Is 🙏 a Praying Hands or High 5 emoji?

There has been much discussion over what exactly this emoji, formerly known as the “person with folded hands emoji,” signifies. While some claim it’s a high five, others say that it’s handed in prayer.

Additionally, it can be used to express gratitude or request something. Previous versions of the emoji included images of thumbs and light rays coming from the hands as well as variations on the emoji’s actual picture.

Individual interpretations and the symbol’s importance in different cultures may lead to variations in usage. In Japan, holding hands together might be interpreted as “thank you.” Hands clasped together are symbolic of the “Namaste” salutation in Hindu culture. It translates as “I submit to the divine in you.”

Prayer hands vs high fives

Although it’s OK to use this emoji to give a high-five, the majority of evidence suggests that the hands are clasped together as if in prayer.

The sleeves on both hands are the same color and pointed in the same direction. This shows that the hands are joined together rather than belonging to two different persons, indicating that the configuration is a “prayer hand” rather than a high-five.

The controversy and misunderstanding around this emoji serve as a reminder of the subtleties of written and visual language. As with anything else, the context of how this emoji is used should be taken into account. And it’s typically okay to inquire if something is extremely unclear.

On iOS, an earlier version of this emoji had a yellow flash of light behind the two hands. Android 5.0 displayed a blob character with closed eyes and clasped hands.

Under the name “Person With Folded Hands,” Folded Hands was accepted for inclusion in Unicode 6.0 in 2010 and added to Emoji 1.0 in 2015.

Additional Names

  • Please
  • pray
  • say a quick
  • namaste
  • thank you.

The actual name of the symbol in question is “Folded Hands,” according to all sources used to categorize emojis (including Unicode).

The “Folded Hands” image was classed by the instant messaging service Slack under the keyboard command “:pray:,” and according to an entry in an encyclopedia, its major meaning is “please or thank you in Japanese culture.” The emoji is frequently used in phrases like “pray,” even though its official name is “person with folded hands.”


The explanation comes in folds so however you want to use it depends on you. How it will be explained depends on the sentence you are using it for.

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