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Opele: Element of Divination

Posted on 11 November 2015 by Babalawo Aworeni

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Opele is one of the elements used to cast an Ifa reading. Orunmila detected Opele by using Ikin Ifa (oke
iponri) to cast the reading, and he is also the one who guides Orunmila on his way. Orunmila woke up in the morning and cast the reading the Odu that came out was Ejiogbe.

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Konbi onitaji , Ilebe ko se dipa 

Eru A difa fun Orunmila To fe

Lo fi Owo ra Irerere leru Irere

La jeku irere laaje aja Atokun

Tosa laaje Ori erinla akiikere

To won ni Ife Ooni Oja koja 

Kito oja agbale, Okun to 

Kun kii To kun yemideregbe

Yemideregbe ni oruko taa pe 

Olokun Orunmila ni kanraa 

Nibu Orunmila ni kanraa loro 

Gbogborogbo ni lowo yo ju ori 

Gbogborogbo ni moriwo ope yo 

Ju ogomon lo Igbo kiidi ki 

Iroko ma yori temi yo temi

Yo ni akikodiye ke.
Ifa said that when he gets to the market to buy some items, that he should first put money on something he does not want to buy. When Orunmila got to the market he looked around for the items he wanted to buy, then he remembered the reading he made. He encountered one slave (Irere) who had a limp leg and was handicap.

Orunmila put moneyon the slave. Orunmila originally used Opele as a housekeeper and to clear the bush. Until one day clients who came to visitOrunmila noticed Opele working outside, before they reached Orunmila , Opele started speaking their problems.

Orunmila discovered Opele had knowledge, Opele was once a human being. Orunmila loved himand treated him as he did his own children. Opele stayed in the house and divined for Orunmila’s visitors, but Opele started speaking ill of Orunmila.
Orunmila’s clients and the people started saying that Orunmila didn’t have power, that Opele had more powerthan Orunmila. One day when Orunmila was traveling, Opele was called to the Olofin’s palace to divine. WhileOpele was at the palace he committed a major offense.

When Orunmila returned to the town, Olofin invitedOrunmila to the palace, and he explained all that Opele had done. Orunmila was very angry, and he begged Olofin forgiveness for Opele’s offense. Orunmila did another reading for Olofin, and did a sacrifice for him.
When Orunmila returned back home he called Opele. Opele started to insult Orunmila, so he took the iroke and knocked Opele on the head. Opele broke into eight pieces . Orunmila didn’t want to throw Opele away, so hejoined the pieces together and used him to consult. He has five elements. They are Bone (egun), Cowries (owo eyo), Stone (okuta), Broken plate (awo ti o fo), Snail button (be bere igbin). The five elements of Opele stand for two options:   Ire (good) and Ibi (bad)20151111_222222

Ibo idi Opele

You have to feed Opele, but there is a specific way to feed it. You can feed it during and when you feed Ifa, but you can’t put it on top of Ifa because it is a slave (eru ki ba olu a mi gun opo). You can feed it anytime you want. There are many different types of Opele:Egbere, Agbigba, Akargba ect… Although Opele tells the truth, Ikin is more accurate. Therefore Ikin is used for more important consultations, like initiations.

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Awon Opele

Ki ade pe lori , Ki Bata akun pe lese, Ki irukere akun pe lowo, Ki esin oba je oko pe, Baba yee Oonirisa.

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Orishada , Araba Agbaye Oluisese , Awolodunmirindinlogun and All the Araba ,Olu-awo, Babalawo, Iyanifa,Babalorisa, Iyalorisa, Ojugbona, Gbogbo Omo Awo and All Entire Aworeni Family Congratulate Kabiyesi Oba Adeyeye Babatunde Enitan Oguwusi Ojaja II Olori Alade gbogbo Oonirisa  Arole Oduduwa, May your reign bring goodness & prosperity to the land & the entire people of Ife and all Yoruba kingdom and be peaceful Ase ooo.

Oloye Oloriwarefa Awo Ooni Owolabi Awodotun Aworeni.

