Okay any Santeros in the house

I need more information on Santeria and the seven day initiation process, obviously £15.000 is way above what I’m willing to do.

I want a form of self initiation with Santeria, I would love someone who has been initiated into this to help me.


You could reference EA’s book the Green Spider & Butterfly about Voodoo. I mean, Santeria is basically another style of voodoo/voudon.


A real initiation would actually entail you having to dress all in white for a year!!!

Animal sacrifices thought the time frame and restrictions of various kinds. (All may vary)

7 days!!??!!! Would need more information to conclude the accuracy of what you’ve been told.


Yes it ranges from 7 days and up.

7 days is normally most common in places like Cuba, Miami, New Orleans, areas where Santeria is the capital.

I have watched and read countless information on the initiation, but it varies depending on the source.


Ok, incoming wall of text, but read to the end, I promise you, there’s great benefit.

There is no self initiation into Santeria. The Orishas are not deities you can summon like goetic spirits or the like. I don’t recommend it. Those on this forum love to say you’re a living god and you hold power and whatnot, and while that is very true, the Orishas are a whole other animal. YOU serve THEM, not the other way around. They are similar to Belial, in that they will alter your path to their liking, whether you want to or not. They give you an ita (a life reading) that removes and takes away a looooot of things you might want in your life. They might say no more smoking, no more drinking, no more offal, no more tattoos,—and it’s non-negotiable. Period. You can’t tell them no. To disrespect them is to insult them. (For example, I was told no more tattoos, and I got two anyways, and I ended up losing my job to something completely not my fault). The Orisha aren’t as friendly as goetics or other spirits, not at all. They are benevolent and malevolent at the same time. And if it’s one thing they hate? Those who completely disregard their ceremonies and their instructions. Ceremonies are EVERYTHING to them. Piss them off and find out why yemaya both creates with her water and drowns in them as well, why babalu aye cripples as much as he heals. Why? Because devotion is everything to them. You serve to later be served in return. Only a babalawo can confer upon you your very first duties, so to speak. The sect of Ifa, of divination, gives you tools necessary to begin to serve, which is the first life reading (ita) your exu (a path of elegua, with something like 166 different paths, and that’s just the exu, elegua proper has more) the other warriors, Ogun, Osun (not to be confused with Oshun) and Ochosi.

The first ceremony is becoming half seated and is not 15,000 dollars. It’s about a grand. Only then will they start to hear you, to actually respect you. Before that you can pray to them and leave offerings, and they might concede your demands, they might not.

However, The Orishas will not consider you as one of theirs fully without being presented to the drums first. And that is called undertaking ocha, being crowned, wearing white for one year and 7 days. Its to show that you deserve them. They are picky gods, they aren’t like Christ who takes in everyone—some of them will even come down through possession and tell you outright they do not favor you, do this or that to sweeten the deal with them. But the only way you find out? Through community. Santeria above all is a community based religion. It’s hard to practice alone. You’re missing out on masses to please your personal spirits, drummings, possessions and everything that makes Santeria what it is.

Honestly you’d be missing out on so many things that what you’d be practicing isn’t Santeria at all.

These things, like receiving the warriors, finding out your main guardian Orisha and the other Orisha who is also your other mother/father, receiving their mysteries (they’re called mysteries for a reason) their ceremonial mock weapons, your cowrie divining shells, and all the tools you need to practice the faith.

And soooo many more things that neither I nor any Santero will explain to you, because we can’t. We are bound by secrecy to not reveal what happens in the ceremonial chambers to those not initiated. I’m being serious, no bullshit. There’s a reason you can’t find much on Santeria on the net besides the same tired facts.

Also, the reason your sources vary is because there are hundreds of offshoots of the religion since it’s all oral history. Houses argue and argue about what is right and wrong to this very day. Honesty, it’s really fucking dumb, but I digress.

However, I’m not here to discourage you at all, I’m just letting you know on all you’re missing out on if you cut corners.

Ok, now that I’ve warned you, I’m gonna point you in the right direction. You NEED to Set up a bóveda. Your own personal altar of water filled glasses for your personal chain of ancestors, and all spirits who hold you dearly, blood relation or not. Without your spiritual chain, there is no Santeria, no way to sway the Orishas. Your ancestors are above all in this faith. Attend the bóveda, meditate on the glasses, and watch out for synchronicity. Watch out for clairalience, or smelling the spirits. You will smell A LOT. Google how to set up a bóveda and look at ALL the options, and choose which one is right for you. Why? Because like I said, Santeria varies by house. No one bóveda set up is right. Take care of your ancestors, pray to them. Leave offerings of rum, tobacco smoke and flowers.

If you are meant to follow in this path, the Orishas will come to you.

