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Ogun Balendjo

Updated on March 7, 2016
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Nightcat is a practicing witch who loves to write about Wicca and many of the Gods and Goddesses she’s had the pleasure to encounter.

Ogoun Balendjo's Veve

If I recall correctly it was about ten degrees so this isn't the best example, but I did what I could. His symbol can be used to call to him or ask for his protection.
If I recall correctly it was about ten degrees so this isn't the best example, but I did what I could. His symbol can be used to call to him or ask for his protection.

Ogu!

Ogun Balendjo. Mention the name to his children and you will get anything from fond smiles to stories of his protective and nurturing side. Well, I'm assuming you would. I don't belong to a house and I have as of yet to meet another one of his kids. But if they are as lucky as I am, they know a gentle man, very wise and loving.

What I'm about to relate may not please some folks. But it is how I've always experienced him. No disrespect is meant to any house or traditional views of him. I simply love my sweet Ogun Balendjo to pieces. I've only seen one or two other pages and none seem to be personal. So why not share?

You'll notice a blend of Haitian Vodoun, Palo, Santeria, Sanse, and other beliefs and stories. I figure kids of Balendjo have to take what they can get and I've found Santeria and Palo as well as Espiritismo are a lot more open and willing to share. Absoultely no disrespect is meant by sharing what I've found works for me.

Please remember all Ogus are different so mine will not act the same as anyone else's. Keep in mind I said he is gentle with ME. Anyone who would attack a child of his will be on the receiving end of his warrior's wrath.

All photography and writing herein are my original work. All videos are used for educational and informational purposes only. However if you are the copyright holder or artist and want something removed, please let me know. Intro photo my own of his veve, or special symbol.

Ogun

Ogún the powerful one,

Sufficiently great to stand before death.

One who makes human beings prosperous.

One who is not enriched by Ogún will.

Find it difficult to get sacrificial kola-nuts.

Ogún enrich me.

Ogún the powerful one,

The strong one of the earth,

The great one of the other world,

The protector of those who are being injured.

Ogún support me.

Ogún Balenyo - Pa'lo Monte

My Parents

Both Freda And Balendjo are my parents in a sense and rule my hearth and protect my home, asking only love and devotion in return.
Both Freda And Balendjo are my parents in a sense and rule my hearth and protect my home, asking only love and devotion in return.

Offerings

According to Gade Nou Leve he prefers black coffee, if you want to you can put alcohol in this. Red wine, and cigars. He is given his cape, though whether he wears this because of his icon or a lost naval tradition, they don't say. My Ogun told me I'll find out it is a naval tradition if I look hard enough. He isn't given to lying, though he does tell tales like any good sailor. Keep in mind that cape listed is Dominican Vodou. So you'll have to forgive me for speculating as to the source.

I was taught in Haitian Vodoun that he does favor blue uniforms with gold braiding. You don't need to provide one unless you have a house or you are marrying your Ogun. As mine puts it, he'd rather die than be in civilian clothes. He earned that uniform and is justly proud of it.

Mine loves some coffee, but offering to spike it with rum amused him. My Balendjo doesn't drink. I even have taken him shopping offered to spice a rum or wine for him. No, he whispers. He simply would like some Coke. Where, he asks gently, do I think I got my tea-totaling ways? If I want to do work I can make him mocktails. Yes, mocktails. He favors them. Again, he's the one who taught me to favor them.

He also prefers his coffee after the style of Agwe, with cream and sweetened. At first I thought it is because of how I drink it, but he says Agwe leaves so many untouched cups of coffee around the men on his ship got used to it.

Remember you don't waste things in the Navy. A ship's hold only has X amount of room, so you eat or drink everything, no waste. That and I think Agwe shows his fondness for his men by leaving things for them. They are his boys after all, as are all men to a good and caring leader, and Agwe is fiercely protective of these adopted sons.

You may also offer shells, weapons or ammo, anything connected with the Navy, sailing or ocean. Please don't hesitate to offer him something if it feels right. Even if it matches nothing I or anyone else says, your heart will lead you in the right direction.

Each Balendjo has his own likes and dislikes. Also, don't be afraid to give him a gift, no matter how humble. Even a slip of paper you copied his veve will touch his heart.

PS That is his statue along with Freda.

