The Abosom (Lessor Gods)
Despite this firm conviction, the traditional Ghanaian does not worship God directly. God is too unique. Besides the Supreme Being, we believe that there exists in our world a world of spirits. We believe that Spirits are everywhere. The Supreme Being is the father and creator of those spirits. We believe that these spirits are ministers of the Supreme Being. They are known as the lesser gods, in that they have no power unto themselves but the power is from the Supreme Being. They however are able to work independently, doing the good work of healing and protecting the people who worship them. These lessor gods have a generic name which is different from the names given to the Supreme Being. They are called Abosom(plural) or Obosom (singular) and sometimes referred to as the Deities. These spirits are embodied in the wind, rivers, oceans, streams, trees, mountains, rocks, animals, and other objects. Through the Abosom, we receive blessings, prosperity, protection from dangers and difficulties, direction and guidance for all aspects of our lives, and much more. The role of the Abosom in the traditional Akan religion, therefore, is great.
In Ghana, there are a multiplicity of Abosom, some rated very high, well known, well organized, very popular, effective and flourishing. Following is a brief list of some of the popular ones.
Akonedi, Nana Akonedi, Akonedi Abena. Her shrine is at Larteh Kubease, in a Sacred house, sacred groves and sacred streams. She meets out justice and gives the final decision in difficult disputes related to chieftancy, hierarchy, property, land, family and other major issues.
Nana Asuo Gyebi is a very popular ancient river Deity originally from Northern Ghana who traveled and resides in Larteh as well as other places throughout Ghana. He is a male Obosom who is a protector and a great healer. It is said that he came to the United States to help the lost children of Africa reclaim their spiritual past.
Nana Esi Ketewaa is a deified elderly female ancestor who died in childbirth. She is originally from the Central Region of Ghana. She is a protector of children and women seek her protection during and after childbirth. Nana Esi declares that we "are all her children".
Nana Adade Kofi is a male Bosom of strength and perseverance and is from the Guan area of Ghana. Nana Adade Kofi's sword is used to swear oaths of allegiance. He is the Obosom of iron, metals and is a warrior.
Tegare is the general name for a system of Deities from the Northern section of Ghana and is a very popular deity throughout Ghana. Nana Tegare is a hunter who seeks truth, exposes witches, liars, thieves and evil doers. He is a healer who is very skilled in the identification and use of herbs.
Tano is the general name for several gods which have their origin in the Tano River. These unusual and special river gods are very ancient and powerful. Their purpose is to maintain family, social and national order. They are great healers of psychic-spiritual, emotional-mental, physical and social illnesses.
Nana Obo Kwesi is a war Obosom from the Fante region of Ghana. He is a healer, assists with the need for money and abhors evil doers.
Mmoetia is a system of dwarfs who have traveled and settled throughout Ghana. They live in the forest and are quite proficient in the use of herbs. They specialize in working with nature spirits for healing body, mind and spirit and to address personal, family, social, financial and environmental issues. They can be playful, mischievous generally, or very cruel to evil doers and those who try to ignore them. They are considered the spiritual gatekeepers.
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