“The family is the oldest and most important institution in society and is at the heart of the Native American and indigenous cultures.” “There is no other work more important than fatherhood.”

 Another important part of fatherhood in traditional teachings is being a good role model for children. Being a role model can very challenging for Aboriginal(Indigenous/Native) men who grew up without the presence of strong, caring fathers and grandfathers in their lives.

‘It’s about being strong, being responsible and being recognised as proud fathers and men in your community.

A father is a man who takes responsibility for the children in his life. Many men grow up without a positive, healthy role model of fatherhood. It is often when men are holding their baby for the first time that they take a good hard look at what it means to raise a child.

Remember that being a father is a life-long commitment: Your role as a father starts before pregnancy and continues throughout your child’s entire life. As your child grows, your relationship will grow and change. Children need to know that you will always be there and will always love them.

Maori Child With Father

Native South African father embracing his young child. Zulu warriors

 "I have the future in my hands."
Aztec (Mexica) Father

 Indigenous Child and his father

 As an eagle prepares its young to leave the nest with all the skills and knowledge it needs to participate in life, in the same manner so will I guide my children. I will use the culture to prepare them for life.
-A Fathers Job

 In the baby lies the future of the world. Mother must hold the baby close so that the baby knows it is his
world but the father must take him to the highest hill so that he can see what his world is like.
- Native Proverb

 Xingu father and child

 Aboriginal father and child - Australia

 Father and Son - The chichimeca tribe

Father and Child - Kuikuro Indigenous people from Amazon Rainforest

 Father & son - Rainforest

Mexica dancer blessing the child

Native Alaskan Inupiat father and infant daughter: Photo Credit Clark Mishler

 Father and son resting between dances at the Soboba Powwow Credit: Jim Pankey

Photo by Patti Jo South Dakota

Proud Father- Native Pride - Photo Credit Mye Taliman

Responses to "Fatherhood Is Sacred: Heartwarming Pictures of Indigenous Fathers With Their Children"

  1. Beautiful and heart warming!

  2. Anonymous says:

    that's my uncle in the alaskan native inupiat picture :)

  3. Mystere says:

    A wonderful photo essay on fatherhood. Thank you for posting it!

  4. Unknown says:

    wonderful images

  5. love these pix!

  6. In SA the khoesan are indigenous,definitely not 200 year old zulu tribe that settled in SA long after the VOC created the colony

  7. Daia says:

    The seventh is my godfather nixiwaka and his son mukaveiny , they are not from the xingu but from the acre state and they are from the Yawanawa nation. The tenth photo of the Kuikuro is the real one from xingu, the amazon forest is huge and xingu is just one park. The eleventh is my grandfather ahkito and my brother seeribhi we are from the tukano nation upper rio negro from the amazon state in the border with Brazil Colombia and Venezuela.

  8. Anonymous says:

    How incredibly wonderful natural living can be. Peace shows in each one of those photos. How beautiful and loving those fathers are.

  9. Liveoak says:

    Wonderful examples of fatherhood. But I want to challenge the idea that "if you don't teach me my culture, I don't know who I am." We are all citizens of the planet now, members of the human species, a species facing its own extinction (among many others) unless all human cultures make some changes (some more than others, of course). Above all, we need to stop allowing our species to break down into competing subgroupings that are willing to fight fossil-fuel-intensive wars (and risk nuclear ones) aiming for the greater hegemony of the subgroup. There are plenty of ways of developing one's own identity as an individual--you can be proud of your heritage, while creating a future that makes sense for all of us (human and nonhuman).

  10. Anonymous says:

    I agree Liveoak - we cannot each keep our own indiginous culture, if in fact it tries to cancel out another. Perhaps we need to recreate ourselves into new cultures that are accepting of the other cultures near/with us and a little more pliable to "bend the rules" to make allowances for those not the same as us.

  11. Unknown says:

    Ah ho! Great photos - lovely kiddos with loving fathers - makes my heart sing.

  12. I'm very very proud and very very happy to see these fathers with their children. It is almost a magical moment to see the connection and see the affection, to see the bond. As a young man who unfortunately lost his opportunity to be a direct father due to complications, it saddens me that I do not have my own little ones to hold and to teach them to kiss. But nevertheless the youth are in need of those who will stand up for them and care for them unconditionally and I am such a one. I have been so for all of my life. Without the youth, without them trained in their humanity, raised properly to respect themselves and orhers, all we do is perpetuate another cycles of societal disfunctional and disconnection. Too be inclusive we need the elders of all traditions to tell us the stories, teach us the dances, and show us the music so that all will live on. The ways of certain peoples are lost because no one wants to learn. That way and the memories, the life then truly in some sense dies. All cultures on this here good earth are OUR heritage and must be safeguarded for the youth yet to be born!!!!

  13. The energy we use to sing will live long after our physical frame has passed to dust. The music we make( may it be joyous) will continue to reverberate throughout the universe. So we live.

  14. Susanne Soveigsdotter says:

    Babys in this cultures can only live because of breastfeeding. Without their mothers they would be dead. Your article is disrespectful towards women.
    "Fatherhood" is a philosphical construct of patriarchy. Unfortunately patriarchy is infecting indigenious tribes since more than 200 years :-(

  15. Unknown says:

    Magic photos...Thank you!!!!!

  16. mscarlson says:

    Susanne, its not always about you. Lets rejoice in fatherhood as well.

  17. Hulask8r says:

    Beautiful peaceful images.
    As for Susanne, it is a good thing to support the positive ways fathers behave. Then maybe there will be more balance in the way women are treated.

  18. ReeGee says:

    Susanne, this isn't about you. Don't be such a snob. This is about fathers and their children, many of whom support their children without 'mothers' due to circumstance. But this isn't about that either, this is simply about fathers and their children, so celebrate that today. Beautiful photos, I truly wish all children and fathers had such positive, loving relationships.

  19. Alison says:

    Just beautiful!

  20. Zitkana says:

    Daia, Pidamayaye Nina wopida, thank you with so much gratitude for bringing your relatives to life for us and expanding our understanding of your home. I am Dakota and our nations are often lumped into one name placed upon us. Ours is Sioux. The pictures bring me comfort and I think of the good things my uncles, and grandfathers have shown me and my children. ❤️

  21. Anonymous says:

    Susanne, fatherhood is NOT a patriarchal construct.
    It’s never been that.
    Fathers are necessary and as long as people spout off like
    You’re doing here, young men will keep believing that they can make a baby and walk away.

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