GRADE I: Foundation (Ipilese) - Ejiogbe This grade is the foundation stage of Ifa Priesthood.

This is when a neophyte has just been introduced to begin to learn Ifa tutorials. It is the beginning of the whole tutelage, which is why Eji Ogbe is chosen as the symbol for this stage. Eji Ogbe is the first and premier Odu and the father of all Odu. It is the foundation of Ifa upon which all other Odu are built. The foundation by definition is a weight bearing structure and it has to be firm, sturdy and calculated to carry load. As it is said in a stanza of Ofun-Owonrin that one cannot build a house, product or programme without laying a good foundation. Ifa insists that a good foundation is fundamental to begin and also asked what business we have with building (whatever) when the foundation is not firm or is absent. Topics to be covered under this grade include as follows: 1. 2. 3. Introduction to Ifa Olodumare (The Supreme Being or God) Creation (i) The Universe (ii) The Earth (iii) Man Ori (The Human Head literally, but means the inner or soul personality) Eniyan (Humanity) Irunmole (The Spirit Beings Orisa (The Deities) Obi (Parents) Emi (Me) Ede-Ifa (The Language of Ifa) Babalawo (The Diviner or Ifa Adept), Apetebi (Wife or wives of babalawo, Iyanifa (Female Ifa diviner of Ifa adept), Omo Ikofa/akekoo awo (Neophyte or student of Ifa), Awo (initiates or the knowledgeable one) Epistemology - Eko ijinle nipa Imo, ogbon ati Oye ati bi a se nlo ninu Ifa, (deep studies about Universal Knowledge, Wisdom and Understanding and how they are applied in Ifa) ODU (Ifa corpus or body of Ifa) a) Identification of Odu and their signs b) Tools of babalawo (Opele – divining chain, Ikin – the sacred palm nuts and ibo – determinants etc.) c) Reading of Opele and Ibo

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GRADE II: Basic Studies (Ileke) - Oyeku Meji The Basic Studies shall commence exploration into the bowels of Ifa. At this stage, it is supposed to break the Akekoo Omo Awo into the dawn light of knowledge. The following are pertinent topics: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. Odu - Interpretation of messages: Methods and Techniques (The study of Eji-Ogbe – Irosun Meji) Prayers The Kingdom of Olodumare and Ogba Itero Purity (Iwa mimo) and Purification (Iwenumo) of rites and rituals Leadership Morals (Eko iwa asiwaju) - Ifa’s teachings Advanced Studies of Living and Non-Living things (Ilosiwaju ninu eko ohun elemii ati ohun ti ko lemii) - Mystical/ Magical properties, composition, etc. The study of Owonrin Meji – Osa Meji Destiny and Freewill Birth and Death/Cycles of life Human Character Counselling Techniques Elementary Principles of Iborisa General Principles of Shrine – Design, Construction, Lustration and Sanctification The study of Ika Meji – Irete Meji

GRADE III: Intermediate (Àgbékà) - Obara Okanran After the completion of the first two grades, Akekoo Omo Awo is expected to proceed to this stage and on completion; he is supposed to have attained the position of a Junior Adept (Omo Awo). He can then be admitted into the Priests Council (Igbimo Awo) as Assistant Priest (Asiwaju Isin – III). The symbol/governing Odu is Obara-Okanran. In one of the stanzas, Ifa states the need for the evaluation of a student Awo in order to test his tenacity and level of understanding in the various topics treated so far. Therefore, this grade is expected to direct and introduce the student Awo into the midst of more complex systems and concepts. The following shall be the topics to be covered in this grade: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. History of early Temples/Shrines of Ifa and other Orisa. Homiletics - The art and science of preaching, embracing all that pertains to the study and delivery of sermons. Pneumatology - Study of Spirits/Spiritism - Eko nipa awon emi airi, oro, iwin, ebora, abl. Faith (Igbagbo ati Igbekele) – Definition, Dynamics, Purpose/Significance. Concepts of Worship and Sacrifices – Ijosin, Ibo, Ebo, Ipese/etutu etc. Mode of Worship, Child naming and Ikosedaye, Marriage, Chieftaincy and Burial Forgiveness and Judgement

