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  • In Santeria, Ashe is a sort of primal energy that comprises the power, grace, blood, and life force of all reality. It is amoral, neither good nor bad, unable to be seen or personified, a neutral cosmic energy undergirding every aspect of existence. All that has life or exhibits power has ashe. The blood of living creatures, the moving wind, the growing plants, consuming fire, and flowing water allMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 12). Kindle Edition. In a very real sense, Santeria is a terrestrial religion, firmly rooted in the earth. While Western religions tend to emphasize a heavenly place, or stress the placement of the stars and planets to determine the course of human events (remember that a shining star over Bethlehem was said to signify the birth of Jesus), Santeria is shaped and formed by earth-centered forces of nature. These forces are personified as the deities known as orishas. The orishas are gods of earthly forces for example thunder (Changb), the harvestMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 14). Kindle Edition. Believers in Santeria cannot simply do as they wish, but are required to live according to a set of ethical principles that determine morality among the faith community. But unlike Western religious traditions, Santeria does not have a bipolar concept of good and evil. In fact, there are no personifications of evil or good, as in the case of Satan or God. All orishas represent concepts that are pure and all contain contradictions. Terms like good and evil are relative, dependent on the situation. What is morally imperative for one individual may not be for another. For this reason, santeros and santeras do not necessarily pass moral judgment upon their clients. Santeria does not reach that misfortune is punishment, a result of angering God or the gods. It is better describedMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 15-16). Kindle Edition. Hence believers seek to find harmony with the seen and unseen world and with those with whom they share the planet. If harmony is maintained between the physical and the spiritual realms, then those who dwell on earth experience enlightenment, prosperity, peace, and good health. If, however, disharmony and imbalance prevail, then ignorance, scarcity, violence, and malady will plague the earth.Miguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 16). Kindle Edition. To Catholics, the priest, adhering to doctrinal truth, destroyed the root of evil, idolatry, by cutting down the tree. To santeros and santeras, the misguided actions of the priest, however good his intentions, disrupted harmony by committing a belligerent act against a sacred object, thus bringing upon himself the wrath of the orisha. What ethical actions, then, lead toward harmony? Like most religions, stealing, hypocrisy, lying, and covenant-breaking are condemned, while speaking the truth is considered a virtue. Behavior is expected to be modeled after what Christians call the "Golden Rule" - to do unto others as you would want them to do unto you. Each believer is responsible for seeking the greatest good for the entire community, even when that good conflicts with what is best for the individual. Hence selfishness is frowned upon. The story is told about the orisha of divination, Orunla, who used to be very selfish. One day he fell into a deep pit and was unable to climb out. By the third day he heard theMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 17). Kindle Edition. The worldview of Santeria recognizes that human beings are physical creatures infused with the spiritual. The concept of the on functions similarly to the Christian notion of the soul. Literally, the word means "head," but thinking of it simply as the physical head is misleading. It refers more essentially to the source of sensation, the seat of consciousness, encompassing both the rational and spiritual aspects of human thought. According to legend, the head was the last attachment to the human body, bringing human creation to completion. But on is not limited to humans. All forces of nature also have it: trees, plants, minerals, winds, mountains, animals. Every element and force of nature is spiritual and self-aware. And because all elements of the universe contain the spark of Olodumare within the on, everything that physically exists is inherently sacred. So restrictions within Santeria are not viewed as capricious demands made by the orishas, but as guidelines designed to align one's ori, or consciousness, with ashe, cosmic force. The end product ofMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 18-19). Kindle Edition. Santeria teaches that at the beginning of time, before the birth of humanity, every ori prostrated before Olodumare, the creator, to negotiate its assigned fate on earth. Each on received a specific destiny from the creator, a "potential" destiny designed to unfold itself through the multitude of lives it would experience. Ergo, no person's life is an accident; individual destiny is preordained. Remembering the destiny originally negotiated for becomes the ultimate responsibility of each person and the purpose of their spiritual journey. But while destinies are preordained, they are not determined. They can be changed by appealing to the orishas. Happy destinies can be safeguarded and unhappy ones can be rectified by consulting Ortinla, the orisha of divination, who knows each ori's assigned fare because he was the only orisha present when every individual received a personal destiny from Olodumare. He can warn against evil spells or spirits designed to wreak havoc on an otherwise satisfying destiny; he can also warn how a person's own deteriorating character will createMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 19-20). Kindle Edition.
  • In Santeria, Ashe is a sort of primal energy that comprises the power, grace, blood, and life force of all reality. It is amoral, neither good nor bad, unable to be seen or personified, a neutral cosmic energy undergirding every aspect of existence. All that has life or exhibits power has ashe. The blood of living creatures, the moving wind, the growing plants, consuming fire, and flowing water allMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 12). Kindle Edition. In a very real sense, Santeria is a terrestrial religion, firmly rooted in the earth. While Western religions tend to emphasize a heavenly place, or stress the placement of the stars and planets to determine the course of human events (remember that a shining star over Bethlehem was said to signify the birth of Jesus), Santeria is shaped and formed by earth-centered forces of nature. These forces are personified as the deities known as orishas. The orishas are gods of earthly forces for example thunder (Changb), the harvestMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 14). Kindle Edition. Believers in Santeria cannot simply do as they wish, but are required to live according to a set of ethical principles that determine morality among the faith community. But unlike Western religious traditions, Santeria does not have a bipolar concept of good and evil. In fact, there are no personifications of evil or good, as in the case of Satan or God. All orishas represent concepts that are pure and all contain contradictions. Terms like good and evil are relative, dependent on the situation. What is morally imperative for one individual may not be for another. For this reason, santeros and santeras do not necessarily pass moral judgment upon their clients. Santeria does not reach that misfortune is punishment, a result of angering God or the gods. It is better describedMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 15-16). Kindle Edition. Hence believers seek to find harmony with the seen and unseen world and with those with whom they share the planet. If harmony is maintained between the physical and the spiritual realms, then those who dwell on earth experience enlightenment, prosperity, peace, and good health. If, however, disharmony and imbalance prevail, then ignorance, scarcity, violence, and malady will plague the earth.Miguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 16). Kindle Edition. To Catholics, the priest, adhering to doctrinal truth, destroyed the root of evil, idolatry, by cutting down the tree. To santeros and santeras, the misguided actions of the priest, however good his intentions, disrupted harmony by committing a belligerent act against a sacred object, thus bringing upon himself the wrath of the orisha. What ethical actions, then, lead toward harmony? Like most religions, stealing, hypocrisy, lying, and covenant-breaking are condemned, while speaking the truth is considered a virtue. Behavior is expected to be modeled after what Christians call the "Golden Rule" - to do unto others as you would want them to do unto you. Each believer is responsible for seeking the greatest good for the entire community, even when that good conflicts with what is best for the individual. Hence selfishness is frowned upon. The story is told about the orisha of divination, Orunla, who used to be very selfish. One day he fell into a deep pit and was unable to climb out. By the third day he heard theMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 17). Kindle Edition. The worldview of Santeria recognizes that human beings are physical creatures infused with the spiritual. The concept of the on functions similarly to the Christian notion of the soul. Literally, the word means "head," but thinking of it simply as the physical head is misleading. It refers more essentially to the source of sensation, the seat of consciousness, encompassing both the rational and spiritual aspects of human thought. According to legend, the head was the last attachment to the human body, bringing human creation to completion. But on is not limited to humans. All forces of nature also have it: trees, plants, minerals, winds, mountains, animals. Every element and force of nature is spiritual and self-aware. And because all elements of the universe contain the spark of Olodumare within the on, everything that physically exists is inherently sacred. So restrictions within Santeria are not viewed as capricious demands made by the orishas, but as guidelines designed to align one's ori, or consciousness, with ashe, cosmic force. The end product ofMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 18-19). Kindle Edition. Santeria teaches that at the beginning of time, before the birth of humanity, every ori prostrated before Olodumare, the creator, to negotiate its assigned fate on earth. Each on received a specific destiny from the creator, a "potential" destiny designed to unfold itself through the multitude of lives it would experience. Ergo, no person's life is an accident; individual destiny is preordained. Remembering the destiny originally negotiated for becomes the ultimate responsibility of each person and the purpose of their spiritual journey. But while destinies are preordained, they are not determined. They can be changed by appealing to the orishas. Happy destinies can be safeguarded and unhappy ones can be rectified by consulting Ortinla, the orisha of divination, who knows each ori's assigned fare because he was the only orisha present when every individual received a personal destiny from Olodumare. He can warn against evil spells or spirits designed to wreak havoc on an otherwise satisfying destiny; he can also warn how a person's own deteriorating character will createMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 19-20). Kindle Edition.
