Sunday, June 12, 2011


Last Sunday's New York Times had featured a spread on yoga tattoos by photographer Piotr Redlinski and Emily S. Rueb.

(That is, pictures of tattoos on the skin of those who practice yoga).

Most of those featured are teachers of course.

(Of course they are. Every third person at a BBQ these days is a yoga instructor).

Check out the rest here.

* * *

I don't have any tattoos. Do you?

(This former Mohawk-wearer came to the conclusion that it can far more subversive to look like a square on the outside while internally rejecting the mainstream lifestyle and the mainstream ways of rebelling against said lifestyle).

(This former agnostic also came around to the idea that the body is indeed a temple that houses the soul, and is thankful that hers doesn't have any graffiti on it. Scars, yes. Imperfections, yes. Wrinkles, yes. But not graffiti).

(This former hipster has also, finally, concluded that this preoccupation with name and form is an indulgence of the mind that serves as a distraction from the task at hand: discerning between what is real and Unreal, and seeing all as One.)

Thanks to Claudia for the tip.


  1. No tats. My 80s hair was buzz-cut short on one side and chin-length on the other. And I have a PhD scientist friend with a Mohawk who lets his daughters pick the color. It's usually blue but he's flown to D.C. for meetings with pink hair.

  2. I just love the article, thank you for bringing it up!
    I do have some..
    I have a lotus flower on my upper back, the word "Blessed" on my right wrist, Om Mani Padme Hum, in sanskrit on my lower back, my wedding ring is a angel with my husbands initials and he has the same with mine. Last but not least, an Iris on my ankle.
    I would love to have one more, and this article gave me an idea!


  3. Anonymous10:15 PM

    I went to a yoga retreat once and made a mental note that it seemed that the % of folks there w/ tats was greater than in the population at large. I was curious about it and if my observation was true overall. It seemed striking. Though it could also be that people expose more of their bodies in a yoga class than at the office! BTW, no tats... too much commitment. :)

  4. I have 2. But they are usually hidden. I didn't get them to be shown off. It was more about accepting my path and committing to it.

  5. Anonymous12:09 PM

    No tats for me either. I too teach yoga and have many students covered in tattoos!! Having explored the whole pink hair, odd clothes thing when I was in my 20's I realized that I change so much, inside and out over each year, I couldn't live with the same image marked on my body for all time! I would rather make my statement to the world through my actions rather than via art work ( all be it sometimes beautiful!) on my body.

  6. david life looks like iggy pop. you know how i feel about this. to each his/her own. no judgement. those with tattoos don't care if others do not have them, why should those without care if others do? besides, it's got nothing to do with "sacredness", "punk", or "showing off" at least not for me. i just happen to love my artist & love the continual process over the years.

    because i am into individuality, i am sometimes embarassed. there's so many people with them now i hate to be "in" fashion. i can no longer hide mine.

  7. I don't have any, but I like them on other people. Oddly I never seem to date tat owners.