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Re-incarnation/The hereafter Family Life (i) Origin/Meaning of Family (ii) Types of Family (iii) Significance of Family (iv) Family Responsibilities (v). Opo sisu and inheritance – Ifa’s approach The study of Ose Meji – Ofun Meji Ebo riru - Techniques and Methods Opele - Types, Potency, Preparations Ikin - Types, Potency, Preparations Term Paper/Project thesis to be written at the end of this grade. Thereafter, examination for the award of a Junior Adept will take place.

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GRADE IV: Advanced Studies (Imo Ijinle) Ose Otura This is the fourth grade which marks the beginning of Advanced/Post Graduate Studies in Ifa priesthood. The graduate of Junior Adept may be admitted for higher studies after completion of at least one-year priestly experience in a recognized Ifa Temple. This stage leads the students to the understanding that there is more that stabilize humankind and natural phenomena with relation to the unknown than the ordinary beyond. This is the knowledge that the students is expected to pick in the series of lectures as follows: 1. 2. Theology and Theodicy Classification of Ifa stanzas Historical stanzas (Dealing with history, cosmogony & society) Prophetical stanzas (That tell future events) Poetical stanzas (Dealing with proverbs, poems & wise sayings) Scientific/Technological stanzas Literary stanzas (Dealing with figures of speech, etc.) 3. The Healing Art Physical – using medicinal plants Spiritual – sacrifices (ebo/ipese) Mystical – Ohun enu to heal minor cases (Ori fifo, Inu rirun, Ina, Arariro etc). 4. Magic, Sorcery and Witchcraft 5. Divination – The art, types and practice of Divination 6. Advanced Iborisa and Ebo Techniques 7. Life and Blood 8. The study of combined Odu from Ogbe ‘Yeku 9. Further Technicalities in Ifa and Ebo riru 10. Term Paper 11. Examination N.B: It is expected that students should study combined Odu up to at least Okanran-Ofun before the end of this grade.

GRADE V: Adept ( Agba Awo) - Ofun Ose Ofun-Ose is the last Odu bearing number 256. This does not denote the size or potency, but here it stands for the last tail of the tape. This grade is the final of the Post Graduate studies. Therefore, the student should prepare his mind towards the final conferment for the award of the full Diplomat Agba Awo, Aaw. At the end of this stage, he must have been confirmed fully and performed excellently in the hydraheaded pedagogy of Ifa. Before we go into the contents of the topics, let us see what Ifa says with regard to Ofun’see as the guiding Odu for this grade. The topics for the course are: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. Statistics, Research and Documentation More Studies of combined Odu Advanced Mysticism of Ifa – Summoning the dead, Ayajo, Aasan, Ogede, Ofo, Ifobaje, Ifa-Ilu, Levitation, and Clairvoyance. Comparative Studies of Ifa’s and other contra lateral mysticism Limiting and Restricting the evil and Negative forces in Nature More studies of combined Odu Practical means of ancient communications/transportation – Iyere, Aroko, Egbe, Afeeri, Telepathy, etc. Project Examination Graduation ceremonies and Award of the full Diplomat Agba Awo, Aaw.

During and all through the courses from grades I to IV, various techniques shall be applied relevant to transfer and acquisition of information and skill. These shall include but not limited to: 1. Homework = HM 2. Classwork = CL 3. Groupwork = GW 4. Demonstration = DM 5. Dramatisation = DR 6. Questions and Answers = Q&A 7. Practical = PR 8. Fieldwork = FW 9. Audio Visual = AV 10. Distant Learning Technique = DLT 11. Internship = IN 12. Seminars/Workshop = SM/W Sources and References shall be from: 1. Books 2. Literatures 3. Oral sources from Adepts and advanced Adepts Evaluation shall be based on continuous assessment and examinations as at when due and approved.

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