Color - White

  • Obatala

    The King of the White Cloth, King of the Orishas, the First Among Equals. He is the King of Power, and his weapon is wisdom. He is the essence of honored maturity, wisdom through age and experience, purity of intention, virtue, humility, tolerance, judicious use of power, the knowledge of what is truly right and wrong, the moral code, and the obligation to do what is right. Obatala is the Creator God, who first fashioned mankind from clay; thus, he is also the first sculptor and potter. The human head itself is Obatala’s creation, and it is through it that he grants us the ability to discern genuine morality as opposed to oppressive, mistaken and arrogant self-righteousness. His is not the falsehood of societal boundaries, His Truth is the understanding of one’s own character and the obligations that we all have to our world, our Gods, and one another. He is the Benevolent Judge, calm and lucid, and he governs rational deliberation. His color is white, as His spirit is free from any soil or stain, and His energy radiates sanctified purity, great wisdom, happiness and internal peace. He is associated with cloth, as that was one of His gifts to mankind. The aspects of Obatala are symbolized by the chameleon, boa constrictor, elephant, gorilla, and snail. Obatala is the Lord of Laughter, for it is through wisdom that one may see the joy in life, and through laughter we are able to see the follies of mankind not with cynicism and derision, but with humor, compassion and understanding. Obatala’s Laughter helps soothe the pain of life’s rigors, and takes the sting out of the harshest of life’s lessons. Obatala’s ofrenda is soft, white and pure: milk, coconut meat, shea butter and cool, refreshing water.

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  • The Other Mother’s Right Hand

    Coraline opened the front door and looked at the gray sky. She wondered how long it would be until the sun came up, wondered whether her dream had been a true thing while knowing in her heart that it had been. Something she had taken to be part of the shadows under the hall couch detached itself from beneath the couch and made a mad, scrabbling rush on its long white legs, heading for the front door.

    Coraline’s mouth dropped open in horror and she stepped out of the way as the thing clicked and scuttled past her and out of the house, running crablike on its too-many tapping, clicking, scurrying feet.

    She knew what it was, and she knew what it was after. She had seen it too many times in the last few days, reaching and clutching and snatching and popping blackbeetles obediently into the other mother’s mouth. Five-footed, crimson-nailed, the color of bone.

    It was the other mother’s right hand.

    It wanted the black key.

    A scrabbling, skittering, clacking scent: white as bone, black as a beetle, and red as blood – orris root, vetiver, and daemonorops.

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