Mola motives have their origin in body painting like they are still used by many indigenous groups of Latin America.
A main concept in Molas is to leave as little unworked space as possible as the Kunas believe that evil spirits can settle in the free spaces. A similar principle
is applied in the history of European art, known as 'horror vacui' - the fear of emtpy space - the result can be seen also in the overloaded art forms of Barock.
Based on this, several repeating filling elements can be found in traditional Molas.
These small appliqued triangles symbolise the shape of the bamboo huts, being the home of the Kuna. They represent being protected by the family.
The vertical slots imitate the sun beams shining through the bamboo walls of traditional Kuna homes. They also mean being protected by the family.
Labyrinths are found on many Molas. Evil spirits get lost in labyrinths and the Kuna wearing these molas is being protected.
Zig Zag lines are "dientes" or teeth biting away evil spirits