  • Early modern Protestant: rooting out of the sacred, especially symbolism: communion, sacrament minimized; creation of the universe expression of divine will; lays grounwork for modern secularism; Deism: 18 th century intellengentsia, Ben Franklin, believed in God, uninterested in History; self-governing commonwelth; sects withdrew from the worl, translates into moern revolution; the invisble hand, self-regulating markets England: 18 th century, Industrial Relvoluation; collapse of Christendom; Hobbers, Locke; moving out of the realm of contract to self-governing: life, libery, proporety, John Locke, constitution never mentiones God money, sectarian model was seculariszed and gneralized, holy association; ind. Oscione as basis for community, more voluntary associations , all individuals free to form their own associations, 1832:
  • In Santeria, Ashe is a sort of primal energy that comprises the power, grace, blood, and life force of all reality. It is amoral, neither good nor bad, unable to be seen or personified, a neutral cosmic energy undergirding every aspect of existence. All that has life or exhibits power has ashe. The blood of living creatures, the moving wind, the growing plants, consuming fire, and flowing water allMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 12). Kindle Edition. In a very real sense, Santeria is a terrestrial religion, firmly rooted in the earth. While Western religions tend to emphasize a heavenly place, or stress the placement of the stars and planets to determine the course of human events (remember that a shining star over Bethlehem was said to signify the birth of Jesus), Santeria is shaped and formed by earth-centered forces of nature. These forces are personified as the deities known as orishas. The orishas are gods of earthly forces for example thunder (Changb), the harvestMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 14). Kindle Edition. Believers in Santeria cannot simply do as they wish, but are required to live according to a set of ethical principles that determine morality among the faith community. But unlike Western religious traditions, Santeria does not have a bipolar concept of good and evil. In fact, there are no personifications of evil or good, as in the case of Satan or God. All orishas represent concepts that are pure and all contain contradictions. Terms like good and evil are relative, dependent on the situation. What is morally imperative for one individual may not be for another. For this reason, santeros and santeras do not necessarily pass moral judgment upon their clients. Santeria does not reach that misfortune is punishment, a result of angering God or the gods. It is better describedMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 15-16). Kindle Edition. Hence believers seek to find harmony with the seen and unseen world and with those with whom they share the planet. If harmony is maintained between the physical and the spiritual realms, then those who dwell on earth experience enlightenment, prosperity, peace, and good health. If, however, disharmony and imbalance prevail, then ignorance, scarcity, violence, and malady will plague the earth.Miguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 16). Kindle Edition. To Catholics, the priest, adhering to doctrinal truth, destroyed the root of evil, idolatry, by cutting down the tree. To santeros and santeras, the misguided actions of the priest, however good his intentions, disrupted harmony by committing a belligerent act against a sacred object, thus bringing upon himself the wrath of the orisha. What ethical actions, then, lead toward harmony? Like most religions, stealing, hypocrisy, lying, and covenant-breaking are condemned, while speaking the truth is considered a virtue. Behavior is expected to be modeled after what Christians call the "Golden Rule" - to do unto others as you would want them to do unto you. Each believer is responsible for seeking the greatest good for the entire community, even when that good conflicts with what is best for the individual. Hence selfishness is frowned upon. The story is told about the orisha of divination, Orunla, who used to be very selfish. One day he fell into a deep pit and was unable to climb out. By the third day he heard theMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 17). Kindle Edition. The worldview of Santeria recognizes that human beings are physical creatures infused with the spiritual. The concept of the on functions similarly to the Christian notion of the soul. Literally, the word means "head," but thinking of it simply as the physical head is misleading. It refers more essentially to the source of sensation, the seat of consciousness, encompassing both the rational and spiritual aspects of human thought. According to legend, the head was the last attachment to the human body, bringing human creation to completion. But on is not limited to humans. All forces of nature also have it: trees, plants, minerals, winds, mountains, animals. Every element and force of nature is spiritual and self-aware. And because all elements of the universe contain the spark of Olodumare within the on, everything that physically exists is inherently sacred. So restrictions within Santeria are not viewed as capricious demands made by the orishas, but as guidelines designed to align one's ori, or consciousness, with ashe, cosmic force. The end product ofMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 18-19). Kindle Edition. Santeria teaches that at the beginning of time, before the birth of humanity, every ori prostrated before Olodumare, the creator, to negotiate its assigned fate on earth. Each on received a specific destiny from the creator, a "potential" destiny designed to unfold itself through the multitude of lives it would experience. Ergo, no person's life is an accident; individual destiny is preordained. Remembering the destiny originally negotiated for becomes the ultimate responsibility of each person and the purpose of their spiritual journey. But while destinies are preordained, they are not determined. They can be changed by appealing to the orishas. Happy destinies can be safeguarded and unhappy ones can be rectified by consulting Ortinla, the orisha of divination, who knows each ori's assigned fare because he was the only orisha present when every individual received a personal destiny from Olodumare. He can warn against evil spells or spirits designed to wreak havoc on an otherwise satisfying destiny; he can also warn how a person's own deteriorating character will createMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 19-20). Kindle Edition.
