Yin Yang Tattoos

Yin Yang Tattoos: One of the Oldest and Most Recognized Symbols

Yin Yang tattoos are one of the most recognizable symbols in the world On the symbol, black is used to represent yin while white is used for yang. In Taoism, the symbol is a reflection of the intertwined duality in all things in nature.

The concept behind yin yang tattoos has quite a long history. There are recorded writings of the philosophy behind the symbol as far back as 1,400 BC however, it was not until 770 BC that the popularity began to emerge.

It is suggested that there is not one quality that is completely independent from its direct opposite. This representation is depicted by the flowing boundary between the black and white along with the smaller circles left to float in their opposite’s region. There are basically six concepts that are represented by yin yang tattoos.

1. Interdependence – Yin yang tattoos suggest that one of the opposites is not capable of existing without the other. Night cannot exist without day and darkness cannot be without light.

2. Transformation – An important concept of yin yang tattoos is that at one point, yin has the ability to transform into yang and yang can transition into yin. A good example is day turning into night and life turning into death.

3. Opposites – One of the most popular representation of yin yang tattoos is that everything has an opposite yet no one thing can completely be yin or yang. This is because yin contains a seed of yang and vice verse. This can be seen when a rare summer day peeks through in the middle of winter and then quickly goes away.

4. Supportive – As yin increases, yang decreases and as yang increases then yin will decrease to maintain a perfect balance. There are possible imbalances though such as Daylight Savings Time. One forces the other to be more concentrated.

5. Subdivided – Yin yang tattoos represent that a yin or a yang aspect is able to be subdivided into the other. Every moment in time is a new beginning as well as an end.

6. Equality – The dots that are present in yin yang tattoos mean that part of yang lives within yin and yin shares a part of yang. There is always a trace of direct opposites in one another. Shadows of dark are always present in the light and the moon offers light in the darkness.

Tribal Tattoos

The Ancient History Behind Tribal Tattoos

Although you may think that tribal tattoos are simply part of a new and growing trend, they have played a huge cultural role with many tribes for centuries. Tribal tattoos today are primarily inspired from the Maori tribes of the Polynesian islands.

It has been common for a long time for the Maori to display their social status by wearing tattoos on their body. Some have even been know to ink their whole entire face. Once the European visitors observed this rare showmanship of status, they also wanted to be a part of the meaningful tradition.

The Maori however, were not actually the inventors behind tribal tattoos. Mummified bodies in Egyptian tombs from thousands of years ago have been found wearing very precise patterns of ink. Of course back then, every drop of ink was completed slowly, with a skin piercing needle so every dot displayed was as painful as it was significant. Tribal tattoos were not always worn as decoration. Sometimes they simply represented maturity and strength as well.

The Explosion of Popularity

The art of tattooing today owes a lot to the early Polynesian tribes. In fact, the word tattoo is derived from “tau tau,” the tribe’s terms for the tattoo practice. Tribal tattoos helped individuals feel like they belonged to a group and they were a method of recognizing existence.

The explosion of modern tribal tattoos took place in the 1980s. Tattoo Time, a popular magazine, did a feature on the native tattoos that were found on individuals in Samoa and Borneo. Nearly everyone who read the magazine was deeply inspired. People in western parts of the world quickly worked to duplicate these styles and popularity grew.

Today, there are some that choose tribal tattoos simply for the bold, vibrant images that they display. However, most individuals wear these tattoos proudly to reflect their cultural heritage. Latin American, Native American and Celtic images all bring their symbols to tribal tattoos.

Individuals with Native American ancestry often choose spiritual totems and tribal symbols while Latin Americans adopt Aztec images such as the tribal sun. People with Irish descent typically choose Celtic designs, another type of tattoo that falls under the tribal category but has grown to be so popular it is recognized as its own unique sector.

Tribal tattoos are one of the oldest types of self-expression. They represent belonging and being proud of something bigger than one’s self.