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Yellow Butterfly ~ Following Your Joy Will Set You Free


yellow butterfly

 

Yesterday we found this little joyous one at the helm of The Magick Bus, at the driver’s seat and window.

There was this sudden flutter of yellow that appeared out of nowhere inside the RV. Literally, nowhere.

She was just beautiful and sweet, as you can see in this photo I captured when she settled down on the driver’s side window.

Several things ran through my mind right away.

Miracles and magick can happen at any moment, out of nowhere, and both in and from unlikely places and sources. So remain open and flexible, as well as full of unyielding belief.

Support is around, as butterflies are often the divine form that faeries and angels use to message and guide us.

To pay attention the the subtle energies and inner voice, as the butterfly is a reminder to tune in to what’s going on in the inner realm.

Because it was yellow there was the instant connection to what that color signified to me – joy, freedom, and wonder of life. So the questions to ask were, what can I do to live with even more vibrant joy and freedom? What changes can I make to live in greater alignment with my truth? – Synchronous, since I’d received a repetitive message of raw honesty with myself when doing Tarot card readings recently and checking in with myself.

Since I am already experiencing huge shifts and changes in my life, the butterfly felt to be a reminder that everything would be ok with the “new life” path I was creating and that it signified – Again I didn’t need to know the how’s.  Just continue in the trust.

And then there was this…

I watched the butterfly flutter at the driver’s side window, trying to break free and get back outside now that its presence had been acknowledged. For me this felt symbolic of a few things.

One, that we are ready to leave and break free of everything here and the past and this journey is being “driven” by our joy and can only be traveled by taking the driver’s seat and navigating our own lives.

Two, that you can’t keep a butterfly under glass, as you break her spirit of which you admired her in the first place for – something is ready to break out from within me and be unleashed after this cocooning stage that I’ve been patiently awaiting alignments for.

And three, because it was by my hand that I freed her, opening the window and guiding her on to my hand so I could carry her to freedom, it is so that by my own hand, shall I be set free.

Does the yellow butterfly speak to you? And if so, how might you receive and embrace her message today in support of your own joy and freedom?

White Butterfly, Garden Delights & Magick Ovens


white butterflyYesterday I took my lunch break out back on the deck before doing a little pruning and watering of my Garden Tower, which is almost about ready for some more harvesting.

cucumbers and tomatoesI had just enjoyed a plate of Heirloom Sun Gold Cherry Tomatoes, Heirloom Golden Tomatoes, and Heirloom White Wonder Cucumbers from the Garden Tower the night before, which was incredible. I sliced them up and created little bite-sized morsels with others, drizzled with shitake sesame dressing and ground black pepper. Everything is just so beautiful and fresh.

kale saladAs I sat outside for lunch enjoying my delicious garlic tahini kale salad with avocado and ground black pepper, along with carrots and hummus, I listened to the birds and watched the little insects flying around.kale

That’s when White Butterfly appeared.

She stayed with me all lunch and after, as I was tending to my Garden Tower. As I sat eating, I watched her go to each of the plants on my GT, spreading her grace. Fluttering like a whisper and coming to softly land only for moments on each of the plants. It was like she was sprinkling her magick upon all of them, just as I’ve asked the Faeries to do.

white butterfly gardenShe would also briefly go over to the plants I have sitting next to the GT, my Lavender, Peppermint, and Chocolate Mint, as well as the Star Jasmine. And when I ventured over to her, she would dance around me and air-kiss me with her whispers of lightness…coming into the aura of my cupped hand, but the two of us remaining free to explore one another in continual dance.

I watched her float like a feather, and drop into these free-falls of trusting partnership with the breeze delicately supporting her ease of grace.

It was so beautiful. She was so beautiful.

Not only did it feel like she was there nurturing my plants, but she was there to connect with me and reflect this new place I find myself in.

Butterflies symbolize ecstasy, playfulness, and lightness of being – some of my message reiterations from my weekend with the horses at Epona Rise.

They are about powerful expansion and growth, the kind that comes from a very deep transformational process that is more internal and has the potential of completely changing your life as you know it. The changes can be done with grace and lightness, however, which she reminds us.

Butterflies in Native American Indian traditions are also considered the “bringers of dreams” – helping to manifest those that you have and providing clarity in dream time.

They are also about freedom transcendence, the Divine Feminine, magick of believing, helping you to release fears, the experience of transformation by going very deeply into your cocoon, moving through life cycles, grace, beauty, and even Reiki healing.

Not to mention, they remind us to tune into our emotional or spiritual depths to see what is messaging us there.

They are from the world of the soul, symbolize immortality, and herald a time of renewal and rebirthing.

White butterflies especially so.

White butterflies have been seen as good luck, angels in disguise, past spirits and souls visiting us, ancestors, purity and a pure soul, a guardian spirit to usher you along your new path, to some it is the soul of a child, and to others the sign of death – both literal and symbolic.

It’s interesting that white keeps showing up for me so much, as I’ve had the very powerful and important dreams with White Jaguar and White Conch, and then of course White Unicorn energy around this last weekend and connecting with Tareena the Unicorn in embodiment at Epona Rise, followed by my sighting of White Peacock on my way to the airport and then White Feather showing up on Tuesday at the beach.

Butterflies live a miraculous life from beginning to end and their lifespan is very short – typically a few weeks to months at most – which messages us about the importance of this now moment and embracing all the sweetness and beauty life can offer.

I was grateful for this private lunchtime interlude with her, as I’m experiencing an increase in the magickal – if you can believe that. It stems from a deeper drop and embrace into that part of myself. Since I’ve returned from British Columbia, things have been manifesting and unfolding quickly.

Yesterday, while I was out in the garden I also received the delievery of my new Sun Oven! I’m so excited and grateful to Laura for the inspiration. She’s been hugely a part of inspiring my version of easy gardening by Faery heart and intuition, and inspiring all of these off-grid cooking methods that feel so aligned with me and my lifestyle.

I fell in love with her Sun Oven while I was visiting and felt it would be perfect for my adventures ahead, and not to mention makes food taste amazing, while receiving the Sun’s pure energy infused into it. While I own a dehydrator, I’m guessing this Sun Oven will outshine that quite quickly. As even the names – dehydrator vs. Sun Oven – just has more resonance right now. Anything natural and naturally energy infused just simply matches the purity and freshness I am feeling.

Funny synchronicity too, as Hillary and I both shared this last weekend how much we’ve always been drawn to the Moon, which we still are of course, but that having done so much work with her, we have shifted into Sun energy more recently. This has also been evident in the Crystals I’ve been drawn to and the energies/Chakras I’ve been working with. I actually was drawn to wear Sun gold yellow nailpolish for our retreat weekend with gold sparkles. 😉

Needless to say, between my wonder oven (aka wonderbox/bag that the lovely Laura made and gifted me for Christmas and I’ve made yummy, easy quinoa in so far, as well as kept soups warm), Garden Tower (I actually have two, but the other I’m saving), and Sun Oven, I’m feeling the Sun-shiny goodness! Everything ready for off-grid cooking now and on the adventures to come! I’ll share more about how things go with my Sun Oven, as I explore it.

For more information on the Sun Oven and Wonder Oven please visit Laura’s great post on these here:

Preliminary Review of Off-Grid Cooking Methods

So much increased alignment into my essence is taking place and I’m so grateful for all of the beautiful gifts, messages, synchronicities, and inspiration dancing through.

Sacred Tattoo Designs with Dual Symbolism Superimposed – Whale/Butterfly & Scarab/Earth Mother Goddess


I had the opportunity again to work with one of my cherished clients and friends, Mari. You may remember her from my post “An Inside Look At One Soul’s Sacred Tattoo Experience – Mari’s Journey with ‘Spiritual Skin‘”. It’s been so incredible working with her as she creates her own soul’s journey through sacred body art that speaks to her unique soul essence. We’ve created several pieces together and I was excited to work with her again to create a couple more, which are today’s highlights.