  • the amalgamation or attempted amalgamation of different religions, cultures, or schools of thought. In Santeria, Ashe is a sort of primal energy that comprises the power, grace, blood, and life force of all reality. It is amoral, neither good nor bad, unable to be seen or personified, a neutral cosmic energy undergirding every aspect of existence. All that has life or exhibits power has ashe. The blood of living creatures, the moving wind, the growing plants, consuming fire, and flowing water allMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 12). Kindle Edition. In a very real sense, Santeria is a terrestrial religion, firmly rooted in the earth. While Western religions tend to emphasize a heavenly place, or stress the placement of the stars and planets to determine the course of human events (remember that a shining star over Bethlehem was said to signify the birth of Jesus), Santeria is shaped and formed by earth-centered forces of nature. These forces are personified as the deities known as orishas. The orishas are gods of earthly forces for example thunder (Changb), the harvestMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 14). Kindle Edition. Believers in Santeria cannot simply do as they wish, but are required to live according to a set of ethical principles that determine morality among the faith community. But unlike Western religious traditions, Santeria does not have a bipolar concept of good and evil. In fact, there are no personifications of evil or good, as in the case of Satan or God. All orishas represent concepts that are pure and all contain contradictions. Terms like good and evil are relative, dependent on the situation. What is morally imperative for one individual may not be for another. For this reason, santeros and santeras do not necessarily pass moral judgment upon their clients. Santeria does not reach that misfortune is punishment, a result of angering God or the gods. It is better describedMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 15-16). Kindle Edition. Hence believers seek to find harmony with the seen and unseen world and with those with whom they share the planet. If harmony is maintained between the physical and the spiritual realms, then those who dwell on earth experience enlightenment, prosperity, peace, and good health. If, however, disharmony and imbalance prevail, then ignorance, scarcity, violence, and malady will plague the earth.Miguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 16). Kindle Edition. To Catholics, the priest, adhering to doctrinal truth, destroyed the root of evil, idolatry, by cutting down the tree. To santeros and santeras, the misguided actions of the priest, however good his intentions, disrupted harmony by committing a belligerent act against a sacred object, thus bringing upon himself the wrath of the orisha. What ethical actions, then, lead toward harmony? Like most religions, stealing, hypocrisy, lying, and covenant-breaking are condemned, while speaking the truth is considered a virtue. Behavior is expected to be modeled after what Christians call the "Golden Rule" - to do unto others as you would want them to do unto you. Each believer is responsible for seeking the greatest good for the entire community, even when that good conflicts with what is best for the individual. Hence selfishness is frowned upon. The story is told about the orisha of divination, Orunla, who used to be very selfish. One day he fell into a deep pit and was unable to climb out. By the third day he heard theMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 17). Kindle Edition. The worldview of Santeria recognizes that human beings are physical creatures infused with the spiritual. The concept of the on functions similarly to the Christian notion of the soul. Literally, the word means "head," but thinking of it simply as the physical head is misleading. It refers more essentially to the source of sensation, the seat of consciousness, encompassing both the rational and spiritual aspects of human thought. According to legend, the head was the last attachment to the human body, bringing human creation to completion. But on is not limited to humans. All forces of nature also have it: trees, plants, minerals, winds, mountains, animals. Every element and force of nature is spiritual and self-aware. And because all elements of the universe contain the spark of Olodumare within the on, everything that physically exists is inherently sacred. So restrictions within Santeria are not viewed as capricious demands made by the orishas, but as guidelines designed to align one's ori, or consciousness, with ashe, cosmic force. The end product ofMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 18-19). Kindle Edition. Santeria teaches that at the beginning of time, before the birth of humanity, every ori prostrated before Olodumare, the creator, to negotiate its assigned fate on earth. Each on received a specific destiny from the creator, a "potential" destiny designed to unfold itself through the multitude of lives it would experience. Ergo, no person's life is an accident; individual destiny is preordained. Remembering the destiny originally negotiated for becomes the ultimate responsibility of each person and the purpose of their spiritual journey. But while destinies are preordained, they are not determined. They can be changed by appealing to the orishas. Happy destinies can be safeguarded and unhappy ones can be rectified by consulting Ortinla, the orisha of divination, who knows each ori's assigned fare because he was the only orisha present when every individual received a personal destiny from Olodumare. He can warn against evil spells or spirits designed to wreak havoc on an otherwise satisfying destiny; he can also warn how a person's own deteriorating character will createMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 19-20). Kindle Edition.
  • the amalgamation or attempted amalgamation of different religions, cultures, or schools of thought. In Santeria, Ashe is a sort of primal energy that comprises the power, grace, blood, and life force of all reality. It is amoral, neither good nor bad, unable to be seen or personified, a neutral cosmic energy undergirding every aspect of existence. All that has life or exhibits power has ashe. The blood of living creatures, the moving wind, the growing plants, consuming fire, and flowing water allMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 12). Kindle Edition. In a very real sense, Santeria is a terrestrial religion, firmly rooted in the earth. While Western religions tend to emphasize a heavenly place, or stress the placement of the stars and planets to determine the course of human events (remember that a shining star over Bethlehem was said to signify the birth of Jesus), Santeria is shaped and formed by earth-centered forces of nature. These forces are personified as the deities known as orishas. The orishas are gods of earthly forces for example thunder (Changb), the harvestMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 14). Kindle Edition. Believers in Santeria cannot simply do as they wish, but are required to live according to a set of ethical principles that determine morality among the faith community. But unlike Western religious traditions, Santeria does not have a bipolar concept of good and evil. In fact, there are no personifications of evil or good, as in the case of Satan or God. All orishas represent concepts that are pure and all contain contradictions. Terms like good and evil are relative, dependent on the situation. What is morally imperative for one individual may not be for another. For this reason, santeros and santeras do not necessarily pass moral judgment upon their clients. Santeria does not reach that misfortune is punishment, a result of angering God or the gods. It is better describedMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 15-16). Kindle Edition. Hence believers seek to find harmony with the seen and unseen world and with those with whom they share the planet. If harmony is maintained between the physical and the spiritual realms, then those who dwell on earth experience enlightenment, prosperity, peace, and good health. If, however, disharmony and imbalance prevail, then ignorance, scarcity, violence, and malady will plague the earth.Miguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 16). Kindle Edition. To Catholics, the priest, adhering to doctrinal truth, destroyed the root of evil, idolatry, by cutting down the tree. To santeros and santeras, the misguided actions of the priest, however good his intentions, disrupted harmony by committing a belligerent act against a sacred object, thus bringing upon himself the wrath of the orisha. What ethical actions, then, lead toward harmony? Like most religions, stealing, hypocrisy, lying, and covenant-breaking are condemned, while speaking the truth is considered a virtue. Behavior is expected to be modeled after what Christians call the "Golden Rule" - to do unto others as you would want them to do unto you. Each believer is responsible for seeking the greatest good for the entire community, even when that good conflicts with what is best for the individual. Hence selfishness is frowned upon. The story is told about the orisha of divination, Orunla, who used to be very selfish. One day he fell into a deep pit and was unable to climb out. By the third day he heard theMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 17). Kindle Edition. The worldview of Santeria recognizes that human beings are physical creatures infused with the spiritual. The concept of the on functions similarly to the Christian notion of the soul. Literally, the word means "head," but thinking of it simply as the physical head is misleading. It refers more essentially to the source of sensation, the seat of consciousness, encompassing both the rational and spiritual aspects of human thought. According to legend, the head was the last attachment to the human body, bringing human creation to completion. But on is not limited to humans. All forces of nature also have it: trees, plants, minerals, winds, mountains, animals. Every element and force of nature is spiritual and self-aware. And because all elements of the universe contain the spark of Olodumare within the on, everything that physically exists is inherently sacred. So restrictions within Santeria are not viewed as capricious demands made by the orishas, but as guidelines designed to align one's ori, or consciousness, with ashe, cosmic force. The end product ofMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 18-19). Kindle Edition. Santeria teaches that at the beginning of time, before the birth of humanity, every ori prostrated before Olodumare, the creator, to negotiate its assigned fate on earth. Each on received a specific destiny from the creator, a "potential" destiny designed to unfold itself through the multitude of lives it would experience. Ergo, no person's life is an accident; individual destiny is preordained. Remembering the destiny originally negotiated for becomes the ultimate responsibility of each person and the purpose of their spiritual journey. But while destinies are preordained, they are not determined. They can be changed by appealing to the orishas. Happy destinies can be safeguarded and unhappy ones can be rectified by consulting Ortinla, the orisha of divination, who knows each ori's assigned fare because he was the only orisha present when every individual received a personal destiny from Olodumare. He can warn against evil spells or spirits designed to wreak havoc on an otherwise satisfying destiny; he can also warn how a person's own deteriorating character will createMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 19-20). Kindle Edition.
