Under the Afro Caribbean Sea

Due to the recent controversy with Halle Bailey taking the lead role in Disney live action Little Mermaid as Ariel, and due to the complexion of miss Bailey, certain groups of people have turned to the internet vocalising their distain for a fictional character in movie that till late spring May, meanwhile they forget the message of the story which can apply to any race, colour or creed; the mistakes and challenges she goes through, she still achieves her goal and got to explore the human world. The lesson here is that if we were to give up during challenges, we would never reach our dreams. But if you try your best, you can succeed.

But never mind that what I want to share with you guys today is to share with you different water deities, spirits and mythology from Africa.


Mami Wata

First off we have mami Wata; Mami Wata is a water spirit who is worshipped across Africa and in the Caribbean. She was originally celebrated in Central and West Africa, but travelled with enslaved Africans across the Atlantic. Those communities continued to honour Mami Wata, and she flourished throughout the Caribbean.

With a female human upper half and a fish or serpent lower half, Mami Wata symbolises many aspects of life including good fortune, wealth, and healing but also the threat of destruction; she is sometimes depicted with a snake around her neck which represents both divinity and the art of divination.Mami Wata is venerated throughout Africa and the African diaspora as a being of great spiritual power who is associated with health and wealth, love, and good fortune. She can be beneficent or malevolent — depending on the obedience of her followers. She can shower them with good luck or drown them for insolence.



Olokun

In Yoruba mythology, Olokun was the orisha (or spirit) of the waters of the earth and the depths of the ocean where the light never shone. He was considered as the ruler of all the bodies of water on earth and even had authority over the other water deities. Olokun was venerated as male, female or androgynous depending on the location. Olokun is believed to be the parent of Aje, the orisha of great wealth and of the bottom of the ocean. Olokun is revered as the ruler of all bodies of water and for the authority over other water deities. Olokun is highly praised for their ability to give great wealth, health, and prosperity to their followers. Olokun, at a certain time, was displeased with humanity since he believed that the humans didn’t respect him as they should. Therefore, he decided to punish humankind, by sending tidal waves to bury the land and everything on it under water. The water obeyed his commands and the ocean began to swell up. Immense waves start invading the land and the people who lived far away from the coastline saw the mountains of water coming towards them, meaning certain death. They ran as far away as they could in fear.


Nyami Nyami

Nyaminyami is the ancestral spirit or Mudzimu of the Tonga people in the middle Zambezi Valley. The Tonga inhabited both banks of the Zambezi River in Zimbabwe and Zambia for centuries. Life changed for everybody downstream of Devil’s Gorge with the construction of the Kariba dam wall at the entrance to Kariba Gorge in the 1950?s. Much of the local Batonga population was then displaced and the legend of Nyaminyami was given fresh life. Nyaminyami has apparently been seen on several occasions by local Tonga. He’s been described by some as looking “like a whirlwind”, others say that he had a “body like a snake with a head like a fish” but it was difficult to say how big he was as he’d never fully shown himself to anybody.


Oshun & Yemoja

Finally we have Oshun is commonly called the river orisha, or goddess, in the Yoruba religion and is typically associated with water, purity, fertility, love, and sensuality. She is considered one of the most powerful of all orishas, and, like other gods, she possesses human attributes such as vanity, jealousy, and spite. While still a mortal, Oshun is said to have gone to a drum festival one day and to have fallen in love with Shango.In the visual for “Hold Up”, the third track on Beyoncé’s 6th album Lemonade, the singer brings terror to a quaint town as she manically - and quite jovially - smashes cars and store windows motivated by suspicions of her creating lover. But it’s not just intuition fueling her rampage, visually, Beyoncé is channeling something much more powerful - the Yoruba goddess Oshun.

Every river must have its beginning, and that beginning is Yemoja. The Goddess of the Ogun River is mother to the Yoruba pantheon, and from her floodwaters sprang the first mortals. She is the mistress of all rivers and the eternal guardian of the ancient mysteries of life itself. Fishermen and sailors seek her blessings, for she is the protector of all who travel on water. Mothers-to-be ask for her aid, for she is the patron spirit of women and governs everything pertaining to the feminine – especially childbirth. Yoruba people in Nigeria offer thanks to Yemoja, goddess of the river and mother of all other Yoruba gods. It is an important way for them to remember and celebrate their traditional roots and beliefs. Yemoja is frequently portrayed as the wife of various male personified orisha, such as Obatala, Okere, Orisha Oko, and Erinle. She is also said to be the mother of Ogun, Sango, Oya, Osun, Oba, Orisha Oko, Babaluaiye, and Osoosi.



And these are just a few of the water Gods and Goddess that I have during my research into African Mythology, so for their to be such and out cry about a fictional character being portrayed as another race is very baffling to me, but none the less, here are other deities that I had found but could find substantial information on them, if you know of any more do not hesitate to share:


Benin:

  • Ezili, goddess of sweet water, beauty, and love.

Lugandan:

  • Sezibwa, goddess of the Sezibwa River.

Kongo:

  • Bunzi, goddess of rain, rainbow and waters.

  • Chicamassichinuinji, king of oceans.

  • Kimbazi, goddess of sea storms.

  • Kuitikuiti, serpent god of Congo river

  • Lusunzi, god of spring and waters.

  • Mbumba, rainbow serpent of terrestrial waters and warriors.

  • Mpulu Bunzi, god of rain and waters.

  • Simbi dia Maza, nymphs or goddesses of waters, lakes and rivers.



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