot avoid going back and forth to earth,

Until you bring about the good condition that Olodumare has ordained for every human being.

After then, you may rest in heaven.

They asked “What is the good condition?”

[Orunmila asked them to confess their ignorance. They said, “We are ignorant and would like to be given knowledge by Oloduamre(oluwa).”]

Orunmila said: “The good condition is a good world:

A world in which there is full knowledge of all things;

Joy everywhere;

Life without anxiety or fear of enemies;

Without attacks from snakes or other dangerous animals;

Without fear of death, disease, litigation, losses, wizards, witches or Esu;

Without danger of injury from water or fire; and

Without fear of misery or poverty,

Because of your internal strength [inner power], your compelling desire for good character [good character], and your wisdom.

When you refrain from stealing because of the hardship the owner suffers and the disgrace with which this behavior is treated in the presence of Odudua and other good spirits in heaven, who are always friendly and often wish us well.

These forces can turn their backs on you and allow you to return to the darkness in the world.

Bear in mind you will not receive any favors, and whatever is stolen will be repaid, all evil has repercussions.

[Indivdually]The things needed to bring about the good condition in the world then are:

Wisdom that is fully adequate to govern the world as a whole;

Sacrifice or cultivating the habit of doing good to the poor or those who need your help,

And the desire to increase the world’s prosperity, rather than destroy it,

And not let any good at all be lost. [This statement is omitted in some translations.]

People will continue to go to heaven;

And they will go back and forth to earth after their transfiguration,

Until everyone has achieved the good condition.

There are a lot of good things in heaven that are still not available on earth and will be obtained in due course.

Thus, when the children of Odudua gather together,

Those chosen to bring good into the world are called human beings or the chosen ones.

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