Oriki Sango god of thunder and fire in Yoruba

Stock image from Google

 

If you’ve read my fantasy romance novella Abiku: A Battle Of Gods, that I wrote under the name Elizabeth Salawu, you should be able to guess that Sango is one of my favourite Orisas. Sango represents what a true man is to me (apart from his polygamous nature). He’s strong, powerful and protective and his followers know that he’s always got their back. Sango is the Yoruba god (Orisa) of thunder and fire.

 

What is an Oriki?

Oriki is the Yoruba word for praise poetry. Yoruba’s pay homage to everything and everyone, including food. In my book Yetunde: An Ode To My Mother, I wrote the praise poetry for a mother (Oriki Iya). Most (if not all) Yoruba families have their own orikis.

One thing I especially love about Sango is that he took his 3rd wife Oya with him into battle. To me it shows that even with his strength, he acknowledges the strength of the woman in his life. A prosperous man, in my opinion, is one who can work with his partner and not try to dominate her.

 

Oriki Sango

There seems to be different versions on Sango’s Oriki and seeing as I’m not a devout follower, I couldn’t tell why I came across several versions.

Be that as it may, here’s one version from NairaLand.com:

ORIKI
Sango Olukoso
Akata yeri yeri
Arabambi Oko Oya
Alaafin, ekun bu, a sa
Eleyinju ogunna
Olukoso lalu
Ina l’oju Ina l’enu
A ri igba ota, sete
O fi alapa segun ota re

 

And here’s one version I got from a Yoruba page on Facebook:

ORIKI SANGO

SANGO, A WA SE RE

SANGO WE ARE HERE FOR YOUR CEREMONY

MAA JE KI A RE IBANUJE O

PROTECT US FROM BAD FORTUNE

JE KI A LE SI, MAA JE KI A PEDIN

LET US INCREASE IN NUMBER AND NOT DECREASE

MAA JE KI ARI AISAN O

PROTECT US FROM ILLNESS

MAA JE KI A DARAN IJOBA

PROTECT US FROM BREAKING THE LAW

MAA JE KI ARE EPO O

SPARE US FROM COURT CASES

MAA JE KI ARI RE O

DON’T ALLOW US TO SEE YOU IN YOUR BAD MOOD

MAA JE KI ARI IJA SANPONNA

DON’T LET US SEE SANPONNA’S ANGER

MAA JE KI ODO O GBE WA LO

DON’T LET A RIVER CARRY US AWAY (SAVE US FROM DROWNING)

MAA JE KI A KU IKU INA

DON’T LET US DIE BY FIRE

TUTU TUTU NI KI O JE KI A MAA RI

LET US EXPEREINCE THE CALM AND GENTLE THINGS OF LIFE

MAA JE KI OWO IKA O TE WA O

DON’T LET WICKED HANDS TOUCH US (SAVE US FROM WICKED PEOPLE)

BA WA SEGUN OTA O

HELP US DEFEAT OUR ENEMIES

BA MI WO OMO MI

HELP ME LOOK AFTER MY CHILDREN (HELP PROTECT MY CHILDREN)

MAA JE KI NDARAN ARA ILE

DON’T LET ME COMMIT CRIMES AGAINST THE PEOPLE OF THE WORLD

MAA JE KI N LU OFIN OLODUMARE

DON’T ALLOW ME BREAK ANY LAWS OF OLODUMARE

MAA JE KI N RIN ARIN FI ESE SI

GUIDE MY FOOT STEPS

MAA JE KI N SORO FI ENU KO

PREVENT ME FROM COMMITTING OFFENSE BY THE WORD OF MOUTH

ASE ASE ASESE-O

ORIKI SANGO

ONE WHO SCATTERS THEM WHERE THE ARE CONSPIRING
ONE WHO PUNISHES THE WICKED BY RUBBING THEIR MOUTHS ON THE GROUND
ONE WHO LOOKING IN VAIN FOR TROUBLE, DRAWS TO HIMSELF DIFFICULT PROBLEMS,
ONE WHO ESTABLISHES A FARM, NEAR THE MAIN ROAD IN ORDER TO FORMENT TROUBLE WITH PASSERBY

HE SAYS; IF YOU GREET LADOBO THERE WILL BE TROUBLE.
IF YOU FAIL TO GREET LADOBO, THERE WILL STILL BE TROUBLE
THE EVER QUARRELSOME EWEGBEMI, SON OF OWONRAN, WHO DESTROYS TROUBLE GETTERS OF DEATH

ONE WHO IS BY NATURE RESTLESS
WHO TEARS DOWN PEOPLE AS COBS OF CORN ARE TORN DOWN
SANGO DON’T QUARREL WITH ME, I AM NOT ONE OF THEM (OF THOSE WHOARE AGAINST YOU)
LOGBOOKUN THE SIZE OF WHOM IS LIKE A MOUNTAIN OF CORN

JA’MU JA’MU IS A POWERFUL EGUNGUN
SANGO YOU ARE A POWERFUL MAN
THERE ARE TWO SOLUTIONS TO A PROBLEM
SANGO PLEASE RESOLVE THEM

IT IS NOT UNTIL SOME PEOPLE ARE INVOLVED IN TROUBLE THAT THEY WILL ACKNOWLEDGE SANGO AS THEIR ONLY SAVIOR.
A DREADFUL SPIRIT WHO BECOMES IRRITATED WHEN DRENCHED BY RAIN
THE FEARSOME ONE WHO FRIGHTENS A MUSLIM SO THAT HE URINATES IN THE MOSQUE
ONE WHO FRIGHTENS THAT BABALAWO SO MUCH THAT HE RUNS AWAY LEAVING HIS IFA DIVINING CHAIN BEHIND

BOTH IN RAINY SEASON AND THE DRY SEASON
THERE IS NO ONE WHO CANNOT BE KILLED BY SANGO
ONLY THOSE WHOA RE INSANE AND THOSE WHO ARE BEING TEMPTED BY ESU CAN AFFORD TO ATTACK ESU PR SANGO

ONLY THOSE WHO WISH TO BE KILLED BY SANGO WILL DO THAT
SANGO ONE WHO FALLS UPON PEOPLE LIKE THE BLACKSMITH HAMMER

 

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If you can forgive the quality of the video (there aren’t that may Yoruba heritage videos online) here’s a video about Sango. Happy viewing!

 

Disclaimer: I can admire Sango without being his worshipper, so no, I am not a Sango worshipper!

With that out of the way, what do you think of Sango’s oriki? Please leave a comment below