I found this article about what to look for when seeking a teacher.
There are many things that can be said about the ethics and relationships of teachers and students, but one of the most important is this:
Magical training forges a permanent karmic link between teacher and student.
Therefore, you should exercise caution and judgement when deciding to apprentice with any teacher: their problems, as well as their skills and strengths, will naturally, through the karmic link, tend to get passed along to you. Thus, you want to choose a teacher whom you respect as a person, AND who has a reasonably good control over her/his life.
Some things you might want to think about:
- Does this person have a healthy sense of her/his own identity? That is, does s/he seem to have both an honest appreciation for herself and an honest awareness of her weaknesses? (We all have them, and anyone who can’t accept that fact will tend to trip themself up.) Does s/he like herself, yet have reasonable humility? (If the phrases “power-tripper”, “doormat”, “egomaniac”, “paranoid” or “perpetual victim” apply, the answer is probably no.)
- Does this person handle their life, including the annoying aspects of mundane reality, in a reasonably balanced manner? The inner and the outer often mirror each other, and a person who is continually in crisis mode is not exercising their magic to good effect. This doesn’t mean that a Witch should necessarily be rich, or free of problems, or otherwise above the daily work of living; but a Witch should not live habitually in self-generated crisis.
- Do you WANT to share this person’s karma, or would you hope that, er, not too much of it would rub off, thank you?
Source: The Covenant of the Goddess. This is an international organization of cooperating, autonomous Wiccan congregations and solitary practitioners.
I believe that I am going to practise Orisa all my life. However, I have been noticing a great many similarities between Ifa traditions, and the Wiccan traditions.
In any case, magick is a belief system independent practice and exists as a force separate from Ifa, Shamanism, Christianity, Islam or anything else for that matter.
What this article says is just what I needed to absorb right now. I respected the teachers I have spent the last year with, but I knew all along that I was going to move on. They taught me a lot, and held back too much, sought too much to control and manipulate.
I think I am going into a period of solitary practise. For now, it seems right that I build up my understanding of the systems, and actually begin to practise independently of anyone else’s opinions.
I need to learn how to build up my own power, and strengthen myself and my spirit. No one can teach me that, I have to want it and achieve it on my own. When I am strong enough, a new teacher will arrive to take me to the next level.