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Thread: Tattoos

  1. #11
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    Re: Tattoos

    hari o
    ~~~~~~
    namast

    Quote Originally Posted by Eastern Mind View Post
    Vannakkam: There isn't a whole lot in scripture to go on, and it is a fashion trend. Personally I see no harm in it, and in the grand scheme of things, it's pretty surface stuff. There are greater things to consider than whether of not to place permanent marks on your body ... like kindness for instance.
    Aum Namasivaya
    EM makes a point... if you are looking for our śāstra-s or our agama-s to say ' tattoos are fine' , one will never find these words.
    Yet if one reads (again and again) that the real you is not the body then the message is there. What does this infer ? Let me offer an example.

    Let's say you make a trip and go to a neighbor's home. You begin to paint the home. You paint the outside, inside, etc. People walk by and say why is he doing this, that is not his home, how does this make sense ? it is not his.

    Like that, the body that you reside in is not you (Self). Why spend too much time painting it and fixing it up ? It is not yours.

    But yajvan, is not the residence of where the Self resides ? Yes, this is true and we tend to it ( keep it healthy and fit so it works accordingly). But this house (the body) will soon decay with time. Of what value will there be to paint (tattoo) a house that will wither with time before one even knows who the real occupant is ?
    Just like a carpenter has tools e.g. a hammer, a saw. He knows these are his tools and not him. He keeps them sharp, clean, but me thinks he does not add too many decals , colors, and stamps on them as dcor.

    iti śiva

    1. Kaha upaniad 1.3.3 - know the Self as the lord of the chariot and the body as the chariot. Know the intellect as the charioteer and the mind as its reins. The senses are the horses and the sense objects ( the world) which they range over.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  2. #12
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    Re: Tattoos

    I see no real spiritual harm in it. When done correctly it doesn't damage the body either. I think it's more an issue of, "are you really going to still love that tattoo of Winnie the Pooh on your ankle when you're 50 years old?"

    I have no tattoos, but have occasionally contemplated getting one. The body is a temple, but we adorn it with clothing, jewelry and the manipulation of makeup and hair cutting.

    Let's also not forget that many Hindu women pierce their noses and ears - also a form of body modification done for the sake of surface appearance. Ultimately it's a personal decision. In any case, I think people need to give what they want tattooed on them a LOT of thought over several months before making it permanent. It's just common sense.
    "God will not have his work made manifest by cowards."
    ~Ralph Waldo Emerson


  3. #13
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    Re: Tattoos

    Quote Originally Posted by Jodhaa View Post
    I see no real spiritual harm in it. When done correctly it doesn't damage the body either. I think it's more an issue of, "are you really going to still love that tattoo of Winnie the Pooh on your ankle when you're 50 years old?"

    I have no tattoos, but have occasionally contemplated getting one. The body is a temple, but we adorn it with clothing, jewelry and the manipulation of makeup and hair cutting.

    Let's also not forget that many Hindu women pierce their noses and ears - also a form of body modification done for the sake of surface appearance. Ultimately it's a personal decision. In any case, I think people need to give what they want tattooed on them a LOT of thought over several months before making it permanent. It's just common sense.
    Agreed not just women, young brahmin boys get their ears pierced too and are supposed to maintain all their life but these days no kid likes to be laughed at in school .
    ॐ महेश्वराय नमः

    || Om Namo Bhagavate Rudraya ||

    Hara Hara Mahadeva Shambo Shankara

  4. #14
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    Re: Tattoos

    hari o
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    namast
    Quote Originally Posted by Jodhaa View Post
    The body is a temple, but we adorn it with clothing, jewelry and the manipulation of makeup and hair cutting.

    Let's also not forget that many Hindu women pierce their noses and ears - also a form of body modification done for the sake of surface appearance. Ultimately it's a personal decision. In any case, I think people need to give what they want tattooed on them a LOT of thought over several months before making it permanent. It's just common sense.
    Not all of us adorn it... many maintain the body , like a car to keep it operating.

    You mention that hindu women do different piercings... yes, but I am not certain of the point to be made. Are you suggesting that since hindu women do this thing, then that is certification that it is a behavior that is to be emulated ?

    My point is very simple ( and I am not selling anything here), it just seems to me that tattoo's are an effort with a poor return on investment. It once again raises the ego to a level of importance, thinking one is doing something that has merit.

    I find myself chuckling when I see elderly women with tattoo's; or very young adults with tattoos up and down their arms, legs and back. If you follow the logic of ' they like it' or ' I think it looks good' , this seems just superficial and shows ( to me) how one is caught in the game that they think the body is the real Self, the real 'them'.