Iron And Ogou

In his African origins Ogou is iron or the spirit associated wit iron, the forge, and fertility among other things like hard work and warfare.
In his African origins Ogou is iron or the spirit associated wit iron, the forge, and fertility among other things like hard work and warfare.

Gifts

Although I've heard him described as generous (most sea-going lwa get that label) you never get any idea of what the gifts will be. For me at least he gives two main kinds. Knives and jewelry. Shortly before my reading I began finding blades of all descriptions on the roadside. I brought them home, figuring it had to mean something.

Then when I got Ogun Balendjo it made sense. Of course Ogun, knives. He also gives jewelry to me, always free in one way or another. Costume jewelry ladies, though he has given gold and silver as well it isn't his standard gift. He knows of course the more he gives the more likely I am to share the wealth among my spirits, and he doesn't mind.

He does after all get all the blades or knives he gives me back as I can't carry one anyhow. He also favors giving coins, rocks and other things Ogus will give as gifts. It makes him happy and pleased when his children accept these gifts with many thank yous.

He also provides food for his children. You will find sales of buy one get one, have people deliver gifts of food, whatever it takes so that you are well cared for. I imagine if you were so inclined he could help you fish. He doesn't like seeing his children do without food to stretch a budget or loose a few pounds through self-imposed starvation.

He has also provided me with clothes. I won't buy any, and he figures women need new ones. So people have been giving me clothes, or I've been finding bags of freshly laundered clothes left places, clearly for anyone to pick up. Strangely there is always one nautical or blue item so I don't miss the message. Ashe, Ogu!

I treasure these gifts to pieces. Who cares if the clothes are used? He's showing his immense love for me by providing for me. I'd rather have them than diamonds or rubies because they come with love from him.

He can worry because he thinks all females want minks and platinum jewelry. He can feel his gifts aren't good enough, so be sure to show him they are. Even if his gifts come from other people, trust me, they really are from him.

His favorite video, honest - The Warrior Song

I got to admit, we both love this. But he will tell you stories about being on the flight deck, going in the war, the glory of destroying the enemies of justice and freedom. Hey, Balendjo looks old because he is such an old Ogu.

Yes, he is a healer, but a tough as nails battle medic. He will mess up his enemies, and yours seven ways from Sunday. He might not attack until attacked, but then there is nowhere for the enemy to hide. Yay! He is an awesome daddy to have.

Personality

Mine pretty much matches what folks say about him. He is quiet, reserved, serious. He's very thoughtful, considering before he answers. But he is also a very loving, indulgent and doting father. He is friendly and warm with his children, expecting to be hugged in greeting. He loves being close to his children.

Indeed as a child I had him around, though I didn't know it was him at the time. He'd sit me down with the family medical guide and point things out to me. Since I was born with a dangerous heart problem, he'd help me study the heart and whisper to me it would be all right, he was a doctor and would protect me.

He proved to be true, the problem healed itself as I grew older. Or more than likely, he healed me as I grew older. Doctors after all, didn't hold out much hope for me. He also used to fondly watch over me when my family would go to the beach, carefully holding me back from the waves. Somehow I knew better than to mention my doctor friend more than once to my parents. He was also very indulgent with me, often letting me find toys and other things. He gave me a love of the sea that stays with me to this day.

Balendjo does have a wonderful sense of humor, by the way. Just quiet and reserved. He's highly intelligent and not pompous or obnoxious like so many mortal doctors. In fact I've never seen anything make his jaw set faster than some fool going on about how his medical degree has given him god-like powers.

Mine is proud to be a warrior, and holds veterans in the highest regard. He always would be whispering to me as a child to salute them in parades. He rightly feels they are the greatest men and women on Earth.

As soft as he might sound from my descriptions of his doting ways, he is every inch a fierce warrior. He's proud I have weapons training from my family (I think Ogu co-opted my family generations ago) and survival skills.

He loves to go hunting in the Army/Navy surplus store with me so we can drool over weapons and snag some MREs, jump boots, or other goodies a girl's just gotta have. So he has Tank Girl for a daughter, sue me.

Ship's Bells

Any gift of metal, or something that could be nautical like bells can please him.
Any gift of metal, or something that could be nautical like bells can please him.

Vital Stats

Balendjo's colors are blue accented with gold, blue, or blue and red. Mine also likes yellow as it is close enough to gold. He also proudly appears in all black, yes it is a color in the US Navy.

