Core Values Among Yoruba People
By Adeniyi Ifetayo
*In Yorubaland, money has never been foremost in Yoruba value system*
*In our value system money is number six*
*What are the first five you may ask?*
1. The first is làákà’yè – The application of knowledge, wisdom & understanding… (Ogbón and ìmò òye)
2. The second is Ìwà Omolúàbí – (integrity) Someone with integrity is a man/woman of their words.
If you have all the wealth in the world but lack integrity, you are not worth a thing. Integrity is combined with iwa, (character) which we regard as Omolúàbí.
3. The third is Akínkanjú or Akin – (Valour).
That is why Balóguns is second-in-command to the leaders in Yoruba land.
Balóguns are people that can lead them to war.
To lead with great courage in the face of danger, especially in battle.
Yoruba people have no respect for cowards.
4. The fourth is Anísélápá tí kìíse òle – (Having a visible means of livelihood).
A person must be identified with a visible means of livelihood that guarantees a lawful income or sustenance. His or her profession or job must be open and legally approved by society, and not through cheating or forcefulness.
5. The fifth is iyi – (Honour) Yoruba people place a premium on the gait with which individuals carry themselves and public reputation.
That is why Yorùbá people usually say when you set out to look for money and you meet honour on the way then you don’t need the journey anymore, because if you get the money, you will still use it to buy honour.
6. The last in the Yorùbá value system is owó tàbí orò – (Money or wealth).
If putting money ahead of the other five, then you are nobody in Yoruba land of the olden days.
Unfortunately, this is being pushed to the front burner nowadays due to the erosion of our value system.
*Please feel free to share with fellow Yoruba sons and daughters*