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Does Tattooing and Piercing Reflect Turning Away From A Higher Diety?

rhinefire

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What single item in your opinion has lead to the enormous popularity of tattooing? While piercing is not as popular it also has surged. Is there any connection whatsoever to religion here? Tattoos have gone from a symbol of rebellion or dissatisfaction to everyday, normal folks. We read of civilizations long before the time of Christ where tattooing was a ritual as well as some physical deformations for whatever reason the culture had. Tattooing is rising everywhere in the free world. Why? Why so many so quickly? Is it a fad or is it something much deeper?
 

MaggieD

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What single item in your opinion has lead to the enormous popularity of tattooing? While piercing is not as popular it also has surged. Is there any connection whatsoever to religion here? Tattoos have gone from a symbol of rebellion or dissatisfaction to everyday, normal folks. We read of civilizations long before the time of Christ where tattooing was a ritual as well as some physical deformations for whatever reason the culture had. Tattooing is rising everywhere in the free world. Why? Why so many so quickly? Is it a fad or is it something much deeper?
Tattooing has gone mainstream. I'd guess a lot of it has to do with advances in the color/ink process. Tattoos have gone from being darkish/black blobs to beautiful works of art. Gone from being representative of biker/street gangs, sideshows and criminals to representing individuality across all walks of life. Reality television has probably done its share most recently to popularize tattooing as well.

People have always looked for ways to stand out in the crowd. My way is sparkly things. Sequined this-and-that; Skwarovski Crystal accessories. For some it's different colored hair or body piercings. Or a trademark hat even. Tattooing is just another form of individual expression.
 

nota bene

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I don't see the connection between tatting and turning away from "a higher deity," by which I mean God.

I have, though, seen many designs, including those with entire verses of Scripture, expressing faith.
 

RabidAlpaca

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My entire upper body is pretty much covered in tattoos. I did it because life is short and I'd like to enjoy it to the fullest.
 

Rainman05

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My entire upper body is pretty much covered in tattoos. I did it because life is short and I'd like to enjoy it to the fullest.
How did that help to make your life fuller?

I always said, there are tattoos and tattoos.. and most tattoos mean nothing, even the motivational/religious or personal ones. They are pointless. there are tattoos that mean something universally, and they're usually not good.
 

RabidAlpaca

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How did that help to make your life fuller?

I always said, there are tattoos and tattoos.. and most tattoos mean nothing, even the motivational/religious or personal ones. They are pointless. there are tattoos that mean something universally, and they're usually not good.
My artwork looks amazing. It's colorful and well drawn. I think it makes my body look better, and I think it sets me apart from the crowd. My wife digs it to, she's the one that got me hooked on them.
 

ChrisL

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What single item in your opinion has lead to the enormous popularity of tattooing? While piercing is not as popular it also has surged. Is there any connection whatsoever to religion here? Tattoos have gone from a symbol of rebellion or dissatisfaction to everyday, normal folks. We read of civilizations long before the time of Christ where tattooing was a ritual as well as some physical deformations for whatever reason the culture had. Tattooing is rising everywhere in the free world. Why? Why so many so quickly? Is it a fad or is it something much deeper?
Highly doubtful that most people associate their tattoos with religion here in America anyway. It's more of a fad IMO, and people get them for their own personal reasons. Personally, I have no desire to have a tattoo, but to each his/her own I guess! :mrgreen:
 

ttwtt78640

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Tattooing has gone mainstream. I'd guess a lot of it has to do with advances in the color/ink process. Tattoos have gone from being darkish/black blobs to beautiful works of art. Gone from being representative of biker/street gangs, sideshows and criminals to representing individuality across all walks of life. Reality television has probably done its share most recently to popularize tattooing as well.

People have always looked for ways to stand out in the crowd. My way is sparkly things. Sequined this-and-that; Skwarovski Crystal accessories. For some it's different colored hair or body piercings. Or a trademark hat even. Tattooing is just another form of individual expression.
The difference between tattooing/piercing and dressing in trendy or flashy clothing (or changing hair style/color) is that first is permanent and the second subject to change on fairly short notice. Most folks change their attire to fit either current trends or even the formality of the social/business events that they may attend, which is often not possible with tatoos/piercings in areas not easily covered by clothing.

What may seem cool or trendy to one in their late teens to even their early thirties may not be what they wish to keep as their personal "signature" for their entire life. I new a bartender who lamented that the tattoo she had gotten of a shamrock on her thigh, while very young, had somehow morphed into a plam tree as she aged. :)
 

Rainman05

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My artwork looks amazing. It's colorful and well drawn. I think it makes my body look better, and I think it sets me apart from the crowd. My wife digs it to, she's the one that got me hooked on them.
To each his own.

I personally would never get any tattoo done. I don't see the point. But good on you :)
 

ChrisL

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I don't see the connection between tatting and turning away from "a higher deity," by which I mean God.

I have, though, seen many designs, including those with entire verses of Scripture, expressing faith.
I agree. I have seen many "religious" themed tattoos.
 

