Wednesday, November 23, 2011



Traditional Colors: Purple, reds, oranges and black

Number: 9 (she is called the “mother of nine”)

Areas of Influence: Storms, wind, lightning, tornadoes, death and the cemetery, the marketplace and business, change, witchcraft, athletics

Entities associated with: St. Theresa

Symbols: Lightning bolts, tornadoes, graves, masks

Offerings: Eggplant, red wine, tobacco, plums and purple grapes, legumes

Feast Day: February 2nd

Astrology: Signs of Scorpio and Capricorn

Tarot: The Wheel of Fortune card, Ace of Swords, Page or knight (Princess and Prince in Thoth deck) of swords

Chakra: Third Eye

Gemstones: Amethyst, garnets, black opals, labradorite

Animals: Birds in general but especially sparrows and purple martins, Insects in general but especially fireflies and dragonflies, bats, deer and water buffalo

From: here
Our Lady of the Presentation of Our Lord. (Santa Virgen de la Candelaria) and St. Theresa.
Day of the Week: Wednesday. Friday is also popular.
Colors and Collars (Ilekes):
Black and white. The collar is made up of nine black beads followed by nine white beads. Then a black bead alternates with a white bead nine times. The pattern is repeated to the desired length. A variant is a collar made of brown beads striped in a variety of colors or lilac or maroon beads striped with colors.
Sacrificial Animals:
Chickens and guinea hens. Some hold that Oya does not eat any four legged animals, but others say that she likes female goats.
Sacrificial Foods:
Ekru-Aro (black-eyed peas unpeeled and cooked in a double boiler. Her favorite fruit is the star apple. Oya loves eggplant. All of her food should be liberally laced with corojo butter. She drinks chequete. Her water should be rain water.
espanta muerto, bonita, varia, palo rayo, cabo de hacha, revienta caballo, Peppercress, marigold, plantain, Jamaican rosewood, mimosa, mugwort, aralia, camphor, breakax, cypress, flamboyan tree.
Oya wears a crown with nine points from which hang nine charms; a hoe, a pick, a gourd, a lightning bolt, a scythe, a shovel, a rake, an ax, and a mattock.

A spear or a metal rendition of a lightning bolt. A red gourd. The dried seed pod of the flamboyan tree. She also wears nine copper bracelets.


Many years ago, Chango was embroiled in one of his unending wars. He had fought for many days and killed many of his enemies, but, more came than he could kill. He found himself surrounded by his enemies in the middle of the forest.

"Enchile," he shouted, but his famous magical horse had become lost during the fighting. Chango was afraid to yell again. He might be found. He heard his enemies beating the bushes and shaking the trees to find him. If they did, they would kill him.

Without Echinle, Chango had to scurry through gullies and cover himself in river mud to hide from his enemies. Days passed. His implacable enemies did not rest. They did not eat. Chango, tired and hurt, had to keep on running without sleep and without food.

He ran and he ran until he reached the place where Oya lived. It was very deep in the woods. Very few people there knew that Oya was Chango's wife.

Chango came to Oya's house and pounded on the door. She opened it and saw Chango bruised, cut and panting.

"What has happened to you?" cried Oya.

"Oya, they have me surrounded," panted Chango. "They want to hang me from a tree."

"Come in, quick." said Oya, hustling Chango into her house.

"My lightning is not effective against my enemies today," He told Oya.

"That's because you lack the courage to fight," she scolded. Oya gave him water and a bite to eat.

"It's not courage I lack," said Chango. "I'm very tired."

"What do you want from me?" asked Oya.

"If I could escape my enemies' deadly circle, I could rest and sleep." said Chango. "I would recover my strength and destroy my enemies."

"Why is it that you only come to see me when you need help?" asked Oya.

In those ancient times, Chango was used to fighting by himself, but he swallowed his pride.

"Help me, Oya."

Oya thought for a moment and then turned to her husband.

"When night falls," she said. "You will put on one of my dresses. The disguise will let you escape."

"They will still recognize my face," said Chango.

"I will cut off my hair and put it on your head. That will complete the disguise." said Oya. "I will cut off my hair to save my king's life."

They waited until night. Oya lit no fire. She was afraid that the smoke from her chimney would be noticed by Chango's enemies and draw them to the house. When the sun had gone down, but before the moon had risen, Oya cut off her beautiful hair and pinned it to Chango's head. Chango did not know what to do with woman's hair. It fell across his eyes. It tangled in his ears. Oya had him sit down and wove the hair into two long braids.

"Here's a dress," she said. "Put it on quickly, before the moon comes up."

Chango managed to tangle himself up in Oya's dress. "Stand still," she said. "Just stand still and let me dress you."

Finally, Chango was dressed as a passable imitation of Oya. She went to the door and peered out.

"Hurry," she said. "There's no one around."

