Properly showing respect to OYA
Oya is a lady and should be treated as such. She likes good food and good wine. I’ve noticed she likes the healthier stuff (legumes, vegetables and lean meats). She also likes cosmopolitans (the drink). I will normally sauté an eggplant cut up into 9 pieces for her. Oya likes white cheese popcorn. If you visit a cemetery, leave a handful of popcorn at the gate for Oya (along with something for Ellegua). Decorate any altar to her with bright and flowery prints. You can also leave her offerings at marketplaces, flea markets, gyms or windy places. Do not throw her offerings into the ocean. She doesn’t like patchouli incense although she likes patchouli if it’s blended with other scents. I don’t feed Oya and Yemaya next to each other. There’s a whole story about why they don’t like each other. However, I believe that it’s not that Oya and Yemaya hate each other, it’s just that they don’t get along because they are such opposites.
Where to find oya
Windy places and places that are frequented by tornadoes, the marketplace, farmer’s markets and flea markets, gyms, cemeteries, business schools, the mountains, lightning storms, martial arts studios
Oya’s children are brave, stubborn, strong, hard-working people. They tend to be business orientated and have a good head for money. They hate it when the bills aren’t paid. They will rip you apart if they find out you have lied to them. They have extreme personalities and can be moody. Oya’s children like to fight for the underdog. They will love or hate lightning storms. Both sexes can be clothes whores who like to wear bright colors. It is normal for them to have studied some sort of martial arts or self-defense. They are graceful folks. The females may be drawn to athletics and tend to like the company of men more than women. Oya’s daughters may be more tomboyish as they are growing up. Members of both sexes will suffer heartbreak and betrayal in their relationships. Very often they will be drawn to the occult or have some experience with the dead. Her children can be businesspeople, meteorologists and storm chasers, athletes, lawyers and legal assistants, soldiers.
When I was going through a special initiation to the Orishas in 1995, it was spread out over 4 days involving 4 different Orishas. The first night (to Nana Buruku, my mother) was very scary. The second night was going to be an initiation to Oya. I knew I had to go out the local cemetery at night, by myself. I did not know what was going to happen once I got there. I got to the cemetery after dark and took a seat on the ground. Keep in mind, I was terrified! I was doing this ceremony to the Queen of the cemetery. With all of the stories I had read and heard about her frightening and awesome power…I just knew this lady was going to kick my butt! After a few minutes (of course it felt like hours), a cool breeze started up through the trees. Bracing for the worst, I closed my eyes and when I opened them again…I saw fireflies. For the first time in my life, I saw fireflies and they were beautiful. I started to laugh and cry at the same time. I was surrounded by these beautiful insects just like out of a movie. I waited until they moved on and I went home. I then understood that while Oya can be fierce, she can also be compassionate. I did not see fireflies again until the summer of 2001. I was on this horrible school summer field biology trip. It was the second evening and I was having a lot of problems. It was very physically demanding and it was painfully obvious that I was very out of shape. The day had not gone well I was just so exhausted. I just wanted to cry. Just as the sun was going down and I was sitting there like a very pathetic bump on a log and a firefly landed on my arm. Oya had sent this beautiful creature to tell me that it was going to be okay. I again laughed and cried at the same time. It was just what I needed. I survived that trip…it certainly wasn’t my finest moment but I finished it and I’m certain that Oya was by my side the whole way.