Over the past fifteen years there has been a burgeoning desire by Òrìsà devotees to deepen their understanding of Yorùbá religious ethos and culture. There is a growing demand for short-term travel to Yorùbáland to study and explore the diverse and rich culture of their spiritual ancestors. While some undertake this trip on their own, others find traveling with other Òrìsà practitioners very attractive. OCDC’s Journey to Yorùbáland is uniquely tailored to meet this demand for group travel, thus making Yorùbáland accessible to millions of practitioners in the U.S., the Caribbean and Europe otherwise not inclined to venture solo into southwestern Nigeria.
The homeland of the Yorùbá, descendants of two very ancient cultures— Nok and Egyptian— spans four West African countries: Nigeria, Benin Republic, Ghana and Togo. The Journey to Yorùbáland is NOT a vacation. It is a spiritual and cultural pilgrimage to southwestern Nigeria, the ancient and mythological land, where the Earth and all of its inhabitants were created. The religious identity of more than 100 million Òrìsà practitioners, worldwide, is rooted in the Holy City of Ile-Ife, the cradle of life and the heart of Òrìsà tradition and culture.
The Orisa CDC Journey to Yorùbáland emphasizes two weeks of complete immersion in Yorùbá culture. The centerpiece is a visit to the Obàtálá Shrine in Ilé-Ife and Osun Festival in Osogbo. In Ilé-Ife we will visit the sacred shrine to Obàtálá and the devoted elder priests who maintain it. The shrine occupies the very site, the Yorùbá believe, Obàtálá settled after arriving from heaven, to find the earth covered by a large mass of water. At the shrine’s site, with a handful of dirt, Obàtálá created the large land masses we know today as continents and later human beings. For a preview of your experience at this consecrated site please view this video:
The grand finale of the journey will be in Osogbo. We will witness and fully participate in, alongside tens of thousands of devotees worldwide, an extraordinary cultural festival organized at the Osun River within the sacred grove and sanctuary, containing different shrines, sculptures and art erected in the deity’s honor.
All Orisa CDC trips are led by Yoruba Òrìsà priests and culture experts. The groups will average 15-20 to deliberately maintain an intimate learning environment. Learning will happen in a variety of ways― formal dialogues, lectures and in unstructured ways. Yorùbáland is quite expansive, and since most of the traveling will be done by bus, it will very often become “the classroom on wheels”. There will be ample time for rich dialogues and to ask lots of questions. Spontaneous learning opportunities will happen at the shrines, over a meal, in a group setting or in casual conversation. The guide will lead informal talks and evening conversations groups.
The Journey to Yorùbáland is culturally charged and brings Yorùbá mythology, spirituality poetics and aesthetics alive, allowing the traveler to step into its timeless dimension, and, simultaneously, experience living in both the ancient and contemporary world in a palpable way. Over the course of 14 days you will
- Fully immerse in Yorùbá spirituality and its rich and diverse culture,
- Engage in philosophical and religious exchanges with Orisa/Ifa priests on all aspects of the Yorùbá religion,
- Visit Obàtálá Shrine, Ile-Ife and Osun Grove and Festival, Osogbo
- Experience Yorùbá traditional musicians, dancers and singers
- Experience Yorùbáland with other Òrìsà devotees and expert guides
- Learn basic Yorùbá greetings and expressions
What all travelers are likely to have in common is that they are Òrìsà devotees. Beyond that they will be an interesting blend of people― single, couples, professionals, retired, and students. The group will generally have a mix of ages ranging from their twenties to sixties. This travel program was first launched in 2008 and is repeated every two years to main high quality travel.
The estimated cost to participate in this program is $2,625. The price includes round trip international airfare departing to Nigeria on August 17th and returning on August 31st, ground transportation, hotel and guided tours. It does not include visa, passport, meals vaccinations and travel insurance. We are happy to offer discounts at the following rates: $250 by January 1, $150 off by March1 and $100 by May 1.
Students of Africa, African culture and African traditional religion will find this journey worthwhile. Òrìsà adherents who wish to expand their religious worldview, learn more about their spiritual heritage and experience the richness and diversity of Yorùbá culture should not miss this opportunity. Further, the Yorùbá religion is the most widely practiced African traditional religion and one of the fastest growing religions worldwide, and those who are interested in learning about the survival and relevance of African traditional religions in the 21st century will find this experience both inspiring and life changing.
For more information, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. To make your deposit please click the “Buy Now” button below.