Founder’s Note

Oku ó gbogbo abure Lukumí

In the past forty years, Lukumí religion has undergone a tremendous degree of growth in the United States and other areas outside Cuba. The many Cubans that fled the island’s Revolution in different waves since the early 1960s have taken the religion to different areas of the world and introduced it to people of different ethnicities and nationalities. Though its origins are undeniable, the religion’s growth has reached such a degree of heterogeneity that we can no longer refer to this as an Afro-Cuban religion. In fact, the Lukumí religion is probably well on its way to becoming an international religion. Modupué gbogbo Orisha.

In the past, I have expressed concern on many Internet forums about the increasing number of questionable websites, their mercenary nature, and the level of misinformation that some of these sites are spreading. I do realize though that there is a growing and legitimate need to disseminate information, even if this means doing so through means that vary tremendously from the traditional way in which our religion was transmitted in the past. Though this may be an area of concern for some, including myself, modern Olorishas may not always have the opportunity to learn by participation in events and rituals. Obviously, the Internet and books can never substitute for actual exposure and practice, but it is definitely a very powerful medium to share our experiences and devotion.

This website will contribute to the growing body of reputable Internet literature on this often misunderstood and purposely stigmatized religion. It is my strongest desire that it serve as a place to disseminate knowledge and understanding. After more than twenty-five years as an Obá Oriaté, I hope to offer a different perspective than that which has been available thus far. I can only pray to Olorun and the Orishas that my initiative will be received with the same level of respect that I have tried to inspire throughout my religious life.

In memory of all those who lost their lives on September 11, 2001. We have not forgotten you, nor shall we ever forget! Ibá é layé’ntorún, mbelese Olodumaré! We also pray for the safety of all the troops in Iraq. May God protect them.

Ki Olorun n’agbé wá!
Willie Ramos,
Ilarí Obá

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