But since I can’t control you, If you decide to summon them (can’t stress how bad of an idea this is), your ancestors will step in on your favor if you so happen to piss one off. At least I think they should. I really don’t know, since you don’t summon the Orishas, they summon themselves.

Also, be on good terms with elegua. The Orishas can’t understand you and require him to translate, so to speak. . If you’re not on good terms, they can’t hear you, he cuts off all communication. Please please please please don’t try to use papa legba for this. Santeria, Palo and Vodoun are NOT the same, despite the common opinion that they are. They originated in different parts of the continent, and the gods, although they might resemble each other strongly, consider it an insult to use techniques from a different path on them. For example, in palo, Mama Chola is widely considered to be a path (a face, an avatar) of Oshun, an Orisha. Despite that, You would NEVER call her by Oshun if you’re doing a palo ritual. Oh sweet lord the shit that would happen to you if you did. Each path is considered its own being, despite them being connected. And the paths have paths and more path and more paths… long story short, don’t paint stripes on a horse and try calling it a zebra.

Also, look into learning lucumi, the yorubaland liturgical language. It might help you some. It’s nevessary for rituals and calling upon the Orishas. It might be hard, because 99% of the sources are in Spanish, tho.

Like I said previously, my experiences might vary greatly from other because different houses do different things. But here, I’ve listed the core concrete components of the discipline.

Oh, and the seven day initiation process you heard? Complete bs, I can tell you that. Becoming half seated is the first step, is 3 days, and is about a grand. Crowning ocha (fully seated and initiated) is a YEAR and 7 days, and about 10 grand. 15K for a seven day initiation? You’re being scammed. There are always always always, despite house differences, 2 initiations, plus various ebbos and a bunch of other ceremonies that you may or may not be made to undergo. It depends on a whole lot. And this post is already too long.

Like I’ve said, I’m not trying to discourage you, but it’s not all rainbows and lollipops either. If you have any questions, feel free to ask away. I wish you the best of luck in your endeavors.


This is so true. The Orishas are very angry when they want to be. They are of a whole different spectrum… and if you dont play by their rules they will fuck you. Yes we can FORCE our hand unto them, and as a divine power you can command them, but they will use every loophole in the book to find a way to turn your command against you… i know a priestess in Santeria so I am very familiar… but if you become initiated they are a great force to have your back.


And food offerings are legit something you must do… daily. You keep their statue in a sacred area and the food THEY like needs to be in place 24/7…


Actually anything can be summoned and religious dogma and doctrines are what tell us they are above us.

But i’ve already found my head Orisha, I have worked with Orishas for years just never initiated into it:

Trust me when I say if Haitian Voudon has a form of self initiation so does Santeria, maybe not in a traditional sense but then again Santeria is not traditional, since it is a watered down version of other African traditions.


If those are actually orishas youre speaking to and not elemental forms created from yourself posing as such. But to each their own. I am one who feels that we can do whatever we want, but they are different from my experience. Good Luck though in finding your initation if it exists.


Many thanks and yeah I tested their authenticity as I normally do, these are strong powerful beings, I have come to the understanding initiation exists to only set the stage if you trace back the origins of calling the Orishas.

The people who used to call on them were not initiated by anyone but the Orishas themselves.


Well actually most priests and priestesses of Santeria aka the godfather and godmothers, they all agree the Orishas actually went all over the globe and Eleggua is known as Papa Legba, they are both spirits of the crossroads.

Also a Godfather I know said these Orishas even went east and interegrated themselves in Europe, like Shango for example, the Orisha of justice, Dance and lighting and thunder is the equivalent of Thor in the Norse patheon.

Plus Ogun the warrior Orisha, is 100% a Loa of Voudon.


Cant disagree there

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Can’t stress this even more, my father comes from generations of Ifa priests and I can both speak and write the original language of these Orishas ( Yoruba)
The truth is, the most powerful of these practitioners are in such remote places, they live with the spirits daily and interact with them like you would your neighbor. They don’t know religious dogma and the first of them were initiated by the Orishas themselves


Preach brother.


Aha, you know this !

Thats what i was thinking. They CAME to me. I didn’t even know who they were. So if you have to be initiated by a human and pay all this money for it, then why did they come to me and start working with me?

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Ache! You’ve said it perfectly! I made Ocha nearly 15 years ago and it took me a good two years of pinching every penny to get the funds together for Ocha and all that comes along with it, and it was worth it too!
But before someone even receives Warriors much less crowning Ocha, one has to know that this is a life time responsibility and practice. Your learning and growing never ends because no one can ever know everything, no one. I can’t imagine my world without all my Orishas.
You have to make Ocha for the right reasons too, because it’s not a magic wand to get that lover you want or to get rich–those things can come, but first and foremost Orishas are received with faith and love.


Great explanation @EvelineJanus