The First 4 Principles of Vodun
Greetings, I come with honor. I hope that you take this knowledge and value it, if you find it useful for you.
- Vodun, is not a religion. Religion is the deification of a culture. Religion typically goes about convincing people if you want to save your soul, you must be apart of this particular group. Vodun only asks that you be of service to others.
- Vodun means, In all that you do, know that the spirit is present.
- In Africa Vodun was known as Ifa, in the Yoruba, Afa in Ghana. In Cuba we know about Obeah, or Palo Mayombe, Quimbanda, and Santeria. These are all children or branches of Vodun.
While there are many different entities and paths in Vodun, the common thought of the 7 African Powers are heavily observed. These are a few notes, and sparked the basis for my walk in Vodun. With these principles, none can go wrong.
- Bondye -The Most High comes before all, and is already with you at all times.
-The Lwa is already with you, you just have to know how to call on them.
- The Ancestors gave us the word “Loa” they did not give us “God.”
- French word for Law= “Loi”; pronounced the same way as “Loa” (low-uh, or low-ah) .
- The word Loa or Lwa = Law
- this poses the question, is a law a God?
Da / Damballah Wedo
In Haiti known as Damballah Wedo, or Damballah La Flambeau. In Africa the spirit is known as Da. Da is respresented as a white snake, pure and flexible. Da represents the Law of life. The law of basic biological material life. This Lwa tells us in order to have life you must have flexibility and mobility. If none of these are present, no biological material life can be successfully had.
Papa Legba holds the 1st principle of “Social Life”. In africa Esu Ellegba,
Esu means,” The Divine Interpreter”Dominant term for many parts of Africa. Ellegba means, “The One who Fights”.
- When speaking on the aspects of Legba within Haitian. It is held by some that between the names, the best aspect for the particular situation at the time would be, the aspect of Legba.
Legba is the law which demands, that in order for us to have a successful social society, we must open the doorway of oppurtunity for others.
“Give your brother a chance, help your sister advance.”
This is the spirit of Legba. Legba is nota spooky little something that pops up and makes mischief. This is why we serve the loa and not adore them. Secondly, we must always build upon ourselves, and develop a good character. We must work on ourselves, and build in ourselves the traits to help towards a better society for all. This is the principle of Legba.
Ayizan holds the principle of organization and structure. Two people cannot co-exist if there is no organization and structure. Ayizan is a female principle. If we are to follow the first principle of Legba, opening opportunity for others, then it must be organized and structured and cannot be done in chaos.
The third principle is Ogou or Ogoun, in Afria also known as Ogu. The principle of Ogou teaches us to have courage.
- There is no life if there is not courage.
- Courage is truth, that is served for the betterment of the community. When you are courageous, you speak the truth.
- Courage has source. Gains power from the truth.
- Courage must not be confused with greed, as courage is for the benefit for the group as a whole. If this principle is not taken to benefit the group as a whole then there is no courage.