Showcasing the art and ritual of the African and African-diaspora religions

Ọpọ́n Ifá (Divination Tray) #1

Catalog Number: D021


19.75" x 17.25"

50.165 mm x 43.815 mm

Approximately 34 cm in diameter


Approximately 14 in in diameter


Country of Origin: Nigeria
Materials: pigment
Usage: N/A
Detailed Description of Significance:

Ọpọ́n divination trays vary in size and decoration, but are generally carved from wood and are decorated with the sacred symbols of the Ifa cosmology. A characteristic symbol of the ọpọ́n is the face of Èṣù, which decorates the top quadrant of the tray.

Some trays have one, two or even four Èṣù faces carved around their rim. The border of the tray is usually carved with anthropomorphic figures, each with a special purpose and meaning. The Babaláwo employs the Ọpọ́n Ifá when performing divination with the ikin, or sacred palmnuts.  More important than the physical design of the tray, is what the tray metaphysically represents. The Ọpọ́n signifies the Universe as we know it, both micro and macro cosmically. It is divided into four quadrants and each quadrant represents certain aspects of life itself. By understanding the nature of the Ọpọ́n and its components, you can further discover which area of life are being impacted by the Odu, or divination verses revealed.