He is a very masculine lwa, but said to be a hermaphadite.

He is a warrior like all Ogus, a blacksmith, and a doctor.

He sails in Agwe's navy.

His numbers are three and seven.

His day is Tuesday in Haitian Vodoun.

In some places his feast day is July 25.

Although he favors blue, he can appear in a dazzling white uniform.

He likes blue candles, or something with a sea theme.

Although he most often appears as an older African American man in a naval uniform, he can appear as a man of any age or any color. He can also appear as a doctor.

Although a true warrior, Balendjo will not fight unless attacked first. He's very peaceful and cool in that regard.

He shares the butterfly totem with all Ogus, but mine also likes leopard seals, blue whales, great white sharks, and sea gulls. The albatross as well as they brought good luck to a ship.

He is always and ever the ideal elder man. He loves the younger people around him, wanting to teach them everything he knows and nuture them. Remember his age gives him great status so it is an honor to have him teach you.

My Balendjo, unlike others I've heard of, is never tired. He is always at work on something. He has boundlees energy.

Balendjo is seen both as a Rada or cool spirit because of hs cool nature, and petro. Petro means, hot, aggressive, and downright magical. Though it must be noted all petro spirits are loving and protective with the children the select for themselves.

In Sanse, he is the lord of thunder and lightning. You can learn more HERE

Balenyo

This song has been given to Balendjo in a video above, and I'm sure by now you are a little sick of it. But it also shows a strong pride in Dominican culture having a strong African background. So as I was hunting down the lyrics, I saw some people state it is time to stop apologizing for the fact that they call out to the African gods, though they may have different skin. Amen to that!

Palo is the wonderful religion there, and you might also hear of Espiritismo practitioners of which are extremely resourceful, spinning out new songs and praises all the time, compared to more stagnant religions.

I'm including San Santiago, even though he is loved as a spirit or saint in his own right, he also stands in for Balendjo in some areas where the African dispora is alive and well. The point is his kids come in all colors, religions and sing all sort of songs. None of us own Balendjo!

The Healer

One attribute he has is protecting his children from poison, whether given to them intentionally or just accidentally digested. You can spot his kids eating the food that sat out all night and they are just fine. A child of Balendjo's should never test the theory, but by and large we can eat what we like and be fine.

He is also the only Ogu I can think of who adores children, and is said to take as long as needed making a herbal cure for them. So in his role of pediatrician he is gentle and soothing, taking as long as needed with each child. Children glom onto him in my experience because there is just something about him that you trust.

He will hold them for hours as he just loves kids. He will tell them stories about the sea, or just talk to them about nothing in particular. Think of how a German Shepherd dog is with kids. Sure the dogs is tough as nails; it was bred to kill wolves. But it will also put up with all sorts of nonsense from a beloved child too. Just like that dog, Balenjo has a sixth sense about people. If he knows somebody likes to hurt kids he will warn his young friends to avoid them.

Ogu is also trusted by adults who ask him, as I was taught, to guide the doctor's hands as he rules over all doctors, and medical technology. He will lead you to the right doctor if you ask nicely, and he will make sure you are listening to what the doctor told you. One thing he will not tolerate is patients that do as they please then whine they are not getting better.

He can heal and calm a child of his, but only if they open up willingly to his healing. He is not going to fight with you over it. You want to be angry and out of control, go ahead. But if you'd rather be soothed and relaxed he will help you. He's much prefer you relax and enjoy his company then tense up in his presence anyhow. As mine recently put it, we all loved him when we were children and trusted him completely, what happened?


Fire And Water

Like Balendjo, this ball fuses red and blue, fire and water, and glass, of course, is made with fire.
Like Balendjo, this ball fuses red and blue, fire and water, and glass, of course, is made with fire.

Making an altar

This is different from the altar of most Ogus. Here we are praising and highlighting his medical skill, generosity, and connection with the sea. I was told to go with what my Ogun liked so my altar may be different.

Start with a blue altar cloth, blue and white is fine. This can be any sort of fabric. You may use a cloth accented with gold or yellow if you like. You'll need a blue candle, or white. White is used to cool in Vodoun and although not his color per se, has a cooling effect. White is also associated with the healing lwa or spirits as well.

