Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: January 26, 2009 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412964623 | Print ISBN: 9781412936361 | Online ISBN: 9781412964623 | Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Molefi Kete Asante
Eleda is a part of the Yoruba concept of the human being. Indeed, the Yoruba ethnic group of Nigeria contend that all humans who die live again after death. Of course, each human being has three aspects to existence: emi , the spirit; ojiji , the shadow; and eleda , the guardian soul. The emi inhabits a person's lungs and heart and lives by the wind and air that come through the nostrils. One cannot live at all without emi; it is essential to everything. If one cannot breathe, then one cannot exist. So the Yoruba say that emi is important for working, walking, running, dancing, celebrating, hearing, making love, caring for children, and seeing. Ojiji, the shadow, is always with the person. One does not escape the shadow, it ...