  • In Santeria, Ashe is a sort of primal energy that comprises the power, grace, blood, and life force of all reality. It is amoral, neither good nor bad, unable to be seen or personified, a neutral cosmic energy undergirding every aspect of existence. All that has life or exhibits power has ashe. The blood of living creatures, the moving wind, the growing plants, consuming fire, and flowing water allMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 12). Kindle Edition. In a very real sense, Santeria is a terrestrial religion, firmly rooted in the earth. While Western religions tend to emphasize a heavenly place, or stress the placement of the stars and planets to determine the course of human events (remember that a shining star over Bethlehem was said to signify the birth of Jesus), Santeria is shaped and formed by earth-centered forces of nature. These forces are personified as the deities known as orishas. The orishas are gods of earthly forces for example thunder (Changb), the harvestMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 14). Kindle Edition. Believers in Santeria cannot simply do as they wish, but are required to live according to a set of ethical principles that determine morality among the faith community. But unlike Western religious traditions, Santeria does not have a bipolar concept of good and evil. In fact, there are no personifications of evil or good, as in the case of Satan or God. All orishas represent concepts that are pure and all contain contradictions. Terms like good and evil are relative, dependent on the situation. What is morally imperative for one individual may not be for another. For this reason, santeros and santeras do not necessarily pass moral judgment upon their clients. Santeria does not reach that misfortune is punishment, a result of angering God or the gods. It is better describedMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 15-16). Kindle Edition. Hence believers seek to find harmony with the seen and unseen world and with those with whom they share the planet. If harmony is maintained between the physical and the spiritual realms, then those who dwell on earth experience enlightenment, prosperity, peace, and good health. If, however, disharmony and imbalance prevail, then ignorance, scarcity, violence, and malady will plague the earth.Miguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 16). Kindle Edition. To Catholics, the priest, adhering to doctrinal truth, destroyed the root of evil, idolatry, by cutting down the tree. To santeros and santeras, the misguided actions of the priest, however good his intentions, disrupted harmony by committing a belligerent act against a sacred object, thus bringing upon himself the wrath of the orisha. What ethical actions, then, lead toward harmony? Like most religions, stealing, hypocrisy, lying, and covenant-breaking are condemned, while speaking the truth is considered a virtue. Behavior is expected to be modeled after what Christians call the "Golden Rule" - to do unto others as you would want them to do unto you. Each believer is responsible for seeking the greatest good for the entire community, even when that good conflicts with what is best for the individual. Hence selfishness is frowned upon. The story is told about the orisha of divination, Orunla, who used to be very selfish. One day he fell into a deep pit and was unable to climb out. By the third day he heard theMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 17). Kindle Edition. The worldview of Santeria recognizes that human beings are physical creatures infused with the spiritual. The concept of the on functions similarly to the Christian notion of the soul. Literally, the word means "head," but thinking of it simply as the physical head is misleading. It refers more essentially to the source of sensation, the seat of consciousness, encompassing both the rational and spiritual aspects of human thought. According to legend, the head was the last attachment to the human body, bringing human creation to completion. But on is not limited to humans. All forces of nature also have it: trees, plants, minerals, winds, mountains, animals. Every element and force of nature is spiritual and self-aware. And because all elements of the universe contain the spark of Olodumare within the on, everything that physically exists is inherently sacred. So restrictions within Santeria are not viewed as capricious demands made by the orishas, but as guidelines designed to align one's ori, or consciousness, with ashe, cosmic force. The end product ofMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 18-19). Kindle Edition. Santeria teaches that at the beginning of time, before the birth of humanity, every ori prostrated before Olodumare, the creator, to negotiate its assigned fate on earth. Each on received a specific destiny from the creator, a "potential" destiny designed to unfold itself through the multitude of lives it would experience. Ergo, no person's life is an accident; individual destiny is preordained. Remembering the destiny originally negotiated for becomes the ultimate responsibility of each person and the purpose of their spiritual journey. But while destinies are preordained, they are not determined. They can be changed by appealing to the orishas. Happy destinies can be safeguarded and unhappy ones can be rectified by consulting Ortinla, the orisha of divination, who knows each ori's assigned fare because he was the only orisha present when every individual received a personal destiny from Olodumare. He can warn against evil spells or spirits designed to wreak havoc on an otherwise satisfying destiny; he can also warn how a person's own deteriorating character will createMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 19-20). Kindle Edition.
  • In Santeria, Ashe is a sort of primal energy that comprises the power, grace, blood, and life force of all reality. It is amoral, neither good nor bad, unable to be seen or personified, a neutral cosmic energy undergirding every aspect of existence. All that has life or exhibits power has ashe. The blood of living creatures, the moving wind, the growing plants, consuming fire, and flowing water allMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 12). Kindle Edition. In a very real sense, Santeria is a terrestrial religion, firmly rooted in the earth. While Western religions tend to emphasize a heavenly place, or stress the placement of the stars and planets to determine the course of human events (remember that a shining star over Bethlehem was said to signify the birth of Jesus), Santeria is shaped and formed by earth-centered forces of nature. These forces are personified as the deities known as orishas. The orishas are gods of earthly forces for example thunder (Changb), the harvestMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 14). Kindle Edition. Believers in Santeria cannot simply do as they wish, but are required to live according to a set of ethical principles that determine morality among the faith community. But unlike Western religious traditions, Santeria does not have a bipolar concept of good and evil. In fact, there are no personifications of evil or good, as in the case of Satan or God. All orishas represent concepts that are pure and all contain contradictions. Terms like good and evil are relative, dependent on the situation. What is morally imperative for one individual may not be for another. For this reason, santeros and santeras do not necessarily pass moral judgment upon their clients. Santeria does not reach that misfortune is punishment, a result of angering God or the gods. It is better describedMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 15-16). Kindle Edition. Hence believers seek to find harmony with the seen and unseen world and with those with whom they share the planet. If harmony is maintained between the physical and the spiritual realms, then those who dwell on earth experience enlightenment, prosperity, peace, and good health. If, however, disharmony and imbalance prevail, then ignorance, scarcity, violence, and malady will plague the earth.Miguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 16). Kindle Edition. To Catholics, the priest, adhering to doctrinal truth, destroyed the root of evil, idolatry, by cutting down the tree. To santeros and santeras, the misguided actions of the priest, however good his intentions, disrupted harmony by committing a belligerent act against a sacred object, thus bringing upon himself the wrath of the orisha. What ethical actions, then, lead toward harmony? Like most religions, stealing, hypocrisy, lying, and covenant-breaking are condemned, while speaking the truth is considered a virtue. Behavior is expected to be modeled after what Christians call the "Golden Rule" - to do unto others as you would want them to do unto you. Each believer is responsible for seeking the greatest good for the entire community, even when that good conflicts with what is best for the individual. Hence selfishness is frowned upon. The story is told about the orisha of divination, Orunla, who used to be very selfish. One day he fell into a deep pit and was unable to climb out. By the third day he heard theMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 17). Kindle Edition. The worldview of Santeria recognizes that human beings are physical creatures infused with the spiritual. The concept of the on functions similarly to the Christian notion of the soul. Literally, the word means "head," but thinking of it simply as the physical head is misleading. It refers more essentially to the source of sensation, the seat of consciousness, encompassing both the rational and spiritual aspects of human thought. According to legend, the head was the last attachment to the human body, bringing human creation to completion. But on is not limited to humans. All forces of nature also have it: trees, plants, minerals, winds, mountains, animals. Every element and force of nature is spiritual and self-aware. And because all elements of the universe contain the spark of Olodumare within the on, everything that physically exists is inherently sacred. So restrictions within Santeria are not viewed as capricious demands made by the orishas, but as guidelines designed to align one's ori, or consciousness, with ashe, cosmic force. The end product ofMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 18-19). Kindle Edition. Santeria teaches that at the beginning of time, before the birth of humanity, every ori prostrated before Olodumare, the creator, to negotiate its assigned fate on earth. Each on received a specific destiny from the creator, a "potential" destiny designed to unfold itself through the multitude of lives it would experience. Ergo, no person's life is an accident; individual destiny is preordained. Remembering the destiny originally negotiated for becomes the ultimate responsibility of each person and the purpose of their spiritual journey. But while destinies are preordained, they are not determined. They can be changed by appealing to the orishas. Happy destinies can be safeguarded and unhappy ones can be rectified by consulting Ortinla, the orisha of divination, who knows each ori's assigned fare because he was the only orisha present when every individual received a personal destiny from Olodumare. He can warn against evil spells or spirits designed to wreak havoc on an otherwise satisfying destiny; he can also warn how a person's own deteriorating character will createMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 19-20). Kindle Edition.
