Awo Yoruba the Language of Ifa (E-book)

Awo Yoruba the Language of Ifa (E-book)

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This Yoruba Dictionary and glossary is one of the most complete that has been published. In order to understand the oral tradition of Ifa it is necessary to have some grasp of the language of Ifa. The rituals, invocations, incantations and recitations of traditional Yoruba religion are not expressed through conversational Yoruba. The language of Ifa is liturgical Yoruba (ofo ase), a language used among diviners to express transcendant ideas. Many of the words used in Ifa have a tonal resonance used to access the power of Spirit. The tonal quality of words used in liturgical Yoruba places the diviner in harmonic resonance with the tonal essence of a wide range of Spiritual Forces (Orisa). The remarkable quality of liturgical Yoruba is that the words used for invocation also carry meaning that reveals the inner essense of the Spiritual Force itself.

This Dictionary is a preliminary attempt to understand Ifa theology through an understanding of Yoruba language. The words were taken from Odu Ifa as it is recited in Ile Ife and most of the vocabulary reflects the dialect of that particular region. This dictionary will serve as a point of departure for theological linquistic analysis.