As always, I marvel at the divine timing and what aligns with the process when creating these sacred pieces. It’s always so beautiful when direct messages, confirmations and support come through, as with the recent Incan tattoo designs I created, when Moth showed up to chime in with her wisdom in agreement. The designs also seem to be aligned with Reiki workshops I teach, which then also adds to the potency of the energy imbued within the designs, as well as align with astrological influences like the Moon phases, Cardinal Cross, and other intensified energies.

reiki (3)I’ve been following my client wait list in order, but arrived at working on Mari’s in beautiful synchronicity. Her designs were also graced with these types of energetic influences, as I had begun the first of the two the day before teaching a Reiki 3 Master Teacher Workshop for which I was preparing. I thought that very appropriate and empowering for the essence of this “ring” we were co-creating. More on it below.

whale

Silvery gray of whale shining in the sun at center/top, as she surfaces and spouts

And right as I had begun the second piece for her foot, I was called to take an ocean-side break and was immediately upon sitting down to relax on the beach and read, met by a mother Grey Whale and her baby swimming by, which was so supportive and inspiring, not to mention confirming for the piece that included Whale wisdom in it.

whale6

Here you can see a whale watching boat, as well as leisure boat have spotted the whale and her baby, as they move. Whale is in front of the left boat where you see the mist of her spout and darker body surfacing

Not long after, a large pod of Dolphins also came through and I just felt in the flow once again and also knew that the feelings and visions I was receiving from them were to be captured in the piece. More on that below as well.

So it was another interesting and beautiful journey, to say the least, in co-creating these pieces and I’m grateful for the energies the Universe aligns me with, in guiding support during the process.

Since I just shared the Whale images (although not all that great of photos), I thought I’d first share on the foot design that incorporates Whale energy.

When I saw Whale on Saturday it reminded me of that powerful day, just a few weeks back that I blogged about, when the whales were bursting through the waters and jumping and splashing and just in total joy and bliss.

I felt that a Whale (which Mari was wanting incorporated into the design) that is not just one swimming through the seas of experience, but one that is penetrating the very veils of illusions with pure joy of authenticity from heart, was to be. The Whale depicted in this piece is thrusting in joy through the ocean’s surface, but also penetrating the veils between Earth and Cosmos, between self and other, consciousness and unconsciousness – bringing a knowingness and beingness of both at once.

Whales are cosmic beings that use their abilities to communicate through sound and message us about our true origins and authenticity. For more on Whale symbolism please visit: Whale Song

Sacred Tattoo Design - Foot Healing MandalaBut if you look very closely, you will see that Whale is also a Butterfly. For more on Butterfly symbolism you can visit: Butterfly Messengers.

See how Whale’s tail fins are the body of the Butterfly and body is the larger part of her wing, and fin makes up part of her lower wing. I created a spherical shape, but organic in nature with use of flowing water, spirals, energy, leaves and Plumeria (as my client had seen this as a healing Mandala and I also saw it as a portal or gateway).

There are two planets to the right, or could be a Full Moon and Sun. I also felt called to include a simple version of the Hunab Ku to demonstrate the Galactic nature of this piece in harmony with Earth – a return to natural harmony within and without. Hunab Ku is also known as the Galactic Butterfly, which is what is created here both as this more organic Butterfly with Whale as part of her shared essence of her wing AND as the Hunab Ku cosmic essence Butterfly.

Air and Water elements being highlighted a bit more, along with Spirit yet with an Earth connecting factor. Mari already has a lot of Fire and Earth and with a serpent on her right leg, this felt very balancing on her left foot where it will go.

I immediately had mentioned to Mari that I was sensing this sort of Polynesian, Mayan, Cosmic quality to the design and that is what I feel manifested. I was also receiving Plumeria as inspiration and when I looked into more of what it symbolized, I realized why.

Plumeria symbolism includes natural beauty, charm, grace, new life, new beginnings, creation and recreation, the Sun, perfection of all things as is, dedication, devotion, love, immortality, healing powers, liveliness, life and birth. They span many cultures in their symbolic meaning and reverence including being very important to both Hawaiian and Mayan cultures 🙂 , but also Hindu, South Indian, Buddhist, Chinese, Vietnamese, etc…

So there is so much celebration of life from the heart of hearts here. And I see it as a gateway she will walk forward into with each step, bringing in a new, vibrant, joyous energy that is birthing with all the shifts and upcoming newness in her life. It is a beautiful new layer of the onion, so to speak, revealing more of her deep personal frequency that is of and beyond this world, which many may not have seen of her yet. Very powerful, but in a gentle and beautiful way of grace and flow. It is centered, but organic in nature and can bring the experience of always feeling centered no matter how things are flowing outside – movement with cycles rather than with a rigid plan. There’s also a sense of abundance and true joy as she activates her Galactic “Nature” even more.

Sacred Tattoo Design - RingThen we move on to the second which is created to be worn as a ring – a wedding band so to speak that celebrates the sacred union with self. Being a ring, it is done in very simple and clear lines (open design line work) – like the henna work I have on my own hand and fingers. Fingers and hands are tricky in being able to ink and how they will wear over time. So it is best to keep them simple and defined.

This design, like the Whale/Butterfly is dual in nature as well, which was tricky. I had immediately for this piece been feeling Egyptian and Earth Priestess/Divine Feminine energy, and that is what is represented.

It took me a while to get the right design that would work dualistically, but also be very simple, yet potent. But it happened and what came through was the energy of the Scarab and the Earth Mother Goddess (Gaia).

For more on Scarab symbolism please see: Sacred Scarab

Within the design at top is a simple Lotus that has a bit of an Egyptian flair to it. I created 3 dots around it, sort of providing a subtle Henna quality, but can also represent the Trinity, Triple Goddess energy, the Maiden, Mother, Crone, etc.

Now if we skip below that and you look at center of the band, there is a simple heart-like design (felt very important to have all things come and stem from the/her heart). This heart acts dually as the body of the Scarab and the body of the more primitive Earth Mother Goddess design. To the left and right are the wings of the Scarab that create the band and will come to a point at back under the finger. I kept them simple but they are spread open to produce freedom energy. They also balance the Scarab/Goddess.

Below, coming just slightly down over knuckle into hand, is a design that could be both a leaf (to draw energy in and be the grounding Earthiness, as well as root of the Lotus), but can also be another set of wings (as the mirror to each other) that have come to rest together creating hands in prayer position, much like that centering at heart we do in meditation, and in receiving and giving blessing and honoring to self and others (Namaste).

Above the heart design is the stylized head of the Scarab, as well as the Goddess. Coming out on both sides are the Scarab’s legs, but also the Goddess’s arms stretched above holding the Sun Disk (Source within her and representative of the Great Central Sun). This reflecting connection to it, honoring of it, and always walking in the reflection and grace of the truth within that Source.

It’s a small piece, but amazing what can be achieved with just the right tweaks. The ring band will sit where a band would usually, with the lower leaf/wings coming down into hand a bit (balancing a design she already has moving up the hand on the right), and reaching past the first finger knuckle to create an elongated design down part of the length of her finger, coming to rest in between the two top knuckles.

Really grateful to support Mari with her beautiful journey. And it looks like we will be partnering again down the road soon. So stay tuned for more with Mari and me. 🙂 I love that I finished writing this at 11:11 am here.

If you would like to partner in co-creating your own sacred visionary piece of artwork or tattoo design to embody the empowerment you desire, you can contact me at tania@spiritualskin.com.

There is currently a waiting list, which I am moving through as quickly as I can.  I can only provide a guesstimate on timing. You can easily make your deposit at the link provided below to embark on this journey in partnership with me.

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

To enjoy a visual journey of some of the sacred tattoo designs I’ve had the honor and privilege of co-creating, please visit: Spiritual Skin for my YouTube video.

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 format here: Spiritual Skin

You can also order your personal copy here: Signed and Inscribed Copy of Spiritual Skin 

Opening to the Expanded View of the Butterfly


changeThis felt particularly resonant today, as I stumbled upon it, so it felt to be perfect for today’s inspired post. Hope you enjoy the message from the Hopi and from one of my animal totems that has been the symbol of my life’s path since I began a conscious journey – our friend, the alchemical Butterfly.