Now some folks use a red candle, because all Oguns in Haiti use red in some capacity and that may be what your Balendjo wants. I stick with red candles for the day I honor him with his brother Legba, blue on his own altar and so on.

A bowl of or goblet salt water as he is a sea-going lwa, most often with nails in it. Remember he is iron just like any Ogu and as iron rusts it is said to be working. You could also include fresh water if your Balendjo so desires. On one altar mine does. Please note he is the ONLY Ogu who is fond of water like this, most would be quite upset with water anywhere near them. They are all fire lwa; Balendjo being the only one to combine fire and water.

After the candle and salt water a machete would be nice, swords or knives. He is still a warrior, so he will appreciate the thoughtfulness. Then it is up to you, I've added cigars, small packets of salt, coffee, assorted tools he has requested as per Santeria and a tracheostomy kit, which I thanked him profoundly for not having to use. Yes, apparently a mortal doctor thought sending a patient home early and giving me the kit constituted good care. I guess he didn't see how much my hands shake.

You can also put his gifts here, shells, driftwood, anything connected to the sea like sand, pebbles and the like. Anything naval, anything connected with healing, such as herbs, surgical instruments, anything. He is much sweeter in personality than say, Dr. House, so use your imagination. That glass orb for example fits him perfectly.

Patron

There's a difference in Haitian Vodoun between a lwa being the patron of say, a doctor, or being a person's head. As the patron of doctors Balendjo rules over what they do, can bless them and keeps a general eye on them, That doesn't mean however that they have him as their head, or ruling spirit.

But as a patron he gives doctors insights. Many sincerely believe all medical breakthroughs are gifts from caring lwa such as Balendjo himself. He rules all aspects of the medical field and can inspire researchers and doctors to find things we are ready for. He also rules, mine proudly insists, over nurses. They fight in the trenches ad he loves and respects them more than doctors.

In Haiti many traditional healers, mambos, and hougans rely on his gentle yet sure guidance, or for Balendjo himself to do the healing through possession.

He also is the patron of all who go to sea, though many favor Agwe over him. Balendjo keeps a watchful eye on all sailors, fisherman, whalers and so forth. Before you whine and cry about animal rights, I'm talking about those that respect the sea and take only what is needed. His true love of course is for the Navy, as he is a Navy man himself.

He will protect favored ships and sailors, keeping them from harm in battle. Many times a ship under his favor has somehow limped back to port, despite not being seaworthy. Although no site may tell you this, he also favors wounded veterans and all retired servicemen and women. He is proud of those willing to fight for what is right, though he does not require it of his own children.

He is also, mine teases me, fond of kitchen witches. We heal with herbs which is pretty much all he has on hand in Haiti a lot of the time. He will tell you EXACTLY what herbs to use, and when it comes to healing, listen.

Mine favors a herbal concoction I buy called APR that has tons of healing herbs for burns, headaches, and the like. He'll also watch me lance blisters from burns (I tend not to see too well and bump my oven racks), put on ointment, then insists I send in healing energy.

A few hours later you can hardly tell a burn was there. He also has the butterfly of transformation as his totem, like the one in my photo.

Here he is served with his brother, Papa Legba. I made both jars in their colors with their veves.
Here he is served with his brother, Papa Legba. I made both jars in their colors with their veves.

His Children

We like to make him things...

Balendjo's children are those people he has selected from before birth as his own. His children live all over the world, in every color of the rainbow. Many may be healers like me, doctors, sailors, artists (he is also a patron of the arts), or anything they like. As your head he will never force a vocation on you, though many end up in the teaching and healing fields because our personalities match his.

I'm writing this for example, because I want to help you learn, thrive, and be healthy. No better way then to give you to his tender care. But we don't always match him exactly. I have a terrible temper, which my Balendjo dryly tells me makes more a child of an explosive Ogun like Feray. Go live with him, he will say, when I lose control of myself. Of course he knows I'll do no such thing because having an Ogu as your father does not mean all members of the vast family tree will like you.

An explanation is in order here. Many people will tell you all Ogus are Ogu, and while I agree up to a point, it doesn't explain what to do with a distinct spirit such as Shango who becomes Ogun Shango in Vodoun. In general I find my Oguns are Ogu, it's true, yet still distinct. My Feray by the way is nothing but nice to me, if a bit loud and aggressive for my taste.

