Loser Sign - or the Number Eight in Chinese? You think that resting your hands in your pockets seems like a chill thing to do, but in some Asian cultures, like Korea and Japan, you'd make people flip the hell out. This gesture is bad manners all around the world. In Vietnam, however, this is an obscene gesture, especially when done while looking at or addressing another person. If in doubt, motion with your head to point at something. The pointed finger is a symbol used in alchemy, and many classic paintings, as well as being used on old gravestones.It represent the person's relationship with the spiritual world - in a sense where they are [or were if they are dead] on the spiritual path.In its simplest interpretation, which we will take first:. Be friendly, be polite -- they'll know you didn't really mean to imply anything about sticking anything anywhere with some casually thoughtless and simple gesture. What You Need to Know, Don't Make These Etiquette Mistakes in India, Hand Gestures in the World With More Than One Meaning. This hand gesture is considered as the symbol of the devil in many cultures. In Spain, North America, Ecuador, Chile, Russia and Germany this same sign but bringing the thumb to the mouth means drink because it is reminiscent of the shape of a glass. However, pointing a finger has a meaning in different countries too. It is now used for both meanings and is very common to be used by many people posing on a photograph as a friendly gesture, especially among Japanese people. This gesture first got this meaning in the UK, is also known as the "two-fingered salute" and has been widely used against authority. Finger-pointing definition is - the act of making explicit and often unfair accusations of blame. Bottom line: Don't worry about accidentally insulting your hosts in a foreign country with some inadvertent rudeness. Which countries find it most offensive? ~ This could also mean placing a blame on someone. It is used in several meanings, including when it is meant to underline some statement and attract attention to it, to point out some fact, or to ⚠️ Warn someone about something important. If you do this sign upside down, i.e. Sticking the middle finger up with the fingernail pointing outwards is also rude in Britain. … TikTok has become the new go-to hub for trends, challenges and dance crazes and it's also introduced a number of new phrases that … We invite you to visit your doctor if you have any type of condition or pain. On the other hand, in Arab countries, it means to take your time. William Timmons / former Peace Corp volunteer / Niger. Pointing with index finger may be used to indicate an item or person. To point your open hand & outstretched arm toward someone, (as if to say halt! ) The two pointing fingers indicate the horns of the Devil. However, crossing your fingers can also signify a white lie, especially when trying to hide the hand this means that you are lying during a conversation. The thumb between the index- and middle finger in the fist form in Russia mean the same thing as the middle finger in America, pinky finger in china mean the exact same thing as middle finger in america, The Meaning of Hand Gestures in different Countries, Putting your thumb and index finger of one hand together, Raising the index and middle fingers of a hand into a V, Raising your index and middle finger into a V with the palm inward, Ask someone to come towards you with a finger, Raising your index finger and little finger to make horns, What Are The Five Senses And What Do They Do, What are the Symptoms of a Lack of Oxygen to the Brain, How does Caffeine Affect the Nervous System, How Long Does it Take for Prednisone to Work, What Is The Normal Range Of Lymphocyte Count, Causes of Pain in Right Side of your Stomach, How Many Calories To Eat Per Day Based On Age, How Much Prednisone to Use For Sinus Infection, How to Get Rid of Fluid Retention in the Legs. However, in China it can also mean number six. In the US, my Father (from his army days) said that the Index Finger and Little Finger meant "What you are saying is a lot of BullSh*t" The Fingers as horns and a downward hand movement. In Vietnam, it is extremely rude to cross you fingers as a hand gesture, as it is representative of female genitalia. ~ Western cultures consider finger-pointing to be one of the most obscene hand gestures. Making a circle with your thumb and your index finger … The corona is carried out by pointing the index and pinkie finger upwards and the two middle fingers and thumb curled towards the palm. It can also be used to seal a promise, like when you vow to keep a secret. This gesture has evolved to mean perfect, but in some countries it has completely different meanings: In Germany and Brazil it is a very obscene gesture, in Japan it means money and in France it usually means zero or useless. In many Mediterranean countries this symbol was also used (and in some region still is) to get rid of bad omens and situations. The two pointing fingers indicate the horns of the Devil. The Seashell. Also in Britain, it's obscene to stick two fingers up in a V-sign with the nails pointing outwards. Again, better off with the enthusiastic smile to indicate that all is well. In other words, you don't order two beers in an English pub by holding up two fingers