“Grandmother Mona believes that giving the origins of her ancestors is as important as telling her name…Her last name, Polacca, means butterfly in the Hopi language and is the name received from her paternal grandfather. In Hopi lore, the butterfly is the symbol of man’s spiritual transformation.

‘At the level of existence, when it crawls on Mother Earth in the form of a caterpillar, it only sees what is right in front of it,’ Grandmother Mona explains. ‘There comes a time in the development when it puts itself into a little cocoon and enters the darkness. In this darkness, it completely breaks down. During that time a great change takes place…’

‘Finally it emerges into this world, into this life as a beautiful creature,’ Grandmother Mona says. ‘Yet it doesn’t immediately fly away. It sits there as if to be making a connection again with the elements of life: the water, the air, the fire, the earth. Then there is a moment when its wings start fluttering, developing movement, developing strength within itself using these elements of life.’

‘When the moment comes and the butterfly takes flight, it suddenly sees the world from a completely different point of view, a view of vaster beauty and a much, much wider worldview. This is what I was told about being a butterfly.’

…Grandmother Mona believes the Hopi legend of the butterfly can see us through these turbulent times of darkness and confusion by revealing to us our path of transformation. 

These times can actually be viewed as necessary to enable humanity as a whole to transform into a comprehension of the truth of our oneness with each other and with all of Creation.

Only by going into darkness and breaking down our old ways can we move from the myopic view of the caterpillar to the greatly expanded view of the butterfly~ a necessary view if we are to save the beauty and resources of our planet for the next seven generations to come.

Then we will have emerged out of the darkness of ignorance into the beauty of the butterfly to see the wonder, hope, compassion, faith, and charity so essential for our survival.”

~Grandmother Mona Polacca from Carol Schaefer’s book “Grandmothers Counsel the World: Women Elders Offer Their Vision for Our Planet”transformation

Personal Empowerment Mandala/Visionary Dream Catcher Sacred Tattoo Design


Sacred Tattoo Design

It’s been quite the energetic week and continues to be so. I’ve been immersed in a bunch of creative projects, as well as new things for 2014 and all I can say is that I’m grateful to have learned balance and flow in my life.

Today I would like to share one of the several new sacred tattoo designs I’ve been working on. Creating this piece was like weaving a tapestry. It required a piece at a time, and it revealed itself in much the same way – never something to rush.

Working with these sacred tattoo designs reminds me of the abundant and infinite creative energy in the Universe and how truly unique each soul is, even though sharing the collective energetic themes. The way an individual’s frequency comes through will always have it’s own unique shine.

This piece is quite a large one and will be complimenting an already beautiful design that my client has on her back. Her current piece is also quite large extending from lower back, up half way and then flowing up to the right and across the left of lower back.

This piece will be at the upper back center and flowing down to the left in the open space she has and will tie in with her gorgeous large peacock that sits in front of a cherry blossom tree which extends up to the right, and that has a lotus sitting at the peacock’s feet, center.

I was given ability not only to create purely from channeling, but to tune in to any other area, besides the back she was thinking of, that may have been calling forth for a design. But, indeed the back was coming in clear for this piece of her journey. It was also very clear that the Higher Heart area, with synergy of Throat and Heart Chakras, was the place of power to ignite. All of these to help express her creative self through love and to be and speak truth with clarity, and always from the heart. The Higher Heart is the area where intent originates. It supports speaking your heart’s whispers and it connects the emotions of divine love, truth, compassion and forgiveness with your way of expression. This area is the etheric heart and helps in releasing fear so you can come into that divine love and way of being. It is the bridge between your emotions and intellect and makes a connection between your soul and physical body.

That being said, this design will be sitting at the top of her back/just under neck, in that Higher Heart area, with some of the design extending onto the back of Throat/neck and the rest flowing into Heart and then flowing into integration of drawing energy down and balancing her more “right focused” piece that flows up with “left focused” energy.

The new piece helps to emanate and move energy in all directions and will balance and integrate, while empowering the specific energies embodied in its symbolism.

Being that this piece is going to be part of what she already beautifully had on her back, it needed to have a tie-in and flow, which revealed near the end. The current piece has a mix of very organic energy and also a symmetrical flow right now and I wanted to compliment that, as well as add some new elements, yet keep with the integrity of her current design style.

What came to me was to create a Personal Empowerment Mandala, but it is simultaneously an organic version of a visionary Dream Catcher as well. I wanted it to be extremely potent, but to also be delicate and graceful, and to include Nature elements to convey her connection with it, an organic feel, but also a little subtle sacred geometry aspect.

The layers of the personal Mandala came through in vision, as I don’t think about the energies, until later. Below I will share some of the energy each element has. The bottom blossom/feather flowy extensions tie in with her current cherry blossom tree. I call them cherry blossom feathers, as instead of creating the feathers you normally see at the bottom of a Dream Catcher, I felt that the lightness and grace of the cherry blossoms appearing as if they are flowing on the breeze, felt more appropriate and not to mention perfectly compliment the more grounded and rooted full cherry blossom tree with a nice integrating element.

For people who like to know about symbolism, here are the individual elements and their energetic messages:

Hummingbird: The hummingbird symbolizes timeless joy and the Nectar of Life, as well as a symbol for accomplishing that which seems impossible and will teach you how to find the miracle of joyful living from your own life circumstances. They also symbolize energy, vitality, renewal, sincerity, healing, persistence, peace, infinity, agility, playfulness, loyalty, and affection. They are also messengers of hope and remind us to be persistent with the pursuit of our dreams. Apparently, a not-so-known fact is that their wing flutters move in the pattern of an infinity symbol, which then embodies the symbolism of eternity and continuity of infinite cycles. They are seen as being tireless, always seeking the good and beauty of each moment and day – and yet let us know that the sweetest nectar is found within. Since hummingbirds call our attention to how we expend our energy, when they appear it heralds us to honestly look at how we are managing our energy – are we wasting it on needless things like fears, worry, or unimportant details and things to avoid something? Or, are we staying well-balanced and efficiently honing in on productive use of our energy? (I created the hummingbird in a mix of organic and ethereal, with wings and tail that end in flowing spirals)

Spiral: symbol of creation, movement, fluidity, surrender/releasing, holistic growth, and awareness of the one within the context of the whole. It reveals the cyclical nature of life, the consciousness of nature from core center expanding outward, and the relationship between unity and multiplicity. It is the limitless spirals that move both “inward towards the Source of creation and eternally outward with Source’s continual self-creation.” In this way, the spiral reflects the contiguous journey home to who you really are and the journey to be one with Source.

Butterfly: Butterfly medicine symbolizes transformation, celebration, transition, lightness, soul, time, grace, elegance, freedom, joy and bliss, miracles, flexibility, cycles of life, creativity, gentleness, preciousness of life, as well as the medicine the ability and clarity of mind needed before self-transformation. This Butterfly also represents the more feminine aspects with her gracefulness and curved wings and design, and that connection with understanding both the strength and fragility simultaneously in life. (the butterfly is integrated over the center of the Mandala design, emerging from it)

Heart Chakra Symbolism: In the human energy system, the source of powerful and creative, unconditional love energy lies at the center of your chest in the Heart Chakra, or “Anahata,” in Sanskrit. From its middle position as fourth in a system of seven chakras, it is the balancing integrator of opposites (between body and spirit, male and female, persona and shadow, ego and unity) and acts as an energetic “bridge” between lower and upper chakras. It is symbolized by a lotus of twelve petals and the color green, with emerald as one of its associated gemstones. (the Heart Chakra symbolism was created by the twelve petaled Mandala with inner layers of another 12 petals and then double 6 petaled or pointed stars at the core – representing the depths of integrative healing and core activation)

Six Pointed Star: (or hexagon/hexagram. Here is a post I did on the energy of this: Hexagons and Healings