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How to Become an Ifa Priest

Posted on 09 July 2010 by Babalawo Aworeni

To become an Ifa Priest (Babalawo) one must first submit themselves to Olodumare and Ifa.  The term Babalawo means “Father of the Mysteries/Secrets of the Earth.”  Becoming a Babalawo and Priest of Ifa is a lifetime pursuit for those who take it as a calling and profession.  There are four things that will be asked of the person that wants to become a Babalawo.  First: Do you want to learn Ifa because of the meat you will gain?  If so then you will have plenty of meat.  Second:  Do you want to learn Ifa because of the money you will gain?  If this is the case, then you will have plenty of money.  Third:  Do you want to learn Ifa to have many wives?  If this is the case, then you will have plenty of wives.  Fourth:  Do you want to learn Ifa because you seek the truth?  If so you all of the good things in life, meat, money, and wives will be yours.

There are several procedures necessary to become a Babalawo.  If one does not follow these procedures under a master Ifa Priest they cannot rightfully call themselves a Babalawo.  To become a Babalawo one must go though the ritual of Ounje Oju Opele (the food of Opele).  There are many steps that must be followed and they must be followed in a particular order.  After one eats the food of Opele, a perspective priest must have the 16 Odu Ifa opened for them over five days with the Akaragba.  Akaragba is made from the calabash used to make the sacrifice to Esu.  An omo Awo must use this Akaragba when learning Ifa.  They must keep it for life. However if you are a good omo Awo and your teacher sees you as a good student, he may open the Odu for you more quickly.  After one learns to open the odumerindinlogun, the next step is Amulu, divination.  The omo Awo will practice this and once they can do this well the third step is to learn how to divine “yes” and “no” questions.  Also at this point the omo Awo will gain knowledge about specific odu Ifa that have special meaning during divination.  After this, the next step is to learn how to make Ibo.  Ibo is characterized by particular aspects of “ire” and “ayewo/ibi,” (good and bad).  Next, the Ifa master will teach the omo Awo the elements of “ire” and “ayewo/ibi” and the differences in readings for males and females.  After the omo Awo can perform these tasks well they then must learn how to ask Ifa about “ebo” and “adimu.”  The omo Awo will then learn and memorize all the extensive elements of “ebo” and that of “adimu.”

The next step is to begin learning the Odu Ifa beginning from Eji Ogbe.  Depending on the omo Awo’s memory this step may take a long time.  After the omo Awo has made significant progress in learning odu Ifa, then they will begin learning how to make sacrifice, how to feed Ifa and how to feed all the Orisha.  Then they will need to learn all the elements of Ifa and the associated Odu Ifa.  Next the omo Awo will learn how to make medicine for a myriad of different problems.  This step in the Ifa Priest’s learning is also very extensive and one may use a lifetime to gain this knowledge.  It should also be recognized that all this information is memorized and cannot be recalled using notes or a book.

It is important to understand that this process begins after a person is initiated.  One cannot call themselves a Babalawo simply because they have been initiated to Ifa.  To be initiated to Ifa means that a person has received their Odu Ifa and that they know their destiny. Being initiated is only the beginning of the learning process.  Becoming a Babalawo takes a lifetime of dedicated service to Olodumare, Ifa, the Orisa, the ancestors, your Elders and family.

It should also be noted at this point about those that call themselves “babalawo” but are actually “babalariwo.”  The Babalariwo has not had the proper training, they have to read odu Ifa from a book and in many cases haven’t had proper initiations.  This article is being published in the hope of letting the general public know what is necessary for one to call them self a Babalawo.

