Adinkra are visual symbols, originally created by the Gyaman (Ashanti) people of Ghana and the Ivory Coast. The symbols hold a great deal of meaning and not only present the rich Akan culture, but serve to communicate deep truths, wisdom and knowledge using imagery.
For this father’s day, we wanted to highlight three symbols we feel represent father’s around the world. Their meaning, truths, and wisdom ring true in the personalities and characteristics of the men in our lives who helped to make us who we are today.
Meaning: Fence. A symbol of safety, security, and love.
Some of us remember our fathers as the one who protected us from the things we feared the most, (spiders, bullies, our moms when they were mad). He was brave when we weren’t and we only hope to receive some of his courage as we grow in life.
Meaning: Butterfly. A symbol of tenderness, gentleness, honesty, and fragility.
Is your dad the ‘softy’ in the family? The one who would show the most care when needed, wore his heart on his sleeve and wasn’t afraid to cry when needed? In the hyper- masculine world we live in today, it’s tough for men to feel comfortable enough to show their true emotions. But there are fathers out there that do, and this symbol is for them.
Woforo Dua pa
Meaning: When you climb a good tree. A symbol of support for good causes.
He’s your rock, your foundation, and the one who taught you everything you needed to know. This symbol can represent the fathers who provided that solid foundation in life, who made the necessary sacrifices that allowed you to become the person you are today.
Do you see your dad in any of these symbols?
If not, go through the list of Adinkra symbols here to find one that might!