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African Traditional Religion : Santeria herbs and Orisha

Discussion in 'African Traditional Religion Study Group' started by awo dino, Feb 17, 2010.

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  1. awo dino

    awo dino Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    The following Herbs most commonly associated with the major Orishas in Santeria or Lucumi. The Herbs are listed in Spanish because that is how they are known in botanicas. Botanicas specialize in herbs of Santeria, most of which they sell fresh.

    Eleggua: grama de caballo, lengua de vaca, espartillo, abre camino, pastillo, yerba fina, hedionda, itamo real, meloncillo, albahaca, pata de gallina, llamao.

    Oggun: cana santa, pata de gallina, yerba de sangre, yerba mora, pegojo, hueso de gallo, adormidera, siempreviva, anamu, romerillo, amanza guapo, albahaca morada, palo manaju, ebano, quita maldicion, salvadera.

    Chango y Aganyu: beldo punzo, moco de pavo, zarzaparrilla, paraiso, alamo, jobo, almacigo, granada, mamey, rompe zaraguey, ruda.

    Obatala: bledo de clavo, sauco, campana, algodon, aguinaldo blanco, higuerete, almendro, guanabana, jugua blanca, malva.

    Yemaya/Olokun y Ochun: malva te, lechuga, lechuguilla, yerba anil, verbena, prodigiosa, helecho, floe de aqua, berro, yerba buena, albahaca morada, guama, guasima, boto de oro, yerba de la nina, colonia, marilope, panetela, huevo de gallo, guacamaya, yerba mora, diez de dia, palo canela.

    Oya: yerba garro, baria, mazorquilla, yuca, ciruela, palo caja, cabo de hacha, caimitillo, caimito, flamboyan, geranio, guara, maravilla.

    Babalu-Aye / Nana bukken: Cundiamor, zalgazo, zazafran, alacrancillo, escoba, apasote, pinon botijo, caisimon, tapa camino, salvia.


    The herbal baths called despojos are said to have the special ashe of the various Orishas. The combination of herbs brings about the "chemical reaction" necessary to improve an individual's life. Santeros believe that the herbs are divided into two groups, the sweet and the bitter. These denomination do not have anything to do with taste, but with spiritual vibrations. Sweet herbs are uaed for attracting good luck, love, money, and prosperity. Bitter herbs are used to dispel evil and negative energies. Sweet and Bitter herbs should not be mixed, as they nullify each other's vibrations. Following is a small list of sweet herbs and bitter herbs.
    Sweet Herbs: Bitter Herbs:
    manzanilla rompezaraquey
    colonia abre camino
    yerba buena apasote
    mejorana anamu
    yerba luisa escoba amarga
    altamisa jobo
    maravilla alamo
    berro tartago
    albahaca ruda
    salvia arrasa con todo
    siempreviva yerba bruja
    menta hedionda
    verbena cortadera
    mirto pata de gallina
    prodigiosa espartilla
    boton de oro lengua de vaca
    paraiso romerillo
    llamao zarzaparrilla
    salvadera
    quita maldicion


    Any combination of 3, 5, 7, or 9 bitter herbs boiled in several quarts of water make an excellent bath to destroy evil. At least three baths should be taken (on three consecutive nights). It is advisable to add some holy water to each bath every night after the herbal decoction has been boiled, strain and cooled. santeros recommend lighting a white candle in honor of the person's guardian angel after taking the bath.

    Sweet herbs should only be used after the bitter herbs, again 3, 5, 7, or 9 herbs are recommended, and an equal number of baths, although in some instances only one bath is necessary. The sweet baths are also prepared with holy water, and santeros recommend the addition of honey, cinnamon, and some perfume - either the person's favorite fragrance or Locion Pompeya or Kolonia 1800, the staple perfumes of santeria. It is always better to consult a santero to determine which are the best baths for each person, as there are some people who do not need the bitter herbs and others who should avoid the sweet herbs until their bodies are thoroughly cleansed of negative vibrations. Following are some of the specific baths of the most popular Orishas.

    Elegua: Escoba amargs, guairo, altamisa, canutillo, blanco, yerba buena, cimmarrona, abrajo
    (this powerful bath combines both bitter and sweet herbs to underline Elegua's dual force).

    Obatala: cascarilla, campana blanca, algodon, white flowers (no thorns), anon guanabana, prodigiosa, higuereta blanca, bledo blanco, colonia, verdolaga, yagruma, paraiso, vergonzoza, jaguey, caracolillo blanco.

    Chango: Pinon, almacigo, ponasi, tres marias, algodon, alamo, ruda, apasote, peonia, granada.

    Oggun: Salvadera, Amanza guapo, yerba quimbisa, pata de gallina, malva cochinera.

    Aganyu: Iroko (ceiba), algarrobo, lino de monte, guairo, santo jaguey.

    Babalu-Aye y Nana Bukken: Pata de gallina, escoba amarga, yerba sangre, guano real, cordovan, guira, malva te, albahaca morada, cundiamor.

    Yemaya / Olokun: Canutillo blanco, lechuguin, mejorana, altamisa, mazorquilla, floe de aqua, malanguilla, yerba buena.

    Ochun: Sauco amarillo, boton de oro, girasol, guacamaya, guano del rio, paraiso, ciruela, canitel, helecho, caracolillo.

    Oya: Malanguilla, caimito, llagruma, hoja de palo ramon, algarrobo de mar, higuereta morada, cordovan, flamboyan, maravilla.
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  2. awo dino

    awo dino Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Snap. the sweet and bitter got mixed together - they were in separate columns. Let me divide 'em up.
  3. awo dino

    awo dino Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Here are the bitter herbs. You can eliminate the m from the original list and derive the sweet ones.

    rompezaraquey
    abre camino
    apasote
    anamu
    escoba amarga
    jobo
    alamo
    tartago
    ruda
    arrasa con todo
    yerba bruja
    hedionda
    cortadera
    pata de gallina
    espartilla
    lengua de vaca
    romerillo
    zarzaparrilla
    salvadera
    quita maldicion
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  4. Corvo

    Corvo navigator of live MEMBER

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    Thanks brother I only knew of some of these
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