If you are interested in more information about being initiated to Ifa, any Orisha, becoming an Omo Awo, becoming a Babalawo or if you would just like learn more, feel free to write us at:

Orishada@gmail.com

Como Convertirse en Babalawo

Para convertirse en sacerdote de Ifa la persona debe primeramente someterse a Ifa y Olodumare. El termino Babalawo significa “Padre de los Misterios/Secretos de la Tierra”. El proceso de aprendizaje y entrenamiento de un Babalawo o Sacerdote de Ifa constituye un trabajo que puede tomar el resto de la vida para la persona que siente el llamado a sacerdocio, siendo esta una vocacion y una profesion a la vez. Una vez que la persona expresa su deseo de convertirse en Babalawo se le hacen las siguientes preguntas. Primero, quieres a prender Ifa para tener de que comer? Si eso es lo que deseas tendras siempre de que comer. Segundo, quieres aprender Ifa para ganar dinero? Si ese es el caso y es lo que quieres tendras mucho dinero. Tercero, si quieres aprender Ifa para tener muchas esposas? Si eso es lo que deseas tendras muchas esposas. Cuarto, tu quieres aprender Ifa porque buscas la verdad? Si ese es su deseo, todas las cosas buenas de la vida la obtendras, comida, esposas y dinero seran todos tuyos.

Para convertirse en Babalawo, la persona debe pasar por una serie de procedimientos o fases. Si uno no sigue esos procedimientos guiados por un maestro Sacerdote de Ifa la persona no puede llamarse a si misma Babalawo. Para iniciar el entrenamiento a Babalawo  la persona debe pasar primeramente por el ritual de Ounje Oju Opele (la comida de Opele). Estos procedimientos constituyen un requisito fundamental en el proceso de convertirse en Babalawo y deben ser seguidos en un orden particular. Despues que la persona come la comida del Opele, se le deben  de abrir los 16 Odu Ifa en un termino de cinco dias con el Akaragba (opele hecho de la calabaza utilizada en sacrificio a Esu).

Un  omo Awo (estudiante de Ifa) debe usar este Akaragba cuando este aprendiendo Ifa,  y debe conservarlo por el resto de su vida. No obstante, si  el maestro Sacerdote de Ifa considera que la persona es un buen estudiante de Ifa, el podria decidir abrirle el Opele mas rapidamente..

Despues que la persona aprende abrir el Odumerindinlogun, el siguiente paso es Amulu o  adivinacion.  En esta fase  el  omo Awo aprendera los pasos necesarios para realizar preguntas cerradas de seleccion  en las cuales  la respuesta sera si o no, asi como los odus de relevancia que tienen un significado especial a utilizar en el proceso de adivinacion.

Luego, el siguiente paso es el de aprender como utilizar Ibo o los determinantes de una  situacion especifica que aparezca en el proceso de adivinacion. Estos aspectos se clasifican en “ire” (buena fortuna) y “ayewo/ibi” ( mala fortuna). Una vez aprendido este paso el maestro Sacerdote de Ifa explicara los elementos que configuran “ire” y “ayewo/ibi”, asi como la diferencia entre una adivinacion para hombres y una realizada a mujeres. Una vez que el omo Awo pueda realizar estas fases de adivinacion muy bien, entonces pasara a aprender acerca delos distintos elementos que configuran “ebo” (sacrificio) y “adimu” (comida) en una adivinacion de Ifa.

En la siguiente fase se comienza el studio profundo de Odu Ifa, empezando por Eji Ogbe. Dependiendo de la memoria del Omo Awo este proceso puede tomar un largo tiempo. Cuando el omo Awo ha realizado un progreso significativo en el eprendizaje de odu Ifa, entonces comenzara a aprender a realizar los sacrificios, como darle de comer a Ifa y a todos los Orisa. Asi mismo, estudiara los diversos elementos de Ifa que se asocian a los distintos Odus de Ifa. En la siguiente fase el omo Awo estudiara como hacer las medicinas necesarias para solucionar una gran diversidad de problemas. Esta fase de aprendizaje es tan extensa que puede requerir  el resto de la vida del estudiante de Ifa para adquirir este conocimiento. Se debe constatar, que toda esta informacion debe ser memorizada y no debe ser consultada en libros y notas.