ChrisL

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I'm not just an atheist, I'm a super-atheist. ;)

Those tattoos are relics of my religious past.
Lol! Must be quite confusing to your fellow atheists.
 

Goshin

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What single item in your opinion has lead to the enormous popularity of tattooing? While piercing is not as popular it also has surged. Is there any connection whatsoever to religion here? Tattoos have gone from a symbol of rebellion or dissatisfaction to everyday, normal folks. We read of civilizations long before the time of Christ where tattooing was a ritual as well as some physical deformations for whatever reason the culture had. Tattooing is rising everywhere in the free world. Why? Why so many so quickly? Is it a fad or is it something much deeper?


I don't think it necessarily is; depends on the individual.

I've known very devout people to have passages of scripture tattoed on their person. Some places I go to church, you'll see tats on many of the younger folks (20-30s).

I'm not a tattoo fan; don't have any, don't plan on any. I have heard preachers speak against it, but their scriptural basis for their objection is thin... unless one got the tats for purposes of pagan ritual beliefs.


One of my big things is what are those who get covered in tatts in the 20s going to look like in their 60s...
 

nota bene

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I have a young relative who's running out of real estate. Not sure by the time she's 21 that she'll have any untatted skin left unless she begins on her face.
 

ChrisL

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I don't think it necessarily is; depends on the individual.

I've known very devout people to have passages of scripture tattoed on their person. Some places I go to church, you'll see tats on many of the younger folks (20-30s).

I'm not a tattoo fan; don't have any, don't plan on any. I have heard preachers speak against it, but their scriptural basis for their objection is thin... unless one got the tats for purposes of pagan ritual beliefs.


One of my big things is what are those who get covered in tatts in the 20s going to look like in their 60s...
:2razz:

tumblr_mjxo4vkDU91rcqs97o1_500.jpg
 

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The only unforgivable sin is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, so if you're in Christ you're no doubt ok.
 

What if...?

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I don't think it necessarily is; depends on the individual.

I've known very devout people to have passages of scripture tattoed on their person. Some places I go to church, you'll see tats on many of the younger folks (20-30s).

I'm not a tattoo fan; don't have any, don't plan on any. I have heard preachers speak against it, but their scriptural basis for their objection is thin... unless one got the tats for purposes of pagan ritual beliefs.


One of my big things is what are those who get covered in tatts in the 20s going to look like in their 60s...
Imagine the old folks home when the body modders get there!

Comedy gold!
 

AGENT J

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Hilariously enough, about half of my tattoos are religious in nature.
actually that is funny and awesome at the same time

i dont have any ink yet, i dont know why, i have had one drawn (i drew it) for about 10 years lol planned to get it on vacation one year but did something else i think. Im thinking next year and im workign on a second one. (drawing)

I had a ring made, its a class ring design and its the "university of hard knocks" on one side theres a ram because im an aries and on the other a ying yang for two reasons, personality and mood wise im very balanced and also race wise im black and white lol

its inscribed with my Dads name, my grams name and my nephews name who all passed relatively closed to eachother
it also has the word heart on it because in that same time frame i needed a heart surgery that was set to kill me if i didnt. Rare form of chronic progressive atrial fib
and also my daughters name because again in that same time frame i was fighting for full custody of her, which i won

I picked that name and the date because i figured after all that if i didnt have a nervous break down or huge personality/demeanor change i graduated !!!! lol just a small part of life but still another step

so the second drawing im working on im trying to involve that

so yes if i do finally get them they will be very special to me.
 

Surtr

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What single item in your opinion has lead to the enormous popularity of tattooing? While piercing is not as popular it also has surged.
Couldn't tell you. Personally, I think it has become a tacky fad, and these days, it's more "rebelious" to not get one.

Is there any connection whatsoever to religion here?
Depends on the individual. Some tattoos are religious, some aren't. For the sake of religious discussion, though, it's expressly forbidden in both the New and Old Testaments.

Tattoos have gone from a symbol of rebellion or dissatisfaction to everyday, normal folks. We read of civilizations long before the time of Christ where tattooing was a ritual as well as some physical deformations for whatever reason the culture had. Tattooing is rising everywhere in the free world. Why? Why so many so quickly? Is it a fad or is it something much deeper?
Again, it depends on the individual. People think it's cool to look like a circus freak, gauging out their ears, piercing parts of their bodies nobody int their right mind would want a sharp object near, and covering themselves with ink. What they seemingly don't understand is the core concept of permanent. Piercings heal up, but gauging and tats are permanent. Even with laser removal, you'll be left with some ugly scars, and in some cases, won't completely remove the ink. When I got my tattoo done, it took me nearly a decade to come up with a design that I could look at every day and not get tired of. I drew it on my arm, and kept it looking fresh, just so I could look at it every morning for a month. It took a lot of preparation, and a lot of time. It's a huge decision, not something you just rush into in a drunken haze, but kids these days are pretty damn stupid.
 

