Expressing Affection in Toki Pona: How to Say You Like Something

Expressing Affection in Toki Pona: How to Say You Like Something

Toki Pona, invented by Canadian linguist and translator Sonja Lang in the early 2000s, is a minimalist constructed language, known for its small vocabulary. Despite its simplicity, it’s quite capable of expressing complex concepts, including the expression of liking or affection.

Here’s how you can convey you like something in Toki Pona:

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1. Using “pona”

The word “pona” is a cornerstone in Toki Pona language. It has various meanings including “good”, “simple”, “positive”, or “useful”. To express that you like something, you can say “ni li pona tawa mi”. The phrase literally translates to “this is good to me” (I like this).

– If you like fish, you would say “kala li pona tawa mi” (Fish is good to me).
– If you like the house, you could say “tomo ni li pona tawa mi” (This house is good to me).

2. Using “sama”

The word “sama” signifies “same” or “similar”. If you feel a kinship or affinity towards something, you could express it using “sama”. It’s like saying that you feel the same way about the subject as you do about yourself. However, note that this form is usually used more for expressing affinity or identification with someone or something rather than mere liking.

– If you feel a strong bond with a friend, you could say “sina li sama mi” (You are like me).
– If you identify with a certain group, you could say “kulupu ni li sama mi” (This group is like me).

3. Using “mi olin e sina”

The phrase “mi olin e sina” translates to “I love you” but “olin” isn’t used as casually as “love” in English. It indicates a deep affection or care, and can be used for both people and things.

– If you love your friend, you could say “mi olin e sina” (I love you).
– If you deeply love music, you could say “mi olin e kalama musi” (I love music).

Watch this short Toki Pona video to hear how to pronounce “I love you”

Remember, the beauty of Toki Pona lies in its simplicity and the room it gives for personal interpretation. Feel free to experiment with these constructions to express your likes and affections in your own unique way.

Interested in learning some more Toki Pona? Check out our posts The Most Common Verbs in Toki Pona and Where to Learn Toki Pona.