To talk about the real and important meaning of the phrase "to become a saint"We must go back to colonial times, to the slavery of black Africans, to the ruthless attempts to change their beliefs and to the hopelessly cultural mix that this brought as a consequence.
As the Cuban writer and poet very well described of the XNUMXth century, Gastón Baquero:
In the New World coexisted, from the XNUMXth century to date and forever, three fundamental human groups: those who were there, those who came to stay, and those who were taken by force.
Indians, Europeans and Africans were forced to live together. None of the three groups would return to being what it was, what it was purely, or Indian, or European, or pure African.
Imperceptibly, they all became something else, another guy: the new man there, the mestizo. Whether their bloods were mixed or not, souls, words, beliefs and superstitions, customs, feelings were intermingled...
Wanting it or not, between all of them they made the American miscegenation, the new man of the New World, which is still gilding in the oven.
Syncretism is the key to Cubanness, and that is why today on this Caribbean Island there are many paths of faith, since religion has always been present as the strongest element of transculturation.
In Cuba many beliefs have been professed, but the Santeria, heir to the precepts of the Yoruba culture, it is already a full expression of Cubanness and a mark of identity and authenticity.
What is the name of the person who becomes a Saint?
That person dressed in white from head to toe that many times we see, and that wears necklaces, is an "iyawó"“, the initiate who is undergoing a year of testing and consecration to become a santero.
That's why today is usual become a saint in Cuba and glimpse people dressed completely in white, with elekes (necklaces) and bracelets and umbrellas to cover themselves from the sun and the serene.
It is also common to hear how many religious are called, among them godfather, godmother, or godson, or iyawos, or yabós as they are popularly known.
In that year of consecration, the initiate must comply with rules such as:
- dress in white,
- not go out at night
- have your head covered,
- don't look in the mirror and
- avoid excesses and vices, among other rules that must be respected.
For what reason does a person become a Saint?
There are many reasons why a Cuban becomes a saint, mainly for health and faith, almost always linked to a spiritual consultation with a babalawo, in which the saint indicates that it is time for him to consecrate himself.
But we must emphasize that this is an act of true faith and devotion, for which you must be absolutely prepared, because we will have the support and protection of the Orishas and spiritual guides, but we also owe ourselves to them.
There are rules and rituals that a santero must respect throughout his life, so become holy it requires great responsibility, commitment and above all respect.
Become a saint in Cuba, involves going through a rigorous process of consecration to receive the Orishas and get to be related to the Guardian Angel (Orisha who protects him) but it is a practice that has increased over the years in the country.
Becoming a saint in Cuba Is it a really expensive process?
We must also know that in Cuba become holy, requires an economic analysis, since consecrations are expensive. For them instruments, animals, clothing, food of all kinds and other elements are needed.
That is why it is also said that currently “to become a saint” has become a fashion to demonstrate a good economic position and that some godparents consecrate only to enrich themselves.
This situation is no less true, there are many babaloshas, iyaloshas, babalawos, Oriates, who profit by setting exorbitant prices to make Osha and It is a real shame, because our religion is one of love and help.
But also there are many religious who carry their religion inside and their heart is still intact and they do not profit, they cannot pay just for sinners.