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  • A question about tattoos

    First off, I don't yet know anything about Native American culture, I am just an Irish girl who is very interested in learning about it.
    What first sparked my interest was the artwork and symbolism. I have always found all of the symbols and colours and crafts so incredibly beautiful. I've been waiting for years to start getting tattooed and I thought a Native American tattoo would be perfect, and so beautiful to have on my body forever. I proceeded to ask a question on Yahoo Answers about the tattoo. I'm also very interested in Buddhism, and my question was basically just asking whether it would be too mish-mashy and clashing if I were to have some Native American style tattoos, as well as eventually getting some Buddhist ones. One of the replies I got really opened my eyes to how naive I was being.

    Someone, obviously of Native American routes, was very upset and angry at me wanting to wear their symbols, and told me I had no right at all. At first I was a little taken aback, but then I did some brief research and realized they were right. I had no idea what these images were symbolizing other than what I'd read on a quick google search. I found that these were symbols that had to be earned. I might not be getting all of this right, like I said, I know nothing about the culture or history, but am now definitely eager to learn about it.

    I was so disappointed to hear that my tattoo idea of a bull skull surrounded by some feathers and coloured beads, would actually be very offensive and disrespectful of me, particularly when respect is such a strong quality that I aim to have at all times. I was happy that I'd found this out before getting the tattoo. I guess I'm just still disappointed that I can't get a Native American styled tattoo without feeling like I'm being disrespectful, I just find it so beautiful.. I have tried some research on what symbols or artwork is not considered disrespectful.. some people said dream catchers are not offensive because they are not symbolic of anything spiritual, is this true?

    I'd just like some advice, even on similar styles, that don't have such a strong meaning. I'd also love to learn more about all of the history, which I'm going to head onto the information section of this website now and read about!

    Thanks!
    Becca

  • #2
    Welcome to powwows.com.

    With all dues respect, I must ask: When you're not interested in Native cultures (note the plural, there are 500+ in the US alone) anymore, what are you going to do with the tattoo?

    Perhaps you might ask yourself why your culture seems insufficient to you, that you must mark yourself with symbols from other cultures? I think the Book of Kells is an amazing piece of artwork. Many of the figures are incredibly evocative. But I wouldn't appropriate symbols from that book. They have only the most superficial meaning to me. Why do you need to do this?

    Comment


    • #3
      some people said dream catchers are not offensive because they are not symbolic of anything spiritual, is this true?


      My brain is tangible, my mind is intangible.

      Dreams are intangible, therefore, dreams must be spiritual.

      Do you know the origin of the dream catcher?


      You know nothing of at least two cultures, yet you want to put permanent marking on your body because they 'look pretty'. What happens if you choose a family design or marking and someone recognizes it. How will you explain it?

      Mark yourself the way you want. It's your body.


      Why must I feel like that..why must I chase the cat?


      "When I was young man I did some dumb things and the elders would talk to me. Sometimes I listened. Time went by and as I looked around...I was the elder".

      Mr. Rossie Freeman

      Comment


      • #4
        Well,since she wasn't told what she wanted to hear, I doubt if she'll be back. ROFL!
        Take nothing for granted. Life can change irrevocably in a heartbeat.

        I will not feed the troll-well, I will try.

        Comment


        • #5
          Seems like you're more interested in the fad than the significance. Yes, it is offensive and not to mention hypocritical when paired with a buddhism tatttoo.. (??WHY??) but, also, why the hell would you get yourself permanently inked with something that means absolutely nothing to you except for the fact that you like the way it looks...?? I suggest you wait through a few years of maturation and self-disovery... and education in general before you get any kinda tattoo... just sayin'.

          Comment


          • #6
            BeccaDaisy, Dreamcatchers are use for babies who sleep. As for myself as a Grandmother, I would have put the Dreamcatcher hanging over their bed like a window or something that hold on top of the headboard. That way they would sleep good dreams catching in the nets and bad dreams going out through a hole. The Dreamcatchers have been around for centuries.

            Now about tattoos, I would suggest using the henna which is not permanent (idea from the India) to make it look like tattoos. You can always wash it off when you don't want the style. Trying to copy some of the Native designs is not yours to make the tattoos. It is the Native decision in their spiritual dreams that they received the native designs from their dreams.

            My daughter-in-law does the henna and love it so that we don't have to worry about how to get rid of tattoos if we don't want the style. Someday I will go and visit my son and my daughter-in-law, I will ask her to let me have a henna tattoo(s). She will be glad to do that for fun and we will laugh over it. Just don't make it permanent if someone get offend by the design that you want as it will never come off. Good luck. :)
            Gegiibishedjig (Deaf Person)

            Comment


            • #7
              No tattoos for Buddhists.

              In Buddhism, the body is sacred. They do not cut into the body because it is seen as mutilation, as well as disgracing this sacred temple. Tattoos, I believe, are a form of mutilation because it not only cuts into the body, it desecrates it with "artwork."
              Why don't you find a way to respect all the cultures without the tattoos?

              hopiwmn




              QUOTE=BeccaDaisy;1596531]First off, I don't yet know anything about Native American culture, I am just an Irish girl who is very interested in learning about it.
              What first sparked my interest was the artwork and symbolism. I have always found all of the symbols and colours and crafts so incredibly beautiful. I've been waiting for years to start getting tattooed and I thought a Native American tattoo would be perfect, and so beautiful to have on my body forever. I proceeded to ask a question on Yahoo Answers about the tattoo. I'm also very interested in Buddhism, and my question was basically just asking whether it would be too mish-mashy and clashing if I were to have some Native American style tattoos, as well as eventually getting some Buddhist ones. One of the replies I got really opened my eyes to how naive I was being.

              Someone, obviously of Native American routes, was very upset and angry at me wanting to wear their symbols, and told me I had no right at all. At first I was a little taken aback, but then I did some brief research and realized they were right. I had no idea what these images were symbolizing other than what I'd read on a quick google search. I found that these were symbols that had to be earned. I might not be getting all of this right, like I said, I know nothing about the culture or history, but am now definitely eager to learn about it.

              I was so disappointed to hear that my tattoo idea of a bull skull surrounded by some feathers and coloured beads, would actually be very offensive and disrespectful of me, particularly when respect is such a strong quality that I aim to have at all times. I was happy that I'd found this out before getting the tattoo. I guess I'm just still disappointed that I can't get a Native American styled tattoo without feeling like I'm being disrespectful, I just find it so beautiful.. I have tried some research on what symbols or artwork is not considered disrespectful.. some people said dream catchers are not offensive because they are not symbolic of anything spiritual, is this true?

              I'd just like some advice, even on similar styles, that don't have such a strong meaning. I'd also love to learn more about all of the history, which I'm going to head onto the information section of this website now and read about!

              Thanks!
              Becca[/QUOTE]

              Comment

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