with your palm facing you unless you want to get in a bit of a brawl. This gesture was commonly used in World War II by the Allies to symbolize victory. Meanwhile, in Turkey it is a positive sign meaning everything is well or that something is pretty. Many western cultures make this gesture when wishing for good luck. But watch out! In America, you might respond to such a question by flashing the "A-OK" sign, created by touching your forefinger to your thumb and pointing the remaining three fingers straight up. China, Japan, Indonesia, and Latin America. Some cultures take snapping fingers to get the attention of a waiter as alright whereas some take it as disrespect and very offensive. This article has been edited and updated by Lauren Juliff. In the USA it is the symbol of the University of Austin in Texas and means "Hook'em Horns"; meaning stab them horns, referring to the Texas bulls. For example, in some countries, pointing a finger at a person is considered an insult, which is why in the U.S. we tell children “don’t point.” While in Italy pointing is used to indicate a direction. In the previous section we explained that the V sign means victory or peace. Traditionally, it's a way to show the number three in many Western countries, and a way to indicate the number seven in China. The thumbs up gesture can also create some real problems for those who count on their fingers. A “finger handshake”: the person catches only the fingers of the other person’s hand. Should you be lucky enough to travel to China, know that the vendor at that street stall is not telling you that you're a loser for playing it safe with the onion pancakes (what, the skewered thing with several legs doesn't seem appealing?). Although they basically use it when they are incredulous about something, when you are gestured in such a way it may also mean "What do you want?". In Egypt it means that you won't take long to do something. Especially if it's accompanied by a genuine smile. The meanings of non-verbal language can change from one culture to another as much as to have the opposite connotation. Pointing the middle finger in the air is considered a rude gesture in the U.S.; pointing the index finger means the same thing in Arab countries Hand gestures and body language mean very different things across different cultures. Lifting the thumb and little finger. Take heed all you global … For example, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, it is a sing to show you want a small amount of something. Nothing." Italy and Spain: “Hang loose” (or the “rock on” sign) These gestures, generally positive and “cool” in … Cross-Cultural Communication Nada. In most countries it is considered insulting to ask someone to come towards you like this. While the origins of the action are unclear, it appears the symbol is an attempt to create a crude "o" and "k" (the "o" is certainly clear, though not so much the "k"). From a 'thumbs up' to looking at your watch – here's what 6 hand gestures mean in different cultures and countries. Some cultures consider pointing fingers at someone as insulting whereas in other parts of the world it is often used as a reference. In Brazil, however, the okay symbol is the equivalent of giving someone the finger in the U.S. Brazil: A good luck charm to ward off the evil eye and jealousy. In the Middle East and Far East use the index and middle fingers together or the whole hand to point something out. Meaning of 👆 Backhand Index Pointing Up Emoji Backhand Index Pointing Up emoji is a picture of a right hand with the index finger pointing up. This gesture called a shaka sign is typical in Hawaii and in places … Pointing Finger: Often a Rude Gesture in Any Country or Culture. What is considered polite in one culture may be construed as rude in another. In the USA it can be a friendly gesture that can mean "you're cool" when doing this gesture to someone you're talking to directly and in a friendly fashion. This gesture goes back to Ancient Roman times. From there, you're on your own -- just don't feel offended by the gesture. In the Philippines this gesture is liable to arrest and is used to call dogs and prostitutes. Some cultures take pointing fingers as insulting too. The corona is a hand gesture that is carried out by pointing the index and pinkie finger upwards and the two middle fingers and thumb curled towards the palm. Last on our list of hand gestures in different country is putting your fingers together. This gesture has survived many years and is now used in most western countries where thumbs up means we are stating that everything is okay. Well, what's widely accepted for us can be seen as offensive in other countries around the world, so this is yet another gesture to use with caution. Most cultures find pointing rude altogether, but others are more tolerant of its use. In most countries crossing your fingers is a sign of good luck, in many countries, as it was historically a sign of protection against evil in Catholic countries. Those of Indian heritage may point using the chin, whole hand, or thumb. Previously, it had been perceived everywhere as a marginally rude gesture, though it was occasionally used to great effect in advertising (think, "Uncle Sam Wants You"). However, there are other meanings to this hand gesture in