Many Rastafarians grow out their hair in dreadlocks to symbolize the Lion of Judah’s mane. They are of the view that Jesus was a Nazarite, which implied that Jesus was a dreadlocks Rastafarian and he was a Blackman. The key verse quoted in defence of this practice is Leviticus 21:5. Dreadlocks are seen as a symbol of defiance towards the demonic influence of “Babylon.” For Rastafarians, Babylon refers to all the spiritually deadening forces of the materialistic world.
Rastas can often be recognized by their particular way of styling their hair. They usually grow their hair long and knot them into dreadlocks. They can either be allowed to become that way naturally, by not combing the hair for several days or be accomplished by backcombing and with the help of commercial products. The Rastas see it as a way of getting the hair to its more natural and purer state by rejecting the artificial way of grooming oneself. The belief comes from the Biblical text “During the entire time of his dedication, he is not to allow a razor to pass over his head until the days of his holy consecration to the LORD have been fulfilled. He is to let the locks on his head grow long.” – Numbers 6:5.
The hair is sometimes worn in knitted caps called “Rasta Caps” or “tams”. These are brightly coloured, rounded, crocheted caps, and are used simply to tuck the locks, or during religious ceremonies, to cover the head. The women are supposed to cover their heads for all Rastafarian celebrations, and those from the Nyabinghi and Bobo Shanti are required to do so, anytime they are in public.
Samson (Judges 13), Samuel (1 Samuel 1), John the Baptist (Luke 1:15- 17), and Jesus were all Nazarites but their understanding of who a Nazarite is differs from the understanding of the Rastafarians. They were separated unto the Almighty God for a special purpose but the Rastafarians do so as a symbol of disobedience towards the demonic influence of “Babylon. Many youths in Ghana are now following the trend of having dreadlocks without a full understanding of what it is. Having received the word of God in much tribulation with the joy of the Holy Spirit, let us be imitators of the Lord (1 Thessalonians 1:6) and not of any deceitful philosophy.