Want a lotus tattoo from Japan? Discover the history and meaning of the popular Japanese lotus tattoos.
Tattoos have been a form of ancient body art in many cultures around the world. It has always been considered a very personal form of artistic expression. The fact that it is something that lasts for life on your body is what makes this a rather unique form of art.
The art of tattooing has been part of the Japanese culture since ancient times. In fact the very first tribe to settle on the Japanese islands known as the Ainu were also known for their tattoo art. The Japanese collection of tattoo designs has a wide variety of themes that have many different meanings. The lotus flower tattoo designs are amongst the most popular and prominent themes of tattoo art in Japanese culture.
The lotus flower has a deep symbolic tie for the Japanese. The flower that starts off as a tiny flower at the very bottom of a pond and slowly makes its way upwards towards the light is known to carry immense innate symbolism. The constant struggle of the flower and its eagerness to move towards the source of light is taken as a reflection of the meaning of life in Japanese culture.
The influence of Buddhism raised the importance of the lotus flower as within the dharma the flower is regarded as the symbol of spiritual awakening. This perception was adopted from their Chinese neighbors along with the religion it self. There are other religions like Hinduism in Asia that regard the lotus as a sacred and symbolic flower.
The religious interpretation of the lotus flower continues to gain currency in modern times as well. Generally though, the lotus tattoo represents life as a whole for most tattoo enthusiasts. The constant struggle through which the little bud goes through in order to become a beautiful flower basking in the sun is seen akin to the struggle and purpose of life by the masses.
It has been observed that people who have had past experiences where they have gone through incredibly tough times and come out on top have gone for the lotus flower tattoo designs. Such people tend to be able to relate to the life cycle of the lotus flower from the muddy and gloomy beginning to a bright future. Basically a lotus flower tattoo represents triumph over difficult times.
Another flower that is used in accompaniment with the lotus is the peony flower. The Japanese tattoo artists have formed interesting design variations by combining the lotus flower with the koi fish and other symbols. It is also common to find the koi fish along with lotus flowers in ponds outside of temples.
The meaning that the lotus flower takes on depends on the setting which it is depicted in. Although the general meaning conveys the struggle of life when used in combination with other elements a new dimension may be added to the already existing meaning.