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om tattoos

OmNamahShivaya2010-07-03 18:19:02 +0000 #1
This is a slightly random question that I'm just hoping for a little feedback on.

I have been practicing meditation for over a year now, using a mantra that I was very drawn to when I first started practicing (see my username, LOL). In December I had the idea that maybe I would get this mantra tattooed (in Sanskrit) someplace on my body, because it is something very meaningful to me, and I fully plan on meditating for the rest of my life.

I'm not the type of person to just jump into things, so I decided to sit on the idea for at least a year (I'm 20, so legality isn't the issue here).

And while I have seen a bunch of people with Om tattooes on various body parts, it got me thinking... Is this some sort of taboo? I know to a certain extent it doesn't matter because it is my body, but I feel like this might be the type of thing that more hardcore practitioners of yoga would frown upon... So I was just curious what everybody here felt about the whole thing.

InnerAthlete2010-07-03 18:21:05 +0000 #2
I don't frown upon anything you choose to do to your body or your living. We each make choices for our own living.

There are two things on this front for me. The first is that I would not elect to have toxic ink etched into my flesh. The second is that I don't need to have any signage on my body. I don't need it for me, and I don't need it for others.

I personally think it stokes the ego, unless you're living amongst an indigenous tribe of people for whom such things are a way of daily living.
yogatatryit2010-07-03 18:36:32 +0000 #3
i always wondered too man..i recite the maha mantra everyday too...i was also thinking about the same thing...but i really am not into it because i feel like something is holding me back, as if it was; i dont to say right, but i dont want to say its wrong too..i just cant put my finger on only 23 so what do i
yogatatryit2010-07-03 18:50:37 +0000 #4
thanks innerathlete...i like that you did mention it plays a role in ego..and that is something i want to get rid of...i dont need to show anyone really or express my views on my body or anyform for that matter unless it was a anwser to a disrepect to ppl with tattoo's though...i kinda would like to get on..NO..stop it dont want one!
Tanguerita2010-07-03 18:52:24 +0000 #5
As Om is a religious Hindu symbol, I would research whether it is likely to offend any practicing Hindus as well as followers of other religions in which it is sacred.

In his book "The Heart of Yoga" TKV Desikachar discussed Westerners putting Om on everything they lay their eyes on, in an amused tone as I recall.
yogatatryit2010-07-03 20:34:29 +0000 #6
im hindu and have a few cousins/friends that have an OM tattooed in various be honest I feel neutral about friend I know has it in red/yellow/green colors since we're west indian and its from our flag..i didnt like course i didnt tell her that..but i didnt see the point cause i dont think it makes the person more spiritual or so to have it or something like passage from a scripture as in religion class a girl said a monk she saw walked into a starbucks and had a swastica on his hand or something and a jewish women screamed at him that worked at the starbucks...sigh..
1hourmeditation2010-07-03 20:44:58 +0000 #7
If it reminds you of your mantra and it makes you happy embrace it.
InnerAthlete2010-07-03 21:21:02 +0000 #8
The Om symbol is not a religious symbol. It is a representation of a primordial sound which pre-dates organized religion. However I would agree many westerners are slapping it all over the place without any idea as to it's meaning - similar to the way people have Chinese symbols tattooed without having any grasp of the language.
davis.barbara2010-07-03 21:33:32 +0000 #9
OmNamahShivaya, personally i do not prefer ink over my skin and lable myself with anything,

It makes me lets say personality 'X'. Not because its a bad thing to have but because

i don't want to label my skin at all.

But this is personal, If i had ideas the other way round, which make me, say

personality 'Y', i'll go for it.

Now for 'Y', the question of whether or not to get a tatoo (any tatoo for that matter)

is something that can be answered only by 'Y' himself and no one else. For 'Y' getting

such a tatoo is a question of gut feeling. Do i really want this mark or its gonna

be meaning less after a while or it may even have to be conpletely removed (donno how??).

So ask these questions to yourself and your calm meditative mind answer them with ease.

You should give yourself some time to evolve with this mantra and hey don't think it as

some taboo or a religion. Yoga is something transcendental and beyond our personal or

societal likes or dislikes, or do's and don'ts! Change the way you look at are

practicing this mantra for spiritual upliftment not to entagle yourself with various

conditions...its for your freedom not slavory of conditions!!!

Love and Guru's Grace!


Yoga Guru

Divine Wellness
Quetzalcoatl2010-07-03 22:19:01 +0000 #10
Hi OmNamahShivaya,

since a tattoo won't wash off, one should consider it seriously before getting one. That you did, so get your tattoo if you want to. The body is only a vessel and we all, to some degree or at some point in our lives, decorated it with imagery, colors, jewlery. Don't care what others say and think. That is not important.

Reinhard Gammenthaler



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