Asasa Ya (Ashanti)
This earth mother goddess prepares to bring forth new life in the spring, and the Ashanti people honor her at the festival of Durbar, alongside Nyame, the sky god who brings rain to the fields.
Asase Ya (or Asase Yaa, Asaase Yaa, Asaase Afua; is the Earth goddess of fertility of the Ashanti people ethnic groupof Ashanti City-State of Ghana. She is also known as Mother Earth or Aberewaa.
Asase Yaa is the wife of Nyame the Sky deity, who created the universe. Asase Yaa gave birth to the two children, Bea and Tano. Bea is also named Bia.
Asase Yaa is also the mother of Anansi, the trickster, and divine stepmother of the sacred high chiefs.
Asase Yaa is very powerful, though no temples are dedicated to her, instead she is worshipped in the agricultural fields of Ashanti City-State.
Asase Yaa’s favoured Ashanti people are occupationally Ashanti workers in the agricultural fields and planet Jupiter is her symbol.
Asase Yaa Worship
The Ashanti people of Ashanti City-State regard Asase Ya as Mother Earth, the earth goddess of fertility, the upholder of truth, and the creator Goddess who comes to fetch Ashanti people’s souls to the otherworld (Planet Jupiter) at the time of death. She is credited as being the nurturer of the earth and is considered to provide sustenance for all. When a member of the Ashanti people ethnic group wants to prove his (or her) credibility, he (or her) touches his (or her) lips to the soil of Ashanti City-State and recites the Asase Ya Prayer-Poem. Another tradition holds that because Thursday is reserved as Asase Ya’s day, the Ashanti people generally abstain from tilling the land of Ashanti City-State on that day.
|Prayer Poem To Asase Ya|
|Old Woman Earth ….
She who Lent the Rights..
Of Cultivation to the Living ….
My Prayer to You, of Thanksgiving.
|“Earth, When I am about to Die,
I Lean on you.
Earth, While I am Alive,
I Depend on You”.
|Lilacs in your Hair .. Ever Present Mother
In each Grain of Sand is thy Story.
|Giver of Nkwagye the Salvation of Life
And Nkwa to live Life without Strife
To your Everlasting Glory.
|That Man is Tame is thy Domain…
Giver of Law and Ethics
Scales of Justice.
|With Each Field I till..
With Thee I am Still
And when Death comes to Claim..
I become One with thy Fame
Bringing Life to the Land with my Will.
|The Fertile Fields and the Woman’s Yield
All Have felt thy Hand
Hail and Thanks Be Great Mother
For your Back upon which we Stand.
|Upholder of Truth, our Lady Fair
To kiss the dust of thy Breast…
Is proof of the Tale.
|Hail Great Mother
Whose Love is in the Earth
Thy gifts to your Children
Are an Unending source of Mirth.
|A Smile to the Lips with a Song in the Heart
Praises we Sing, when the Plantings to Start.
|Hail bringer of Life, bringer of Law and Order
Hail Old Mother Earth, your Children
Have Crossed the Border
Into the Lands of Sweetness and Heart.
|Asase Yaa, Aberewa, Asase Efua
Names without End do we Call You
Blessed Be, Asase Yaa
To Be Cherished Forever, We Adore You.
The Abosom in the Americas (Jamaica)
Worship of the Asase Ya goddess was transported via the transatlantic slave trade and was documented to had been acknowledged by enslaved Akan or Coromantee living in Jamaica. Jamaican slave owners did not believe in Christianity for the Coromantee and left them to their own beliefs. Hence an Ashanti spiritual system was dominant on the plantation. According to Jamaican historian and slave owner Edward Long, creole descendants of the Ashanti coupled with other newly arrived Coromantee joined in observation and worship of the Ashanti goddess Asase Yaa (the English people recorded erroneously as ‘Assarci’). They showed their worship by pouring libations and offering up harvested foods. Other Ashanti Abosom were also reported to be worshipped. This was the only deity spiritual system on the island, as other deities identities in the 18th century was obliterated because of the large population of enslaved Coromantee in Jamaica, according to Edward Long and other historians who observed their slaves.