different countries. In the Philippines however, this gesture is considered offensive, as this style of beckoning is used to call dogs. However, the gesture made by circling thumb and forefinger, with​ the middle, ring, and pinkie fingers extended, has a couple of other meanings than the "Okey dokey" we're most familiar with. Be careful using it abroad, though: it's still not really polite to older generations, and it's not polite, at all, to anyone in the Middle and the Far East (use an open hand to point when you're in that neighborhood). (That would be an insult.) Its meaning is"relax". It's not just West Africa, though. So check out our list of hand gestures around the world, and take note if you'll be heading to any of these countries soon -- it's always best to err on the side of caution and try to avoid gesturing if at all possible. Sometimes the hand is moved to emphasize the gesture. with the palm facing you, in the UK, Australia, Ireland and New Zealand it is an insult meaning "f*** you". Where the middle finger is seen as a rude gesture, using it to point can be extremely off-putting and should be avoided. Touchiness and physical affection are not common in Chinese culture. This is considered as the symbol of the devil in many cultures. For fans of heavy metal it means "What's up?". It’s also widely used by … In Japan, however, the okay gesture means money, which could lead to confusion if you use it to indicate everything's okay while you're in the country. In the Middle East it is better to avoid using this gesture because it means that you are telling the person you are doing it to stick it where the sun doesn't shine. For more extended information, take a look at our article on the meaning of two fingers. In Japan, pointing is done with the fingers together and the palm facing upwards; in Germany, with the little finger only. Showing feet is taken as offensive in some Middle Eastern cultures. Looking at your wristwatch during a conversation is considered to be rude if done during a conversation, as it may be considered a sign of boredom, especially in Middle Easter countries, where the meaning of this hand gesture signifies being in a hurry or having to go somewhere. And if you do manage to slip up and offend someone, a simple apology and explanation that you didn't know it was offensive are often all it takes to make amends. After asking around a bit, we learned that in some parts of the world, it means to sit on the thumb. Flipping the finger, also known as flipping the bird, is a sign of extreme contempt. Facing your palm up and curling an index finger toward yourself is commonly understood as a “beckoning” gesture. Common body language and gestures in the United States such as eye contact, the OK sign and the hand thrust, have widely different meanings in various parts of the world. Over the early … It helps to know what these gestures mean so as to not surprise anyone by using them in another country. Although sometimes hard to avoid, doing it is very bad manners. (American culture, for instance, may frown upon it as a point of manners, but it's absolutely more acceptable than, say, giving someone the finger.) For this reason, this oneHOWTO article will explain what some of these hand gestures mean. Snapping your fingers to get the attention of a waiter is okay in some parts of the world but is disrespectful and offensive in other areas of the globe. Knowing this it is especially important for communicating in … And in some places, it can mean that you're indicating that the other person is a, um, body part with happens to be round (and hidden). While in many cultures pointing at someone is considered a bit rude, it's certainly not always considered an obscenity. You may know if for the most popular Italian hand gesture. America: The thumb between the index and middle fingers represents the nose stolen from a kid’s face in the “I’ve Got Your Nose” game. People and their cultures interpret all these ways to give a handshake in different ways. If you're in the habit of throwing a thumbs up at people to express your happiness, try to quash it for any trips to the regions mentioned above. This gesture's origin is found in India to symbolize the expulsion of demons. It means something like “come here.”. Middle Finger. Ouch. If you want to read similar articles to The Meaning of Hand Gestures in different Countries, we recommend you visit our Family health category. Raising the middle finger up facing another is a rude gesture in any other countries. It's seen as a highly offensive gesture, and should definitely be avoided. This symbol's original meaning was a-OK and NASA was one of the first to use it to describe that everything has gone to plan. And in many African countries, you should also only point at an inanimate object and never at humans. Even babies point their fingers at objects they want. The finger is at one end of the hand, and so does not disturb the use of the index finger or the whole palm. A pointing index finger raised upwards is used in Islam as an affirming gesture of Tawhid though it has been also used in more political contexts, particularly by groups more extremist in ideology such as ISIS. Regardless of the hand, pinky fingers mean you are a good negotiator. 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