This post is being re-addressed from the original Guardian Orisa as a former godsister pointed out there are some key points missing that she felt would have been more helpful. As an additional updated note, witnessing her experience is why I feel this information is imperative to understand. People must be prepared and you will see people walk away from tradition when they are not read for the Orisa they thought they were a child of.
# 1: This post will be readily dismissed and disregarded. The temptation to play the “Name the Head” game will significantly outweigh any discussion presented other than more guesses as to who a person’s guardian orisa is.
# 2: Until you are crowned your guardian orisa is Obatala. Period.
# 3: In our lineage, the way that guardian orisas are determined are via Ifa with several babalawos (more than just one). I believe this helps ensure accuracy as well as provides official witnesses.
# 4: If you do get your heart set on being an omo (insert orisa name here), you must absolutely be open to receiving that you are not an omo (insert orisa name here). Your ori accepted a particular orisa before you left Orun (heaven). When your feet touched the ground you forgot, but this is all intertwined with destiny and what you returned to the Earth to do. The orisa your ori accepted/selected will lead you to your highest level of enlightenment. You may shop around until you receive the orisa you want, but you will never reach your full potential.
# 5: After knowing the actual guardian orisa and it was not expected, the most important step is to study and learn more about the orisa. Always fail at being inflexible, no one knows everything for as much as is known about orisa. There are patakis (stories or parables) that can give significant insight to the orisa’s behavior, character and interaction between other orisa.
Before my guardian orisa was determined to be Osossi, Obatala stood up for me on all but one of the many readings I have had over the years. It is patakis like Obatala Chooses His Helpers that help me to overstand my relationship with Obatala as a child of Osossi. It helped me accept that I am not a child of Obatala (as I desired) but there is an intimate relationship between Osossi and Obatala, and He is still just as close in my heart.
# 6: Decide before you go your true level of commitment. If you are told an orisa you did not want is your guardian orisa will you lose faith, and be honest with yourself about it. If, honestly, faith will be lost, don’t have the ceremony. Stay where you are and continue to learn and be content with that. There is no sin in saying “I’m not ready.” If anything, it shows maturity.
# 7: Your interests, jobs, behaviors are not a definitive indicator. In other words, you may like growing vegetables, being a blacksmith, hanging out in cemeteries, performing surgeries, but it doesn’t mean that you are the child of the orisa that governs those activities. Painting peacocks on your nails and wearing only yellow will not make you a daughter of Oshun/Osun no matter how strong the desire.
# 8: Focus on work: Developing and enhancing relationship with Egun, working with Egun; develop and work with Warriors, work as much as you can during ceremonies even if it is just sweeping the floors, learn baths, learn herbs/ewe, learn additional prayers/iwure, establish daily ritual, navigate four day prayer cycle, learn all the orisa and where to find them in nature (they don’t have to be in a sopera for you to go to them), learn songs for Egun and the orisa, etc., etc., etc.. If your ile/house is having a ceremony and your backside is in a seat, go back to # 6 and re-read it carefully.
There is so much to do and learn, that if you are stuck on one issue you will end up missing the forest for all the trees. In the process of experiencing the journey, you may find yourself further enriched than you thought.