But back to being his child. Mine at least expects me to be a healer, so my becoming a witch wasn't so much self-expression or answering the Goddess as it was doing my duty. For over ten years he helped me heal a family member and keep death away, all with no credit whatsoever, for I didn't know of his patronage at the time.

I also grow my own herbs for healing, wild-crafting only in my own yard and with plants I'm sure are not endangered. Being his child I could make you a salad, dyes and coffee just out of dandelions. Resourceful being a word he's fond of. Speaking of dandelions, you can use the "milk" inside as a treatment for small cuts while working in your yard. They are also the only food planted to tide bees over in the spring by early settlers in the US, so no killing them.

You may also find his children are strongly attracted to the sea, sailing, and love older ways of doing things. For example I loved sailing on a sailing ship. The kind with actual sails and no engine, honey. Can you imagine how terrible it will be when every ship is designed after the luxury liners so you can't feel the waves beneath you? Or smell the salt air and feel the spray and breezes off the sea? Makes me want to cry. I don't, for the record, like trains where you can't feel the rails beneath you either. Progress, hmmmph.

Balendjo's children are also warriors, serving in every brach of the military you can think of. A lot of battlemedics could very well be his children. Mine figures everyone in the military belongs to him, something I'd advise you not to argue with. He is fond of warriors, especially those fighting in the US military. Mine is American all the way, coming from Africa or not.


Mon film: HAITI TERRE DE OGOU BALINDJO

Rare, even for a Balendjo

C'mon, look at his spirit house....

My Balendjo loves to talk. He's somewhere between nonstop and just slight overload, but it is always something useful. He'll tell me I give him lots of energy and make him happy, then rattle on about the projects I should do, or something he needs me to know, or just anything.

Most Balendjos hardly speak two words. He is portrayed as an old man, so worn out from all his healing work he never talks. Many act just like that in possession. Mine must be on some sort of healing high, he's always playful and never tired.

He loves knowledge, making you think I got read wrong and he's really a Legba. But no it is Ogu. Just a different type. I can talk you up the steps and down again (a nice way of saying I never shut up) so I see where I get it from.

The only other person I've found on the Internet who posted personal stories matches a lot of attributes, including having a fiery temper, only to have Balendjo tell her to cool off. I wouldn't say mine gets angry, though a well-known Mambo was terrified of his holy wrath when my tools were slow in shipping.

He just snorted and said he has better thing to do than get angry over things he can't change. I of course found a thousand things wrong with them when they did arrive, and he just rolled his eyes and told me to hush.

How would I heal on the battlefield if I wanted things just so? He shook his head in disbelief, then told me to write a nice thank you note to the Mambo. When I asked why, since I paid her for a service, she didn't do anything special, he gave me The Look.

It is a look of total shock. Because it is good manners, he told me. He shook his head again and wandered off, but not before muttering something about me being raised by hyaenas.

My Personal Story

happened June 2013

Sometimes I do terribly idiotic things. Like figuring that since I am a child of Ogu I don't need to do sissy things like read safety directions or wear gloves when working with caustic chemicals. Although of course he was gently trying to tell me to do both these thing I ignored him, pretty sure I'm made out of steel.

So ancient pan in hand I started working on the outdoor grill. A felt a slight burning and ignored it. Then the pain started shooting up my arm and my fingernails where turning a ghastly white color. Lye! I knew I'd loose the fingernails at least and was soon whining a high-pitched prayer to please save me, and yes you warned me, and please have mercy, please?

Well he did, but not without first getting me to tell him what a wonderful healer he is, and how handsome he is, and how stupid I was, and making me swear to never do it again in an amused tone of voice. He then healed me and the pain went away, the nails were saved.

He spoke gently telling me I wasn't a Navy ship, and I should listen, and so on and so forth. But he didn't get angry, nor did he leave me to suffer for my foolishness.

By the way, that is about the only thing I haven't mentioned. In Haitian Vodoun Ogun Balendjo is the battle medic.

Ogu Spirit Bottle

Heavily ornamented, I made this bottle for his pleasure.
Heavily ornamented, I made this bottle for his pleasure.

My favorite Site on Him

And a pic of one of his bottles I made

Ogun Balindjo is my all time favorite site, or article on him, and yup, it is written by one of his wives. Yes, he has earthly wives! Goodness not every gal can marry Feray.

