BLACK, HISTORY, Santeros, Genetics, Otomi




Mexico, Paraiso, El Carmen, Veracruz, Saladero, Tamiahua

Bar Chart

Researchers have found that some Mayan people have genetic markers, which point to African ancestors. For example: Underhill, et al noted that:"


One Mayan male, previously (has been) shown to have an African Y chromosome." - Underhill, et al (1996) " A pre-Columbian Y chromosome specific transition with its implications for human evolutionary history", Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci USA, Vol.93, pp.196-200. Paul Manansala has observed that: Genetics Mestizos in Mayan or nearby areas show significant African admixture.


The East Coast had extensive admixture according to a recent study by Lisker et al. ("Genetic Structure in Mesoamerica," _Human Biology, June 1996).


The following percentages of African ancestry were found among East coast populations: The Olmec spoke a variety of the Mande language, which is still spoken in West Africa today. Many scholars refuse to admit that Africans early settled America. But the evidence of African skeletons found at many Olmec sites, and their trading partners from the Old World found by Dr. Andrzej Wiercinski prove the cosmopolitan nature of Olmec society. The major evidence of the African origin of the Olmecs comes from their writing. The writing system used by the Olmec and later adopted by the Maya, was first used by Mande speaking people in Northern-west Africa and is called Libyco-Berber (even though it cannot be read in Taurag).




The first scholar to recognize the African origin of the Olmec writing was Leo Wiener, in Dr. Wiener, highlighted the fact that the writing on the Tuxtla statuette was identical to writing used by the Mande speaking people. In addition to the Mande speaking Olmec or Xi people influenced the Mayan languages they also influenced the Otomi language of Mexico. The Otomi language also shows affinity to the Mande languages.

Priests are commonly known as "olorishas" or owner of Orisa. Once those priests have initiated other priests, they become known as babalorishas, "fathers of orisha" (for men), and as iyalorishas, "mothers of orisha" (for women).

Divination, Orishas, Ifa priests, Orunmila, Babalawos, Nigeria

Santeria Table

Any priest can commonly be referred to as Santeros and Santeras (depending on gender), and if they function as diviners (using cowrie-shell divination known as Diloggun) of the Orishas they can be considered Italeros, or if they go through training to become leaders of initiations, they are known as Oba or Oriate. Considered to be highest in rank are priests of Ifá (ee-fah), which in santeria is an all male group. Ifá Priests receive Orunmila who is the Orisha of Prophecy, Wisdom and Knowledge. Ifa Priests are known by the title Babalawo or "Father Who Knows the Secrets".


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In the recent years, the practice of traditional Yoruba Ifa priests (from Nigeria) has come to the diaspora of initiating women to be Iyanifa or "Mother of Destiny", but Santeria or "Lucumi" practitioners do not accept this practice as dictated by the Odu Ifa Irete Untelu which states woman cannot be in the presence of Olofin or Igba Iwa Odu and so cannot be initiated as divining priestesses.

This is a major difference between santeria Ifa practitioners, and traditional Yoruba practitioners from Nigeria (though it should be noted that not all areas of Nigeria have this practice). Instead, women are initiated as Apetebi Ifa (bride of Ifa) and are considered senior in Ifa to all but fully initiated Babalawos.


There is little evidence of Iyanifa existing in West Africa until very recently, so the existence of the Iyanifa is likely to be of modern origin in Yorubaland and therefore does not appear in the Cuban variant.


Libyco-Berber, Taurag, Xi people


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There is little evidence of Iyanifa existing in West Africa until very recently, so the existence of the Iyanifa is likely to be of modern origin in Yorubaland and therefore does not appear in the Cuban variant.





















The foremost Western academic authority on Ifa, William Bascom, traveled throughout Yorubaland studying the Ifa cult in a series of visits in 1937–1938, 1950–1951, 1960 and 1965, and never encountered a single Iyanifa nor was he told of their existence by any of his informants.














However, Maupoil in his work in the early 20th century does note the existence of Iyanifa and Chief Fama, is a Nigerian born Iyanifa with several books considered to be academic worthy.


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