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Oshun Altar

Posted by sirensays on May 11, 2009

In my previous post, while the moon was waxing, I included a basic spell for a honey jar. I made one recently, created a lovely collage and redid my altar, all as an offering to Oshun.

Oshun is a West African Orisha. Orisha are the deities that are manifestations of Olodumare (God) in the Yoruba religious system. She is a Goddess of fresh water (such as rivers, lakes, streams and creeks), love, sensuality, abundance, divination, women’s rights, the arts, female mysteries, seduction, sweetness, renewal, healing and beauty. You could say that the new moon and Springtime are Oshun, times of renewal, fresh promise and the beginning of manifestation.

Like all Orisha, she is associated with colors and numbers. Her number is 5 and her colors are yellow, gold and green (many people don’t realize green is one of her colors). She loves honey (please taste it first), pastries, champagne, cinnamon, cloves, yams, coconut and pumpkins. If you offer her honey, eggs or pumpkins, especially in multiples of 5, she will release her renewing powers in human life. Her altars must be beautiful and usually include ornate fans, mirrors, river water, cloth in her colors, peacock feathers, copper, amber or gold jewelry, flowers and yellow candles. It’s traditional to use white plates for food offerings. If you don’t have white plates and can’t afford to buy any, it’s acceptable to cover the plate with white tissue paper. If you can’t get fresh water such as a lake or river, using bottled spring water is acceptable and you can buy river rocks at arts and crafts stores. It’s preferable to gather these items yourself, but it’s not always possible.

Here are some photos of my altar (the bright lights on top of the honey jar are burning candles):
Honey Jar Oshun1
Offerings to Oshun
Peacock Featehr Fan

Here is a simple, incredibly delicious recipe for shortbread which makes a wonderful offering to Oshun:

½ c cornstarch
½ c powdered sugar
1 c flour
¾ c butter or margarine

Optional: nuts and chocolate, extra powdered sugar

Pre-heat oven to 300 degrees.
Sift the dry ingredients and then blend in the butter or margarine
Add ½ to 1 c chopped nuts if you wish.
Mix together.

Dough may need to be refrigerated a bit if it’s warm out.
Form in either crescent shapes or small balls and put on a cookie sheet. If you use foil, you probably don’t have to grease the sheet, but feel free to do so lightly. Press down with either your fingers or a lightly flowered spoon or fork.

Bake 2-25 minutes. Note: these cookies do not darken much, so make sure you pay attention so that they don’t burn!

While still warm, if you wish to “dress” them with some powdered sugar, as these are plain, buttery, rich cookies, but not overly sweet, sift some powdered sugar over them while they’re still warm, as it will melt a bit on the warm cookies and form a deliciously sweet paste of sorts.

If you want to dip them in chocolate, I prefer melting semi-sweet chocolate chips with a tad of butter, then stirring. Since the cookies are crumbly, I carefully apply chocolate to the top of a small circular cookie or to 1/3-1/2 of a crescent shaped one. You can also add nut halves on top of the chocolate.

These cookies, with or without chocolate, make a delicious, generous offering to Oshun, especially in a crescent shape. The dough will keep for some time in the freezer. I’ve found that if it’s delicious and made with magical intent and a lot of love, Oshun adores homemade goodies. Shown your adoration to Oshun, and she will renew you!
Shortbread for Oshun


One Response to “Oshun Altar”

  1. Sam said

    thank you for this, I look forward to trying the cookies for Her

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