Obatala and the fibers of Humanity
Obatala is the voice of communication. He is the father of all Orishas and the deity of white cloth. The cloth does not only represent purity and cleanliness. The interwoven fibers represent the connection of all things to mother earth. Just as letters need to be stringed together to create words, then sentences, and paragraphs. Humans need to be stringed together to create individuals, families, and communities.
Obatala is the Orisha of high intelligence and is said to have descended from the heavens on an iron chain. The chain can represent the double-sided helix that stores information, like genetic codes, also known as DNA. It is Obatala who crafts the blueprint of our souls. He works very much like an engineer, studying the details of the human construct, and then combining all the elements to form one single unit. A brick by itself is just a brick. It has little meaning or purpose. However, when combined with other bricks it becomes more powerful, more stable. Bricks, when placed together can work as shelters, as fortresses, and even barriers. Obatala represents the power of unity and synchronicity. He is the holistic force that enables humanity to evolve and survive.
Obatala can also be associated with the forest and mountaintops. Mountaintops are the closest we can get to the heavens on earth. Mountaintops represent the state of full consciousness. The woods or forest is a symbolization of the unconscious mind. Exploring the unconscious mind is a process of understanding self, while exploring the secrets of our own nature. The forest can also represent the soul entering into areas that it has never explored before.
Obatala is also associated with the 6th chakra or the Vishuddha chakra in Sanskrit. This chakra also governs our ability to communicate. However, it also governs our intuition. Obatala represents the fibers that allows us to bind and become one. He is the force that allows us to exchange information through telepathy. Obatala rules over both verbal and nonverbal communication. This includes information and knowledge that is transported through humanity’s collective consciousness. Obatala’s color is white. Obatala’s numbers are eight and twenty-four.