Maple Leaves: Just as the sweet rich sap produces Maple syrup, so too does the Maple leaves serve as a love symbol, as they depict the sweetness and wonder of love in everyday life. (there are two at both bottom sides of the Mandala)

Cherry Blossoms: The breathtaking but brief beauty of the cherry blossoms, according to Buddhist tradition, symbolizes the transient nature of life. They also reflect, in traditional Japanese values, that of purity and simplicity. The cherry blossom is also tied with the samurai culture, representing the fleeting nature of the samurai’s life and symbolic of drops of blood. They also represent the arrival of Spring, end of Winter, end of difficult/challenging periods, joy, beauty, freshness, new generation, life cycle, feminine principle, beauty and sexuality, love in a language of herbs, promise of fruit to come – fruits of your labor revealing in abundance. (there just so happened to end up being 12 cherry blossoms, which was not consciously intentional – this mirrors the 12 petaled lotus Mandala, as well as 12 being symbolic of the creation of the universe, but combinations and repetitions of 1 and 2 together share that our thoughts are like seeds that are beginning to sprout and a sign that things will and are growing in terms of our intents. It also breaks down to the number 3 which is the Trinity, Union of Divine plus Human, Manifestation, Positive, Negative and Neutral, Expression, Subconscious Mind/Imagination, Creativity, Optimism, Enthusiasm, Expressiveness, Humor, Fun)

Dream Catcher: The dream catcher can also be a medicine wheel and with specific intention, with all the parts of the dream catcher having meaning.  To begin, the web represent the spider forever repairing the eternal web of life.  Thus weaving your life dreams and energy in the universe when you dream.  The ring represents the earth mother and the humble walk we do upon her. As we believe that we are related to all things and that all things are part of us then the Dream Catcher and medicine wheel is a representation of such sacred belief. The ring and the woven web represent love, honesty and purity.  All of the elements of the dream catcher together represent the earth, fire and water. Things we need to live. It represents the ability to be love and to love, to take the risk and get out of the nest and fly on your own, the ability to live beyond your shadows. The web is from the spider whose web represents the cycles of life – in each time of life there are many forces that can help or can interfere with the harmony of Nature. The web is a perfect circle with a hole in the center, to be used to help yourself and others reach their goals, making good use of their ideas, dreams and visions. If you believe in the Great Spirit, the web will filter your good ideas and the bad ones will be trapped and will not pass. The legend of the Dream Catcher is that it captures the bad Spirits and filters them. Protecting us from evil and letting through only the good dreams.  It is believed that each carefully woven web will catch bad spirit dreams in the web and disappear by perishing with the first light of the morning sun. The good spirit dreams will find their way to the center and float down the sacred feather. Dream Catchers are believed to bless the “sleeping ones” with pleasant dreams, good luck, and harmony throughout their lives. It is how lessons  were remembered and where visions were received. It is said that when you get a good night sleep you can remember when the spirit has talked to you.

Personal Empowerment Mandala: Mandalas are geometric figures representing the universe. In this case, she IS the universe and this empowerment mandala is a reflection of the very “fabric” (my client actually loves fabric) of her You-niverse – the core of her being and aspects of her higher self to help her to move more gracefully into expressing that. This mandala will help her to focus her energy in a way that is connected to her authentic self.

In totality, and not limited to, this sacred design will help her to embody:

  • more of her authenticity
  • help remind her to flow and let go
  • embodies that joy of life and will penetrate that integration through to her heart
  • help her to have more courage and step out and into her expression
  • will help to integratively heal old emotions and help her step more into the freedom of who she truly is
  • will support her through the changes in life with continued promise of renewal and light at the end of each dark tunnel
  • reflects her inner spark, connection with self, and the rhythms of nature with her animal totems
  • help draw out her passions and come into her fullness more
  • feel more peace with each step of transition knowing she is beautiful and loved as she is
  • has a regal quality in its design almost like a personal soul crest
  • will help create a powerful sense of boundaries when needed

The design as you can see at top and bottom and all sides, keeps the energy flowing and moving through and extends that centered energy it resides in at Higher Heart through all that she does through the journey of her life.

I was honored to be able to create this for her, as I am with each piece I help to co-create. My only hope ever, is that each design will touch the soul it is intended for, as each soul touches me.

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 tania@spiritualskin.com. Remember that there is currently a waiting list and price changes are going to be in effect at start of 2014. 

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 format here: Spiritual Skin

Kaleidoscopic Lotus Star Sacred Tattoo Design – Recreating Potentialities


sacred tattoo designGrace is beauty of form under the influence of freedom. ~Friedrich Schiller

Another amazingly magical and powerful sacred tattoo journey came to closure and yet it is also, simultaneously, just the beginning of the journey for this dear client and all that she is welcoming into her life.

I find that the energy is continually deepening and expanding for everyone, the collective, myself, and in turn, the sacred tattoo design process. The complexity of symbolism and layers that I am being challenged to convey are exciting to say the least and as I shared with my client before embarking on the creative journey of channeling her essence into manifestation,

“Whenever I have a really involved design to create, I always am like how the heck is that going to happen? And then I just say, shhh, it always does.”

This is a concept that has been with me since I first originally started professional work as an artist and designer and has increasingly grown. My very first commissioned pieces were extremely complex things I had never done before (in this life at least) and were commissioned by extremely left brained professionals (I do like to challenge myself), but I approached it from the get-go with confidence and trust that the ability to do anything was there within me and I needed only to engage and allow it through. I believe it is this way for us all.

For some reason there has always been this innate trust in this aspect of myself, regardless of what my mind might think otherwise, and I have chosen to go with the trust rather than the fear. Which is interesting, as usually the unseen and intangible can be the challenge to trust and things that are more logical and tangible are what we fall back to relying on. However, for me, it is my creative process and intuitive trust that has taught me how to extend this trust to other, and all areas, of my life.

That is how I approach life in general now, after experiencing my evolution through this.

And quite an evolution this magical piece is. The synchronous and interesting journey from start to finish, the timing, the story, and the personal things each of us, me and my client, were experiencing each step of the way. There could be a whole other book on these journeys, and yet I could never capture the magic even if I tried.

With each journey, my clients will share things they have as intents, things that are meaningful or desired to incorporate whether literal or abstract, and then I draw upon these and tune in to which feel most supportive for current empowering, what other things may be supportive, and how to have these things portrayed that will optimally embody the energy intended.

As I always share, there is so much to each design and everyone sees and receives differently from viewing them, which makes them personal and collective. Things always seem to reveal themselves in fullness to me “after” I complete the design. I only trust what I’m being guided to create when I’m creating, getting abstract essence hits on the meaning, but it is when I am done with a portion of it, and then again when it is completely done, and I sit back and look at what has channeled, that I receive that a-ha moment, smile, chuckle, shake my head and say, “Wow, I get it.”

Here’s some information about this piece’s symbolism, which I shared with my client. Sometimes I delve deeper to help people see what is possible to incorporate in complex layers embedded within these sacred designs, while other times I let them speak for themselves. This is one of the deeper times. 🙂

The main elements incorporated into the design are Tara, Hummingbird, Butterfly, Bee, Stag, Sea Shell, and Lotus. The way in which the style came through was a combination of ethereal, star-like, and an integration that creates an organically cosmic essence both anchoring and ascending, emanating, yet very centered, balanced and all emerging from the wholeness at core.

This portal of her spiritual journey I created comes through the center/heart center of the Lotus, which almost spirals and creates etherically and organically, as it constantly blossoms and emerges, with new petals continually recreating themselves. The Lotus itself I also created as a Lotus “Star” (cosmic flower), almost like an Infinity Star, and also has the quality of the life giving source of the Sun with its energy emanating in powerful grace. This came into play with a special name my client had been given that personifies her and her constantly evolving journey with it and is the core essence of this piece. And so too the Lotus is one that is constantly creating itself the way I designed it…think a kaleidoscope and peering in to see the Lotus transforming. That’s how I was seeing it and capturing it in a drawing.

