Onwa Agwu is a period that lasts from June (Onwa-iri na ato) to July (Onwa-mbu) each year.
The Ịgọchi na mmanwụ (adult masquerades) come out in this period. The Alusi Agwu (Yoruba Orisha/Spirit of divination and healing), after which the period is named, is venerated by the Dibia (Yoruba Babalawo/Priests and Priestesses), by whom Agwu is specifically revered during this period.
The Alusi Agwu is the spirit of Divination and Healing. Agwu is also known as Agwusi and shares similar characteristics to spirits like Ekwensu of the Igbo, the Esu of the Yoruba and Ananse of the Akan people.
Agwu explains the phenomenon of good and evil, health and sickness, wealth and poverty, fortune and misfortune and belongs to the category of deities from Chukwu Okike (God the Creator) like Anyanwu, Amadioha and Ala.
In his book, In Defence of Igbo Belief System, Nwankwo Nnabuchi recollects and records his conversation with Agwu – when Agwu was asked about himself, he replied:
"I am the spark of Divine Essence charged with the responsibility of providing man with tools of existence… "
"I hold the key to those secrets of creation which man is expected to know and reveal such secrets as are necessary for the advancement of mankind… "
"In the study of science, philosophy, religion, occultism, mysticism, I am the first port of call. "
Intelligence, wisdom, knowledge and power is bestowed on those who have received the blessings of the spirit of Agwu.
These blessings are, however, bestowed with the price of being clean at all times of your life before God the Creator.
Look out for our Alusi/Orisha chart in our next edition!
Iseee! Ase wa!
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