  • At first, there was only sky above and a watery, marshy waste below. No land existed for humans to dwell upon. Supreme in the sky was Olodumare the almighty, the owner of all destinies, the God that is above all gods. Now, it was Nzame as Olodumare who created all that exists. In four days, all was completed, leaving the fifth day set apart for rest and for the worship of the Supreme Being. After bringing into existence the planets, stars, plants, and animals, Nzame asked Olofi and Baba Nkwa what they thought of his handiwork. Although impressed, they noted that his creation lacked an intelligent being to rule over all. Agreeing, Nzame formed the first man, in his own image, out of mud. When finished, he breathed immortal life into this man, whom he called Omo Oba.Miguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 35-36). Kindle Edition. Olodumare can be understood as the Prime Mover, the Ultimate Source, the First Cause, the Designer of all that exists. Neither created nor begotten, Olodumare is the origin of all creation. As creator, ruler, and judge, Olodumare is immortal, omniscient, omnipotent, and beyond the total comprehension of mortals. Within him are many different facets or persons. He is Elemi, owner of life; Olorun, owner of the sky, typically identified with the sun; and Olojo Oni, controller of daily occurrences. However it is as Olofi that Olodumare is humanity's personal god (see Table 2 above). Believers in Santeria most commonly worship Olofi, the personification of Olodumare. To them, Jesus Christ is theMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 34-35). Kindle Edition. In Santeria, the orishas' lives are recounted as legends known as patakis. For most santeros and santeras, such stories are not interpreted literally; whether a particular pataki is history or myth is not important. The purpose of the story is to provide guidance and practical help for believers in the here and now. According to anthropologist Clifford Geertz, legends or myths can provide both a model of reality and a model for reality. While they inform the day-to-day dynamics of life, they are also capable of shaping those dynamics.' When a pataki is recited, each orisha, person, animal, herb, sacred tree, and object contains symbolic meaning, pointing to a truth that exists beyond its literal meaning. The stories become reference points that provide divine revelation on the particular life issue being faced by the person seeking the orishas' assistance. Or, to put it another way, the issue being faced by the individual imploring the orishas becomes the context by which the pataki is interpreted. Hence the same story can beMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 31-32). Kindle Edition. believer who approaches the orishas with a specific area of concern. The orishas then reveal a pataki to be interpreted by the santero or santera. Consequently, there is no one interpretation applicable to all individuals at all times. Interpretations are highly individualized. Because the stories themselves are less important than the contexts in which they are told, accuracy in details or contradictions within the stories may become the source of lively debate among followers of Santeria, but are ultimately unimportant in verifying belief. In fact, inconsistency is to be expected given the different contexts of believers. For example, patakis told in the Western Hemisphere differ somewhat from those told in Africa. In the West, all the orishas are blood-related, while in Africa such family ties do not necessarily exist between them. One explanation for this difference is that the vastly different tribal origins of slaves in the Caribbean kept them separated, if not enemies. By making the orishas interrelated, historically separate (if not hostile) African nations who found themselves expatriated were able to see themselves united as brothers and sisters,Miguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 32-33). Kindle Edition.
  • Like the Confucians, the Daoists understood Dao as the appropriate way for humans to order and live their lives. But for the Daoists, following the way was participating in the Dao of nature, the changes and rhythms of the universe and the natural world. The Dao of humanity was the Dao of nature because humans are part of the natural world. Confucians, on the other hand, connected the way not with nature but with culture: the observances of tradition, ritual, and li. B. For Daoists, to neglect the way of nature was the root of society’s misery. Early Daoism saw Confucianism not as the solution to the problem but as its cause. C. Confucianism further alienated humans from the Dao of nature through anthropocentrism and close regulation of human relationships. To Daoists, Confucianism ruined life’s spontaneity. D. Daoists accused Confucianism of advocating the very things that led to corruption in an earlier golden age, claiming that in better times, there were no virtues, no talk of benevolence or compassion, no need to discriminate right from wrong, and no ritual to cultivate moral goodness. The solution to human suffering, the Daoists believed, was a return to the way of the universe.
  • Like the Confucians, the Daoists understood Dao as the appropriate way for humans to order and live their lives. But for the Daoists, following the way was participating in the Dao of nature, the changes and rhythms of the universe and the natural world. The Dao of humanity was the Dao of nature because humans are part of the natural world. Confucians, on the other hand, connected the way not with nature but with culture: the observances of tradition, ritual, and li. B. For Daoists, to neglect the way of nature was the root of society’s misery. Early Daoism saw Confucianism not as the solution to the problem but as its cause. C. Confucianism further alienated humans from the Dao of nature through anthropocentrism and close regulation of human relationships. To Daoists, Confucianism ruined life’s spontaneity. D. Daoists accused Confucianism of advocating the very things that led to corruption in an earlier golden age, claiming that in better times, there were no virtues, no talk of benevolence or compassion, no need to discriminate right from wrong, and no ritual to cultivate moral goodness. The solution to human suffering, the Daoists believed, was a return to the way of the universe.
  • Like the Confucians, the Daoists understood Dao as the appropriate way for humans to order and live their lives. But for the Daoists, following the way was participating in the Dao of nature, the changes and rhythms of the universe and the natural world. The Dao of humanity was the Dao of nature because humans are part of the natural world. Confucians, on the other hand, connected the way not with nature but with culture: the observances of tradition, ritual, and li. B. For Daoists, to neglect the way of nature was the root of society’s misery. Early Daoism saw Confucianism not as the solution to the problem but as its cause. C. Confucianism further alienated humans from the Dao of nature through anthropocentrism and close regulation of human relationships. To Daoists, Confucianism ruined life’s spontaneity. D. Daoists accused Confucianism of advocating the very things that led to corruption in an earlier golden age, claiming that in better times, there were no virtues, no talk of benevolence or compassion, no need to discriminate right from wrong, and no ritual to cultivate moral goodness. The solution to human suffering, the Daoists believed, was a return to the way of the universe.
  • Obatala: Lord of the Head, King of Purity Obatala was the first orisha created by Olodumare after the disastrous experience with Omo Oba. He is the most powerful orisha and is thus recognized as the head of the Yoruba pantheon. He fathered many of the orishas and is also considered the father of humanity in recognition of the fact that he created all human heads. As owner of all human heads, he is in charge of human thoughts and dreams. When the mind is troubled and confused, Obatala provides serenity, and when times are difficult he can bring clarity. He is the patron of lawyers, writers, and physicians. He is associated with the color white, which indicates purity. Known as the King of the White Cloth, he is portrayed as a white-haired old man in white clothes; his devotees also often dress in white. He is praised with the names Ala ba la se (the one who clutches the center), Alamo rere (the one who handles the chosen clay), A-te- rene-k-aiye (the one whoMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 57-58). Kindle Edition. Originally, the orishas had no power of their own. When they wanted to do anything, they had to petition Olodumare for ashe, which he dispensed only in quantities sufficient for that specific activity. Because only Obatala knew where Olodumare lived (remember that soon after the creation he withdrew from the world), it was his duty to take these daily requests for ashe to him. In other words, if someone prayed to the love god Oshun for a mate, she in turn had to approach Obatala and request the power to answer the request. Obatala had to take the request to Olodumare, who would either grant or deny the request. Obatala would then have to go back to Oshun to convey Olodumare's answer.Miguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 58). Kindle Edition. him when he was away petitioning Olodumare on their behalf, for they loved to accuse Obatala of manipulating their requests in order to enhance his own powers. So one day, Obatala brought all of the orishas with him to Olodumare's home. "Olodumare, please release me from this duty of being messenger for all of the orishas!" he said. "Give each of them sufficient power to answer the prayers of humans on their own!" In hopes of at last getting some peace from his troublesome creations, Olodumare granted the request and dispensed a bit of his power to each orisha. To Obatala he gave authority over all human heads, and thus he is to be turned to when clarity is desired. Obatala is known as the father of peace. Once, during a battle between the warring brothers Chango and Oggtin, he appeared on the scene as a white dove hovering over the combatants. His presence brought an end (however temporary) to the brothers' feuding. For this reason the white dove is a symbol of Obatala, and for this reason he isMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 58-59). Kindle Edition.
