In an era when Europeans believed that excessive bathing was bad for one’s health our ancient ancestors maintained a strict regimen of water purification which kept them pure physically and
Much in the same way that contemporary Amazon Rainforest natives still bathe regularly at a nearby stream first thing in the morning, our Taino ancestors had a complex of ritual bathing and water cleansings that went far beyond simple physical hygene.
You are called by your ancestors and by the spirits of the Taino Universe to go back to these sacred rituals, which if followed correctly will help re-align and balance your relationship with the forces of Nature and the spirits of your ancestors, the Hupias.
The first and most important step in maintaining a strong personal water purification ritual cycle is to establish a regular bathing or shower time each day which you can initiate with a brief ceremony and prayer. Before stepping into the shower or sitting in your bath water focus on the act that you are about to perform as a sacred thing, a thing that will bring you closer to the realm of the spirits. Make sure that before you start the ceremony you have found out the placement of the four directions in your region. Know in advance where the North South East and West are.
Then enter the water and use a cup or bowl to scoop up of catch a cup-full of water.
Lift the cup to the direction of the South first and focus briefly on the quality of Open Mindedness. Pray to ACHIANO (Ah-Chiah-Noh), the spirit of the South that it may endow you with that quality. Pour the water upon your body as if pouring the Open Mindedness over yourself and annointing yourself with that quality.
Then scoop up a second cupful of water and raise it briefly to the direction of the West. Focus on the quality of Inner Vision (the ability to look within your own self and understand what you see there). Pray to KOROMO (Koh-Roh-Moh), the spirit of the West that it may endow you with that quality. Pour the water over your body as if pouring the Inner Vision over yourself and annointing yourself with that quality.
Then scoop up a third cupful of water and raise it briefly to the direction of the North. Focus on the quality of Wisdom and Experience. Pray to RAKUNO (Rah-Ku-Noh), the spirit of the North that it may endow you with that quality. Pour the water over your body as if pouring the Wisdom over yourself and annointing yourself with that quality.
Finally scoop up a fourth and final cupful of water and raise it briefly to the direction of the East. Focus on the quality of Illumination or Enlightenment (clarity of outward vision). Pray to SOBAIKO (Soh-Bye-Koh), the spirit of the East that it may endow you with that quality. Pour the water over your body as if pouring the Illumination over yourself and annointing yourself with that quality.
The ceremony is to be performed at the beginning of your day, no matter at what time of the day that may occur. A person who starts his or her workday at 8:00 A.M. can perform this ceremony at 6:30 A.M. before leaving for work. However a person who works night-shift and starts at 6:00 P.M. might find it appropriate to perform the ceremony at 4:00 P. M. after sleeping all day.
You may enhance the symbolism of this ceremony by burning tabonuko incense (copal) in a large bivalve shell or a separate bowl on a low table next to the bath tub or shower and smudging the water-bowl you are to use in the ceremony before beginning.
It is also advisble, if you have the time before going to the bathroom for the water ritual, to burn some tabonuko in your bedroom or a special meditation room. Sit quietly in meditation, raise your hands to shoulder high with your palms facing foward, away from you, fingers curled in, and request that your ancestors cleanse you and purify you of your misdeeds, your wrong-doings. Follow that request with another request to the male fatherly spirit of LIFE, Yoka Hu (Yoh-Kah-Hooh), and the female motherly spirit of BIRTHING and NURTURING, Ata Bey(Ah-Tah-Bay). These are the two entities that united together make up YAYA-GUATUREY (the Great Spirit). Ask that this mother spirit and this father spirit may endow you with the strength and vitality to accomplish all that you need to accomplish that day. You may also ask for anything else that you feel you need from these supreme beings. You may also pray for other people that you feel need the prayers. Once you are done you can go to the bathroom and perform the ritual I described above.
Performing at least the basic water purification will guarantee that you start your day on the right foot and will give you the strength and confidence that you need to accomplish all that you must accomplish that day.