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Birth Of A Hakim (& Turtle Tank) present:

The Power of Life Purpose: an Ifa / Orisha Perspective

Live Virtual Talk and Q&A on Thursday, June 13th @9pm EST / 6pm PST

a conversation with Iyanifa Ifalade TaShia Asanti

Hosted by Samia Abou-Samra (Ifagunwa Omilari)

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The Power of Life Purpose: An Ifa / Orisha Perspective

SIGN UP for the link to attend live oR get a link of the recording following the event

This event will be held LIVE via a virtual platform (such as Zoom or YouTube Live) and be followed by a Q&A

Date&time: THURSDAY, June 13th 2019 @ 9pm EST/6pm PST

PS: If you attend live, you will receive a $50 discount code (that expires in 24hrs) for our new digital course: Radical Purpose Deep Dive !

There are a handful of people without whom I would surely not be alive today. Iyanifa Ifalade TaShia Asanti is one of them.

Iyanifa Ifalade is my Godmother in Ifa (a Yoruba / Orisha cosmosystem) and presiding priestess of Ile Ori Ogbe Egun, Temple of the Enlightened Path. She is also an award-winning poet and author (amongst many other incredible things). Her feats are wide and numerous, her godchildren many and thriving.

As a recent queer brown immigrant to the United States, I’ve struggled to find and make home here. Iyanifa is one of my adopted mothers/fathers in and beyond Ifa. She has closely guided me in revealing the meaning of my life. She has helped me stay here -- in this country, on this earth and on the path of my purpose. We also share a common core purpose: to reveal and ignite people’s purposes and propel them to fulfill their greatest potential for the evolution of all.

Our journey together solidified my understanding of my purpose and the concept of life purpose in general. And I would love to share some of her wisdom with you.

We often hear about the concept of ‘life purpose’ from an oversimplified western, new age perspective. Over the years (while I roamed, sat and learned with my teachers across indigenous and afro-indigenous cosmosystems), I became increasingly clear that the concept of life purpose is at the heart of many indigenous systems. And I would argue that those systems were created to remind us of our purpose after the journey of forgetting, the journey of birth into this reality.

The culture of capitalism thrives on our forgetting of our purpose. It is built on the value basis that we, the majority of humans, especially the marginalized, are not unique, important nor sacred. We are treated as empty malleable vessels: filled, molded and shuttled into corrupt systems that generate corrupt wealth and well-being for a select few. We are made to feel dispensable on purpose. We are made to feel inadequate on purpose. We are distracted, exhausted, depleted and burnt out on purpose.

The entire system of capitalism, its marketplace and culture of wealth thrive on our lack of self-worth and value. It thrives on our lack of direction, our lack of center. It thrives on us not knowing, accessing and living our true life purpose.

… because that kind of living roots us in our power and destabilizes the status quo.

The majority of indigenous and afro-indigenous cultural systems that I have encountered are constructed around the concept of Purpose, at their core. Every ritual (from naming to healing ancestral wounds) is designed to remind us why we are here, where we come from, what our gifts, challenges and lessons are and how we work to fulfill our deepest desires on this earth towards evolution. Our rituals are communal and natural ecosystems created to support the fulfillment of each of our purposes (and the purpose of every living creature) towards collective evolution. The systems are designed to keep life in sacred balance through the lens of purpose.

That is why, at Turtle Tank, we say that radical (life) purpose is the guiding compass on our journey of personal and collective evolution.

The Ifa framework that explains the concept of life purpose is rich and complex. It reflects the complexity of the Ifa concept of a ‘soul’ (our Ori) and consciousness. Many high priests speak of Ori (all the layers of the soul) as the greatest Orisha or source of power we have access to. And it is Ori that we call on first and foremost to access our life purpose (with guidance from a complex system of other forces).

In this conversation, we will be talking about the concept of Life Purpose through the lens of Ifa, a Yoruba, Orisha cosmosystem and its relationship to Ori.

We, Iyanifa and myself, will also share bits of our life and Ifa journeys and the ways in which Ifa has informed our understanding of our life purpose.