    This is what occurs when one is offered the freedom of choice. Some choices are good, noble, disciplined and others are not so much.


    iti śiva




    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  5. #15
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    Re: Tattoos

    Namaste.

    To give a spiritual answer on this one, I just researched why Muslim people are forbidden to have tattoos.

    1. It is done through and by the way of personal vanity, which is shunned (in much the same way as vajvan just said) because it takes the person away from God.

    2. It mutilates the body which is a temple to Allah/God (like yajvan also said).

    3. It causes unnecessary pain and opens the body up to infection.

    4. Images are not allowed to be displayed anywhere...least of all, on the body.

    Women are allowed to have pierced ears because the wearing of jewelry is not prohibited.

    If the body is changed for medical purposes (dentures, contact lenses etc) that is allowed.

    Aum Namah Shivaya

  6. #16
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    Re: Tattoos

    Vannakkam: Individuals souls are free to paint, add to, decorate, pierce, etc. this temporary home as much as they wish. There is no harm done, unless it's mutilation, like stretching necks, or squishing feet. There can be as much pride in "Hey, look at me. I have no tattoos." as there is in having them.

    I remember an old Mad Magazine cartoon in the 60s when long hair on men was the newest fad. They had a group of men lined up and asked each the same question. "Why do you have long hair?" Each responded, "To be different."
    The last guy had short hair. His response was, "To be REALLY different."

    So fads come and go. I see no harm. For me personally, I used to have a thing against them because I grew up in a military town, and many soldiers had them. So did some of the more original stereotypical bikers. In peacetime, many of those individuals were a rough bunch. So tatoos were associated with the 'lower class' whatever that is supposed to mean.

    Today some body art is downright beautiful. Not for me, but still beautiful.

    Aum Namasivaya

  7. #17
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    Re: Tattoos

    Many of the piercings like nose and ear rings etc. in Hinduism is santioned by our traditions and are very specific and holy. This should however not be taken to mean that Hinduism sanctions any kind of piercings by will and wish. This is similar to not equating Mangal sutra to any ordinary chain.

    The mantras and sacred symbols, especially, are to be even uttered with care and with basic external and internal purifications. The Names and Forms are equally holy and so displaying them on the body subject to various impurties and for view by everyone would defile it.

    Will the body then never have ashouchyam (uncleanliness - not to go into detail)? Will it not enter a dirty swimming pool?

    It hurts me to see that the mantras which even great Rishis gave out with utmost care, being displayed casually outside or being played on a guitar.

    So a/c to me atleast tattooing sacred symbols and mantras should be strictly avoided. One also wonders about the character of the person who will be actually tattooing these.

  8. #18
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    Re: Tattoos

    Quote Originally Posted by yajvan View Post
    hari o
    ~~~~~~

    You mention that hindu women do different piercings... yes, but I am not certain of the point to be made. Are you suggesting that since hindu women do this thing, then that is certification that it is a behavior that is to be emulated ?

    My point is very simple ( and I am not selling anything here), it just seems to me that tattoo's are an effort with a poor return on investment. It once again raises the ego to a level of importance, thinking one is doing something that has merit.

    I find myself chuckling when I see elderly women with tattoo's; or very young adults with tattoos up and down their arms, legs and back. If you follow the logic of ' they like it' or ' I think it looks good' , this seems just superficial and shows ( to me) how one is caught in the game that they think the body is the real Self, the real 'them'.

    This is what occurs when one is offered the freedom of choice. Some choices are good, noble, disciplined and others are not so much.


    iti śiva




    My point is not that hindu women should be emulated in their choice to pierce their skin, only that this shows a precedent for body modification within the religion.

    Both tattooing and piercing involve the puncturing of the skin, and temporary pain/inflammation - so the comparison seems appropriate to me.

    No one should do anything to their body that they don't want to, but they also shouldn't feel like they can't if they want to. That's all I'm saying


    Shanti
    "God will not have his work made manifest by cowards."
    ~Ralph Waldo Emerson


  9. #19
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    Re: Tattoos

    hari o
    ~~~~~~
    namast


    I find it infinitely amazing that after all that has been written on this subject that ~in general~ people think the conversation is about the ink that is placed on one's body.
    I will leave it here...

    iti śivaṁ
    Last edited by yajvan; 03 July 2013 at 02:06 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  10. #20
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    Re: Tattoos

    hariḥ oṁ
    ~~~~~~
    namast

    I wrote,

    I find it infinitely amazing that after all that has been written on this subject that ~in general~ people think the conversation is about the ink that is placed on one's body.

