While the power of the Orishas is legendary, one doesn’t become initiated for power or for money. Instead initiations in Santeria help the person to move forward in their lives, often in specific ways and impart the aché or spiritual power of the Orishas into your life. There are a number of levels of initiation, and the knowledge you gain deepens as well as the commitment expected of you by the Orishas and your Godparents. First a person will generally receive their Guerreros or warriors and/or their ilekes or their Necklaces. Later, they may receive La Mano de Orula or Hand of Orula. When the person is ready, they may be go through the kariocha or Full Initiation as a Santera or Santero if that is their path in life. Finally, if the person’s sign in their Mano de Orula calls for it they may be fully initiated as aBabalawo (Father of the Secrets) and serve as a High Priest in the religion.
Initiations are recommended according to the needs of the person as determined by the Orishas themselves through divination.