Erin-Ijesha Waterfall’s Myth
Erin Ijesha water falls was dicovered in the year 1140AD. It has 7 stages and 3 major falls.
Legend has it that after the death of Oduduwa, the people of present day Erin-Ijesha migrated from Ile-Ife.
This migration was led by a lady called Yeye Aye Akinla who consulted the Ifa Oracle on how it would go. The Ifa Oracle’s chief priest informed her that after 17 days of trekking out of Ile-Ife, wherever she got to would be the new home for her and her followers.
Off Yeye Akinla went with her followers on their journey and on the seventeenth day, just as the chief priest said, they arrived at Erin Ijesha. Then it was called Erin Itadogun loosely translated as ‘the 17 day journey’. They settled down and lived a happy life.
Remember when I said hunters seem to find everything in Yoruba stories? This little clan had been living in Erin-Ijesha and didn’t know there was a ‘river’ (the waterfalls). A hunter went looking for game and came across it. With so much fear in his heart, he ran to Yeye and told her he had seen another god. She asked “Nwon ni awon ti ri Oluwa Mirin’ (where did you see another god?, this is where the name Olumirin comes from).
Quickly, she summoned the Ifa priest and asked him about this so called god the hunter claimed to have found. The priest then told her it wasn’t a god but the handiwork of God and to show how marvelous and great He is.
He then instructed them to worship the river every year and this turned into a festival where human sacrifices were made. This continued till Yeye Akinla died.
After her death, her son became king and put an end to the human sacrifices and instead used cows. This continued from king to king until 1959 when HRH Oba Stephen Adeyinka Adeosun took over and cancelled everything all together. He also showed off the waterfall to the govt of the Western Region headed by Chief Obafemi Awolowo and it has been used for domestic purposes and tourism ever since then.
And that is the story behind the legendary Erin Ijesha waterfalls. Have you heard any other stories? What were they?