These are some of the questions we will be conversing around and about.

  • What insight does Ifa provide on the concept of ‘life purpose’?

  • How do we determine our life purpose and stay on that journey through Ifa?

  • What is the Odu Ifa (sacred text and oracle) and what is its relationship to life purpose?

  • How does Ifa divination work and how do we access divination to stay on path?

Sign up to join us for what will be a deepening and revelatory experience.

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The Power of Life Purpose: An Ifa / Orisha Perspective

SIGN UP for the link to attend live oR get a link of the recording following the event

This event will be held LIVE via a virtual platform (such as Zoom or YouTube Live) and be followed by a Q&A

Date&time: THURSDAY, June 13th 2019 @ 9pm EST/6pm PST

PS: If you attend live, you will receive a $50 discount code (that expires in 24hrs) for our new digital course: Radical Purpose Deep Dive !

IYANIFA IFALADE TASHIA ASANTI

Ifalade (E-fah-lah-day) Ta’Shia (Tah-Shee-ah) Asanti (Ah-sawn-tay) is a nationally celebrated spiritual teacher, master intuitive and Orisa/Ifa Priestess. In an article about TaShia’s work as a healer and teacher, the New York Times said, “Iya Ta’Shia is a priestess with a good head on her shoulders.”  Ifalade began her journey in the Orisa tradition in 1992 under the guidance of her then Padrino, Angel Lebron and Iya Adeloni of the House of Pimienta, Havana, Cuba. Ifalade went on to be initiated to Orisas Yemoja (Head) and Shango (Feet), as well as to Isefa in 2000 by Oloye Ifa Karade whose lineage extends to Ile Ife, Nigeria. Ifalade received supporting initiations under the guidance of Iyanifa Ifalola Omobola and Awo Ifasola Odunade from Atlanta, Georgia.  Culminating 18 years of study, practice and worship in the Orisa & Ifa tradition, Ifalade made her journey to Atlanta, Georgia to receive Itefa initiation from the late, great Chief Kofi Zannu Medahochi (Ibae). She and her mat brother were among the last few to receive the healing medicine of this frontrunner in the Orisa traditions before he passed on the great Ile in the sky....  In 2003, Ta’Shia and her temple members, organized and produced the first International Ifa Conference which featured 26 speakers from Ifa, Voudoun, Curandera, Candomble and Lukumi spiritualities.  n 2004, following the wisdom and guidance of Orunmila given through divination, Ta’Shia accepted a part in the internationally aired reality TV show, "Mad, Mad House," which aired to millions of homes across America making her the first priestess to appear on a primetime TV show. While Ifalade experienced both joy and struggle as a result of her participation in the show, Orunmila guided many new students to the Ifa/Orisa tradition as a result of Ta’Shia’s role.  In 2006, the temple Ta’Shia co-founded reached 27 Ifa initiates and 50 members nationwide giving it the right to establish an official lineage in the State of Colorado.  TaShia gave birth to the Ogundeji Ajake Lineage supported by Irete Meji. Ogundeji Ajake lineage was officialized before Elders and the community at the Cleo Parker Robinson Theatre with support of local Orisa elders and priests.  Following the charge of her teacher, Oloye Ifa Karade to, "Return the People to the Tradition," Ifalade and Ile Ori worked diligently to present a positive and healthy image of not only Ifa but all African and indigenous spiritualities. Thus, Ifalade created the National Institute for Indigenous Cultural Studies which invited local, national and internationally recognized spiritual and cultural teachers to educate communities on indigenous spirituality.  Ta’Shia is the author of five books including:  Two Non-fiction books-The Sacred Door: A Spiritual Guide to Power Living and The Master Breakthrough  Two Novels--The Seer: Legacy of Stone & Spirit  and The Bones Do Talk  And a book of short fiction named, Fluid: Out of Darkness Comes Light which she co-authored with Iya Oyaseeke  A commentator on Fox News Good Day Colorado with Emmy-award-winning anchorwoman, Shaul Turner and a regular on PBS’s, Colorado State of Mind, Ta’Shia has made numerous appearances on TV and film.  Ta’Shia is the recipient of the African Americans Who Make a Difference Award from Urban Spectrum Media; the Audre Lorde Black Quill Award for creating positive images of African American women in the media and the Kathleen Morris Award for best contemporary fiction by a woman of color. Ta’Shia was also presented with the UCLA Seed Scholarship Award for Outstanding Writing on Culture and the Arts by the International Black Writers and Artists Organization. TaShia was also named a Distinguished Fellow by the Lambda Literary Association.  In 2015, Ifalade crowned her 122nd Godchild in Ocha. This cemented her vision of creating an inclusive Orisha society with multi-ethnic, SGLBT, gender non-conforming and hetero-identified members.  With a career spanning two decades, with milestones in radio, TV, print journalism, creative writing, filmmaking and theater arts, Ta’Shia is excited to share her journey as an activist, spiritual teacher and Iyalocha!  Ifalade TaShia Asanti can be reached at:  www.officialtashiaasanti.com  www.ileoriteacheslove.com  www.blackwomanchronicles.weebly.com  allthewords[AT]aol.com

