The Coordinator of Peers of Heaven society (Egbe Orun), Chief Oyelola Elebuibon Ajibola, the Iya-Osa of Ogbeyonu temple and Iyalode of Onibuaje says they are not witches and wizards as people popularly believe.
She argues that her group literarily means society of heaven, stating everyone belongs to one heavenly society or the other, as Christians and folks of other faiths in Nigeria criticise her.
She said, “traditionally, everyone on earth has his spiritual being in heaven working with the physical being to achieve his destiny on earth. Some people can hear what others can’t hear, while others just don’t hear things alone but can see vision others cannot see. Simply put, being an ’EMERE’ simply means having supernatural abilities”.
PEERS OF HEAVEN CHIEF’S EXPLANATION
However, one of the pastors who responded to her claim she is mistaken ‘the spirit man’ for any special group of people. The pastor said: “Man is a spirit. He has a soul and lives in a body. The spirit man is the main spiritual personality and he is not disconnected with the person. Man is spirit, soul and body. When we die, the spirit – the main person, goes to God and the body decays”.
Yorubas believe that the Obatala deity its the moulder of destiny and the Ori (Spirit-man) and the physical being can hardly be separated.It is believed that some people are more successful than others because of the power of their spiritual being.
Emere in the Yoruba belief is a child who can travel between the spiritual and physical world at will. Christianity frowns at this belief, affirming that Emere is entrenched in demonic operations and familiar spirits.
Yorubas believe an emere is a spirit in disguise, misrepresenting death as life, and is clever enough to disguise its objectives.
Emeres are believed to be more powerful that witches and they most often die on a particular day of joy before their divine calendar as set by God. The day of joy could be wedding days, when having first baby, graduation from university, among others.
Chief Ajibola claims she has special powers and that her words manifest but Christians say she is under demonic oppression and the demon in her uses her to accomplish its ends.
Most Yoruba traditional myths, spirits, magic, taboos, power and evil are attributed to demons, witches, enemies and sin against ancestors or Olodumare, the Supreme God.