Chango stepped outside, imitating Oya's dignified walk. He walked until he reached the forest and came across the line of searching men. He greeted his enemies with an imperious tilt of his head and crossed their line. He did not speak to them because his voice is very deep. It would have given him away.

This is the way Chango was able to escape his enemies' trap.

Once he was far away from the forest, he made camp. He rested and slept and ate and regained his strength and his will to fight.

Echinle managed to find his way back to his master. Chango fed him and groomed him.

A few days later, rested and healed, Chango mounted Echinle.

"It is time to kill," said Chango to his horse, and galloped off to find his enemies.

it was dawn when he reached his enemies' camp. He came rushing at them. His fury was terrible to behold. Lightning flashed from his hands. He shouted wild warrior cries. He was still dressed as a woman.

"Oya has turned into Chango," his enemies shouted when they saw the screaming apparition bearing down upon them, long hair flying and a gown flapping in the wind. They panicked.

Behind them, Oya came striding out of her house, fully armed, and began hacking right and left with her ax. Her short hair bristled and shot out electric sparks.

"If Oya helps Chango, there is victory," she shouted, cutting off arms and legs.

Chango and Oya were victorious. Since that battle, Oya has been Chango's inseparable companion in war. With Chango's thunder and Oya's storms, they are invincible and remain so to this day.


Oya is the only Orisha that has power over the dead. Since she is a compassionate Orisha, she has allowed many dying children to live as a gift to their parents. Cemeteries are known as "ile yansan", Oya's house. Anyone who uses dead bodies or parts of dead bodies in their ceremonies, must render payment and homage to Oya.

Whenever there is a haunting, Oya is summoned to dismiss the spirit. Sacrifices must be made to ensure that she takes an interest in the matter.

Oya is the Orisha of tornadoes and twisting storms, hurricanes and gales. The four winds are dominated by Elegua, Orunmila, Obatala and Oya.

Oya has such a terrible face that anyone looking on it will be stricken mad or blind. In ceremonies where Oya descends, no one looks upon her. When she possesses someone, she puts on a red crepe dress or a flowered dress and weaves multicolored ribbons around her head. She only dances warrior dances. When her "children" enter trance, some of them can handle live coals with their bare hands.

From: here
Oyá - santo of graveyard gates

Many consider Oyá as Changó's match when it comes to strength and temper, and in the myths the two are often out at war together.

Natural elements
Oyá rules over the storms and the rough weather which often hit Cuba. She takes care of all graveyard gates and makes sure the dead stay where they are meant to. In addition, she has a brighter side as the santo in charge of the rainbow and all its beautiful colours.

Personality traits
This santo of storms is not only responsible for weather changes, but also for the changing moods of most people.

Catholic saint and day of celebration
Oyá is associated with the Catholic saint Santa Teresa. Oyá is celebrated on 15 October.

Dwelling place
As responsible for graveyard gates, that is where she will be most of the time, unless she is out flying with the storms. At home among her followers, on the other hand, she lives in a tureen painted in all the colours of the rainbow.

Oyá wants aubergines from her devotees and is fond of colourful materials and silk ribbons.

Personality traits of initiates of Oyá
The sons and daughters of Oyá are known for changing moods as abruptly as their mother and the stormy weather she dominates. They are often powerful and may seem to be violent. At the same time you will never find anyone as loyal and as jealous as Oyá's children.

Usual restrictions for initiates of Oyá
Initiates of Oyá should avoid eating aubergines, which should be saved for the day when you really need her help. Moreover, you should watch out for churchyards, as the dead may come down on you.

Though her colours are those of the rainbow, her necklace consists of a series of nine brown and nine wine-coloured pearls, the latter with white and black stripes.

From: here
NAME: Oya, Oya-Ajere, Ayaba Nikua, Queen of Death, Lady of the Wind, Goddess of the Nine Skirts, Lady of War, Carrier of the Container of Fire. Bearded Amazon, Thunder Maiden, Iya Yansan "Mother of Nine," Ayi Lo Da "She Who Turns & Changes," Oia, Yansa, Yansan, Olla, Aido-Wedo,

AREA OF CONTROL: Change, Chaos, Transformation, Wind & Storm (though she must get her mother Yemaya's permission before she can create a hurricane,) the Marketplace, Women's power. the Gates of Death. She brings the first breath of new borns and takes the last breath of the dieing to the Gates of Death, the Graveyard, the dead can not be raised without her. The Harmattan Wind & Haze, a dry and dusty wind blowing northeast and west off the Sahara into the Gulf of Guinea between November and March (winter,) that like the Santa Ana wind in California is blamed for frayed nerves, and other unpleasantness.