Ifalade (E-fah-lah-day) Ta’Shia (Tah-Shee-ah) Asanti (Ah-sawn-tay) is a nationally celebrated spiritual teacher, master intuitive and Orisa/Ifa Priestess. In an article about TaShia’s work as a healer and teacher, the New York Times said, “Iya Ta’Shia is a priestess with a good head on her shoulders.”

Ifalade began her journey in the Orisa tradition in 1992 under the guidance of her then Padrino, Angel Lebron and Iya Adeloni of the House of Pimienta, Havana, Cuba. Ifalade went on to be initiated to Orisas Yemoja (Head) and Shango (Feet), as well as to Isefa in 2000 by Oloye Ifa Karade whose lineage extends to Ile Ife, Nigeria. Ifalade received supporting initiations under the guidance of Iyanifa Ifalola Omobola and Awo Ifasola Odunade from Atlanta, Georgia.

Culminating 18 years of study, practice and worship in the Orisa & Ifa tradition, Ifalade made her journey to Atlanta, Georgia to receive Itefa initiation from the late, great Chief Kofi Zannu Medahochi (Ibae). She and her mat brother were among the last few to receive the healing medicine of this frontrunner in the Orisa traditions before he passed on the great Ile in the sky....

In 2003, Ta’Shia and her temple members, organized and produced the first International Ifa Conference which featured 26 speakers from Ifa, Voudoun, Curandera, Candomble and Lukumi spiritualities.

n 2004, following the wisdom and guidance of Orunmila given through divination, Ta’Shia accepted a part in the internationally aired reality TV show, "Mad, Mad House," which aired to millions of homes across America making her the first priestess to appear on a primetime TV show. While Ifalade experienced both joy and struggle as a result of her participation in the show, Orunmila guided many new students to the Ifa/Orisa tradition as a result of Ta’Shia’s role.

In 2006, the temple Ta’Shia co-founded reached 27 Ifa initiates and 50 members nationwide giving it the right to establish an official lineage in the State of Colorado.

TaShia gave birth to the Ogundeji Ajake Lineage supported by Irete Meji. Ogundeji Ajake lineage was officialized before Elders and the community at the Cleo Parker Robinson Theatre with support of local Orisa elders and priests.

Following the charge of her teacher, Oloye Ifa Karade to, "Return the People to the Tradition," Ifalade and Ile Ori worked diligently to present a positive and healthy image of not only Ifa but all African and indigenous spiritualities. Thus, Ifalade created the National Institute for Indigenous Cultural Studies which invited local, national and internationally recognized spiritual and cultural teachers to educate communities on indigenous spirituality.

Ta’Shia is the author of five books including:

Two Non-fiction books-The Sacred Door: A Spiritual Guide to Power Living and The Master Breakthrough

Two Novels--The Seer: Legacy of Stone & Spirit

and The Bones Do Talk

And a book of short fiction named, Fluid: Out of Darkness Comes Light which she co-authored with Iya Oyaseeke

A commentator on Fox News Good Day Colorado with Emmy-award-winning anchorwoman, Shaul Turner and a regular on PBS’s, Colorado State of Mind, Ta’Shia has made numerous appearances on TV and film.

