Father Fomo de Oxala talks about the origin of Omoloko and Umbanda

According to Bai Fumo de Oxala, one of the pillars of Umbanda is the cult of Omoloko.

Omoloko is a cult that combines Yoruba (nago) rites and rites, corresponding to Catholic saints, and also brings together different African races. Many

Of his songs in Portuguese, along with other Afro languages, but with an emphasis on the Kimbundu language.

The contribution of the Sudanese peoples, particularly the Jejes (Fon; Adja) has been very valuable in defining Umbanda doctrines, such as: the act of drawing, tracing to scratch, or point to scratch has its origin in the ‘Vèvè’ ritual of the Vòdún (Jiji divinity), where each drawing represents Vòdún or Loans. Through “Vèvè” many performances are given on specific occasions. “Vèvè” is not adopted in Candomblés Jeje Mahin, but in Terreiros de Jeje Dahome this ritual is preserved.

In Africa, Vòdn priests still practice it in Benin, Togo, Ghana, the Republic of the Congo and Ivory Coast. Beyond Fodonon

The amasìn (amaci) which has become here in Brazil from the Umbanda rite, is a practice of Jeje origin, not only as a religious rite, but also as a medicine, when prepared for this purpose, with the appropriate leaves or herbs.

Senda, a deity of Jiji origin incorporated into the cult of Omoloko, was associated with Oshun, and received the affectionate code name “Mama Senda”. This designation comes from fon: sín-water, dàn-serpente, which also became known as: Mamãe Sinda da snake coral, due to its concordance with N. Sra. from Benha. Certainly due to the influence of the image of the Catholic saint, who has a snake at her feet, called the Oxum da Cobra Coral, being in fact a female voodon, nymph, half-snake, half-woman, Mami Wata.

The following poem proves that the ancient Umbanda terreiros, out of respect for this deity, sang a song with the following phrases:

“Sinda mummy, how beautiful you are,

Mama Cinda, Mama Cinda!

Mama Sinda comes in Umbanda,

Or bond Cobra Qora! “

Other Jeje attributes are used in Umbanda terreiros to this day, such as the larger beads (guides). It is still in the way of associating the headdress, with traditional and simple attire, which refers to many to the antiquity of Jeje Dahome’s ancient candomblé.

The term omoloko entitles sect is derived from the intersection of two words, from the Yoruba language, with the consensus omo (son), but the differences are in relation to the other radical, either in relation to the name itself, or in relation to its truth. the meaning. In the version by Tata Gilberto de Oxusi (Ode Caruvage), the cult of Omoloko is a religious practice, originating from the inhabitants of the Lunda region (eastern Angola) called the Kiyoko, a people with a distinctly expansive character, who began to inhabit the areas located in the springs. Two major rivers (Kaungu and Kasai).

The word Omoloko comes from the regional ethnic groups: mussurumim, lunda and kioko. All of these people profess a Bantu religious tradition and worship animals (Kiyama), mineral kingdoms (Kia Mina) and plants (Kirimu).

According to Tancredo da Silva Pinto’s version, Tata ya Nkesi, Saint Father of Candomble Angola, given in the book Culto Omoloko – Os Filhos do Terreiro, by Ornato José da Silva, the radicals would be Ọmọ: filho, and Oko: place, farm, farm Natural in rural areas, where Omoloko, due to police repression at that time, performs their rituals by ex-Africans from Luanda and Kyoko.

Omoloko is also associated with the worship of Orisha Oko (master of agriculture), which was performed by yam farmers on new moon nights. Hence the term “terreiro” or “roça” to define the Omoloko place of worship.

There are rites and cult practices in Oryxas, with settlements similar to those at Candomble, and Capocles and Pritus Philhos, who are also worshiped in Umbanda.

Omoloko is considered by scholars and practitioners as one of the main influencers in shaping the African Umbanda, along with the Candomblé de Caboclo, Cabula, and Candomblé de Nação itself.

Due to its special rituals, Omoloko had its most expressive representative, despite the strong influence of Umbanda, the late Tata Tancredo da Silva Pinto, who worked in the post office and was a resident of Morro de São Carlos. He was a major scholar of Afro-culture, columnist, and writer.

The daughter of the slaves, Lía Maria Fonseca da Costa, however, kept Omoloko separate from Umbanda, as noted in the above-mentioned work by Ornato José da Silva.

There are reports that Omoloko was founded in Rio de Janeiro by Maria Pataio, a slave born in Africa in 1797.

The Oryxa diaspora worshiping in Omoloko is the same as that used by Kandomble, and its belief system makes it different from the Umbanda, who worships them in smaller numbers and mostly in a consensual manner.

It is a mistake to define Omoloko as a mixture of Umbanda and Kandomble, as one explanation reveals that the term Omoloko is related to the areas once ruled by King Varma in the Sierra Leonean hinterland. His city was called Lokoja and was located on the banks of the Metombo River, a tributary of the Benue River, which in turn is a tributary of the mighty Niger River. Locojá was close to the Yoruba kingdom.

The Loko people were also known by the names of the lakes, lândogo and sosô. The name Locô was first recorded in 1606. There is also a record of these people with the name loguro. The Loko tribe was divided into smaller tribes along the Metombo, Benue and Niger rivers and on the coast of Sierra Leone. In 1664, King Varma’s son was baptized as Dr. It turns out that syncretism among Afro-Catholics was already taking place in Africa before the arrival of Africans in Brazil. It is believed that the Loco tribe belonged to a larger group called the Mani and that some of its members came to Brazil as slaves and formed the Omoloko tribe.

The Mani peoples used to use poisoned arrows, short bows, short and broad swords, spears, arrows, and knives that they carried tied under their arms. To combat the poison of their arrows, in the event of an accident, they used a small bag with an antidote. They warn their enemies on the day they will attack with hay – a lot of hay, for several days to attack. They wore gold and silver chains on their arms and legs. They were also associated with the whites who conquered black Africa. They worshiped settlements of deities and wooden idols that represented man and animals. When they did not win wars, they whipped idols. If they were victorious in battles, they would provide the gods with food and drink. They called women cabondos and were distinguished by the absence of two front teeth.

Although there are doubts about the role of Maria Pataio in the creation of Omoloko, scholars confirm its beginnings in Rio de Janeiro, in the nineteenth century, from the knowledge that blacks brought from Africa and their descendants, after being influenced by various religious aspects, mostly the cult of Orixás and Nkisis, which made Their worship is peculiar, which has preserved the cosmology of every origin, as well as contemporary religious rituals, such as French animism.

Béèrè ìbùkún ti àwọn àgbagbà Àfìrìká ti Brazil!

(Blessed of Brazil’s African ancestors!)


Bai Fomo de Oxala runs Kwe Esìn Lissá at Rio Das Ostras/RJ, a researcher in African culture.

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