  • the amalgamation or attempted amalgamation of different religions, cultures, or schools of thought. In Santeria, Ashe is a sort of primal energy that comprises the power, grace, blood, and life force of all reality. It is amoral, neither good nor bad, unable to be seen or personified, a neutral cosmic energy undergirding every aspect of existence. All that has life or exhibits power has ashe. The blood of living creatures, the moving wind, the growing plants, consuming fire, and flowing water allMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 12). Kindle Edition. In a very real sense, Santeria is a terrestrial religion, firmly rooted in the earth. While Western religions tend to emphasize a heavenly place, or stress the placement of the stars and planets to determine the course of human events (remember that a shining star over Bethlehem was said to signify the birth of Jesus), Santeria is shaped and formed by earth-centered forces of nature. These forces are personified as the deities known as orishas. The orishas are gods of earthly forces for example thunder (Changb), the harvestMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 14). Kindle Edition. Believers in Santeria cannot simply do as they wish, but are required to live according to a set of ethical principles that determine morality among the faith community. But unlike Western religious traditions, Santeria does not have a bipolar concept of good and evil. In fact, there are no personifications of evil or good, as in the case of Satan or God. All orishas represent concepts that are pure and all contain contradictions. Terms like good and evil are relative, dependent on the situation. What is morally imperative for one individual may not be for another. For this reason, santeros and santeras do not necessarily pass moral judgment upon their clients. Santeria does not reach that misfortune is punishment, a result of angering God or the gods. It is better describedMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 15-16). Kindle Edition. Hence believers seek to find harmony with the seen and unseen world and with those with whom they share the planet. If harmony is maintained between the physical and the spiritual realms, then those who dwell on earth experience enlightenment, prosperity, peace, and good health. If, however, disharmony and imbalance prevail, then ignorance, scarcity, violence, and malady will plague the earth.Miguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 16). Kindle Edition. To Catholics, the priest, adhering to doctrinal truth, destroyed the root of evil, idolatry, by cutting down the tree. To santeros and santeras, the misguided actions of the priest, however good his intentions, disrupted harmony by committing a belligerent act against a sacred object, thus bringing upon himself the wrath of the orisha. What ethical actions, then, lead toward harmony? Like most religions, stealing, hypocrisy, lying, and covenant-breaking are condemned, while speaking the truth is considered a virtue. Behavior is expected to be modeled after what Christians call the "Golden Rule" - to do unto others as you would want them to do unto you. Each believer is responsible for seeking the greatest good for the entire community, even when that good conflicts with what is best for the individual. Hence selfishness is frowned upon. The story is told about the orisha of divination, Orunla, who used to be very selfish. One day he fell into a deep pit and was unable to climb out. By the third day he heard theMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 17). Kindle Edition. The worldview of Santeria recognizes that human beings are physical creatures infused with the spiritual. The concept of the on functions similarly to the Christian notion of the soul. Literally, the word means "head," but thinking of it simply as the physical head is misleading. It refers more essentially to the source of sensation, the seat of consciousness, encompassing both the rational and spiritual aspects of human thought. According to legend, the head was the last attachment to the human body, bringing human creation to completion. But on is not limited to humans. All forces of nature also have it: trees, plants, minerals, winds, mountains, animals. Every element and force of nature is spiritual and self-aware. And because all elements of the universe contain the spark of Olodumare within the on, everything that physically exists is inherently sacred. So restrictions within Santeria are not viewed as capricious demands made by the orishas, but as guidelines designed to align one's ori, or consciousness, with ashe, cosmic force. The end product ofMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 18-19). Kindle Edition. Santeria teaches that at the beginning of time, before the birth of humanity, every ori prostrated before Olodumare, the creator, to negotiate its assigned fate on earth. Each on received a specific destiny from the creator, a "potential" destiny designed to unfold itself through the multitude of lives it would experience. Ergo, no person's life is an accident; individual destiny is preordained. Remembering the destiny originally negotiated for becomes the ultimate responsibility of each person and the purpose of their spiritual journey. But while destinies are preordained, they are not determined. They can be changed by appealing to the orishas. Happy destinies can be safeguarded and unhappy ones can be rectified by consulting Ortinla, the orisha of divination, who knows each ori's assigned fare because he was the only orisha present when every individual received a personal destiny from Olodumare. He can warn against evil spells or spirits designed to wreak havoc on an otherwise satisfying destiny; he can also warn how a person's own deteriorating character will createMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 19-20). Kindle Edition.
  • the amalgamation or attempted amalgamation of different religions, cultures, or schools of thought. In Santeria, Ashe is a sort of primal energy that comprises the power, grace, blood, and life force of all reality. It is amoral, neither good nor bad, unable to be seen or personified, a neutral cosmic energy undergirding every aspect of existence. All that has life or exhibits power has ashe. The blood of living creatures, the moving wind, the growing plants, consuming fire, and flowing water allMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 12). Kindle Edition. In a very real sense, Santeria is a terrestrial religion, firmly rooted in the earth. While Western religions tend to emphasize a heavenly place, or stress the placement of the stars and planets to determine the course of human events (remember that a shining star over Bethlehem was said to signify the birth of Jesus), Santeria is shaped and formed by earth-centered forces of nature. These forces are personified as the deities known as orishas. The orishas are gods of earthly forces for example thunder (Changb), the harvestMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 14). Kindle Edition. Believers in Santeria cannot simply do as they wish, but are required to live according to a set of ethical principles that determine morality among the faith community. But unlike Western religious traditions, Santeria does not have a bipolar concept of good and evil. In fact, there are no personifications of evil or good, as in the case of Satan or God. All orishas represent concepts that are pure and all contain contradictions. Terms like good and evil are relative, dependent on the situation. What is morally imperative for one individual may not be for another. For this reason, santeros and santeras do not necessarily pass moral judgment upon their clients. Santeria does not reach that misfortune is punishment, a result of angering God or the gods. It is better describedMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 15-16). Kindle Edition. Hence believers seek to find harmony with the seen and unseen world and with those with whom they share the planet. If harmony is maintained between the physical and the spiritual realms, then those who dwell on earth experience enlightenment, prosperity, peace, and good health. If, however, disharmony and imbalance prevail, then ignorance, scarcity, violence, and malady will plague the earth.Miguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 16). Kindle Edition. To Catholics, the priest, adhering to doctrinal truth, destroyed the root of evil, idolatry, by cutting down the tree. To santeros and santeras, the misguided actions of the priest, however good his intentions, disrupted harmony by committing a belligerent act against a sacred object, thus bringing upon himself the wrath of the orisha. What ethical actions, then, lead toward harmony? Like most religions, stealing, hypocrisy, lying, and covenant-breaking are condemned, while speaking the truth is considered a virtue. Behavior is expected to be modeled after what Christians call the "Golden Rule" - to do unto others as you would want them to do unto you. Each believer is responsible for seeking the greatest good for the entire community, even when that good conflicts with what is best for the individual. Hence selfishness is frowned upon. The story is told about the orisha of divination, Orunla, who used to be very selfish. One day he fell into a deep pit and was unable to climb out. By the third day he heard theMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 17). Kindle Edition. The worldview of Santeria recognizes that human beings are physical creatures infused with the spiritual. The concept of the on functions similarly to the Christian notion of the soul. Literally, the word means "head," but thinking of it simply as the physical head is misleading. It refers more essentially to the source of sensation, the seat of consciousness, encompassing both the rational and spiritual aspects of human thought. According to legend, the head was the last attachment to the human body, bringing human creation to completion. But on is not limited to humans. All forces of nature also have it: trees, plants, minerals, winds, mountains, animals. Every element and force of nature is spiritual and self-aware. And because all elements of the universe contain the spark of Olodumare within the on, everything that physically exists is inherently sacred. So restrictions within Santeria are not viewed as capricious demands made by the orishas, but as guidelines designed to align one's ori, or consciousness, with ashe, cosmic force. The end product ofMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 18-19). Kindle Edition. Santeria teaches that at the beginning of time, before the birth of humanity, every ori prostrated before Olodumare, the creator, to negotiate its assigned fate on earth. Each on received a specific destiny from the creator, a "potential" destiny designed to unfold itself through the multitude of lives it would experience. Ergo, no person's life is an accident; individual destiny is preordained. Remembering the destiny originally negotiated for becomes the ultimate responsibility of each person and the purpose of their spiritual journey. But while destinies are preordained, they are not determined. They can be changed by appealing to the orishas. Happy destinies can be safeguarded and unhappy ones can be rectified by consulting Ortinla, the orisha of divination, who knows each ori's assigned fare because he was the only orisha present when every individual received a personal destiny from Olodumare. He can warn against evil spells or spirits designed to wreak havoc on an otherwise satisfying destiny; he can also warn how a person's own deteriorating character will createMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 19-20). Kindle Edition.