SYMBOLS: The Niger river and it's 9 tributaries, the number 9, Machete or Sword, Multi-colored skirt which she fans and brings the winds, Crown of Copper with nine with 9 charms, a hoe, a pick, a gourd, a lightning bolt, a scythe, a shovel, a rake, an ax, and a mattock. A spear or a metal rendition of a lightning bolt (which is central to the altar of Oya,) Wind, Storms, Hurricanes, Tornadoes, Thunderbolts, Water Buffalo, Buffalo Horns, Flywhisk. Weather Vanes, Kites, Balloons, Pinwheels (9 or placed around her alter,) the Amazon River in Brazil.

COLORS: Red, Purple, Burnt Orange, Brown, Burgundy, Copper, Maroon, Aubergine (dark purple,) Plum.

USUAL IMAGE: Striking black women, sometimes shown bare from the waste up cupping her breasts, sometime show with a beard.

HOLY DAYS: November 25th, Feast of Oya.

RELATIVES: Yemaya the Great Sea Mother (mother,) Shango Storm God ( either husband and/or brother.) Egungun (son, along with 3 sets of twins who are her other children.)

OFFERINGS: Eggplants, Coins, Chocolate Pudding, Fine Cloth in her 9 colors, Red Wind, Star Fruit, Dark grapes, Black Chickens, Rice, Black Beans (cooked in a doublt boiler.) Rain Water.

All her food should be liberally laced with cocoa butter.

TABOOS: Palm kernel oil, Offerings of Ram (which make her particularly angry.) or Pork. Some say Oya does not eat any four legged animals, but others say that she likes an offering of female goat.

From: here
Oya is the powerful Yoruban Orisha of the winds and tempests. She is considered either the sister of the storm-god Shango, or one of His three wives, with Oshun and Oba. She can manifest as winds ranging from the gentlest breeze to the raging hurricane or cyclone. She goes forth with Her husband during His thunderstorms, destroying buildings, ripping up trees, and blowing things down. Oya is known as a fierce warrior and strong protectress of women, who call on Her to settle disputes in their favor.

As the goddess of change, She brings down the dead wood to make room for the new, and She uses Her machete or sword to clear a path for new growth. She is believed to watch over the newly dead and assist them as they make the transition from life. She is equated with the Vodoun lwa Maman Brijit, who, like Oya, guards graveyards.

Oya is the goddess of the Niger River, and Her violent rainstorms are said to be its source. Like Oshun, She is worshipped not only in Africa but in Brazil, where the Amazon is said to be Her river, and where She is equated with the Virgin Mary as Our Lady of La Candelaria. Oya, who is a goddess of a very fiery demeanor, also seems to have a far-flung connection with the Celtic Bride or Bridgit, both in Her Vodoun counterpart Maman Brijit, and in Her associated Catholic saint, Our Lady of La Candelaria, whose feast day, February 2nd, is shared with Bride.

Oya's attributes are the sword or machete and the flywhisk, and Her animal is the water buffalo, in whom She sometimes manifests. Her mother is said to be Yemaya, the Great Sea Mother. Oya Herself is said to be the mother of nine children--Egungun and four sets of twins.

Her number is nine, Her color is burgundy or purple, and Her metal is copper. Offerings to Oya include eggplants, coins, red wine, and cloth.

Alternate names: Oya-ajere "Carrier of the Container of Fire", Ayaba Nikua "Queen of Death", Iya Yansan "Mother of Nine", Ayi Lo Da "She Who Turns and Changes", Oia, Yansa, Yansan.

From: here
Oya is the orisha or storms and changes. She is a much feared orisha due to her powers as she can create a storm so powerful that she can destroy towns upon towns. The winds, tornadoes and lighting are at her every command. Oya also known as Xansa, Oya Yansa (Mother of Nine) was the wife of Ogun before Chango took her away from him. Oya is said to be a lovely tall amazonic woman who is dressed in a wine color dress with a belt that holds a grass skirt with 9 different color cloths. Oya is also the owner of the market place where she would go and sell her goods to maintain her children. Oya's main home or domain is the cemetery. Now a lot of people say or believe that she is the owner of the cemetery. That's all not true. Oya is the gatekeeper. She stands at the cemetery gates and she lets the dead into the cemetery where her sisters Obba and Yewa tends to the body.

Oya is a great warrior who loves to go to battle alongside her husband Chango. Stories say the Oya would put on a pair of pants and grow a beard just to fight like a man at war. Oya has a younger sister named Ayao who is the orisha that resides in the clouds in the sky. It is Ayao that gives her sister Oya the ability to take the spirits of the dead to go fight alongside her which makes up her powerful army.

Oya has brought down many men, many towns and many lands. But as a warrior she protects her children with a strong look and with her destruction she brings changes. Whenever there is a storm that brings destruction, change is needed to rebuild. Sometimes the land is expanded for new homes or new business. That's Oya. She has helped all the orishas in one time or another. As well she has feuded with the orishas at one time or another. Oya is the one that convinced Obba to cut her ear to feed to Chango. Oya is the one that brought down Osain’s gourd where he kept most of his secrets of the herbs.