But I like what she has to say about him, and how staunchly true blue she is to him herself. A lot of people like to pick on the Ogus, and she isn't they only one who was told Ogu Balendjo is a nothing spirit who doesn't matter.

She gets just as upset as I do. OK he isn't as showy as some Ogus, and pretty much nobody who has ever met him is afraid of him.

As she mentions in his possession video, when he mounts a horse: " When he comes into the peristyle in possession (I watched this on tape of him coming to one in Haiti, through a gorgeous houngan which just added to the effect LOL) he is surprising for an Ogou, being the sort to shake hands and smile a lot and slap men on the back in good will.

He seems a cheerful, friendly sort, not a fierce kind of guy, or concerned about being all macho and serious. He listened to concerns and was eager to work his crowd, shake hands greet people, and they thronged to him in a way you don't see people generally do to Ogou.

He was obviously much loved and the members of the peristyle delighted to see him like a long absent friend dropping by to say hello. He basically got mobbed with affection and this is the sort of strong man who is comfortable with affection and expressing his feelings."

Mine is usually cheerful too, even if I'm a flop at astral realm training. He has this habit of waiting to the dream state to put me in a training situation. But I never realize it isn't a real threat and smoke my enemy. (Don't worry it is training so they don't really get hurt.)

He sighs in exasperation and asks why I don't call for him. You know he has a point. He would come the instant I call, but I have this drive to prove I'm tough enough, even though he calls me lion cub. One of these days I'll get it right, just to please him, because he makes you want to please him.

Or as she says much better: "He's the sort of leader whose men fight for love of him, would follow him to hell, and believe the best of him and that he cares about their own situations. They also respect him, because he can fight as well as any of them and doesn't order them off to details he hasn't done and done longer and better than they ever will."

So yeah, I have to learn to step back and let the master Jedi do his thing, since he's much better at it. She also calls his curt, which is fair. He can say things without meaning to hurt your feelings that raise your hackles. I seem to recall "I can't fix stupid."

But I had it coming. I absolutely HATED the man when I got my met tete reading, and it took a lot of patience and love on his part to bring me around. He would be nice, and I'd just glower at him. How could I get stuck with HIM?

The most miserable, angry, vengeful and stupid of all lwa, or so my first Mambo taught me. (I'm seriously wondering what her major malfunction was.) But he isn't that, not by a long shot. Balendjo is always going to outthink you, he will never blink first.

He simply has no need to prove himself the way a younger less practiced warrior would. He KNOWS he is the best, and the best don't need to showboat.

Lastly she and I agree on one more thing: "I recall one time when I was very upset over something I'd read on an elist about him, being supposedly a sort of has-been as a healer. He came and found me all wired up furious at the insult and lie, and just sat back with a repressed grin as I went off and ranted and raved about idiots who don't even know him or know what they are talking about, and acting like they can say anything like that and dare to disrespect a man of his calibre."

I will go off like Pele and turn from Fluff Bunny Wicca to avenging-Black-Ops-Crazy-Witch in a nanosecond when he is dissed. He saved my life in more ways than one and hearing anybody diss my beloved all father drives me insane.

My Balendjo just laughs, ruffles my hair and tells his little lion cub not to growl so much because she is soooo cute when she does it. The instantly makes me laugh and makes me happy again.

Family life

Balendjo also has two sisters in Sance.

La Gunguna Balenyo is a Petro spirit, fierce and hot. I'm not sure if she always wears them, but mine showed up in black and blue, a uniform similar to her brothers. She is a fierce fighter, and mine seemed a bit smug, but in a good way. She has no problem advertising her ability to kick tail and she can brag a bit, but mine certainly has fun vexing her brother. She walks with the ghede spirits and has great magical abilities.

She owns nails, such as those that seal the coffin, railroad ties, and nails of any size. She seems to share the number three with her brother. Thanks so much to Sociedad de Sance for opening the door with the information on both ladies. I must admit that as tough as she is, she sees and treats me as a kid sister. You can use a warrior picture for her, but Saint Helen is traditional.

Ofelia Balenjo is shown with a card or picture of Our Lady of Mercy. Her colors are pink and white, white and blue, and perhaps gold. She loves the type of presents Ezili Freda would. Perfume, roses, jewelry and the like. She works with Balendjo to bring justice. She also is a hex smasher, like her brother.

