African gods: 3 myths about the god Obatala
Obatala the son of the supreme god, Olorun bears a special place in the Yoruba mythology.
Here are 3 myths about Obatala,
1. Obatala is associated with the colour white
This is one of the most beautiful imagery to depict a god. He has no colour and dwells in an ‘inexplicable white light’.
He is associated with purity, purpose, and compassion.
His worshippers are draped head and toe in white. They offer mostly white sacrifices without any ingredients to him.
Sacrifices like coconut milk, white pumpkin, white birds and so on. Silver and Ivory are the colours of his charms.
2. Obatala is the son of the Supreme god Olorun
Obatala was sent by Olorun to create the earth and human beings. Obatala made humans from clay.
Obatala is the father of all other gods and Orishas in Yoruba mythology and he is married to Yemoja.
3. Obatala is portrayed as one easily given to wine
Obatala was the first king of the first Yoruba city, Ile-Ife
At some point, while creating he got drunk and created humans with deformities. Though he cannot fix the deformity, he has compassion on them.
Oduduwa is also a son of Olorun, a rival of Obatala. While Obatala was drunk, Oduduwa usurped the authority to rule from him. He later became the king and the ancestor of the Yoruba people.
Obatala was a powerful god but lost his relevance to alcohol and the wine.
Nevertheless, he is still worshipped today.
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