Ta’Shia is the recipient of the African Americans Who Make a Difference Award from Urban Spectrum Media; the Audre Lorde Black Quill Award for creating positive images of African American women in the media and the Kathleen Morris Award for best contemporary fiction by a woman of color. Ta’Shia was also presented with the UCLA Seed Scholarship Award for Outstanding Writing on Culture and the Arts by the International Black Writers and Artists Organization. TaShia was also named a Distinguished Fellow by the Lambda Literary Association.

In 2015, Ifalade crowned her 122nd Godchild in Ocha. This cemented her vision of creating an inclusive Orisha society with multi-ethnic, SGLBT, gender non-conforming and hetero-identified members.

With a career spanning two decades, with milestones in radio, TV, print journalism, creative writing, filmmaking and theater arts, Ta’Shia is excited to share her journey as an activist, spiritual teacher and Iyalocha!

Ifalade TaShia Asanti can be reached at:

www.officialtashiaasanti.com

www.ileoriteacheslove.com

www.blackwomanchronicles.weebly.com

allthewords[AT]aol.com

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What is ‘Birth Of A Hakim’?

A Playspace for LOVE, Wisdom and the EVOLUTION of Consciousness within the Turtle Tank universe

With Samia Abou-Samra, co-founder of Turtle Tank: School for Radical Purpose

How do we bring and keep Love alive? It is time for an Age of Wisdom.

My heart has always been big and tender.

Too big to fit within the confines of my rib cage, of this body, of this life. A black hole of unimaginable love that I would often drown in. As a child, I was in a constant state of in loveness -- with the ever-loyal, majestic dogs and chickens I cared for, the revolutionary Levantine mountain and ocean people I come from, the smell that emanates from a chop of parsley and a pounding of garlic, the Tarab music that trickled into my ears and pierced an opening into another layer of my soul. I was always in love, vibrant passionate love. And as for any child, as we grow into a world that seems like it isn’t made for that kind of heart, that kind of love, the eternal state of in loveness turns to a state of perpetual heartbreak. Heart broken into forgetfulness. Aching to belong. To be in longing - in a state of aliveness. To be in a state of loveness again.

Yearning to go back to love.

And even though, over the years I’ve been ridiculed for how I love. Who I love. How deeply and intensely I experience the magnificence of love. I have never been able to be anything else but love.

For those who have tried could never beat it out of me... and they never will.

But how much more heartbreak could I really survive?

Yes. At times I questioned my sanity. I wondered if the desire and ability to love so deeply was in fact a disease. An inability to truly see fault and draw needed boundaries. An inability to mature into a reality that often consumes and abuses this love because most of us are so fearfully hiding from it. I’ve been called too earnest, too naive, too passionate, too intense, too forgiving, too crazy, too much. Too young. But I have always felt as old as time. I was never and am not naive. Though my heart is pure and maybe too open. And there is a difference between naive and pure.

I hail from a line of pure hearts. And I watched my mother struggle with those who could not sit next to her unmasking integrity -- as it shed light on all they had painfully hidden. I watched my father’s open, generous heart be beat down and abused by the weight of injustice in more ways than I cared to know. I come from a family often ostracized for their values, for standing in their truth, for standing up for me: a wild one with a big heart. For loving so deeply in spaces that had often forgotten how to love. For extending grace at times where others could never imagine to -- and teaching me that I needed to do the same.

They taught me that there was nothing more needed in this world than a love like that.

At times I wondered if there could ever be a love this deep without a great deal of pain. The inescapable duality that we’ve come here to experience. That duality that philosophers ponder into conscious questioning, writers write to dissolve and singers sing to resolve. The one we are all looking to reconcile. Can we ever escape it, the duality?

How can we hold a state of real love in a world where its dual counterparts, fear and pain, often seem to reign supreme.

