Orisha Oko

Orisha Oko

Origins: Yoruba

CLASSIFICATION:

Orisha

Orisha Oko is most commonly described as a former hunter who decided to farm instead. He is closely associated with rituals of agricultural magic. In standard descriptions of the orishas, Orisha Oko is usually described as the judge who settles disputes, especially among women. Those aren’t just any disputes: they are usually accusations of witchcraft. It takes one to know one: Orisha Oko is the wise sorcerer of Earth magic who protects against witchcraft and heals its effects.

Because accusations of witchcraft were insignificant compared to other issues during the development of African Diaspora faiths, Orisha Oko is most familiar in the Western Hemisphere as an orisha of farming. In Africa, however, Orisha Oko remains a deity very closely associated with witchcraft. Disputes regarding accusations or suspicions of witchcraft were traditionally resolved by rituals in his shrines. His devotees are largely female; devotion to Orisha Oko is hereditary. Accusations of witchcraft forge links to this orisha. Once accused (and presumably if one survives the accusation) then one is expected to form a relationship with Orisha Oko that will continue through generations. Orisha Oko manifests his anger through unyielding infertile Earth and barren women.

• Orisha Oko bestows personal fertility.

• Orisha Oko is syncretized to Saint Isidore the Laborer.

MANIFESTATION:

Orisha Oko may manifest as female or male but is usually described as male.

ATTRIBUTE:

An iron stave made from a hoe blade

Spirit allies:

He works closely with Ogun, who forges his tools.

COLOURS:

Red and white

OFFERINGS:

Yams

SEE ALSO:

Azaka; Ogun; Orisha

SOURCE:

Encyclopedia of Spirits: The Ultimate Guide to the Magic of Fairies, Genies, Demons, Ghosts, Gods & Goddesses – Written by : Judika Illes Copyright © 2009 by Judika Illes.

FURTHER READING:

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