Nyame Nti is an Adinkra symbol of religious significance, representing an aspect of the Ghanaian’s relationship with God.
The symbol has a flowy appearance, and is the image of a type of stylized plant or leaf. The stalk is said to represent the staff of life and symbolizes that food is the basis for life. If it were not for the food that God provides, no life would survive – connecting the image to the phrase because of God.
The words Nyame Nti translate to ‘by God’s grace’ or ‘because of God’. The symbol represents faith and trust in God. This phrase is found in an African saying, ‘Nyame Nti minnwe wura,’ which translates to ‘By God’s grace, I will not eat leaves to survive.’ This proverb provides another link between the symbol, food, and God.
It is important to distinguish this sign from other Adinkra symbols that feature Nyame in their name. Nyame is a common part of Adinkra symbols as Nyame translates to God. Each of the symbols with Nyame in the name represents a different aspect of the relationship with God.
The Nyame Nti is used on traditional clothing and artwork, as well as modern clothing, artwork, and jewelry. Using this symbol serves as a reminder that our survival is by God’s grace and that we must continue to have faith and trust in him.
Learn more about Adinkra symbols in our article on a list of popular Adinkra symbols.