    I thought I'd offer a few unsolicited notions on this matter. Here is how I think about this subject ( of which no one need subscribe to).

    View 1
    When one gets a tattoo they take on the vibrations of the 'ink specialist' or tattooer. It is no different then eating food cooked by another.
    Does one know his/her qualities ? What is that person's constitution, his/her values ? His/her influences ? And to those qualities the tattoo remains attached.

    View 2
    The ink on 'me' is only one more thing that suggests that the body is of some real import vs. being a vehicle.
    'I' am made up of 24 tattva-s ( in the sāṃkhya, or sāṅkhya view ) and 36 tattva-s in the kaśmiri śaivism view of the world. The body is composed of the five elements and forms our composition; the mind is influenced by the 3 guna-s, and between these two we influence the chemistry of body & mind via the 6 tastes called out in āyurveda.

    So, what are we doing with a tattoo ? We're just adding to the ~outside~ of the body - contributing a bit more to the
    mahā-bhūta-s . We have not taken any thing away to go in the inward direction, closer to 'I' ( Self). I have convinced myself in some way or another I have added value to my overall being by having this ink on 'me'.
    This 'convincing' far as I can tell is baseless but the rationale resides within the 3 guna-s working within the mind and the intellect.

    View 3 ( A bit more esoteric)
    Within tantra we are told of the cakra-s residing within .... Some say 6 from the sāṃkhya view of 2 + 4 = 6. Some say 9 or (3+6 ) from a śaivism POV and even from the aghori point of view.
    We can group these in 3's : 3 + 3 + 3. If one cares to stop at 6, that's fine, or continue to 9, that also works.
    The item of conversation is the grouping of the first 3 cakra-s.

    Within the first 3 cakra-s is the realm of the paśu or bound animal. Some also call this khara which is a donkey; khara also means solid, hard , harsh , rough. These 3 cakra-s are ~in charge~ of the base activities of eating, pro-creating, and discharge. Very fundamental, mundane stuff , but needed for our sustenance. It is the symbol for consumption , for big appetites . These appetites are not just food-stuffs but for the consumption of the world.
    The lower 3 areas are the world of the ādhibhautika - the receptacle of ordinary/mundane existence. It is here that (IMHO) one feeds
    on adding more to the body - another addition and comes in this case, in the form of an adornment of a tattoo.

    FYI - The next 3 cakra-s are the field of nara. This is the field of the uplifted human. This is the field of the ādhyātmika - the spiritual ( from adhy-ātma). From nara we come to know nārāyaṇa and regain/remember our fullness of Being once again. Here, one deals with more refinement. The world of the mundane is unattractive. The nara-s see the mundane khara as a field of consumption, eating, excreting.
    The nara sees an ocean of mouths, desires, and a field for death to take on a big role as the paśu comes and goes and weeps thinking the body and its existence is the only thing that is real.

    The next 3 cakra-s is the field of the ādhidevīka. This ~field~ is highly refined and for this conversation beyond the scope of the intended post.

    So for me, the choice of adding 'baggage' is beyond the notion of ink on one's skin. For me it's making selections that support my being, of elevating myself above the mundane. This choice process goes way beyond tattoo's and spills over to most selections and behaviors-of-choice one runs into ( that would be me) on a weekly basis. For others, this most likely may not be their frame of reference.

    iti śivaṁ

    words
    • in sāṃkhya the 25th is puruṣa which is ~beyond~ the field of the 24.
    • 5 elements or tattva-s are called the mahā-bhūta-s and we know them as ākāśa (space), vāyu (air/gas) agni (fire), jāla (water/fluid), pṛthvī (earth/material)
    • ādhibhautika
      • ādhi = a recepticle
      • bhautika = belonging to created beings, primitive material
    • 6 tastes
      • madhura or sweet
      • amla or sour
      • lavaṇa or salty
      • kaṭuka or pungent
      • tikta ,or bitter
      • kaṣāya or astringent
    • these 6 tastes cone from the 5 tattva-s:
      • sweet - earth + water
      • sour - earth + fire
      • salty - water + fire
      • pungent - fire + air
      • bitter - air + space (ākāśa)
      • astringent - space (ākāśa) + earth
    • 6 cakra-s -they are usually called out this way
      • mūlādhāra - root cakra
      • svādhiṣṭhāna - or below the umbilical region
      • maṇipūra - navel center
      • anāhata - the heart area
      • kaṇṭhacakra some call viśuddha - throat center
      • ājācakra or the 'command center' between the brow
    Last edited by yajvan; 28 July 2013 at 01:48 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

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