The Swahili language is a Bantu language spoken mostly on the east coast of Africa as a mother tongue or second language in an area extending to Tanzania’s southern border from Lamu Island in Kenya. Swahili speakers are known as Waswahili, though this name is for the language itself and not specific tribal or ethnic unit. Also known as Kiswahili, this language has been significantly influenced by Arabic; hence, there numerous borrowed Arabic words in Swahili. These loanwords include “Swahili” which comes from the Arabic word “Sawahili” meaning “belonging to coast”. Today, we highlight some of the most popular Swahili quotes.
Like any other language or culture, Swahili is rich with wise sayings and quotes used to inspire and educate. Some of the quotes are a translation from other languages like Spanish, English, German, and French. Here are the top 10 Swahili quotes that have proved useful over the years.
Pekejeng meaning – All the interesting explanations you need to know
Hatari kubwa kwa wengi wetu sio kuwa lengo letu ni ya juu sana na hatuwezi kulifikia mbali ni la chini sana na tunalifikia.
This is a translated quote by one of the greatest artists; Michelangelo who said, “The greatest danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short, but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark.” This is a true as most people do not challenge themselves and therefore, cannot improve. For instance, students who do not put in their best effort will never go beyond their comfort level in performance. Similarly, people who set their aim too low in life may risk missing important opportunities since they cannot get the required experience. According to this quote, setting high targets is better than low targets because it enables people to a chance to challenge themselves and improve.
READ ALSO: Stephen Hawking quotes on life
Funny memes about work to make your day
Hauwezi kuvuka ziwa hadi uwe na ujasiri wa kutouona urefu wa pwani.
As coined by Christopher Columbus, the English translation of this quote is that you cannot cross the ocean until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore. People sometimes get frustrated because they think they cannot reach their goals, yet they spend much of their time holding on to old habits and ways. It can also serve the same purpose as Swahili love quotes since it can be used to encourage the unmarried not to fear to begin the journey of marriage. Without the faith and courage to step out from the normal and reach out to the unknown, people cannot go beyond their current shore. Just like a sailor, they must be courageous enough to lose sight of the shore before they can cross the sea and achieve their dreams.
Furaha sio kitu kilichoundwa tayari. Inakuja kutoka kwa matendo yako.
Unique Swahili baby names in Kenya
This is one of the most famous Swahili quotes by Dalai Lama and is translated into English as happiness is not something readymade. It comes by one’s own actions. Since childhood, people are conditioned to find pleasure from the outside sources including other people, things, or events in their lives. However, as they grow and get transformed into their spiritual, they discover that happiness is not obtained externally but from within. If their actions are limited, they will reap limited results, and if their hope is to get happiness in material things and passing moments, they will find their happiness to be short-lived and temporary.
In the modern world, people seek hard for instant satisfaction and then wonder why they are not happy or why the happiness dodged them so easily. While most people consider wealth as a source of happiness, even children born to wealthy families are not guaranteed automatic happiness. In fact, Swahili quotes about life reveal that people who have worked hard to accumulate wealth can easily find true happiness.
Very funny Swahili quotes and images
There are various ways to which this saying can be applied though it is not listed among the funniest Swahili quotes. To begin with, people should focus on what they did for others more than on what others did for them. Instead of focusing on deteriorating health, they should consider what they can do enable their bodies to stay healthy. Additionally, they should focus on the right thing to do to their children instead of on their wrongdoings. They should not focus on getting physical or sexual encounter but on showing someone kindness, love and empathy.
Haijalishi mwendo wako wa polepole ilhali tu usisimame.
This is a quote by Confucius meaning it does not matter how slowly you go, as long as you do not stop. In most cases, people are more concerned about reaching their destination and want to do things with immediacy. However, this becomes a problem when they do not find the success they wanted as at that time. Looking back at some of the greatest people to have lived remembered because of their achievements, it is clear that they took their time without giving up. For instance, Michelangelo took more than two years to design and create David’s statue. Leonardo da Vinci spent three to four years to creatively paint Mona Lisa. These show that anyone seeking success does not need to rush to bring their piece of art or idea into reality. The key is not giving up.
Top trending Swahili music and Swahili songs in Kenya
Kuwa geuzo unalotaka kuona duniani
As coined by Mahatma Gandhi, this is quote encourages people to be the change they want to see in the world. This is true since what a person was ten years, two weeks, yesterday, or even a few minutes ago is not what they are now. Change is the centre of existence in human thoughts, ideas, feelings, and beliefs even their relationships are changeable sunshine and rain, or day and night. The journey to change is smoother when people can avoid fear, anger or grief and take a deep breath before being overtaken by emotions. With time, what people take to be vital at the moment will lose its relevance with time.
Unakosa asilimia mia moja ya mashindano usiyofanya
This quote means that you miss 100 percent of the shots you never take and was brought up by Wayne Gretzky. It comes from basketball where players may begin to think too much and miss important shots. Wayne Gretzky was a famous hockey player, yet he missed several goal opportunities. Many people are afraid to take risks or chances because they are worried about failure. They also fear the judgment by other people, especially for their shortcomings. However, life is about taking chances by giving the best to everything that is done.
Curious Swahili culture facts you should know
Hakuna njia panya ya kwenda mahali pa thamani
This quote means that there are no shortcuts to any place worth going. The truth is that taking short cuts to accomplish goals are not gratifying compared to those achieved through dedication, hard work and persistence. This quote was created by Beverly Sills; a Grammy award-winning opera singer who became the best American in coloratura soprano between the 1960s and 1970s.
Chochote akili ya binadamu kinaweza kuchukua na kuamini, inaweza faulu kulipata
This quote means that whatever the mind of man can conceive and belief it can achieve regardless of the number of times he might have failed in the past. It was created by Napoleon Hill; the writer of the bestselling book titled “Think and Grow Rich”. By taking note of the limiting beliefs and seeing them for what they are, you can overcome them through the conscious mind where the unconscious mind is aligned to what was conceived and believed.
List of Swahili sayings every Kenyan should know
Wakati uliokuwa mzuri wa kupanda mti ulikuwa miaka ishirini iliyopita. Wakati nzuri wa pili ni sasa.
Originally used by the Chinese, this proverb means that the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago and the second best time is now. It can be easy for people to believe that life has bypassed them and their past may be full of wrong choices made and wasted opportunities. It is never too late for people to start the journey of achieving what they have always wished for.
Kila wakati ukumbuke kuwa azimio lako la kufaulu ni muhimu kushinda zingine zote.
As one of the leading motivation Swahili quotes, this saying means that people should bear in mind that their own resolution to succeed is more important than any other. Coined by Abraham Lincoln, it encourages people that their determination is the key to their personal success. Regardless of the obstacles that may arise, making such resolutions renders one a conqueror.
Most Swahili quotes and saying are borrowed from other languages just as other languages have borrowed from Swahili. This depends on how rich culture is in terms of language use. Having seen the top 10 Swahili quotes, it is clear that most quotes and wise sayings are inspirational. Nevertheless, there are also funny Swahili quotes meant for entertainment on various occasion that we will highlight in other posts.
View more information: https://www.tuko.co.ke/271902-top-10-swahili-quotes.html