The Lotus itself is a powerful and ancient image symbolizes harmony, spiritual illumination and unlimited potential. The lotus is a type of water lily which rises from the sludge of muddy waters and opens into a beautiful flower. It is often used as a mandala, or circular symbol, but any way you use the Lotus in a spiritual practice, it will provide a resonant field that reinforces the concept of resurrection. Human mistakes and challenges are the fertilizer for brilliance and awakened creation as the Lotus shows us. Born in the murkiest of ponds, Lotus still emerges pure. Use the Lotus as a reminder that “this, too, shall pass.” Be assured that all fertilizer nurtures a beautiful new life. In the greater world, Lotus is a peaceful cosmic beacon for forgiveness, gratitude and compassion to prevail where the sludge of conflict has resided. Using this symbol on water invites a balance between humility and pride.

Each of the animal spirit guides are at the corners of the Lotus and because they are emerging as spirit guide wisdom are there supportively when needed as a presence that moves in and out of dimensional existence. They came through more ethereal and with creative energy, so you see them as uniquely designed to represent that creative power to come through abundantly and manifesting from nothing into vision and like energy just emerging into creation. The Bee I did a bit more tangibly, as I felt that some of the elements are in process of creatively materializing and some are materialized, and others just simply are present always in essence.

The Deer spirit guide came through as a Stag and its design is almost cosmic in nature. It is in the right diagonal bottom corner. He is graceful and confident, looking up and beyond. Deer symbolism includes, but is not limited to love, grace, gentleness, kindness, compassion, innocence, peace, beauty, fertility, femininity, humility, swiftness, acceptance, regrowth, renewal, creativity, spirituality, psychic power, subtlety, higher connection, awareness, abundance, benevolence, watchfulness, and is associated with the moon, the dawn, and the easterly directions. The stag in particular symbolizes the same, but includes masculinity (which brings balance), regeneration, guidance, healing, connection to the Earth and forest, alertness, pride, independence, purification, strength, and nobility.

Then there is the Butterfly at the top right above him. It came through in an Asian motif emerging from the Lotus. The Butterfly is a symbol of joy and longevity as well as are messengers of powerfully transformative healing and regenerative energy and symbolism to the indigenous peoples across time. They symbolize the precious miracle of life, hope, love, transmutation, magick, reincarnation – to the Maya, butterflies are seen as ancestors returning for a visit to physicality and have a very earth and cosmic bridging connection (ex: the galactic butterfly symbol – Hunab Ku powerfully broadcasts your reaching to actively join the consciousness of our galaxy), resurrection, transition, communication, celebration, lightness, time, soul, unquestioning embrace, freedom, keeping the faith, grace.

Then there’s the Hummingbird at the top left corner emerging. It came through in a henna-like, mehndi design. The Hummingbird symbolizes timeless joy and the Nectar of Life, as well as a symbol for accomplishing that which seems impossible and will teach you how to find the miracle of joyful living from your own life circumstances.

At the bottom left corner is the Bee, which symbolizes understanding female warrior energy, connection to the Goddess Diana, reincarnation, communication with the dead, helping earth-bound spirits move on to their proper place (work that you have been involved with that has been challenging energetically), concentration, prosperity, fertility, and sexuality. The Bee is also a symbol for accomplishing the impossible and anything you put your mind to, as aerodynamically its body is too large for its wings and should not be able to fly. The Bee reminds you to extract the honey of life (that empowerment of fun, joy, opening your heart to the epitome of love and life and to life fully and uninhibitedly). The Bee also makes our lives fertile with ideas, creativity, and productivity with the promise of fulfillment if we pursue our dreams. Its honeycomb, a hexagon, is the symbol of the heart and represents the sweetness of life found within your own heart and is also the symbol of the sun and its energies. The Bee reminds you to savor the honey of life, do all you can do to make your life fertile and examine your life to make it more efficient and supportive. The Bee also is a strong symbolism of the circle of life and balance that they create, as such an important part of our ecosystem.

Interestingly, this last weekend while hiking (during the process of channeling this design), we had come upon a bunch of bees and were watching them amongst the flowers, as well as a bunch of ants that were traveling across the trail carrying things to their nest. It made me ponder about the powerful symbolism and message these little beings have for life that we could learn from that would assist in creating a new paradigm. I reflected on the way they live with no concept of definitions between work and play, just “being” and with the focus of the greater good through every act they do on their own. It is all connected and they don’t see any separation. And I watched as they helped each other and all was about supporting the Source, building together, nurturing and being part of the collective tapestry.

So there is a lot of balance in the design, not just in the above and below balance you see with Tara and the Seashell, but also with each of these four corner animal spirit guides and anchored at center, within, and at each outer edge, without.

There is also a mixture of eclectic exotics with the Asian Butterfly motif design, the mehndi Hummingbird, Hindu/Tibetan Tara, cosmic and organic qualities.

I created a leaf and vine design extending up and around Tara from the Lotus and Hummingbird and Butterfly in a Yin/Yang effect of flipping the design on each side for balance. There is some good general information at this link that you can read about Tara: Tara, Goddess of Peace and Protection and especially certain aspects jumped out at me, after I had created the design. Here are some snippets from the link:

“It is told that Tara first appeared rising from a lotus blossom in the lake that had formed from Avalokitesvara’s tears of compassion, tears that fell when he first beheld the scope of suffering in the world.” – interesting how I instinctively depicted Tara rising from the Lotus.

sacred tattoo design 2

Another image of the design that was captured near midnight when I had finished it. I loved the “golden” ethereal quality that came through this image

Besides being the Mother Creator, “in Sanskrit, the name Tara means Star, but she was also called She Who Brings Forth Life, The Great Compassionate Mother, and The Embodiment of Wisdom, and the Great Protectress.” – goes along with the Starseed essence, the Lotus Star, and the powerful Divine Feminine Goddess Energy that is integrated into all of this that was desired from my client.

“Tara embodies the feminine strengths of great caring and compassion, the ability to endure stressful and even terrifying moments, the acts of creation, and the source of sustenance and protection. Demonstrating the psychological flexibility that is granted to the female spirit,  the goddess Tara,  in some of her human forms, could be quite fierce and wild. Refugees fleeing the horrors of the occupation of Tibet by the Chinese armies recounted numerous stories of the Green Tara that protected them during their torture and guided their flight to freedom. In other of her forms, such as the White Tara, she embodied inner peace and spiritual acceptance. She symbolizes purity and is thought to be part of every good and virtuous woman. Tara is an archetype of our own inner wisdom. She guides and protects us as we navigate the depths of our unconscious minds, helping us to transform consciousness, our own personal journeys of freedom. It is the goddess Tara who helps us to remain “centered”. The myths of the Goddess Tara remind us of our “oneness” with all of creation and the importance of nurturing the spirit within.” – speaks for itself and how she is anchoring the “above” part of the Lotus, guiding and centering the journey and holding that connectedness to everything.

At the bottom is the Sea Shell (a very beautiful, graceful and delicate conch) anchoring in and drawing the energy in balance to the Earth and into the depths within and through the lower Chakras. Sea Shells are symbolic of femininity, birth, regeneration, renewal, expansion, fertility, water, life, love, the Moon, a journey across the sea of life (pilgrim of life), and the Universal matrix (because of their spiral shape) as well as infinity. In China they represent good fortune and good life in the afterworld. In Buddhism the conch represents the voice of Buddha and is said to awaken one from ignorance. In Islam, it represents hearing the Divine Word. In Greece and Rome the conch shell is a symbol of the sea god. In Hinduism it is a symbol of Vishnu as lord or the waters. The Mayans associated the conch with waters and with the sea gods as well. The Sea Shell also represents the unconscious mind and so in its position it helps to uncover, listen to and heart the messages of our shadow parts that are deep within to be discovered and integrated. My client has a connection with the ocean and ocean beings, as well as communicates with the animal world, but for some reason the depiction of a dolphin or whale, did not feel to come through in a literal way. The Sea Shell to me was speaking more loudly and seems to embody and personify all of the beings of the sea, while connecting with the Earth and beyond and is a form of connecting with our inner voice, telepathy, communicating with animals and other beings and people, of sound and sound healing, and the importance of listening within – as when you hold a conch shell to your ear, you can hear the ocean and many messages through it as a way to dial in to the deeper parts of yourself. So the Sea Shell is a way to harness that communication skill at levels only detected by the inner ear.

