Jamaican expression is used as a greeting and as a
parting phrase, conveying the basic idea of unity,
or oneness, which is so fundamental to
the Rastafarian ideology. It links strongly to the
concept of 'I and I', with the same insistence on
universal, all-embracing love and respect for one's
fellow human beings.
The reasoning is simple and timeless: if God is the One
and the All, the Source of all multiplicity, then all of
Creation that has emanated from God is in essence one.
What therefore God hath joined together, let not man
put asunder (Mark 10:9). Rastafarians avoid any form of
segregation or division, labelling it as 'isms
and schisms', and most of all dislike the term
'Rastafarianism', since it undermines the wholesome,
unifying essence of the tradition.
The phrase 'One Love' is often extended, to emphasise its
One Love, One World, One Unity
One God, One Christ, One Deity
One Aim, One Goal, One Destiny
One Voice, One Song, One Harmony...
In the Ethiopian language of Amharic, 'One Love' is translated 'Fiqir
Bandinet' ('fiqir' meaning 'love', and 'bandinet'
being derived from 'ande', 'one').
For examples of songs, see the
'One Love/People Get Ready' - Bob Marley and the Wailers
'Give I Strength' - Prince Far I
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In Rasta Reggae Lyrics' page