Esu is one of the most important Irunmale. Unlike Christianity or Islam, which portray Esu as
Lucifer who tricked humanity to commit sin to God by eating the forbidden fruits, Yoruba
perceive Esu as assistant of Olodumare. Oral stories said that when Esu became too powerful
in heaven, Olodumaré sent Esu to govern the world. The traditional Orisa worshippers believe
that all of the offerings they make to the Orisas usually end up with Esu. The belief is that Esu
can open or close the road on someone. Some say that he does both good and bad. He could
bring love and harmony and he could also bring misunderstandings and chaos if not appeased.
Esu could be represented with a piece of Stone or “Yangi.” There are some beautiful sculptures
of with braids and cowries on them, too. Even molded concrete with the “ase” herbs in
them could be a symbol of Esu, but they are just symbols. The same is true for all the Orisas,
the concept of Esu is far more than the symbols. lt is in the Spirits and Faith.
In the Lukumi tradition, Esu is among the four initial Orisa received by the beginners whom
they call (Guereros) warriors. The order of the four Orisas are Esu, Ogun, Ososi and a smaller
version of Osun staff ﬁom the Osun that stands in front of Babalawos house.