This is what I’ve come to know:

There is absolutely nothing wrong with being in a deep state of in loveness. But what I’ve come here to learn is that: on this earth, this kind of love requires (even demands) an equally robust consciousness steeped in the grace of wisdom.

And that is the ONLY way that kind of love will survive and be sustained in the magnificence of its being. Without the grace of wisdom, it will wither. It will lead to the deaths of the lover and the beloved.

I don’t have to lose my loving heart, in fact I can grow it some more. But to preserve and protect it, I do have to cloak it in a state of graceful wisdom.

I’ve been looking for a word that best suits who I yearn to be to continue to love the way that I do. A reference I can grow more deeply into as the soul I’ve come to be.

Hakim | The Wise One


A Hakim (Arabic Noun) is used to refer to a wise person. An all-wise judge, a person with the ability to discern what is most fitting in the present circumstance and act in honor of a balanced self towards the balancing of the universe as a whole.

In my mother tongue, spoken Lebanese Arabic (and other spoken Arabics) Hakim is what we commonly call a medical doctor -- that’s how I grew up using the word. But that’s not all it is and was used for. It is also a reference for a traditional medicine person, a philosopher and a person of authority (a judge) and often used historically for people in positions of leadership and governance.

The Birth of A Hakim refers to the birth of a sovereign self. A person endowed with sound choice-making (choices that ensure the person can thrive). A person able to make a choice and know that they are in fact, responsible for the choices they make, for the state of their being - their feeling. A person that no longer accepts to simply exist within the simple duality of victim and oppressor. A person that sees both victim and oppressor and their capacity for both in themselves. A person that understands that they co-create their lives with all that is and appoints themselves as the owner of their life and co-creator of their world, all circumstances considered. A person that inspires sovereignty for all the ones, the collectives and the wholes. A person that seeks interdependence as a sovereign self.

At its essence, a Hakim is a person that holds the wisdom of the cosmos, and is able to respond to the universe accordingly while maintaining the cosmic dance of balance at play.

The Birth of A Hakim, is the birth of a person who embodies the cosmos in all that they do. Who knows when to fight and when to surrender, when to bring in and when to leave out, when to speak and when to listen -- and that both edges are necessary in the arsenal of balanced, appropriate behavior.

How to use those edges and when has everything to do with the constant pursuit of Wisdom. And it is this kind of pursuit of Wisdom that will allow us to preserve and deepen a state of true, deep and radical Love.

How do we pursue Wisdom? The medicine of the crossroads and initiation.

The more I learn, the more I know that the pursuit of Wisdom is the pursuit of an ever deeper knowing of ourselves.

And to know ourselves we must be ourselves. Unapologetically.

And to be ourselves, we must integrate all of who we are as part of ourselves. This is what we mean when we talk about “healing”. Bringing all fractured parts of ourselves into a whole that we love.

With integration comes integrity. The ever deeper truth of who we are.

Integration is an act of initiation. It is the coming together of formerly divided parts to make up a new whole, a new beginning. An initiation of a new sense of self that emerges at the crossroads.

And with this new sense of self, we are able to love freely and deeply by the grace of Wisdom.

Wisdom is the medicine of our times. Wisdom is the healer of our hearts.

Wisdom is how great Love thrives. Wisdom will keep us well and alive.

This is a playspace for Love, Wisdom and the EVOLUTION of Consciousness. Join me as I explore these concepts in multimedia conversations, creations and incubations.

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Turtle Tank: School for Radical Purpose

Turtle Tank is a radical modern-day mystery school where we ignite Radical Purpose, support the evolution of consciousness and harness creative power to bring forth worlds of Radical Love and Freedom.

Our aim is to reintegrate old and new wisdom into practical tools to revolutionize all of our diseased human systems and evolve into worlds of ever deeper balance.

At the School for Radical Purpose, we focus on three core paths:

Radical Creators: looking to co-create a fulfilling and impactful life and desire-filled work by rooting in their unique radical purpose through a nature-based creation process aligned with sacred ritual

Radical Entrepreneurs: looking to co-create a radical enterprise rooted in their unique radical purpose and desire-filled work as sacred ritual to contribute to just and balanced systems of well-being and wealth.

