Let us be honest. No amount of books and online resources are a replacement for practising this spiritual path with guidance from elders and real human contact. It is a community religion and it is not meant to be practised as a solitary practitioner. What you can learn these days on line is the background to our practise and there are excellent community pages where you can have your questions answered by trustworthy and knowledgeable practitioners. I have always been quite critical of the online world, however, there have been excellent resources and and trustworthy practitioners sharing their knowledge. In times of Quarantine, knowledgeable priests are stepping up and balancing the wealth of non-information that is out there. So here is my rundown of who to follow and my top resources, groups and seminars. This is a disclaimer, I am a member of the first three Community groups. I have had personal experience of Willie Ramos’ Classes and Oludare’s classes too. But I have not partaken in any other classes, so please do your own research and preferably take part with the agreement of elders if appropriate. In no particular order.
- Orisha Wisdom Community group
- About Santeria Community Group. Is the forum run by a fellow Oshun Priestess. She is also the author of. the About Santeria Blog Women’s Orisha Group A group for women from all the Orisha based practises.
- INSTAGRAM AND YOUTUBE: For interesting and informative discussions with knowledgeable priests follow: Ocha Talk also on Instagram Ocha Talk Instagram
- Classes from Oludare in Breathwork, Orisha Song and Dance. Classes for children and adults. Program on INSTAGRAM/FACEBOOK Oludare’s Program on facebook follow Kiirewellness on Instagram.
- Informative and thorough courses for Priests. Eleda. Org is run by Oba Willie Ramos. He provides serious, thorough courses for the genuine student of our tradition. You have to be initiated to take part in the course. If you are interested in more than a monkey see, monkey do approach to learning, these courses will be for you. For me, these courses have been a blessing.
- A few weeks ago the African and Diasporic Religious Studies association held a conference online. It was seriously a great weekend with a lot of knowledgable Priests talking about various aspects of the religion from their various different standpoints. The conference was addressed by The esteemed Baba John Mason and is now on youtube, and there is also a guide to the conference that you can download also. It was refreshing to me to listening to people talking from a position of authority rather than the all too familiar rhetoric of voyeurism that often happens in academia. I am still painfully writing a critique of a PhD that displays voyeurism, entitlement and bad research and it really is time for initiates to write and speak their truth. Part 1 Part 2
Is there anything I can do regarding the Pandemic. Physically keep yourself safe. Now is not a good time to attend ceremonies or group activities. Anyone who is hosting a group activity right now, is unethical. This is a good time to look after yourself spiritually and if you are a newcomer, find time if you can, to learn as much as you can about the path so you can make your own decisions. Look at my advice regarding setting up a Boveda. Use the resources above to keep yourself health, and grounded, join one of the community groups above and connect with knowledgeable elders in order to answer questions. It’s not an the best time for connection with anyone, and bare in mind the internet is a world of it’s own, and the only way you will really get to know people is by personal connection and building up relationships. This is a great time, to build relationships with your own ancestors and spirit guides.