  • the amalgamation or attempted amalgamation of different religions, cultures, or schools of thought. In Santeria, Ashe is a sort of primal energy that comprises the power, grace, blood, and life force of all reality. It is amoral, neither good nor bad, unable to be seen or personified, a neutral cosmic energy undergirding every aspect of existence. All that has life or exhibits power has ashe. The blood of living creatures, the moving wind, the growing plants, consuming fire, and flowing water allMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 12). Kindle Edition. In a very real sense, Santeria is a terrestrial religion, firmly rooted in the earth. While Western religions tend to emphasize a heavenly place, or stress the placement of the stars and planets to determine the course of human events (remember that a shining star over Bethlehem was said to signify the birth of Jesus), Santeria is shaped and formed by earth-centered forces of nature. These forces are personified as the deities known as orishas. The orishas are gods of earthly forces for example thunder (Changb), the harvestMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 14). Kindle Edition. Believers in Santeria cannot simply do as they wish, but are required to live according to a set of ethical principles that determine morality among the faith community. But unlike Western religious traditions, Santeria does not have a bipolar concept of good and evil. In fact, there are no personifications of evil or good, as in the case of Satan or God. All orishas represent concepts that are pure and all contain contradictions. Terms like good and evil are relative, dependent on the situation. What is morally imperative for one individual may not be for another. For this reason, santeros and santeras do not necessarily pass moral judgment upon their clients. Santeria does not reach that misfortune is punishment, a result of angering God or the gods. It is better describedMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 15-16). Kindle Edition. Hence believers seek to find harmony with the seen and unseen world and with those with whom they share the planet. If harmony is maintained between the physical and the spiritual realms, then those who dwell on earth experience enlightenment, prosperity, peace, and good health. If, however, disharmony and imbalance prevail, then ignorance, scarcity, violence, and malady will plague the earth.Miguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 16). Kindle Edition. To Catholics, the priest, adhering to doctrinal truth, destroyed the root of evil, idolatry, by cutting down the tree. To santeros and santeras, the misguided actions of the priest, however good his intentions, disrupted harmony by committing a belligerent act against a sacred object, thus bringing upon himself the wrath of the orisha. What ethical actions, then, lead toward harmony? Like most religions, stealing, hypocrisy, lying, and covenant-breaking are condemned, while speaking the truth is considered a virtue. Behavior is expected to be modeled after what Christians call the "Golden Rule" - to do unto others as you would want them to do unto you. Each believer is responsible for seeking the greatest good for the entire community, even when that good conflicts with what is best for the individual. Hence selfishness is frowned upon. The story is told about the orisha of divination, Orunla, who used to be very selfish. One day he fell into a deep pit and was unable to climb out. By the third day he heard theMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (p. 17). Kindle Edition. The worldview of Santeria recognizes that human beings are physical creatures infused with the spiritual. The concept of the on functions similarly to the Christian notion of the soul. Literally, the word means "head," but thinking of it simply as the physical head is misleading. It refers more essentially to the source of sensation, the seat of consciousness, encompassing both the rational and spiritual aspects of human thought. According to legend, the head was the last attachment to the human body, bringing human creation to completion. But on is not limited to humans. All forces of nature also have it: trees, plants, minerals, winds, mountains, animals. Every element and force of nature is spiritual and self-aware. And because all elements of the universe contain the spark of Olodumare within the on, everything that physically exists is inherently sacred. So restrictions within Santeria are not viewed as capricious demands made by the orishas, but as guidelines designed to align one's ori, or consciousness, with ashe, cosmic force. The end product ofMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 18-19). Kindle Edition. Santeria teaches that at the beginning of time, before the birth of humanity, every ori prostrated before Olodumare, the creator, to negotiate its assigned fate on earth. Each on received a specific destiny from the creator, a "potential" destiny designed to unfold itself through the multitude of lives it would experience. Ergo, no person's life is an accident; individual destiny is preordained. Remembering the destiny originally negotiated for becomes the ultimate responsibility of each person and the purpose of their spiritual journey. But while destinies are preordained, they are not determined. They can be changed by appealing to the orishas. Happy destinies can be safeguarded and unhappy ones can be rectified by consulting Ortinla, the orisha of divination, who knows each ori's assigned fare because he was the only orisha present when every individual received a personal destiny from Olodumare. He can warn against evil spells or spirits designed to wreak havoc on an otherwise satisfying destiny; he can also warn how a person's own deteriorating character will createMiguel A. de La Torre. Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (pp. 19-20). Kindle Edition.
  • Hum40 modern-religions-f11

    1. 1. Vernacular Religion Projects Humanities 40: Fall 2011
    2. 2. From Early Modern to Modern Religion (Americas)
    3. 3. culture Absolute transcendence (predestination) Disenchantment of the world Secularism (e.g., Deism, Founding Fathers of Constitution) Science society Religiously disciplined self-rule Holy commonwealth vs. Holy association Self-governing nation state (democratic) Self-regulating market personality This worldly ascetism (inner-directed) conscience Individualism
    4. 4. Yoruba religion
    5. 5. syncretism: the amalgamation or merging of different religions, cultures, or schools of thought
    6. 6. Yoruban religion and Catholicism (Cuba)
    7. 7. Santería
    8. 8. primal energy that comprises the power, grace, blood, and life force ashé
    9. 13. “ Lord of the Head, King of Purity” He is the most powerful orisha. Obatala
    10. 17. Sikhism and Catholicism compared
    11. 18. Sikhism <ul><li>Monotheistic, revealed religion </li></ul><ul><li>Originated in the 15 th century in the Punjab region of today’s India and Pakistan </li></ul><ul><li>Ten Gurus from Guru Nanak to Guru Gobind Singh. </li></ul><ul><li>The eleventh and eternal Guru is the holy scripture, the Guru Granth Sahib. </li></ul>
    12. 19. Sikh Gurus
    13. 20. The 5 K’s – displays of commitment <ul><li>Kesh: uncut hair </li></ul><ul><li>Kangha: wooden comb </li></ul><ul><li>Kirpan: sword </li></ul><ul><li>Kachera: undergarments </li></ul><ul><li>Kara: iron bangle </li></ul>
    14. 22. Worship in Sikhism <ul><li>Sikhs strive to achieve the union of the soul with God </li></ul><ul><li>Central elements: discipline, worship, selfless service </li></ul><ul><li>Prayer consists of reading and meditating on the word of God and the teachings of the gurus as written down in the Guru Granth Sahib </li></ul><ul><li>Communal prayer involves recitals and chants from the holy scriptures </li></ul>
    15. 23. Roman Catholic Worship <ul><li>Sequence of actions lead by a priest, aided by altar boys and laypeople </li></ul><ul><li>Consists of readings, singing of psalms, prayers </li></ul><ul><li>Involves body movements: standing, sitting, kneeling, folding hands </li></ul><ul><li>The Holy Communion as a highly symbolic ritual </li></ul>
    16. 24. Historic vs. Early Modern Religion <ul><li>Roman Catholicism </li></ul><ul><li>Hierarchical structure </li></ul><ul><li>Priests as facilitators of worship </li></ul><ul><li>Church hierarchy interprets the Bible </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on faith and symbolic ritual </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on afterlife </li></ul><ul><li>Sikhism </li></ul><ul><li>Nonhierarchical structure </li></ul><ul><li>Laypeople as facilitators of worship </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on reading the Guru Granth Sahib </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on faith and living faith in the present </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on earthly life </li></ul>
