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African Traditional Religions: Ifa

This guide, created by the Atlanta University Center Woodruff Library with funding from the Atla OER Grant Program, exists as an Open Educational Resource on "African Traditional Religions: Ifa." Content licensed CC-BY-NC 4.0.

Chapter 7: Esu is the Power of Communication and Reciprocity

Photography: Will Coleman Ph.D. This is a representation of Esu, the divine messenger and power of communication and reciprocity.  My very personal orisha and guardian through this incarnation.


Eshu is not a trickster.  This is a foolish appellation about the most enduring and ubiquitous spiritual forces our African ancestors conceptualized.  We “trick” ourselves when we think and act as though something is given for nothing; that we can reap without sowing.  Correctly understood, Eshu is the principle and praxis of investment and reciprocity.   Eshu is the power of effective, multidimensional communication.


Photography: Will Coleman Ph.D.

Ehu is not a "trickster." We trick ourself when we fail to realized that every crop is the result of sowing and cultivating good seeds.  Give Esu what is due first and your path with be strengthened with potent ashe.

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