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Saint Lazarus's Eve

17 December is the day Cubans mark as San Lazaro’s day. So tonight was the celebrations.

One Cuban commented - it used to be we welcomed San Lazaro with drumming, now it is with reggaeton.

I approve of Lazaro’s preference for chocolate cake, though I am not sure why he likes to have cigar smoke blown in his face, or rum spat on him.

In Santeria, he is linked to Babalu Aye, the spirit of illness and disease.

Here is some info I found on this tradition


Elegua likes rum and tobacco smoke, as well as honey and toys. You might see Cubans wearing beaded bracelets or necklaces, in green/yellow, black/red, blue/white - they all represent different orishas. When opening a bottle of new rum, always pour out the top first onto the earth, as a tribute offering to the orishas. In this economic and political world, it couldn’t hurt.

ewka - sadly I can’t access that from here.

Eloise - I think all the orishas like rum, don’t they ?

Anyone have a list of which colour represents which orisha ?

Hi Beardo,
I only know the colors of 2 Orishas from when I brought back Santeria dolls a few years back:

Yemaya is blue and white-an ocean goddess
Chango is red and white-a fire god

Here’s a few more:
Eleggua gives an order tomorrow so that it can be heard yesterday. He inhabits the crossroads, the threshold of all possibilities and decisions. He is the first orisha to honor. He is a divine messenger and trickster. His colors are red and black. He enjoys candies, rum and cigars.
Oya means, “she tore.” In ancient Nupe, her ancestral home, she tore a piece of black cloth that became the mighty Niger River to protect her kingdom. She is both an awesome warrior and a most exquisite dancer. She is mistress of both the cemetery gate and market place. She is represented through nine colors. She favors eggplant, star apples and black-eyed pea fritters. The Mother of Nine, she changes form at will, and gives us the means to turn around any situation.
Obatala is a first among equals in the orisha pantheon. Lord of the White Cloth, it is thought that most of the orisha emanate from him. He is the creator as well as source of laughter. His color is white, with different accent colors according to his various manifestations. He receives white foods, such as white yams, rice and meringues.
Shango is King, and a King does not lie. He is the virile force of dance and drums. His colors red and white embody both the fury of the storm and its cooling, life-sustaining gift of rain. He is given apples, bananas, and red wine.
Ogun embodies life force. He opens the path through vital energy and determination. His name Ogun is a multidimensional word. Depending on where the accent is placed, it may mean medicine, war or poetry…His colors are green and black. He receives offerings of gin, palm oil and roasted yam.
Ajaguna means “the road that leads to war.” The youngest manifestation of Obatala, he is both fearsome warrior and master diviner. One of his myths relates that he gained mastery of gunpowder during his travels through Asia. He brought this secret back to Afrika to resist Islamic slave traders. As a wise man, the other Obatalas turn to him for guidance because of his mastery of cowry shell divination. His colors are white and red. He eats Obatala’s foods.
Ochosi is the forest magician. A hunter, he realizes will and possibility instantly,just as his arrow inevitably finds its mark. He fulfills divine justice, even when we cannot understand it ourselves. His colors are green and blue. He is often fed with Ogun. As one of the fundamental warriors, he shares Ogun’s cauldron, and may be offered anisette and fruits.
Oshun represents beauty, love and wealth. The youngest of the orisha, she is one of the most dearly loved and powerful due to the divine forces she imparts. Things that make life pleasurable are her special gifts to us. Her color is yellow. She enjoys honey, champagne, and fine pastries.
Olokun is a mysterious deity, at once each male, female and a true hermaphrodite. Owner of all rivers and seas, King who relieves barren women and the Wife of Destiny, Olokun embodies many essential mysteries. Olokun’s colors are white and blue. Olokun receives cane sugar syrup, roasted pork, saltless bean paste with palm oil.