All of the four elements of Water, Air, Earth, Fire, and Ether/Spirit are symbolically personified and conveyed, as well in the design, and in some ways many of the images overlap with their symbolism, representing more than one element. And the Lotus is like a flowering star and emanating Sun, while also connects that deep feminine divinity of Moon quality essence as well.

There is a passion and fire that comes through etherically in the life giving, creative energy that is pulsating gently and intentfully from this.

The design, in totality, also holds the message of life having infinite possibilities. That you are connected to all the power, wisdom and potential there is. Everything is accessible to you. All of it. Right here and right now. Sometimes we forget this truth and stop dreaming, but this is a reminder of everything that is available to you and awaiting you. A constant reminder of the beauty, power and limitless energy that flows through you to make your world what you desire it to be. There’s something magical about it that empowers you to reach toward your full and unique potential. You are powerful beyond measure “All that is” is within you. The Lotus portal star in center, is the center of wholeness that is you (my client and each of us) and from within you, all things are possible and you are always connected to the abundance of creative potential and Divine Love that is You and All Things.

This design is about 10 1/2” tall by 71/2” wide including the emanating light shaded energy coming off of the design.

I so enjoy being challenged by each unique soul and energy that is coming through. The evolution of designs is mirroring the evolution of energy shifting. I can observe this transformation when I look over the designs I’ve created, seeing the personal and collective changes simultaneously taking place in terms of what we are tapping into.

I really enjoyed worked with the quality of energy from this piece and how it came through in depiction. It is definitely unique, which may seem redundant, as each person’s energy IS different, but this particular vibration was a new octave to tap into. Its organic cosmic essence in a kaleidoscopic depiction of wholeness within constantly transforming creation energies that are perfect in their individual evolution and yet eternally unified in connection, was exciting. And bringing in the Sacred Feminine that is at the heart of our integration potentialities in this way with the essence of something that is shifting and always recreating itself while centered, peaceful and balanced – quite the energy!

If you’d like to see an example of another vegan tattoo conveying a message of compassion, you can find it here: Vegan Sacred Tattoo Design. This design is available if it calls to your heart. 

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 tania@spiritualskin.com.

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

Native American Indian Sacred “Soul Tapestry” Tattoo Design


Sacred Tattoo DesignAnother week of sacred tattoo designs is in flow again. I love these individually unique journeys I am honored to get to take with each of the beautiful souls I co-create with.

Today is the first of three new designs I’ll be sharing. I was inspired by Native American Indian energy and art I’ve experienced, which spoke loudly from the get-go for this client, the minute I started to tune in. I later found out she was part Native American when I shared my feeling of direction I was going. It also felt to be a powerful bleed through from past life experiences and energy that was prominent.

Without much to go on except some themes, I worked away at receiving what wanted to through to assist in the essence of intents she had.

This piece is intuited for her upper back/higher heart area and as always I created the design in shades of blacks and grays, which can then be decided upon with the tattoo artist if it will remain as such or be added to with color. My client was feeling drawn to delicate colors and this I feel would look lovely if chosen as such, or as it is. Staying light and ethereal for this would will add to its energy I feel. The original design is 7” wide by 11” high. When working with detail it’s not recommended to go small in order to retain the delicate touches. Bigger is always better and will be more pleasing over time.

As mentioned, I kept getting native American Indian energy from the get-go. So I was pleased to hear the connection and her resonation with this. And a lot of powerful symbolism wanted through which I enmeshed in this Native American Indian woman’s (representing my client) shawl. She stands empowered, grounded, integrated, centered and looking up and beyond to the left, welcoming courageously, peacefully and with great heart joy, the new found wisdom and direction her journey is now taking her.

She is illuminated by the Great Central Sun’s radiating beams that also seem to emanate from her. That spiral at her Crown Chakra, which is the oldest symbol known to be used in spiritual practices, reflects the universal pattern of growth and evolution. The spiral represents the goddess, the womb, fertility and life force energy. Reflected in the natural world, the Spiral is found in human physiology, plants, minerals, animals, energy patterns, weather, growth and death. The Spiral is a sacred symbol that reminds us of our evolving journey in life. When used as a personal talisman, the Spiral helps consciousness to accept the turnings and changes of life as it evolves. The acceptance of change is one of the greatest freedoms a human can experience, putting consciousness in the present moment where the power of creation is condensed. On a larger scale, using this symbol assures all beings are reminded of their inward and outward evolution, a balanced and centered state of mind.

The spiral repeats throughout the design and I also incorporated a moth with spiral antennaes that shape a heart at her Heart Chakra, lotus designs, buffalo medicine (white one in this case) and horse medicine (black one in this case), as well as butterfly and leaves of the Earth that all flow up and down her Chakras and anchor her, as well as give flight to her journey with each of their symbolism they carry.

I felt something very grounding, integrative, forward moving, expansive, and opening to another level of drawing in a new frequency of energy, was wanting through (keeping with that natural harmony within and without) and so this interwoven tapestry of wisdom and empowerment came through as her Higher Self wisdom revealed.

Here is some more on the specific symbolism included.

Lotus symbolism: This powerful and ancient image symbolizes harmony, spiritual illumination and unlimited potential. The lotus is a type of water lily which rises from the sludge of muddy waters and opens into a beautiful flower. It is often used as a mandala, or circular symbol, but any way you use the Lotus in a spiritual practice, it will provide a resonant field that reinforces the concept of resurrection. Human mistakes and challenges are the fertilizer for brilliance and awakened creation as the Lotus shows us. Born in the murkiest of ponds, Lotus still emerges pure. Use the Lotus as a reminder that “this, too, shall pass.” Be assured that all fertilizer nurtures a beautiful new life. In the greater world, Lotus is a peaceful cosmic beacon for forgiveness, gratitude and compassion to prevail where the sludge of conflict has resided. Using this symbol on water invites a balance between humility and pride.

I love the symbolism that Avia Venefica always has to impart. Here is some information on the rest of the symbolism included.

Moth symbolism: vulnerability, determination, subtlety, intuition, faith, dreams, shadows, otherworldliness, secret knowledge, psychic awareness…The moth is a nocturnal creature and even in navigation, when we observe the moth to fly into artificial light or flames, the moth demonstrates its faith and determination. It is still unproven as to why the moth is driven to light – but the best hypothesis is that the moth navigates by lunar light. In the absence of moonlight, the moth moves to the next best thing: man-made light. Even at the risk of losing its life, the moth is ever-vigilant in following its path of light. This may also serve as a moral to us to keep our own vigilance, but not fall victim of blind faith. Those with the moth totem will find this creature a magnificent assistant in developing higher awareness, and psychic enhancement. We gather these symbolic attributes because night creatures conduct their life-sustaining activities in complete darkness. As humans, we may translate this as symbolic of living our lives by intuitive feeling rather than physical sensory perception. Philosophically speaking, night creatures do not tumble in the dark, and neither do humans. We use our dreams, our awareness, and our deeper, inner knowing to navigate through the darkest hours of our lives. Faith is another tool we use to move through shadowy times of uncertainty, and the moth also shares this aspect. The moth never questions provision. She has complete faith that all of her needs will be meet each night.

Buffalo symbolism: provision, gratitude, abundance, consistency, strength, stability, blessing, prosperity…the Buffalo is a sacred animal the Native American Indians and is a true reminder of the greater whole. The Buffalo is like a hologram – one example of abundance – it’s behemoth features are a physical manifestation of the store-holds available in the energetic realms. The White Buffalo is considered incredibly holy. When the White Buffalo comes into our awareness (dreams, vision or even while hiking) it is a huge sign of promise, and great prosperity is soon to come after sighting this regal creature. Buffalo reminds us that we are always provisioned and our attitude towards abundance influences the rest of this planet.

