A god or goddess is a supernatural being whom people consider as being holy. Some sources refer to the gods and goddesses as deities. Scott Littleton explains a deity as a being with powers that are greater than those of average human beings but communicates with the beings. People categorize religions depending on the number of deities they worship. Monotheistic religions allow one deity whereas polytheistic religions allow more than one deity.
Henotheistic religions allow only one ultimate deity without rejecting other deities. Nontheistic religions reject any ultimate everlasting creator deity but may allow a pantheon of deities that may live and die.
Most monotheistic faiths customarily imagine their God as all-powerful, all-knowing, omnipresent, eternal, and omnibenevolent. Besides, monotheistic religions refer to their God in male terms, while other religions describe their gods in different ways.
In Indian religions, people imagined deities as revealing within the temple of every being’s mind. Having described who deities are and their connection to religion, we will discuss a female deity or goddess in the Yoruba religion. She is called Oshun.
The Yoruba Religion and People
The Yoruba religion comprises the customary religious and spiritual beliefs of the Yoruba group. Religion is the basis for various religions in the new world, such as Santeria, Umbanda, Haitian Vodou, and Trinidad Orisha.
The Yoruba people are a tribe that lives in the western part of the African region, mostly in Nigeria and Ghana. The Yoruba makes up over 40 million people globally. Most of the Yoruba people speak their language, the Yoruba language.
Who is Oshun?
Oshun is in the Yoruba pantheon of deities called the Orisha. People mostly recognize her as the goddess of the river. Oshun represents love, beauty, sexuality, and fertility. Besides, she is generous and very kind. Oshun was a lover of jewels and ornaments of copper that was yellow.
The goddess is one of the mightiest of all Orishas. The female deity has human attributes such as jealousy, and people portray her as a savior and protector. Oshun was involved in the creation of human beings. There was a time in which the male gods had failed in a trial to create human beings. They realized that without the female goddess, they will continue to fail in creating mankind. Oshun later aided them and upon her arrival to earth, the creation of the human species was 100%.
Apart from her life-giving powers, she can take life too when people make her angry. Also, she controlled floods that she could release on the face of the earth and destroy all the crops.
Olodumare, the Supreme god, described the female deity as the favorite of all Orishas. He favored Oshun due to her beauty.
Who is Olodumare?
Olodumare is the name the Yoruba people give to one revelation of the Supreme God. Olodumare is the ultimate Creator. The Yoruba people believe that the Supreme Creator is all-powerful and is also accountable for the making of life. The Yoruba group believes that the Supreme Being partakes in a restful life. He lets other Orishas answer to human issues via prophecy or divination.
Oshun’s Clash with Oba
This clash started when Oshun got married to Shango and she became his 2nd wife. Oba, his 3rd wife, was trying very hard to gain the affection and attention of Shango. Oshun played a trick on Oba by telling her she turned on Shango because she made special dishes for him.
Oba was extremely eager to learn from Oshun how to prepare the dish. One day, Oshun wore a cloth covering her ears and prepared a meal for Shango. Oba watched the dish (mushrooms) that resembled ears and assumed that the female deity had cut off her ears and put it in Shango’s food. Oshun pretended as if she had removed her ears, and Oba followed what she did and cut one of her ears and put it in her husband’s meal.
Shango was disgusted at the meal that Oba had prepared for him, and later Oshun removed her cloth to reveal to Oba that she had lied to her.
The relevance of Oshun.
People acknowledge that Oshun is vital when it comes to femininity. Women who want to have kids and suffer from sterility call upon the female deity to hear their prayers.