Es importante entender que este proceso empieza despues que una persona ha pasado por el proceso de iniciacion. Uno no puede llamarse a si mismo Babalawo simplemente porque ha sido iniciado en Ifa. Ser iniciado en Ifa significa que la persona ha recivido su Odu Ifa y que conoce su destino. La iniciacion en Ifa es solo el comienzo del proceso de aprendizaje. El convertirse en Babalawo toma una vida de dedicacion a Olodumare, Ifa , los Orisas, los Ancestros, los Mayores y la familia.

Debe dejarse constancia en este punto que aquellas personas que se llaman a si mismas Babalawos, realmente son “babalariwo”, personas que han pasado por el proceso de iniciacion sin el entrenamiento adecuado; debido a ello deben de leer odu Ifa de un libro al no pasar por el extenso proceso de memorizacion y aprendizaje de Odu Ifa. Muchas de estas personas ni siquiera han tenido una iniciacion adecuada en Ifa.

Este articulo, ha sido publicado con miras a esclarecer al publico en general acerca de los procedimientos necesarios que un Omo Awo debe pasar para poder llamarse a si mismo Babalawo.

Si usted esta interesado en mayor informacion relacionada al proceso de Iniciacion en Ifa o algun Orisa, o esta interesado en estudiar Ifa y convertirse en Omo Awo y Babalawo, o si esta interesado en conocimiento general de la religion de Ifa, usted puede contactarse con nosotros a la siguiente direccion:

Orishada@gmail.com

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Apetebi: The Wife of Orunmila

Posted on 17 November 2009 by Babalawo Aworeni

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An Apetebi is the name given to wife of Orunmila. It is also the name Orunmila gave to the wife of a Babalawo.

In the Odu Ifa Ogbe Sa, Ifa gives the story of how the Apeeibi became the wife of Orunmila. Ifa relates that Orunmila went to war in the town of Ilu obirin after all the efforts of the other Orisha were unsuccessful. Orunmila consulted Ifa, made the proper sacrifice and subsequently was able to defeat the uprising in Ilu obirin. The town of Iluobirin was inhabited by only women. These women were tied together with rope and taken back to the town where Orunmila resided. Once they arrived in town Orunmila’s advisers wanted to kill all of the women. Instead of killing the women Orunmila decided to make them Apetebi.

The difference between an Apetebi and an Iyanifa (female Ifa priest) is that an Apetebi is not necessarily initiated to Ifa but is a wife of a Babalawo. Whereas an Iyanifa is not only initiated to Ifa but is a learned Ifa priest.

After a woman marries a Babalawo, she is required to clean the area and house of Ifa every 5 days. It is necessary to keep the area where Ifa rests clean. She is always to take water to visitors when they arrive in the home. She must also honor her husband and cannot be rude. She should be respectful of all her husband;s omo Awo. She must be the keeper of her husband’s secrets and be careful of her words outside the home.

A Babalawo’s duties to an Apetebi include treating his wife with respect. He cannot beat or use harsh words towards her but must be cool tempered and patient. If a problem arises between a Babalawo and his his it must be solved amiably.

When feeding Ifa the Apetibi should bring Esin and use these materials to pray. There are many songs specific to Apetibi. In the Oketase temple in Ile-Ife, the Apetibi have Aro, which are roles specific to Apetibi in the Agboniregun and Ifa festivals. When Odu is being carried out Apetibi have Orin that is sung specifically at that time. During each occasion there are many necessary assignments and duties the Apetibi must perform. Through these many tasks the wives of Orunmila receive the blessings of Ifa.

Respect that is given to a Babalawo is also given to his Apetibi. The Apetibi has power. She was given cowries by Orunmila to divine for his clients in his absence. The Apetibi can divine with erindilogun. She has access to all of the Orisha houses. However she can never into the house of Odu or Oro. These places are forbidden to female. The Apetibi will wear Ide Ifa and traditional cloting. Another babalaow can never sit in the place where an Apetibi has just vacated.

The Apetebi is a valued member of the Ifa community.

