Make your own Igba Ori

August 2, 2013 by
Filed under: Rituals and practice 


The House of the Head

Ilé OriMy Omolet Brenda Beek, who not only looks slightly better than her Blabla but is also the more creative of us two, will as a good Independent Practitioner be making her own Igba Ori, which for us exiles here in The Netherlands prompts questions like “Where can I get a few kilos of cowrie shells for a decent price?” and “Does anybody have a clue what the basic construction usually is made of?” An Igba Ori, by the way, is also called Ilé Ori although, due to many different languages, colloquialisms and lineages, I am not sure if the concepts are always exactly the same. Anyway, the Igba Ori is the physical representation of the metaphysical Ori. On the picture you see one from Nigeria.

When you look at the impressive piece of home crafts, it’s clear that it will be, as Brenda says, “quite a challenge to get it done 😉 one for Jaap, one for me; but I will succeed ;-)”! Well, I’m pretty sure she will!

Now if you want to make a container, it reasonably should contain something (grin)! So the next (and quite sensible!) questions was: “Brenda, do you know what goes inside the Igba Ori?” The faithful Omolet, who just like her Blabla feels no obligation to follow any particular tradition that was developed by other cultures in other times in other countries (in fact we are generally forbidden by Ifa to do so!) simply (Please become a member and/or log in to view this article.)


9 Comments on Make your own Igba Ori

  1. aguirre.francisco on Sat, 3rd Aug 2013 12:58
  2. Alafia, I found looking on the Folk.cuba web site cowrie shells by the bags. I bought one bag and it had 200 cowries at an affortable price. They also sell the igba Ori.

  3. Beek Brenda on Sat, 3rd Aug 2013 20:06
  4. Hi Francisco, thank you for the cowrie tip… However, making the thing yourself is what it is all about in being Independent 😉 like I also wrote in lesson 9 – part 2 about making objects yourself!

  5. Nanette Furman on Sun, 4th Aug 2013 00:44
  6. Interesting. I make odd things, but not the tools I use for divination- somehow, those end up being gifted to me. So I go with the flow and don’t worry about it. Oddly, often, by my husband – who has no interest in what I do, really. Universe, you are one odd duck 🙂

  7. Beek Brenda on Sun, 4th Aug 2013 10:34
  8. LOL 😉 it pretty dang sure is an odd duck 😉

  9. Awo Fajumobi on Sun, 11th Aug 2013 00:02
  10. Hello everyone, I want to ask what really goes in a Igba Ori? I’ve made Ori pot before. Basically it was a pot with dirt and a piece of wood with the Odu that accompanied it from its ita. Is this anything like the foundation of an Igba Odu?

  11. Jaap Verduijn on Mon, 12th Aug 2013 09:54
  12. Greetings Awo Fajumobi! The Ori pot and the Odu pot are different things. I don’t know what the latter is supposed to contain, other than that some of the stuff involved is mud, charcoal, red camwood powder (irosun), chalk, and various other ingredients.

    First and foremost you should bear in mind that I am not in the Yoruba/Orunmila tradition, a system that, after having studied it for years, I have largely left behind me – not because I don’t respect it, but simply because it’s a localized sub-system of Ifa (AKA “All That Is”) which, like f’rinstance the Nigerian palm tree, wouldn’t grow well in the totally different Dutch environment. So I planted my own tree here… one that does manage to flourish far away from the Nigerian rain forests ;-)!

    As for the Igba Ori (and just about everything else!), when Brenda and I get around to making them, we will simply ask Ifa what to put in… that’s what divination is for: when in doubt, divine!

  13. Awo Fajumobi on Tue, 13th Aug 2013 05:23
  14. Ase! Thank you for clearing that up for me Jaap. Your absolutely right, when in doubt, divine .

  15. famuwagun on Tue, 29th Oct 2013 18:04
  16. It has always befuddled me, as to why there is a need for an Ori pot
    My Ori is on my body
    I clean it by limiting bad thoughts and washing it by the sea or river with limes and other ingredients .
    If divination mandates another approach
    I try my best to adhere
    The best sacrifice to Ori is to stay calm, mind your own business and give praises to Ori

  17. Jaap Verduijn on Wed, 30th Oct 2013 14:44
  18. Greetings Famuwagun! I can’t find you on Facebook, there are many Famuwaguns there and it’s hard to figure out which one might be you 😉 ! So please send me a friends request at so I can add you to our “Palaver House” group! And… welcome, of course!