Horse symbolism: power, grace, beauty, nobility, strength, freedom…The Horse symbol meanings of power are widespread through most cultures, and it is linked as an emblem of life-force. Many cultures assign the attributes of the four elements to the Horse: Earth, Fire, Air and Water. As a Native American symbol, the Horse symbol meanings combine the grounded power of the earth with the whispers of wisdom found in the spirit winds. The Horse has long been honored has helper, messenger, and harbinger of spirit knowledge to the Native American. Considered wild and an emblem of freedom, the Native American sees many potentialities in the symbolic nature of this noble creature. Another aspect of Native American symbol meanings of the horse comes with the understanding that the wild freedom of the Horse can be harnessed and used to the benefit of the tribe. This understanding comes only when man and beast enter a silent contract, acknowledging mutual respect and awareness of responsibility to each other. Black Horse: mystery, death, night, secret, messenger of esoteric knowledge.

Butterfly symbolism: Butterflies are messengers of powerfully transformative healing and regenerative energy and symbolism to the indigenous peoples across time. They symbolize the precious miracle of life, hope, love, transmutation, magick, joy, reincarnation – to the Maya, butterflies are seen as ancestors returning for a visit to physicality and have a very earth and cosmic bridging connection (ex: the galactic butterfly symbol – Hunab Ku powerfully broadcasts your reaching to actively join the consciousness of our galaxy), resurrection, transition, communication, celebration, lightness, time, soul, unquestioning embrace, freedom, keeping the faith, grace…phew!…it felt to be speaking to another aspect of my client in this greater expansion sense with her shifting work, community sharing, spreading of her wings in deeper ways of service and heart-deepening, more and more.

There’s always so much more to the designs than I can possibly write about, but I like each person to feel what it speaks to them and to know that energetically so much is imbued and will be felt and activated regardless of whether or not we are literally aware of the specifics.

I’m grateful for this opportunity to support another soul’s beautiful and transformational journey and to help manifest a sacred design, soul-mirror-template for empowerment.

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 tania@spiritualskin.com.

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, 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

Celtic Butterfly and Tree of Life Sacred Tattoo Design


Celtic Butterfly & Tree of Life Sacred Tattoo DesignAs mentioned, I’ve been in flowing with the beautiful Celtic energy this week in the most recent wave of new sacred tattoo designs. I had a lot of fun working with this current piece and the essences of things my clients wanted to see embodied in this design.

Each piece I design is so unique because they embody the energy of each individual soul and so they take me on these limitless journeys that not only creatively challenge me to draw from the limitless source of the Universe, but beautifully fill me with the honor of experiencing such brilliant lights along the way.

This sacred design combines the symbolism of Butterfly medicine, the Tree of Life, Spiral and Heart energy, and the Trinity Knot. Interestingly, this pieces is ALSO going on my client’s inner left forearm. Quite the synchronicities flowing energetically with these!

The image that first came to me in right away was a butterfly for this client. Butterfly medicine symbolizes transformation, celebration, transition, lightness, soul, time, grace, elegance, freedom, joy and bliss, miracles, flexibility, cycles of life, creativity, gentleness, preciousness of life, as well as the medicine the ability and clarity of mind needed before self-transformation.

I felt to create a more abstract butterfly, as is mirroring of her unique style, with beautifully Celtic-inspired wing designs that held symbolism in them as well. I included Spiral and Trinity Knot designs that it unveils with spreaded wings. A Spiral, signifying growth, spins into a Trinity Knot, symbol of eternity – therefore symbolizing a spirit journeying into the infinite.

This Butterfly also represents the more feminine aspects with her gracefulness and curved wings and design, and that connection with understanding both the strength and fragility simultaneously in life.

I set it off with a stylized Tree of Life that blends the Spiral energy throughout and merges the top Spirals into Hearts. The Tree of Life captures the essence of Celtic belief in the interconnectedness of all things – earth and sky, plants, animals and all beings – in the cycle of life. This Tree of Life depicts a tree, leaves opening in the new Spiral cycles of life into eternal journeys that lead to abundant of heart expansion in the process. The trees roots grounding in the earth and the limbs reaching in different directions of where the path will lead on the continuous journey of enlightened awareness.

There is a vulnerability of Heart (hence the addition of the Spirals creating Hearts at top – also to represent the deepening and opening of my client’s own heart to embrace unconditional love and compassion for self and others always through the journey) and strength present. There is also a focused energy in creating the very clear and asymmetrical design with symbols that have both Triangular points and Circular energy (which we learned in the last Celtic design post are both symbols that represent clarity). The Circle symbolizing also your self-awareness within the construct of the universe and cosmic consciousness and of course, eternity. The Trianglular shapes of the Trinity Knot pointing upright is a visual symbol of ascension and brings the concept of duality to a third position of integration and harmony. The peak at top symbolizes higher thought, inspiration, enlightenment, oneness of mind, aspiration, focus, unity consciousness. In this way it helps to focus and center the inner conflicts in order to be in stillness of peace with the wholeness of who you are and within that peace to be guided by your authentic voice.

The Butterfly and Tree of Life merge at center and share the same body from which their energy unfurls into individual beautiful through the growth cycles. This shared body creates a strong foundation that is grounded and focused, yet from this center of groundedness, has the freedom to take flight and flow  – the root wholeness and sum of the individual paths taken along the soul journey.

These symbols felt very empowering in terms of the energy intents to embody – those of enhanced feminine power, sweetness, yet strength, tenderness, awareness, gentleness, clarity of mind, and a time of honesty within self.

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 tania@spiritualskin.com.

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

Shape-Shifting Sacred Tattoo Design: A Shaman’s Magickal Journey of Emergence


Shaman Sacred Tattoo Design by Tania Marie

Back in the sacred tattoo design energy flow again, with several powerful pieces emerging. So many of these latest designs are holding amazing shaman, animal medicine, and shape-shifting energy. I love it, love the energy of each of the soul’s they are channeling through, and I am loving how the visions manifest into being!

The shamanic energy really feels prevalent right now, as more and more people are revealing and honing in on these gifts in a focus of return to natural harmony with Mother Earth and the Cosmos as their powerfully integrated selves.

Today’s Spiritual Skin focus is just that – A Shaman’s Magickal Journeyof Emergence. I am officially claiming that I fall in love with each piece I have the honor and pleasure of working collaboratively on and with each I continually uncover the bountiful creative expressions of the collective heart.

This design integrates several powerful symbolisms that mirrored my client’s essence self along with her journey of deeper personal and collective opening in heart service and empowerment.

I always listen and allow myself to be guided to what best hones in on the particular energy in the now moment and that embodies most supportively what would be empowering for each client.

Many times I have much to draw upon and much that is shared beautifully in our interactive consulting dialogue, and so it is always important that I fine tune in to just which frequencies are sharing their music most prominently. Some times I receive images and symbols that are not shared and they become space holders for the new energy, are symbolic of parts of their essence they hadn’t been focused on, and/or end up revealing things my client had forgotten to share or had significance in ways at the time were part of their journey into discovery.

In the case of this one, there were stand-out images and symbolism that definitely came through and I loved how everything wove together like a fine and intricately beautiful web of expression.

Many times, like with this design, I receive images and visions before I hear specifics from my clients, or have read what they have shared. I love when they are reiterated literally or in energy through their expressions.

One of the images that hadn’t been revealed in consulting, but came into being with this piece was the swallowtail butterfly.