Omo ti a fi etebi ki a ma pe ni Apetebi

Lubedo siko aya mi no

Ajagbakira aya mi ni se

Eri mi e dasi yayaya

Edo koyaya

O to ka daesi doko nu ka wa sere gba yi o

Emorora ka o emo ku aribo ode o

Ifa ati Orisa a gba wa o ase

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Elements of Ifa Part III: Implements of Ifa

Posted on 18 October 2009 by Babalawo Aworeni

The implements of Ifa are the spiritual items used by a Babalawo. The following list includes the primary implements used by an Ifa priest, however it must be noted that there are other special items that are used that cannot be listed. The primary implements used by an Ifa priest are as follows:

Ikin Ifa-

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The Ikin were given by Orunmila to humans to divine on earthly matters. Orunmila gave them to people to divine for their problems. Whatever the Ikin is true and cannot be changed. Olodumare first gave the Ikin to Orunmila to consult then Orunmila gave them to human beings in order to have the guideline in life. If you consult with Ikin, the sacrifice must be made the same day.

Opele-

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Opele was the servant of Orunmila. Orunmila used money to buy him at the market. Orunmila discovered that Opele had knowledge, Opele was once a human being. He was handicap with a limp leg. Orunmia originally wanted to use Opele to clear the bush but when clients would come to visit Opele would speak their problems before Orunmila. Opele stayed in the house and divined for Orunmila’s visitors. One day when Orunmila was traveling, Opele was called to the palace to divine. While Opele was at the palace he committed a major offense. When Orunmila returned he was very angry and beat Opele on the head with the Iroke Ifa. Opele broke into eight pieces. Orunmila didn’t want to throw Opele away, but joined the pieces together and used him to consult.

There are many different types of Opele: Egbere, Agbigba, Akaragba, etc. Although Opele tells the truth Ikin is more accurate and Ikin are used for important consultations, like initiations.

Owo Eyo or Erindinlogun-

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The cowries were presented to women through Osun. Orunmila gave them Osun to use to consult. The cowries are made for females and men should not use them. The Owo Eyo say the truth and are an important divination tool.

Opa Orire or Osu:

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This is the staff of Orunmila. It is used as a walking stick by Orunmila. When a babalawo is walking to a spiritual place he will use his Orire. Only an Elder Awo can use the Orire. It represents the premise that an Awo can never die, that he will live long.

Opon Ifa-

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The Opon Ifa is used when consulting Ifa. It is used during sacrifice. The Opon Ifa symbolizes the heaven. It represents the four earthly directions, North, South, East and West. The center of the Opon Ifa is the junction of the earthly directions in heaven. The head is carved at the North position on the Opon Ifa, representing the eyes, where the Opon Ifa sees all that is happening on earth and the sacrifice or messages will be sent to heaven.

Iroke Ifa-

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The Iroke is used by Orunmila when he travels to an occasion to pray for the people. Anywhere an Awo travels he will brng is Iroke. It is also used during sacrifice to knock the Opon Ifa.

Irukere-

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Orunmila uses the Irukere when traveling to an ocassion. The Irukere is also used by kings. It is also used for spiritual services. Orunmila uses Irukere to save people. Only elders, kings, chiefs or those of special importance can use Irukere. It should be used during a sacrifice, or during consultation, it sits to the left.

Apo Abira or Apo Ikofa- This is a bag that a babalawo carries on his left. All the materials of Ifa are kept in this bag.

Adura (Prayer):

Gbogbo eniti won se abewo si orishada.com won ko ni fi ohun mo ni eniyan oju ti won fi wo koni fo ase o

All of the people the visit Orishada.com will not know blindness that the eyes that you use to view this site will always see clear. Ase o

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Elements Of Ifa Part II: Spirit Of Ifa

Posted on 12 October 2009 by Babalawo Aworeni

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The spirit of Ifa can also be called Ase and among other things is carried by those who deliver the message of Ifa.

The idea of Ase comes in many forms . There are many types of Ase, the three major types of Ase include: The Ase that the Ikin Ifa is empowered with, the Ase that Babalawos carry and the Ase a person takes for heaven.

