The Dhahaadhooftuu- the time reckoner

The concept dhahaadhooftuu is derived from two Oromo words dhahaa and dhooftuu. The term Dhahaa itself is derived from the verb dahuu which literally refers to “count on’, ‘enumerate’, ‘reckon’, ‘compute’, ‘calculate’ or ‘see’. It stands for the reckoning of time based on the pattern of the position of the moon to a particular star at the moment of rising. And so the term dhahaa refers to the pattern that this conjunction creates for their interaction by the time reckoner. It stand for the time chart (, or calender) of the waaqeffannaa spiritual society. The term Dhooftuu stands for the term ‘reckoner’. And the two terms together form the word Dhahaadhooftuu which literally represent an expert in reckoning time based on the position of the moon to a particular star.

The concept Ayyaana is the basis of the reckoning of time and the passage of history; the social structure; the authority and power structure; the system of the law, the kinship system; and the religious and economic institutions as carries as its core meaning the concept of “time”. It determines man’s relationship to nature and to his fellow wo/men. Yeroo (time) is the granary (kuusa) of history, present and future. Everything is ordered according to the past, present and future. Hence, dhahaa is the reflection (Mil’uu) and counter reflection (Mul’ii) of everything. Among the Waaqeffannaa spiritual society, both secular and spiritual activities and rituals are directed with dhahaa and not performed without it. Dhahaa is a counting by which nature and creatures are branded, ordered and distinguished.

The Dhahaadhooftuu is one of the quintipal pillars and expert of waaqeffannaa spiritual society wisdom; s/he is a divine enlightened person who is able to reckon ayyaanaa of a day (ayyaanaa guyyaa) and ayyaanaa of time (ayyaana yeroo). They use their memory to see into the past (mil’ata), look into (arga) the present and predict (mul’ata, raaga) the future based on critical analysis of signs, symbols and natural phenomena. Waaqaa enlighten his mind with this divine knowledge, the knowledge of the most awakened consciousness. Dhahaa is the core concept of waaqeffannaa spirituality and knowledge of beingness. Everything is bound for depending on Dhahaa and Yeroo. To do this, hence one needs to understand the ayyaanaa of day and yeroo, and the order and nature of occurrence and appearance of things in the universe.
The Dhahaadhooftuu learns about the dhahaa through training, experience, or research from his /her family. He or she can look at and read omentum. Innoo, sacred Qaalluu-Ayyaantuu, blessed and uttered the dhahaadhoofuu to teach the meaning of time and nature. He uttered as
“Dhahaadhooftuu is a divinely anointed hayyuu (, or expert) he/she who reckons the ayyaana of yeroo and teaches wo/man (human) being. They are one of the enlightened men among you. Let the waaqeffannaa spiritual society consult them. This is Heera Dhugaa GaNamaa (divine truth)!”

The dhahadhooftuu (, or Time-reckoning experts) observe the position of the stars during the night and inform the local people that summer is setting in or winter is coming; and they can tell the day, the month, the year, and time of ritual events either from their memory or by exploring the relative position of the stars and the moon. She/he also uses her / his memory to tell different seasons and periods including the bahaa, the sadeettaa, the salgii, the jaatamaa and the diroo. Well trained dhahadhooftuu tell the truth about future events. There were naturally knowledgeable persons who are believed to possess foreknowledge of future events. To do so, they use seven stars whose position is paramount to predict the future. The seven stars or constellations the dhahaadhooftuu uses are Lami (Triangulum), Buusa (Pleides), Bakalcha (Aldebaran), Algajima (Bellatrix), Arb Gaddu (central cluster of Orion), Urji Walla (Saiph), and Basa (Sirius). These seven stars and constellations are roughly in line and lined up a diagonal of Orion trapezoid. In six out of the twelve lunar months the seven constellations appear successively, in conjunction with the moon. During the remaining six months none of these six stars and constellations is visible at the rising of the moon. The dhahaadhooftuu on the basis of astronomical observations, do make an adjustment in the day name every two or three months. Waaqaa create everything with its own ayyaanaa; but all of this ayyaanaa may not be positive.

When certain stars or constellations are close to the Moon, they are commonly called as dhaha ji’aa (, or Reckoning of Moon/Month). The waaqeffannaa spiritual society’s dhahaadhooftuu (, or time-reckoning experts) can tell the time when the stars are found close to the moon. Since the Dhahadhooftuu has certain days on which certain rituals have to be performed, these days are supposed to be determined by experts who are under his authority. Some of these days are blessed with good fortune but others are not. And therefore, the day (ayyaanaa), the time and the night needs to be evoked (ni hedatamu). The devotion needs to be directed according to this hedannaa.

In the dhahaa of waaqeffannaa spiritual society, there are 27 ayyaana in a month, namely Areerii Duraa, Areerii Bal’oo, Adulaa Duraa, Adulaa Bal’oo, Garba Duraa, Garba Bal’aa, Garba Dullacha, Bittaa Duraa, Bittaa Bal’aa, Sorsa, Algaajima, Arba, Walla, Basaa Duraa, Basaa Bal’aa, Maganttii Carraa, Maganttii Jaarraa, Maganttii Biriitii, Salbaana duraa, Salbaana Bal’oo, Salbaana Dullacha, Gardaaduma, Sonsa, Rurruma, Lumaasa, Gidaada, and Ruuda. The remaining three days are given a different set of names and are called bollolitu, shanaataa and aggaga and stand for the twenty-eighth, twenty-ninth and thirtieth days. Each of the 27 days or ayyaana gives special meaning and connotation to the time reckoning or keeping experts.