Oju: Sight, Vision, Light and Morning

Ojú, eye, is the root of Ojúmọ́, meaning daylight.

Ojúmọ́, which is Ojú+Mọ́ means Eye+clarity.

Mọ́ also means “clean.”

Interestingly, Mọ́ oju means to slowly close and open the eye, a socially-informed symbol of disagreement, dispute and variance.

It is different from ṣẹ́jú (ṣẹ́+ojú), which means “to bat the eyes.”

But when you mọ́ ojú, the process is like clearing the eye, which is what happens when you ṣẹ́jú or bat the eye.

Ojú and Ojúmọ́ are like mother and child. You need the ojú to clearly see the ojúmọ́ (clear-eyed daylight)

Yoruba people pray that Kí ojú u wa má relé dè wá: may our eye not leave us and travel home before our time.

Do you know any Yoruba proverb about Ojú or Ojúmọ́?

Ojú ni alákàn fí sọ́rí: with its eyes the crab guides and guards its head.


I started a series of rotunda or tondo paintings, on the subject of Oju and Ojumo.

In the work, you will see the eyes, the heads and the sun, all blended into a single fluid motion, when one gazes up at the sun.

Interested in some of my published works?

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