Don't make the mistake of thinking this sweet lady can't fight. All Oguns, male and female can have you helpless in an instant. But she does seem more of a Mary type than her sister. Mine at least seems sweetly benevolent.

Ogu Yamsan: Mine is friendly and he is said to be Balendjo's constant companion as they sail on Agwe's ship together. Yamsan runs up the flags, and helps out Balendjo any way he can. Some say he will show up at parties for Balendjo and drink the rum first, but mine is doggedly loyal and protective of my Balendjo.

Matter of fact, in my childhood I always used to see him around a certain person, so I was afraid of that person. It was Yamsan protecting me, scaring me enough so I'd stay out of arm's reach. He is loyal to Balendjo and protecting me was part of that loyalty. He deserves a lot more medals than he gets, certainly a heart shaped one made out of gold.

Ogou's Machete

Ogu likes weapons, using them in possession during his ritual dances. He also likes them for home use as well.
Ogu likes weapons, using them in possession during his ritual dances. He also likes them for home use as well.

You Belong to Your Spirits

Every so often I used to fret over my skin color. Stupid I know, but I had other issues and it is as handy an excuse as any to try to push Balendjo away before he leaves. As if he was suddenly going to rub his eyes one day and notice I'm white for the first time. (Well the jury is out on the white part, but distinctly African I'm not.)

We all have the spirits for our ancestors, despite the rather noble effort I saw on TV once to say all Europeans are descended from cute little tree monkeys. So the spirits do have a legitimate claim on everyone, though they don't claim everyone.

Anyhow during one of these frets, he decided he had had enough. But he wasn't going to yell at me. Oh no. He handed me over to the Santeria Ogu (long story) who ranted and raved, and waved a machete in front of my face.

All while snarling that I belong to him, and how dare I try and run away? I was being stupid and if I didn't stop he would set me on fire for being a naughty child. To me those were the most wonderful words in the world.

Because it proved I am his as far as he is concerned, regardless of what anyone else might have to say. And that, boys and girls is a wonderful lesson. Because he proved, without a doubt I belong to him. That is his machete, btw.

Hey St Jude

Ogun Balendjo has a soft spot for children, and wanted this new (to us) ad on his lens. He loves children, and he works as a doctor with them. So St. Jude's means a lot to both of us. You can find out more about this hospital, than never, ever, turns a child away HERE

He also wanted me to remind you that he is the patron of sick kids everywhere. People who say Ogu never cries for others or never feels love or compassion have never seen him with a sick child. I was very sickly as a child and although I didn't know who he was, I can tell you he visited my hospital bed plenty of times.

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      adam 7 months ago

      iam sitting here wondering too about yet another dream i had years ago where i was told it was Ogou the red eyes... but now i wonder... dreamt of a big giant (tall has a telephone pole nearly) bald headed brown skinned black man dressed with blue and hints of red... with eyes made of fire he had no pupils there was fire in his eyes..... gliding down the streets in water with flames of fire to his left and right while onlookers looked in both a mix of awe and horror.

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      Nightcat 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Thank you so much, Uma! He sees how I'll get myself in over my head then have to run to him for protection and consolation. He tells me I've got as much sense and fighting ability as a kitten, but he means it in a good way.

      I was getting myself all worked up over reader comments on another site, but he used you to remind me that I have to let him deal with things and to avoid fights. All I ever do is get myself worked up over it anyhow. Thanks so much for the visit, hugs! :)

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      Girl you are so...VIVID. Yes, lucid, Returning to this site I am re-inspired by your luminous words, the emotions moving me more profoundly, deeply. Today it is that picture of the little girl finding all the shelter in the world holding safe to her warriors leg. Mojuba Balenjo Ashe

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      Nightcat 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Thanks so very much Uma! I've only seen one other person connected to Balendjo and she roars like I do. Of course we hear mighty roars, and he hears squeaks from a tiny cub! He just bursts out laughing when I get angry and he's a lot like a lion. Calm and laid back cause he knows he can whup anybody he sees. In fact Ogu is called a lion who provides us with food. Thanks so much for the visit, hugs! :)

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      I SO do love the "I don't care who started it....." lion Ogu picture/ theme. This is the best. VERY SUPER!!!!