08/09/2010

The Secret Abundance of Slander




The bad and the good walks hand in hand, they are bedfellows and intimate companions. Where you find the curses coiling you will find blessings blazing. Sometimes the world is like a tug of war between extreme points just to maintain equilibrium and it is in this space of personal opinion, faulty thought and foul emotional odors directed against the objects of envy great blessings are born and made fruitful. Envy that takes the shape of resentment, gossip and the whole array of the works of ‘the evil eye’ tells you that you are noticed. The crawlers reveling in dung and sewage are there to do their work, to fertilize the ground you walk. So, bless your opponents and greet them with awe and joy! They are the earth of your fire, your air and your water. They make the triune harmony. This is a mystery so great, because when slander is directed towards us our reaction is aggressive, it is a reaction we give towards any intruder and vermin, we want to see it perish, not knowing that its nature is to fertilize – and then to perish. It is their natural cycle.

This teaching is found in Ifá, in the odú Ogbè´túrá, an odu that incarnates the divine light through human vessels, often known as prophets. And with prophets I do mean the same as we find in the idea of Malakim, messengers of the One. Ifá speaks here of the secret nature of Otúrá, which is of honey. The ofo ase of the verse tells us:

Ègàn ò pé kóyin má dùn


Meaning:
But ridicule cannot remove the sweetness from honey

The word ègàn is quite interesting in this regard as is can refer to downright contempt but also a state of virginal immaturity which is equaled with the forest being too thick for you to discern what is what. Ègà, a connected word means weaverbird, which in a symbolic sense would indicate a deception of grave dimensions, where you are made into an object for a network of deceit and lies, the network being patiently being laid around you. I find it beautiful; because any slander or attack aimed against someone who manifests the principles of Otúrá will be born from immaturity, no matter how grave the deceit turns out to be. The words of Our Lord when he hung on the cross come to mind: forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.

Not only this, but often slander and envy affirms the righteousness of the foot – or of course the other, as good and bad goes hand in hand. We know if our oppressors hates us because we do good or bad by the nature of our aspirations.

As the same Odù tells us:
Enití ò bá sí féràn ìwà oore síse pàápàá fún àwon aláìní yè ní ìdùnú

Meaning:

Whoever cultivates good habits and do good deeds, in particular for those in need will never lack happiness

So, the reference to honey is a reminder of good character, of ones own generosity and empathy. Good character always provokes and manifests antagonism and like uncanny bedfellows the good and bad draws upon each other, the bad as fertilizer for the good. And herein is found mystery upon mystery…