Godchild or Client?

Sometimes I wonder if people really understand what they are getting into when they enter Orisa religion in any of its branches (Nigerian, Brazilian, Cuban, T&T, etc…)

There are so many stories out there about people who have gone for a reading with an Olorisa or Babalawo, was prescribed ebo and paid the Awo to perform the ebo. All of a sudden, this person thinks they are the godchild of that Awo. Based simply from this act, not in the least bit. There is a clear distinction between being a client and being a godchild/omorisa.

A client goes for readings when they feel an upset in their life, may do prescribed ebo if they believe in it, and may even receive Orisa objects if it comes up in a reading and the client goes so far as to receive it from the priest who divined.

A client in this sense is similar to a regular consumerist client; when I go to my accountant in the beginning of the year to file my taxes, I do not consider him to be my personal financial adviser to be there for me throughout the year; being a client is a no-strings-attached relationship.

The different traditions have different ways in which one officially becomes a godchild, but the underlying similarity is basic communication.

Has it been verbalized that a priest/godchild relationship will be formed?

Have the proper protocols been followed within that tradition to create that bond?

If not, you may be nothing more than a client in the priest’s eyes.

It’s helpful to be selective when you decide to receive readings and consultation, so that when something comes up it can be done by the person who prescribed it through divination; the trust and respect is already established if we have been selective from the beginning.

It is important to use as much care when selecting a diviner (or godparent) as it is when selecting any other professional who will do personal work on you or your belongings; doctor, psychiatrist, mechanic, plumber. Ask for referrals, have pre-divination conversations about their methods and get an overall feel of their personality and how they work. Some diviners will be put off by this stance; that’s ok…you’ll find someone else who understands and respects that you take your head seriously.

In the end, it’s just important to realize that being cleansed by someone, undergoing a ritual or ceremony, or any number of less-than-initiation rituals in the religion does not automatically create a priest/godchild relationship. Be clear and keep open lines of communication on your journey in Orisa.

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