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Orula

The Orisha of divination and wisdom (Saint Francisco of Assisi), Orula in Cuba, is one of the most beloved. He leads the cult of Ifá, the Benefactor. He permits the communication between the Ifá and humans through the babalawos, the latter uses as support the oracle or Holy Book.

He is also considered the great heeler and has Osain, the God of plants and remedies as his auxiliary. Many Cubans wear his alternate green and yellow beads necklaces.

His feast is on October 4th, but every day of the year belongs to him. Orula is the child of Obbatalá and Yemú. His best friends are his brothers Changó and Elegguá. When Obbatalá discovered Oggún wanted to rape his own mother, his rage was such that he ordered to kill all males.

When Changó was born Elegguá with compassion took him secretly to his elder sister to raise him. Afterwards, Orula was born and Elegguá with the same purpose of saving him seeded him on the base of a Ceiba tree, and provided him with food daily. Through time the old Obbatalá got sick and Elegguá looked for Changó, the heeler to get him recovered.

When Changó heeled his father, Elegguá beg for Changó and Orulas forgiveness to Obatalá. They were forgiven. Changó full of joy cut the Ceiba tree and in its wood carved a splendid board, which he gave to his brother Orula as a present, along with the gift of divination.

Orula
is the owner of the board since then, the future prophet and the counsellor of humans, beside being the interpreter of the oracle of Ifá. Orula is a major orisha.

All a religious complexity around him makes him singular to other deities. Orula is the main counsellor of men, reveals their future and permits them to influence on it. He represents wisdom and the capacity to influence on the destiny, no matter how adverse it can be. In order to be a ministry of Ifá or babalawo is not compulsory to be a santero, although many of them are.

His power is such that when he claims a person to become his son, the individual has to abandon the cult to any other orisha and dedicate completely to Orula.

The first step to be a babalawo is "to receive the hand of orula" and only those who the divination suggested such step can go through.

Receptacle: Orula lives in a wooden foot tub, in the case of the ministries or priests, similar to the one of Changó. In the caseof Awofaka or Cofá in small vessels made of wood, china or ceramic.

Attributes: Board (até), ekule, two hands of ikines, two oracles, a weight, a scale, a branch of poplar, an irofá, and a iruke.

Necklaces: alternate green and yellow beads.

Sacrificed Animals: Female goat, black hens, pigeons, and deer.