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Oya

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$3.99
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Product Description

In Yoruba mythology, Oya (Alternative spellings: Oiá, Iansã, Iansan), is the Undergoddess of the Niger River. Oya has been syncretized in Santería with the Catholic images of the Virgin of Candelaria.  She is seen in aspects as the warrior-spirit of the wind, lightning, fertility, fire, and magic. She creates hurricanes and tornadoes, and guards the underworld.[1] She is the spirit of tornadoes (which are said to be her whirling skirts as she dances), lightning (the power of which she acquired from her husband, Shango), earthquakes, and any kind of destruction. Beyond destruction, Oya is the spirit of change, transition, and the chaos that often brings it about. Her association with the marketplace, and more specifically with the gates of cemeteries (as opposed to the entire underworld), reveals her in her aspect as facilitator of transition. Oyá, when danced, often has a horse tail. Her clothes have all the colors but black. She has a face expression of really big and open eyes, and she breathes and blows up her chins, and often screams.

Oya's close association with the passage from life into death also means she is one of the few Orishas which are worshiped alongside the Egun ancestors, whose cult is most often distinct from that of the Orishas. In the stories of the faith, she can transform herself into a water buffalo. One of her preferred offerings is the eggplant.


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