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What single item in your opinion has lead to the enormous popularity of tattooing? While piercing is not as popular it also has surged. Is there any connection whatsoever to religion here? Tattoos have gone from a symbol of rebellion or dissatisfaction to everyday, normal folks. We read of civilizations long before the time of Christ where tattooing was a ritual as well as some physical deformations for whatever reason the culture had. Tattooing is rising everywhere in the free world. Why? Why so many so quickly? Is it a fad or is it something much deeper?
Well, first of all, tattooing or other body modification has been practiced by virtually every culture in the world throughout human history.

Secondly, the Abrahamic religions have their own physical deformity rituals. It's called circumcision. And ear piercings for girls have always been common in modern America. But you didn't even think of that, since it's already socially accepted.

And thirdly, one of the most common subject matters for your average tattooed American is Christian imagery. So I think it's a pretty hard sell to say that Americans getting tattooed equals "turning away from religion."

The prevalence of tattooing in the West is simple. It is no longer associated with criminals and gangs. This began with veterans getting tattoos of their service, and spun off from there. People have always liked decorating their bodies. So now that it has been destigmatized, people are doing it.
 

SmokeAndMirrors

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The difference between tattooing/piercing and dressing in trendy or flashy clothing (or changing hair style/color) is that first is permanent and the second subject to change on fairly short notice. Most folks change their attire to fit either current trends or even the formality of the social/business events that they may attend, which is often not possible with tatoos/piercings in areas not easily covered by clothing.

What may seem cool or trendy to one in their late teens to even their early thirties may not be what they wish to keep as their personal "signature" for their entire life. I new a bartender who lamented that the tattoo she had gotten of a shamrock on her thigh, while very young, had somehow morphed into a plam tree as she aged. :)
One of my big things is what are those who get covered in tatts in the 20s going to look like in their 60s...
A lot of people are concerned about that, which of course is their right. But I think they don't understand how good tattooing has gotten.

Will I get old and wrinkly? Hopefully. But I'll be "ugly" whether I'm tattooed or not, so what difference does it make?

In terms of keeping the tattoos themselves looking good, you just need to do three things.

1. Get a good artists. The days of blown-out black blobs are over. There are now black inks that stay true to color and reasonably sharp for ages. I started getting tattoos on the cusp of that, and I could plainly see the difference between the ones I got before artists began using the new black, and after. I've gotten the older ones touched up with new black. The ones that were done in new black to start with look exactly the same after 6 years as they did freshly healed. Get a touch-up if you need it, but with new inks, you won't need it more than once in your life.

2. If you are young, design "up." Make it look a little mature for your present age -- a little too "big." I'm constantly growing into my tattoos, and this bodes well for how I will like them when I'm older still. I like them as they are, but I did design them with the 40-year-old me in mind. Cleaner and a little more sophisticated than I would have naturally been inclined towards at a younger age. And that has been a very good decision. Along with that, of course, consider your subject matter. Get something that will hold up or mean something over time.

3. Wear sunscreen or otherwise protect your skin from damage. You should be doing that anyway.

There's no reason tattoos have to look bad when you're old. And you're gonna be ugly either way.

However, it's completely another thing to simply not want them.
 

Gathomas88

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What single item in your opinion has lead to the enormous popularity of tattooing? While piercing is not as popular it also has surged. Is there any connection whatsoever to religion here? Tattoos have gone from a symbol of rebellion or dissatisfaction to everyday, normal folks.
The connection to religion you suggest here is tenuous at best. The explosion of tattoos and piercings our culture has seen over the course of the last few decades has a lot more to do with simple boredom (paired, as some other posters in this thread have already pointed out, with gradual market saturation of cheaper, safer, and more effective body modification techniques) than anything else.

When you get to the bottom of things, the phenomena is really little more than another niche aspect of Western consumer culture.

You could conceivably argue that Western public morality in general has witnessed a high rate of decay since the mid twentieth century, and that this has contributed to the greater degree of acceptance for traditionally taboo practices like body modification that can be observed in today's society. However, that's really about as deep as the connection can be said to go.

Some people might still get tattoos and piercings primarily on anti-authoritarian impulse, but there a quite a few people out there in the current day and age who do it simply because body modifications are currently considered to be fashionable.

We read of civilizations long before the time of Christ where tattooing was a ritual as well as some physical deformations for whatever reason the culture had. Tattooing is rising everywhere in the free world. Why? Why so many so quickly?
This insinuation is pretty seriously misguided.

The modern body modification culture cannot really be said to be linked to any sort of resurgent cultural "primitivism" simply because there has never been a primitive culture in all of recorded history with such a wide variety of body modification practices, or such enthusiasm for them, as the modern Western World happens to posses. Many practices which are almost common place in North America and Europe today (such as genital and nipple piercings, for instance) are virtually unheard of in most of the rest of the world.

Where they are practiced, they tend to be ceremonial or religious in nature (i.e. circumcision), rather than recreational.

Is it a fad or is it something much deeper?
I think it's primarily a fad. However, the question of whether or not it will remain popular as time goes by still has of yet to be answered.

I suspect that it will likely taper off to a certain degree in the next couple of decades, if only because conspicuous tattoos tend to be less than attractive on older people. This will likely turn a lot of young adults in future generations off to the idea.

We'll just have to wait and see if I'm right or not. :shrug:
 
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