When one is initiated to Ifa their Ikin should be empowered with the Ase of Ifa . In some initiations where a person’s Ifa is not empowered with the Ase of Ifa , Ifa may not answer their prayers or help them in times of need. This happens because of improper initiation technique, such as 3 day initiations or fake incantations.
The other type of Ase is the type that will come with the person from the heaven. When a person comes from heaven with this type of Ase, whatever they say will happen. If they curse, the curse will affected the person intended, and if they pray their prayers will be immediately answered. They are considered very powerful. This type of person carrying the Ase from heaven is called, Eleyin Oke and God gave the Eleyin Oke power. However they are not dangerous but are well respected.

To recognize the Ase that a Babalawo possesses a client will hear the truth about their life and circumstances. When the Babalawo divines, if he does not speak the truth, then he doesn’t carry rhe true Ase of Ifa. If a Babalawo carries the true Ase of Ifa, it is not good for him to curse. It is not good for a babalawo to be bad tempered or to lose control. A babalawo that is foul tempered, lacks patiences, or curses often should avoided. These type of babalawos are on a destructive path for themselves and those around them.

There are 2 type of babalawo. A normal babalawo that carries the Ase of Ifa and the other is called a Babalariwo. Those that are Babalariwo are frauds and don’t actually carry the spirit or Ase of Ifa. They fake readings to gain money and false prestige. A true babalawo must help those that seek their assistance. A Babalariwo exacts some outrageous price for their services. For instance, telling a woman that she must have sex with him for the her spiritual work is completed. Ifa does not accept this, it is not proper and is an indication of fraud.

A good babalawo must know the Esunsun. The Esunsun is a moral code by which all babalawo must follow. An example of the Esunsun is: don’t sleep with your father’s wife, don’t lie, don’t steal, don’t hurt people with juju, honor your elders, don’t disobey your parents, etc. The Esunsun is what allows a babalawo to live a long life. When an elder that has lived a long life is asked how they have lived so long, he invariably replies, “Esunsun mimon!” (It is the Esunsun that allows me to live a long life!)

There are different ways for one to gain Ase. One way that a babalawo gains Ase is by taking a title. During the title initiation, all the babalawos will gather to pray, say incantations, and empower the title taker’s Ikin Ifa.

A person can also lose their Ase in several ways. One way is by being rude or showing poor character in front of the wrong person, such as an elder. They can also lose their Ase by leaking secrets, telling lies, or committing heinous acts on others. If one is given power or Ase through an initiation title or other means and is rude to those that first gave them the power or title (initiation), the Ase can be removed.

“Odo to ba gbagbe orisun o ma gbe ni.”

– The spring that forgets it’s origin, will run dry.

If a person forgets or is rude to the person that gave them the power in the fist place, the power given can still can still collect that power back. By dishonoring God, orisha, parents, oluwo, ancestors, females or elders, etc a person will lose Ase. Also if someone does not respect their own destiny they can lose power or Ase.

Omode bu iroko o poju weyin o ro pe orujo loluwere pa ni

-The child that insults the Iroko tree, doesn’t know the moment when the Iroko tree will punish him. Any babalawo that disrespects their elders will one day regret it, even if th punishment is not immediate.

Check back to Orishada.com for the Elements of Ifa part III: The Implements of Ifa where we will detail all the implements used in working with Ifa.

We also use this time to thank OLODUMARE for the new Olojo festival of November 20, 2009. We greet the AROLE ODUDUWA OBA OKUNADE SIJUWADE OLUBUSE IKEJI ORISA OLORI ALADE GBO GBO!

We use this time to greet our father ARABA AGBAYE OLUISESE AWOYEMI AWORENI ADISA MAKONRANWALE and all Awo of Ile-Ife.

We also greet all the Ile-Ife indigene, all the Yoruba at home and abroad in the diaspora, for the new Olojo festival that will start on november 20, 2009. The Ooni will carry the crown of Oduduwa to ode agbalasa and pray for all the world.

A SE YI SA MODUN

A SA MODUN SE MI O

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