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My Key of Life – Creating Portals with Key and Ankh Sacred Tattoo Symbolism

ankh james tattoo

me getting my ankh tattoo done this saturday with james spooner

It was another transformational weekend here for me including being called off to the mountains yesterday and adding a small potent sacred tattoo to my Spiritual Skin.

This was not an involved piece in the least, but potent nonetheless. For years I felt it would likely at some point be on me and Saturday was the day. I had an Egyptian Ankh placed on my middle (fire) finger, which was something that had only come to me to do in just the few days preceding actually having it done.

It completes a circuit of energy on my right arm running between an other-worldly portal key I created on my forearm, through the serpent, and out through my fire finger with the “Key of Life.”

The ankh is simple and sits like a ring would between the upper knuckles of my middle finger, as pictured. When healed it will not be as dark as it appears, nor my finger swollen a bit ūüôā

These two “keys” have very special personal meaning for me and where they are placed and the timing of having them are very aligned for how I am moving energy in my life, through the things I do and channel, and the realities and experiences I am creating and accessing.

tattooAnyway, I always like to interweave how experiences I go through bring up information and symbolism that others may find of interest and helpful in weaving their own threads of experience. So I hope you enjoy the key and ankh symbolism I’m sharing today.

Being very symbolic, I love what keys represent and see everything as a “key” to alchemy. But to have actual activation “keys” was a very “real” way of making the realities I’m entering become even more tangible for me and bridging the spiritual and physical through the portals they create.

Symbols in life are very much like seeing/seeking keys that unlock doorways, open and reveal more to you and provide access through portals of experience. When you find the “key” you discover ways to solve challenges creatively, receive greater insight to things, and uncover mysteries.

The more we are open to “seeing” the keys/signs/clues, the more we find balance and empowerment. Sometimes the key is something so simple and overlooked, as in a different perspective, and then hidden realms become easily accessed.

Skeleton keys are particularly cool because they are cut in such a way that they can access many and all doors. I see the one I created on my forearm to be symbolic of this idea in a broader sense of Higher Wisdom and Love, Higher Self, and expansive Unity Consciousness that then is being channeled through the Kundalini and Primordial Cosmic Force and Energy of the Serpent, and then through the Ankh that the Serpent breathes life into for the manifestation of emerging life and creation.

Keys can symbolize knowledge, life, and love, as well as to many cultures, curiosity and mystery. It can also both be the route to something by means of selective access (a right of passage) to another level and a way to safe-keep things. It also answers the puzzle created by the maker of the lock.


my ankh, serpent and the bottom of my larger cosmic key

The ankh is also considered a key, known as the “Key of Life.” The ankh represents many things including life, the abundance we all have access to in living life, symbolizes the combination of elements to create life, magic, power, truth, the Divine and Sacred, vision, protection, mystery, hidden wisdom, covenant, provision, afterlife, immortality, unification, ¬†and evolutionary growth.

The sun is represented by the top loop of the ankh that joins at the Earth’s horizon. This union symbolizes life giving force that provides vital growth and abundance – a powerful symbol for the Ancient Egyptians.

The ankh also symbolizes the sacred union of male and female powers – for the Egyptians this was represented as the union between Osiris and Isis (another sacred tattoo I have on my back).

And to the Egyptians it was also a “key” to unlock the gateways into the mysterious realms and the afterlife. This is where the loop at the top is symbolized as a portal that is an opening leading to¬†shifted consciousness and altered states of being.

Needless to say there is a lot in what I’ve created between the three energies on my arm – much more than I am able to expound upon. And I just found out today that a special soul to me very connected to our Egyptian “roots” just got an Egyptian tattoo with ankh in it as well on the right shoulder. Wow.

I like what¬†Joseph “Joe” Panek writes in his blog post:¬†The Egyptian Ankh (As A Symbol). He likes to share about how Ancient wisdom is revealed through symbolism, mythology, metaphor, sacred writings, natural cycles, and everyday life. Sounds like someone else I know. ūüėČ

Here is his post and you can see it at the link above too:

The deeper we look into Nature, the more we come to the realization that there is an invisible life force which permeates all realms of creation. This mysterious life force, or Key of Life, was acknowledged, honored and respected by the Ancient Egyptians and was depicted in their artwork and hieroglyphs by way of the Symbol of the Ankh.

The Ankh, which  represents the eternal process of creating, consists of a T-Shaped Cross surmounted by a Loop.

The T-Shaped Cross Symbolizes the masculine active Seed. The Loop Symbolizes the feminine receptive Womb.

These two principles, when united, bring forth creation, birth and Events throughout all of the seen and unseen realms of the universe.

The “T”, as the the masculine aspect of creation, is similar¬†to the Symbolism of the Tau cross, the double-headed Axe¬†and the hammer of Thor. All of these Symbols contain Three¬†extremities. Three is the first masculine number. Three also¬†represents the Trinity¬†of Creation.

The Loop, as the feminine aspect of creation, is Symbolic of the birth passageway from which all created, or manifested, life emerges.

When the Tau Cross and the Loop are combined they form the image of a key; a key which the Egyptian Neters, the Divine Principles of Nature, hold in their hands.

The Ankh, or Key of Life, therefore Symbolizes the eternal process of continual creation and perpetual manifestation by way of the union of masculine and feminine aspects of Divinity.

In this respect the Ankh is the Breath of Life, the Hermetic Logos and the Aether of the Alchemists which instills life (the soul), into all living matter. Therefore it also represents the Spiritual DNA which stands forever ready to manifest life  throughout all of the visible and invisible realms of the cosmos.

This ever-present and ever-active life force, Symbolized by the¬†Ankh, is eternally and perpetually alive and available throughout¬†all realms of the cosmos. It is a Power which exists¬†whether or not¬†mental or physical “life” is currently being manifested at any specific¬†point in the universe.

In Egyptian artwork we often see one of the Neters holding the¬†Ankh to the nostrils of a person. This gesture, on behalf of a¬†specific Neter, is the bestowing of the “breath of life” to that¬†particular person. This is Symbolic of the “breath of life”, or soul,¬†which enters into our body at birth and which will eventually leave¬†our body when our Current Incarnation¬†comes to its end.

We also see artwork of Neters gazing into Mirrors¬†which are¬†in the shape of the Ankh through which they can view the¬†reflections, results and Consequences¬†of the persons, places,¬†things and Events¬†into which they have temporarily instilled¬†the “breath of life”.

Egyptian men and women wore amulets in the shape of the¬†Ankh in honor of this Divine Creative Process and also to serve¬†as a reminder to be cautious of the Consequences which can¬†result from Thoughts, deeds, Words¬†and Actions¬†which they¬†are responsible for “giving life to”.

If you would like to partner in co-creating your own sacred tattoo design to embody the empowerment you desire, you can contact me at

For more information about the process and pricing please visit: What is a Tattoo Design Consultation

Some people have preferred to read my book, Spiritual Skin ~ Sacred Tattoos: More than Skin Deep, especially if they are new to sacred tattoo designs, before embarking on this journey.

If you are drawn to learn more about sacred tattoos you can order a copy of the book here: Spiritual Skin

It is also available in Kindle and PDF formats here: Spiritual Skin

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