Radical Leaders: looking to ignite and amplify the purposes of others through radical forms of teaching, leading and organizing towards worlds of love and freedom.

Meet Samia and Ije, the Purpose Igniters and Creative Directors facilitating this experience…


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Samia Abou-Samra (Co-Founder and CEO)

Samia Abou-Samra is an igniter of purpose towards a world of Radical Love. An Alchemist: they create music as Wailing - the cry, the longing prayer to inspire the deepest love. A Director of Genius: they facilitate the creation process for geniuses and design strategic systems to support them and have supported the creation of many Radical Enterprises and projects including Lumos Transforms, Finding Voice (the virtual course) with Sharon Bridgeforth, Balade Black, At The Crossroads: Finding Your Purpose with Yeye Luisah Teish. A Hakim: they practice, invest in and teach about intuitive analysis, old wisdom and the elevation of consciousness. They are the founder of Whale Wonder: a playspace and incubator for the elevation of consciousness. And the co-founder of Turtle Tank: School for Radical Purpose. Samia enjoys all aspects of the creative process particularly in the areas of music/media, entrepreneurship, indigenous knowledge and radical health.

Their years of study include:

Samia has a BA in Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity (with a focus on Ritual, Medicine & Performance) from Stanford University and an MBA in Environmental and Social Management from Antioch University of New England

Relevant Certifications:

Music, Voice and Sound Healing (CIIS), Domestic Violence Prevention Training, Visual Basic, JavaScript, C++, Food Systems Certificate

Relevant Training and Mentorship (ongoing):

Extensive study under the mentorship of Cherrie Moraga and Celia Herrera-Rodriguez through the lens of Xicana Indigena art practice

Initiated to Ifa: received one hand of Ifa and are Olorisha initiated to Orisha Babaluaye / Omolu in 2018 after 12 years of study and practice in Ifa. Currently undergoing training with their godmother priestess Iyanifa Ifalade TaShia Asanti presiding priestess of Ile Ori Ogbe Egun.


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Ije Ude (Co-Founder and Chief Transformation Officer)

Ije Ude is a midwife of deep, gentle change. She resources herself and others to be their freest, fullest selves and give birth to their precious dreams. As Nwachi, she dances, crafts and studies metaphysics to experience the mundane and magical ways god expresses through us. As the Freedom Midwife she designs transformational programs for those of us who are often forgotten and facilitates our remembering of how powerful we are. As a Memory Maker, Ije connects with loved ones to share and experience unconditional love and respect through the crucible of intimate relationships. And as the Inspiration Cocoonist, she makes art that inspires her to honor her inner knowing and teaches others how to do the same.

She is the co-founder of Turtle Tank and proud facilitator of Lumos Transforms’ Resilience Toolkit.

Her years of study include:

B.A. Human Biology with a concentration in Black Women’s Health and Well-Being and an M.A. Integral Counseling Psychology

Certifications:

Coaching for Transformation, Indigenous Focusing Oriented Therapy, Resilience Toolkit, International Trauma Studies Program, Tension and Trauma Releasing Exercises, Tiny Habits Coach, Empowerment Workshop Facilitator, Institute for Integrative Nutrition, Association of Labor Assistants and Childbirth Educators, Human Design Consultant.

Relevant Trainings:

Lead, Gather, Relate Leadership Program, Radical Relating: 4 Skills, Theater of the Oppressed, Education for Liberation, Gestalt-Based Group Facilitation, Somatics and Social Justice, Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction, Sexual Assault Violence Intervention Advocate Training.

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The Power of Life Purpose: An Ifa / Orisha Perspective

SIGN UP for the link to attend live oR get a link of the recording following the event

This event will be held LIVE via a virtual platform (such as Zoom or YouTube Live) and be followed by a Q&A

Date&time: THURSDAY, June 13th 2019 @ 9pm EST/6pm PST

PS: If you attend live, you will receive a $50 discount code (that expires in 24hrs) for our new digital course: Radical Purpose Deep Dive !