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Why do the Iyawó wear parrot feathers in their crowns? ► Pataki

Santeria parrot feather

Shango who is the Orisha who owns the Batá drums, of music and of the guayabera, he was a prosperous merchant.

On one occasion he came to new lands to establish his domains and found that Olofin reigned there, so he decided to visit him.

Pataki: How did Shango bring joy back to Olofin?

Upon his arrival at the palace, he noticed that Olofin had a bad face, did not speak or move and spent almost every day locked up, refusing to see anyone.

The holy merchant communicated to the other Orishas of the state of Olofin and feared for his physical and mental integrity, so he proposed to cheer him up before his peers arrived, so he took out of his trunk a box of various colors that contained inside a parrot with lush and colorful plumage.

The parrot made Creator Olofin heart happy

Then the parrot began to speak and upon hearing it Olofin was amazed at his abilities and began to laugh.

He got up from his chair and held it, placing it later on his head and thus spent a long time playing with the parrot.

The bird rejoiced Olofin's heart again and in this way Shango won Olofin's love and trust.

Faced with such an event, the other Orishas felt jealous and tried to attack the source of their joy, so they silently entered their castle to steal the parrot by taking it captive and hiding it in the heart of the jungle.  

The betrayal of the Orishas returned sadness to the King

When Olofin noticed the absence of his feathered friend, he felt extremely sad again and again refused to speak to anyone.

Shango, realizing that the parrot had disappeared, went out in search, which was the longest of his life, but with a little luck and help from the Eggunes managed to find it.

The parrot quickly told Shango of the treachery of the other Orishas and together they set off back to Olofin's palace.  

Olofi magnifies the power of the parrot and by mandate "the parrot feather would be sacred"

Once they reached their destination the parrot told what happened to Olofin who gathered all the saints to reprimand them for their act.

To whom he communicated that as a sign of his repentance and to magnify the parrot:

All had to wear a sample of their feathers on their crowns.

That is why from that day all initiates in Osha (Santeria) must wear parrot feathers in their crowns.

Learn more about the Iyawó and the Rule of Osha-Ifá:

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