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When An Orisha Chooses You: How Do You Know & What It Means?

Orisha (Orisa/Orishas) are deities, sometimes referred to as avatars or emanations of the supreme being (Olodumare) in the Yoruba religion of West Africa, and they are believed to have extensive supernatural abilities and powers.

They are innumerable, and their number is usually given as 400 + 1 which means “infinite” or ‘without a number’. Different oral traditions refer to their number being either 400, 700 or 1,440 Orishas.

Orishas presence is not active just in Yoruba religion, but also they are essential and very present in Santeria, Hoodoo and Diloggun divination practices.

So, when an orisha deity chooses you, what does it mean? How to know when an Orisha chooses you? What should you do? Let us see everything today..

How to know when an Orisha chooses you? 7 Signs

Orishas were sent by Olodumare to help and teach humans during their time on Earth. It is said that most of these avatars and enlightened spirits first existed in the etheric realm – the realm of the spirits (Orun), and that then they came down into human bodies on the Earth as divine beings (Irunmole).

Due to the spiritual origin of their spirits (souls), they are said to have led ordinary human lives but retain their great wisdom and power, thus acting as a sort of spiritual gurus and shamans to the humans.

Thus, Orishas are seen as intermediaries between the humans and the Olodumare – the supreme being that is beyond human perception, and the constructs of time and space, as it is an omnipotent and omnipresent being that created the Universe.

So, when such an orisha chooses you or is trying to contact/work with you, how would you know?

Sign 1: First and foremost, you will be thinking about your ancestors, a lot. Even if you are adopted, or were raised in one of the monotheistic religions – you will feel called to commune with your ancestors.

Sign 2: You might also receive spirit messages through ‘random’ images you see around you, on the TV, on your daily walks or when speaking with your friends.

Sign 3: You will receive “odd” dreams, and a lot of (physically) unknown people to you might show up in your dreams carrying messages that might seem cryptic to you at that time.

Sign 4: You might also hear strange phrases and names, like Ase, Esu, Oba, Ogun, Otin or Yewa (just some of them) that are a certain sign that you’re being contacted by an Orisha, or an ancestor of yours who has become an Orisha.

Sign 5: You can experience cold feels (chills) in the area of the Crown and Third Eye chakra, respectively, and you might see either white, red or black orbs and colors in the corner of your eyes.

Sign 6: Seeing letters in the shape or form of numbers that spell certain names of the Orishas is also quite common when you are being contacted by one of the Avatars from the Yoruba tribe.

Sign 7: Also, take a look at Alusi (the Igbo pantheon), Loa, a List of Yoruba deities and West African mythology in order to check if any of the signs and names you’ve been seeing or hearing, ring a bell. This might be a potent introduction to your Orisha initiation and your journey down the ancestral path.

So, What does it mean when an Orisha chooses you?

When An Orisha Chooses You: How Do You Know & What It Means?

When an Orisha chooses you or contacts you, it means that you are called to your human purpose (here on Earth), and you need to receive divine help and guidance from the Orishas (and your ancestors).

This can be a confusing and foggy process, so it’s crucial to trust your gut and intuition to guide you on this very unfamiliar path.

Conversely, you might feel very sure of yourself and your intuition, and you might find this whole experience very easy and natural – something you’ve waited your whole life for.

Orishas are divine emanations that have been created and sent to Earth in order to help humans achieve their self-fulfillment. Thus, when an Orisha contacts you, it means that you have an important part to play, and an important job to do during your time on Earth, and you are (quite possibly) in the need for spiritual guidance, which is why an Orisha is contacting you.

It can also mean that you’ve been struggling to find your path and way in life, and you might’ve been feeling stuck and praying for help, so it could be that the ancestors have heard your manifestations, and your prayers are being answered.

Whatever the scenario is, continue forth with humbleness and respect, but also keep in mind your vital force and temper – it’s very likely that an Orisha that chooses you, will have something (very) similar to yourself. This will be a way of recognition for you to determine which Orisha has made contact with you.

When an Orisha chooses you: What to do?

when oshun chooses you

Once you are certain that you are getting closer to an Orisha, it can be a good time to get a reading from an Elder through a Bajada Ceremony, or to consult your godparents (your living grandparents, or great-grandparents). To have a Bajada Ceremony done is not an easy feat, for you’ll have to already be in some kind of Orisha community, or have your Orisha Priest.

Conversely, you can attend an Orisha Drumming and be claimed by an Orisha attending the ceremony through the human conduit present.

Before proceeding further, you should determine whether your Ori (Higher Self spirit that resides in your head trying to play out your destiny on Earth given to you by Olodumare) will “cooperate” in assigning a Head Orisha to you. Head Orisha can assist and push you in the right direction for you in this life, while protecting you from obstacles that would prevent you from fulfilling your spiritual journey.

Strengthening your connection with the Ori (your Higher Self) is the first and foremost step in getting connected with your Orisha, for if your Ori is not willing, then all ceremonies and readings concerning Orishas can be for nought.

The most famous ceremony for determining your Head Orisha is Kariocha (meaning “making ocha or santo”) – a seven-day (plus two preparatory days before the start of the ceremony) Lukumi ceremony that dedicates you to your Head Orisha.

This is an expensive ceremony, and it’s not something that can be done on a whim, so much is there to be done and explored about the Orishas before you reach the stage for Kariocha.

What you can do on your own is work on your bond with your Higher Self (Ori), venerate your ancestors and do proper and lengthy research. Even without the readings and (expensive) ceremonies, if you put energy and work into your Orisha research, you might be able to get connected with your Head Orisha and start a bountiful spiritual journey.

Itana Rakic is a certified Theta Healing practitioner, Tarot reader, Astrologer, and a Reiki Master who lives in Belgrade, Serbia. She majored in Japanese Language and Culture at the University of Belgrade and went on to write many holistic articles for various magazines and sites, including 'Witch's Review'. Itana Haos Rakic is currently writing a fantasy book that has heavy uses of Astrology, magic and the occult sciences. She loves writing and is an experienced spiritualist too.