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What is an Egbe?


Egbe in the Yoruba language translates as ‘group, society or association.’  Egbe are ancient organizations that are still very popular in Yorubaland of SW Nigeria today.  Yoruba people have created egbe for a variety of purposes such as for professional guilds or special interests groups (Fadipe, 1970).  The Yoruba have egbe for spiritual purposes as well, like egbe of particular Orisa, i.e. Egbe Obatala.  There is even an Orisa named Egbe, the Egbe Orun are our “comrades in heaven” (Elebuibon, 2000).  Egbe Orun are different than human arranged egbe groups, yet are related. 


Egbe are distinct from Ile (meaning 'Orisa Worship House/Temple' in the diaspora)—especially because the people come from different Ile.  While there are directors/chiefs/heads of egbe groups, egbe members meet to empower and be empowered by the group, even though they have different lineages.  Historically, egbe meet approximately once a month--on the Yoruba calendar that is every 17 days or “Itadogun”.  They also determine their own agendas based on tradition and common knowledge. 

Our Egbe, or group, is for Aborisa.  Aborisa are Yoruba Orisa "practitioners".  Aborisa can be at any stage of Orisa practice, that is novice to expert.  See our 'About Us' page for more about us.


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