Reviewed & updated: February 2, 2023 by Jamie Wilson BA
Apart from it being the world’s fourth-largest religion, Buddhism is also a spiritual way of living life where one gets a clear view of reality. Many people today find inspiration in Buddhism, therefore making it popular amongst people who do not clarify as Buddhists. The Buddhist way of living life is said to be the one which brings most peace to the mind. In today’s article we are talking about the symbolism and meaning behind tattoos in Buddhism, as well as showing you seven of our favorite Buddhist tattoos, enjoy!
Are tattoos allowed in Buddhism?
Buddhism, as well as other major religions, has several different schools of Buddhism. While some even encourage you to get tattoos, it is not stated anywhere that tattoos are forbidden in Buddhism. Some people think it is disrespectful to get a tattoo of Buddha, while others think that you can get any tattoo as long as it has a symbolic meaning to you. All in all, if you are considering tattooing Buddhist symbols because you like how they look or you might even relate to them, you probably will not have any problems doing so. But if you are a Buddhist who wants to do it because of religious reasons, you might wanna check with a local Monk or temple if the design you chose is suitable.
What does a Buddha Symbolize?
A Buddhist is a person who practices Buddhism and for them Buddha is the source of all knowledge. There are different ways a Buddha can be represented. Depending on the country and as well as the culture, Buddha can be shown smiling, laughing or being very calm. Many people have Buddha statues in their home for all sorts of reasons – for happiness, wisdom, peace. Therefore, a Buddha can symbolize many different but all good things. All of these things make Buddha tattoos very popular among people.
1. An Amazing Mandala Buddhist Tattoo
Mandala Tattoos have a sacred meaning in both Buddhism and Hinduism. These types of tattoos represent perfection, balance and eternity. The mandala style is very hard to achieve because of the intricate lines and elements. Tattoos like this one are often comprised of the moon, soon and a flower, such as a lotus flower. The Lotus Tattoo symbolizes purity, while the elephant is the symbol of power and strength. Not only are these tattoos are beautiful, but there is also a lot of meaning behind them. Buddhist tattoo like this one is the perfect fit for people who like tattoo art and want to incorporate it with the Buddhism design.
2. Zen Buddhist Symbol Tattoo
In Buddhism, the word zen is often used and it has several different meanings, but it mostly emphasizes on meditating and being able to be present at the moment. Zen tattoos can take any form from yin-yang to more simple designs. These traditional types of tattoos usually include perfectly shaped circles and another element of choice. In Japanese culture, you will often find that these tattoos have their fair share of geometric elements. Buddhist tattoos like this one are great if you do not want to do a Buddha tattoo, but still that Buddhist aspect to it.
3. Laughing Buddha Tattoo
There are many Buddha Tattoo designs which one can do. They can vary from the more serious ones to the more peaceful ones. A laughing buddha holds a cultural value in most Asian Buddhist countries. It represents luck, happiness, and prosperity. Therefore, getting a laughing buddha tattoo can also help you with happiness in life. Tattoo ideas like this one are a great choice if you are looking for a tattoo which represents a journey you are on, while still keeping that silly element to it.
4. Sleeve Buddha Tattoos
A Buddha tattoo usually does not have that many colors on it and is mostly done with black ink. Buddha tattoo designs can be done on your hand, chest or anywhere on your body. The Buddha makes an amazing arm or sleeve tattoo since a Buddha tattoo requires a lot of space to work with. Also, they are usually done with all black ink and make great Buddhist tattoos for girls and guys. You might wanna give this one a go if you are someone who loves defined & precise lines, and if you are not afraid of larger & more defined tattoos.
5. Buddha Tattoo for Guys
Buddha Tattoo designs can take many shapes and forms. You can do hand tattoos, a Buddhist symbol, only the Buddha head, or any designs you prefer. A tattoo of a calm Buddha on your leg with geometric aspects to it can give you the tribal images vibe while still achieving that peace element of Buddhism. These tattoos are great for guys, simply because of the drawing, but women can get them too. All in all, if you want to express your beliefs then this buddha tattoo is the way to go.
6. Japanese Buddha Tattoo You Will Love
Japanese Buddha Tattoo designs are very different than Tibetan or Indian designs. They take a much more intricate sketch of Buddha while adding more elements to it. They even combine different tattoos: flower tattoo, lotus tattoo, and buddha tattoo can all be seen together on these traditional Japanese designs. Tattoo ideas like this one are great if you are looking for an all-black tattoo and do not mind doing sleeve tattoos. We are sure you will want to share this Buddha tattoo with everyone around you!
7. Dharma Buddhist Tattoo
Dharma has several different meaning depending on who you ask. In India, specifically Hinduism, Dharma means the right way of living life. In Buddhism, it represents the teachings of Buddha. One of the most important ideas in Buddhism is the Dharma Wheel. It is considered as the eight pillars on the path of Buddhism. This tattoo is usually done with a very little color, black and gold is mostly the way to go. If you are not looking for a tattoo which screams Buddhist tattoos and want something more discrete, then this Buddhist art is for you!
8. The Extreme Buddha Tattoo Designs
If you liked all of the Buddha Tattoo designs so far and still are not sure which one is for you, then why not try it all? It may seem extreme when we say to do all of those designs, but there is a very nice way to put them all together. First of all, a large canvas is going to be needed for these tattoos, so it is best if you do them on your back. Second, if you do eight tattoos then you are achieving the holy number in Buddhism. With a tattoo like this, you can incorporate all of the designs that may be dear to your heart. Since the tattoos are on the back, you do not have to worry about hiding them during those conservative work meetings. So if you are not afraid to go all out there, these buddha tattoo designs are your match!
Having said all of that
Buddhist tattoos can be done is so many different ways. You can do a lotus flower, a Buddha tattoo or any other designs from Buddhism which you like. The Buddha tattoo designs can bring you happiness into your home, while the dharma wheel may bring you peace. Buddhist tattoos hold a very special meaning behind them, so in case you decide on doing one, we are sure you will not regret it!
Still looking for inspiration, then checkout this blog post about tattoo ideas
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