She also had a feud with her sister Yemaya in which she does not eat ram anymore. At one time she did but due to that disagreement she doesn’t anymore. Let me clear something. Oya and Yemaya are not enemies. The only dilemma between them is the ram. It is said that one day Chango was eating with his mother Yemaya and Oya and with his court and Oya saw that he was giving all of his attention to his mother and Oya became very jealous. Oya saw that Chango gave his mother Yemaya first bite of the ram and since that day, Oya said she will never eat it again. One of Oya’s characteristics is the wind that causes hurricanes. Hurricanes come off the coast of Africa where her town is and logically, a hurricane needs the assistance and strength of the ocean to come on shore to bring change.


From: here
Other sites:
Oya & Oya, Lady of Storms
Some info


  1. Hey I love what you did here... I need you in more info on oya... My mail... thanks will really wanna hear from you

  2. Thank you for the info. I have been drawn to Gooddess Oya. I would love some more info on her, please email me at :

  3. I will love more info on her. On cooking her food what's the best day to serve her. I'm new starting out as well setting up alter for her. Thank you so much

    1. orisha oya's day is wednesday and saturday she likes dark fruit her favorite colors are dark not black she looooove brown and burgundy especially she likes red wine, beer, cloth, she likes things that the wind can affect like ribon tied to crosses -SHE LOVES CROSSES- if you can put her outside she will be very happy on wed and saturday use these days for meditation and pay attention to what the wind is doing she also deals with insects they give you an idea of how she works they are very militant they speak through vibration -killing them is giving her sacrifices in my opinion like some kill chickens for Elegba- basically only sacrifice an animal if it helps the community or your family like you plan to eat it.If you are giving her food give what you can she is very practical and talk to her about business ideas she loves people that like to think about the changes they want for their life.

      sprinkle cayenne on her shrine to give it an extra spark it will remind her of shango also that is a herb for him but you can put cayenne in shrines and spell work to make them stronger.

      febuary 2nd is her feast day I believe and she is like a stern big sister she's very friendly but think about a scorpio or capricorn archetype she will test you and find interesting ways to warn, prepare you about things.

      another thing if you make a shrine for her and you start noticing strange insects I ant you to write down the description of that insect she is the mother of 9 shango her and Elegba make 3 6 9 Good luck thats all she wanted me to say :)

    2. oh she also LOVE DARK CHOCOLATE especially with like cherries and elegant type things she has a very sexy feminine energy very graceful and fierce

  4. This is great but a few things are wither incorrwct or misunderstood. I am Omo (child of) Oya as confirmed through divination through my ceremony. I was told I could NOT wear black for this reason. Oya owns all colors except for black. One reason I was told this is because she worls closely with the eggun and black is reserved for them. Also, I'm not sure any pataki says Yemaya (Yemoja)is her sister. Perhaps water sisters because at one time in Nigeria Oya was said to at one time own the rivers. If Yemoja is her sister then Shango is her nephew and that's weird. Lol. Maybe double check that story again. Thanks for posting!

  5. I am so to see the correct knowledge of Oya is posted. No matter how much you dig into the Orishas, only the children of the Orishas possess the true KEY to their mother and the other Orishas. People post things like this article who desires knowledge and get it, without wisdom. Secrets can never
    be tricked out of any believer. Upon giving their knowledge a main ingredient is always mistakenly left out or misused t thrown off false worshippers.

    1. There are people that want to get closer to these spirits/frequencies, instead of chastising people that want to help children of melanin or just people that feel called to know more, why not share or make it easier, if they are not serious they will stop digging and find a new fad.

      Not everyone is able to find people that are "Certified/initiated" I understand not everyone deserves to know but the orisha,lwa are not stupid and their are laws to abide by so if they misuse the gifts of knowledge they will be handled but that is also something people should have access to learning.

      Why not help instead of look down on others? Do you need money to help another? Does spirit not encourage you to heal others. Is that what this religion is to you?

  6. Very informative intro would live to more about Oya

  7. Thank you for sharing. There is so little info and

    1. Iam a child of oya, iam glad and proud of who Iam

    2. How it going for you... I I foundbshe is my head

  8. Is bgreat to learn knowledge about the yoruba orisha's what confuses me is there colors every time you hear a different 1 but hood information being that iam a chango son is kind of romantic they have each other's back

  9. Would love to hear more about shango ,chango macho BABY KING OUTLAW730

  10. What does Shango eat? not a story

  11. Awesome write-up! Thanks very much for sharing this truth about Oya! May Eledua, Orunmila, Obatala, and Oya continue protecting and prospering us!

    Àşę! 🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