LUMINA Volume 22 No. 2

A Critical Yoruba Ontology in the Ifa Corpus

by Dr. Omotade Adegbindin

Drawing heavily from Ifa oral text, this paper attempts to unearth the error which underlie the overt assumption that the nature of God in Africa is polytheistic and the idea that human destiny has only folkloric significance. More precisely, this paper is a response to (i) ontological questions that border on the seeming polytheistic nature of Yoruba (prototypical African) religion; (ii) monistic theory that sees the human person as essentially material or, by extension, the scientific view that human beings are physico-chemical mechanisms; (iii) the fatalist interpretation of ori (controller of destiny, in the metaphysical sense) which rests on the assumption that human destiny is unalterable.

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