    17. 25. First Presbyterian Church
    18. 26. First Presbyterian Church
    19. 27. First Presbyterian Church
    20. 28. Newman Catholic Church
    21. 29. Newman Catholic Church
    22. 30. Newman Catholic Church
    23. 31. Newman Catholic Church
    24. 32. Newman Catholic Church
    25. 33. Berkeley Buddhist Temple
    26. 34. Berkeley Buddhist Temple
    27. 35. Berkeley Buddhist Temple
    28. 36. Berkeley Buddhist Temple
    29. 37. City of Tembilahan
    30. 38. Vihara
    31. 39. Chinese New Year 2010
    32. 40. People of Tembilahan
    33. 41. I used to dance like this…
    34. 42. Congregation
    35. 43. Worshipping
    36. 44. Holy Spirit
    37. 45. Holy Spirit <ul><li>2. How to feel the presence of the HOLY SPIRIT? We don’t have to ask God, where are You? Because the Holy Spirit himself will tell and let you feel God’s presences. By: anointing, the flows of the Holy Spirit through your body. The first encounter with the Holy spirit into your spirit is when you have receive Jesus as your savior. </li></ul><ul><li>1 Corinthians 6: 19. “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own” </li></ul>
    38. 46. Holy Spirit <ul><li>This Holy Spirit / the wellspring of living water, is to guide us to meet our need . This water will be sure </li></ul><ul><li>Isaiah 33: 16. </li></ul><ul><li>“ This is the man who will dwell on the heights, whose refuge will be the mountain fortress. His bread will be supplied, and water will not fail him.” </li></ul>
    39. 47. Holy Spirit <ul><li>How do you welcome Holy Spirit? </li></ul><ul><li>To allow language to flow </li></ul><ul><li>You have to speak </li></ul><ul><li>Think about how much you love him </li></ul><ul><li>Relaxes in confidence </li></ul><ul><li>God will perfect your phrase </li></ul><ul><li>Matthew 21: 16. </li></ul><ul><li>&quot;Do you hear what these children are saying?&quot; they asked him. &quot;Yes,&quot; replied Jesus, &quot;have you never read, &quot; 'From the lips of children and infants you have ordained praise”  </li></ul><ul><li>NOTE: every born-again believer from the Greatest to the Least can speak in other tongues. ***devil might discourage you that it is silly </li></ul><ul><li>To say stuff like that so on and so forth. Because they don’t want you to have the connection with God. </li></ul><ul><li>Pray in tongue everyday to practices </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t have to worry. Because very people that confess to Jesus and receive him as the savior they will get speaking in tongue from Jesus himself. </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>
    40. 48. THE PRAYER <ul><li>Father, I come to you now in the Name of Jesus. I have receives Jesus as my Savior and the lord of my life, and I stand before you now, cleansed by the precious blood he shade for me. Lord, you said in your word that the promise of the Holy Spirit is for me. So in faith I take You at Your Word. I ask You to Baptize me and fill me to overflowing with your own precious Holy Spirit. Thank You, Lord, for fulfilling Your Promise to me. I fully expect now for the Holy Spirit to rise up within me as I pray and give me utterance in other tongues. </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>
    41. 49. Seven Dimensions of the Sacred
    42. 51. Slam Poetry was founded by Marc Smith in 1986 at Chicago’s Green Mill Cocktail lounge. The first Slam team, Team Vancouver, formed in 1996. <ul><li>Venues across the United States of America currently hold Poetry Slams to this day. </li></ul>
    43. 52. BERKELEY POETRY SLAM <ul><li>The First Dimension </li></ul><ul><li>of the Sacred of “Ritual” is present in the very gather of people who pilgrimage from near by locations and from across the nation every Wednesday to participate in the Berkeley Slam. </li></ul>
    44. 53. Participation in Slam <ul><li>In order to participate in the competition people must come at 7:30 pm for a draw which incorporates both the First Dimension of the Sacred as well as the Fifth dimension of the Sacred (ethical or legal). </li></ul>Participation in Slam
    45. 54. <ul><li>At 7:30 pm the Slam Master Betsy Gomez, who is the highest authority of the slam and embodies the Sixth dimension of “organizational or social” , facilitates the draw. The draw consists of a lottery where poets pull numbers from a tin can. During the first draw six poets are chosen and the rest are put back in the tin can for a second lottery near 8:30pm. A total of twelve poets are chosen for the night to compete. </li></ul>Participation in Slam
    46. 55. fulfillment is not only earned by achieving the title of first place, but also $100 cash prize is given to the winner, while second place receives $30 cash prize and third place receives $20. <ul><li>The anticipation from 7:30pm to 8:30pm is one of great intensity and anxiety centered around the Fourth Dimension . Poets are filled with great emotion over winning and being successful in the slam , which can be considered a lack of fulfillment (connected to the state of the mind and body) that can only be attained by winning the slam. This </li></ul>Participation in Slam
    47. 56. <ul><li>Embodying the spirit of the First Dimension of “Ritual”, many poets come back every week to attain the fulfillment of taking first place. During the hour of waiting, poets discuss their Second Dimension “Doctrinal or Philosophical” beliefs on what the best strategy is to win the slam. </li></ul>Participation in Slam
    48. 57. Participation in Slam At 8:30 pm, the host/mc for the evening, which is also connected to the Sixth Dimension “Social” aspect , greets the audience and begins the competition. First, the host goes over the Fifth Dimension “Ethical” aspects , which includes picking five random judges from the audience to judge the competition from a scale of zero to ten and explaining the rules .The host also explains the job of the audience as far as the Fifth dimensional Ethical Code , which is to &quot;boo&quot; the judges if they disagree with the scores given. Once this is done, the host does not go straight into the competition of twelve poets, a sacrificial poet is required, which incorporates the “First Dimension”.
    49. 58. <ul><li>Poets uses the Third Dimension, “Narratives” , in the “ Artistic form ” of a poem ( the seventh dimension ) , to entice the mind state of the judges through the Fourth Dimension . In all, poetry slam is a game and the winner is the poet who can create the most meaningful altered state of consciousness by controlling the audience's emotions. </li></ul>Participation in Slam
    50. 59. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u2CW7JJEltA&feature=youtu.be Myrlin Hepworth Phoenix, Arizona
    51. 60. <ul><li>The Slam Poetry community has nothing to do with race, gender, class, sexuality or beliefs. The power of the word transcends all social standers and brings together a community of diversity. At the end of the night many of the poets who have competed participate in recreational activities such as drinking, smoking herbs and conversations that has nothing to do with competition. Slam Poetry is the communal gather which allows the sacred space for these connections to happen. </li></ul>Berkeley Poetry Slam
    52. 62. Does the Sacred Depend on Words? <ul><li>The sacred does not depend on whether words are used or not. Both Slam Poetry and the silent Hot Tubs, embodies Ninian Smart's seven dimensions of the sacred. </li></ul><ul><li>Are society is based on individualism and attainment, places where people are able to come together and share common experience allows for the sacred to be present. By sharing common experience allows people to connect with other people and thus able to identify with that person on an intimate level. </li></ul><ul><li>Although, the sacred can indeed be found in the self, it is much more powerful when it is summoned and experience with others, because as human beings we are naturally communal. This creates a collective memory as well as a support system to understand the sacred. </li></ul>
    53. 63. Electric Daisy Carnival
    54. 64. http://www.electricdaisycarnival.com/
    55. 65. http://books.google.com/books?id=tGaRJiXe74UC&lpg=PP1&pg=PP1#v=onepage&q&f=false

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