Derived from Sanskrit, the word Buddha means "awake". The Buddha, who would have reached the enlightenment stage of the "Bodhi", taught the "Dhamma", the state of moral rectitude and truth found in every human being and in the universe. Essentially, a Buddha tattoo represents all these truths, although there are variations that completely change their meaning.
Generally, a Buddha tattoo represents the face of a Buddha smiling or laughing, a Buddha meditating or a seated Buddha. Although the Buddha is not as common in Western cultures, the Thai, Japanese, and Tibetan cultures, on the other hand, all contain many representations of the Buddha walking or standing, each with its own meaning. Usually the legs of the seated Buddha are in the position of the Simple or the Double Lotus, while his hands may have various positions to show the meaning of the Buddha or to represent the story of his life.
Symbolic significance of several tattoos of Buddha
Just as the statues of Buddhas in various positions have different symbolic meanings, the tattoos of Buddhas are also significant in their essence. There are more than 100 variations of tattoos of Buddhas, each of which represents a particular aspect of Buddha's life. For example:
– Buddha calling the earth to witness – This representation of the Buddha is common in Thai culture and shows the Buddha sitting with his legs crossed. In this position, the left hand of the Buddha rests on his thigh and the right hand is pointed towards the ground, palm inward. This tattoo typically represents "The Moment of Illumination".
– Medicine Buddha – This particular portrait of the Buddha is very common in Tibetan culture and shows the Buddha with blue skin, right hand down and left hand holding a bowl of herbs. The symbolic meaning of Buddha medicine is related to "health and well-being" and chosen by people who are interested in health.
– Buddha teaching – Another popular tattoo is the Buddha teaching, which shows the Buddha with crossed legs, one hand making an "O" with the fingers and the other with the palm up. This symbolic representation evokes understanding, wisdom and individual destiny accomplished.
– Buddha walking – While most Buddha representations show the seated Buddha, there are actually many significant poses showing the Buddha standing. For example, the Buddha walking has his right foot back, one hand on the side and the other hand up. This tattoo is a symbol of grace and inner beauty.
– Nirvana Buddha – Another popular representation of the Buddha, this tattoo shows the Buddha shortly before his death. One can see the Reclining Buddha on the right side on a table. Symbolically, this tattoo represents reaching spiritual enlightenment and escaping the cycle of death and rebirth, entering Nirvana.
– Buddha meditating – These Buddhas are popular in Japanese culture and other cultures. They are represented sitting, legs crossed and hands clasped in the center of the abdomen. This tattoo symbolically represents the search for peace and serenity in everyone's life.
As Buddhism is the world's fourth belief, Buddha representations can be found in temples or prayer halls around the world. As Buddhism is more and more popular in the West, the Buddha's representations become more and more common and can be seen in all forms, from traditional art to body art.
The most important meaning of a Buddha tattoo is truth and hope. Fears, joys, love, jealousy – these conditions exist, simply, instead of being "good" or "bad". While all human beings share the elements of the same truth, each journey is special and unique. All beings can freely choose their own path and each person can attain Illumination.
Someone who bears a Buddha symbol or a tattoo that represents him is probably searching for the ultimate truth in his own life, instead of seeking it through the rules of men or God. Many people who are considering a Buddha tattoo have experienced a rebirth of the soul in one form or another, often through difficulties or challenges in life. Generally, those who wear this type of tattoos are kind people with an open mind, who accept others and consider life as a wonderful journey.
A Buddha tattoo is deeply personal and should always reflect the story of the life of the wearer. The tattoos of Buddhas are versatile and, whether they represent the state of illumination, whatever it may be, in which there is a person or the difficulties with which his mind is confronted, there is a position of the Buddha who represents him. . This makes Buddha tattoos unique and truly meaningful to each person.