Aside from the swallowtail having the butterfly symbolism mentioned below they also are symbols of innovation, which in part came from studies on the reflection and scattering of light by the scales on their wings, which led to the innovation of more efficient light-emitting diodes – LED. Who knew?! They are also butterflies of fairly open country and wide ranges of migration – freedom adventurer travelers indeed. And, with at least 550 species, members of the family are found on all continents except Antarctica making them quite a collective and eclectic butterfly family. The family also includes the largest butterflies in the world, the Birdwing butterflies of Australia. Swallowtails are different in a number of anatomical traits from from all other butterflies, most notably, their caterpillars possess a unique organ behind their heads, called the osmeterium. Not only are they diverse, visionary, and adventurers, but they are highly unique beings with an extra bit of brain power! 🙂

Needless to say, butterfly medicine came through instead of some of the other literal image depictions that had been conveyed, in a burst of vision where a swallowtail unveiled its wings as the unfurling of my client’s “beingness.”

Butterflies are messengers of powerfully transformative healing and regenerative energy and symbolism to the indigenous peoples across time. They symbolize the precious miracle of life, hope, love, transmutation, magick, joy, reincarnation – to the Maya, butterflies are seen as ancestors returning for a visit to physicality and have a very earth and cosmic bridging connection (ex: the galactic butterfly symbol – Hunab Ku powerfully broadcasts your reaching to actively join the consciousness of our galaxy), resurrection, transition, communication, celebration, lightness, time, soul, unquestioning embrace, freedom, keeping the faith, grace…phew!…it felt to be speaking to another aspect of my client in this greater expansion sense with her shifting work, community sharing, spreading of her wings in deeper ways of service and heart-deepening, more and more.

I also love this sharing about Native American Butterfly Legends by Denise Handlon titled Butterflies – Symbols of Life and Hope:

“Some tribes in the Native American culture believe that butterflies can take one’s wishes up to the Great Spirit. Capture a butterfly, whisper your wish to it, and release it to the heavens. It is believed that all wishes will be granted in gratitude for the freedom of this delicate creature. Other Native American stories include the story of the ‘Children who refused to walk’. In order to get the babies to move from four legs to two a handful of pebbles were thrown into the air and as they scattered they changed into beautifully colored butterflies. The children were so delighted they jumped up and began to chase the butterflies.

Some people believe that the Fancy Shawl Dance, as exhibited in ceremonial Powwows, is believed to have been derived from the ‘butterfly dance’. It is the story of a young butterfly whose mate was killed in battle. After removing her beautiful wings she wrapped herself in a drab cocoon and isolated in her lodge. Family and friends stopped by to console her, but she was wrought with grief. Not wanting to be a burden to her tribe she took her wings and medicine bundle and journeyed far and wide.

As she travelled across field and streams, she stepped lightly on each stone, her eyes downcast. It was in this way that she spotted a beautiful stone and her grieving heart was healed. Filled with gratitude for a new life of joy and renewal, she shrugged off the cocoon unwrapped her wings and began to dance a joyful dance.

When she arrived back to her tribe she told her People of the journey she took and the healing stone she discovered. In celebration, the People danced to celebrate a new beginning. To this day, the butterfly dance is danced using brightly adorned shawls in The Fancy Shawl Dance.”

The butterfly that emerged in this particularl sacred tattoo design also portrays that  integration and centeredness with having one foot in each world of physical and nonphysical and setting the heart a-flight with the way my client is bridging with her work and travels.

Depicted is a Native American Indian shaman/medicine woman shape-shifting collectively as all of what she embodies and portrays, but remaining individually unique simultaneously. I created her to look somewhat lion-like in facial featuring, as well as brought in some of the deer power animal essence through her facial energy, which had been another aspect of this client’s guides. She wears feathers, perhaps of the eagle or owl in her hair (again more of her guides), entwined twigs and leaves of Mother Earth, and her caped shawl with lion main emerging reminds me almost of the furry bear garments of the Native American Indians (bear and lion both also guides). But the stand-out was the lion and he emerges from her heart and throat chakras –his main and her hair and shawl all merging and integrating, his face doubling as the curvature of her neck and breast, and as the support system of the shoulder area and upper body standing in strength.

At the solar plexus a lotus essence almost like ethereal fire, emerges atop the butterfly with energy integrating into the lion’s mane, her hair and shawl. The swallowtail at the lower 2 chakra areas being released and freeing its creative abundance and joyful breadth of life-giving. Her hands are embracing of letting go within the power of knowing all is within to work alchemy as the magician, shaman and medicine woman that she is.

I see the depictions of all the elements here of earth, fire, air, water and spirit in symbolism.

This sacred tattoo was seen as energetically most supportive on the back – in that upper back area of the heart, higher heart chakra, just below the base of neck to really open and deepen those energies being shared in service and emanating at heart and soul.

I like to let the image reflect to each person what they receive from it, as there is so much more that unveils over time and to different eyes and open hearts than what I could possible share or see. I am in sort of channel trance of receiving when creating so I don’t always piece it all together until it actually manifests. I merely hold the essence and visions at heart until then. My service is to be a conduit for the image to come through and to integrate and weave it into its symbolic form as Spiritual Skin.

This piece of course is hugely rooted in shamanism, centeredness, balance, groundedness, empowerment, expansion, opening, releasing and honoring, as well as deepening emergence. Always so many layers that are much “more than skin deep” images.

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 tania@spiritualskin.com.

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

Butterfly Messengers – Ancestors of Wisdom for the Now


This is a time of remembering. The time to experience the mystery of life in its reality. A time to allow and embrace all that is in your heart to come forth, putting aside fears and drawing forth your soul’s authentic voice to commune with those of others in symphony. The butterfly is a beautiful and powerful example for us to learn from. So much of the answers we seek are present in the miracles that are all around us as gifts from Mother Earth. We need only to look with our hearts and be consciously present to receive.

In a previous post, I shared a little bit about the Mayan Hunab Ku symbol, also known as the One Giver of Movement and Measure and the Galactic Butterfly (my favorite description). I wanted to explain its symbolism a little further and its connection to the now, as well as its butterfly connection. To the Mayans, butterflies are seen as ancestors returning for a visit to physicality, and part of that return is to support the shifts in consciousness by bringing back the wisdom, integrated into the now, for a return to natural harmony.

Again, this symbol (Hunab Ku) is said to represent all consciousness that has ever existed in this galaxy: all our physical ancestors including human, animal, reptile, fish, shell fish, plants, as well as the consciousness which organized all of the raw material from a whirling disk into stars, then planets, and solar systems. It’s meaning is so huge that the original Maya had no symbol for this. In their civilization it was like having no name for God. Just knowing the concept was good enough. Later this pattern was devised by Toltec or Zapatec weavers as a pattern for blankets and this is where Jose Arguelles came across it. He called it Hunab Ku. The indigenous peoples call it “The Galactic Butterfly.”
 
This symbol is very powerful, as it broadcasts one’s reaching to actively join the consciousness of our galaxy. The Maya taught that the Milky Way Galaxy is the generator of life. The architect of the universe is called Hunab Ku, The Absolute Being, The Center of the Galaxy, The Universal Dynamism, which stimulates and motivates life in its total manifestation of spirit and matter. The principle of intelligent energy that pervades the entire universe. Hunab Ku is understood to transmit radiant energy information through stars which serve as lenses to transmit energies to planets. Our Sun is the chief mediator of Hunab Ku for our planetary system, the lens by which Earth receives direct galactic information. The pulsations of Hunab Ku are understood as a language of codes and energies recorded in the form of the Tzolkin, a universal harmonic module accommodating every possible permutation of Hunab Ku, also known as the Sacred Calendar. Numerically, Hunab Ku is communicated as the union of numbers 13 and 20, which represent movement and measure, energy and form, spirit and soul.

Hunab Ku, who can see and understand everything, knows that the time for the great change has come. We will complete a 26,000 year cycle, according to the calender on 12/21/12 – not the end of the world, but the beginning of a new experience of life as we have never known. A new cycle has already begun and life as we know it is evolving continuously and rapidly. A cycle that calls us to realign with the cosmos, which can provide essential energy needed to live together harmoniously and with honor for our Mother Earth. We are not separate from anything or anyone. These are the times in which all races, from all directions, must come together in harmony and unity. The Hearts of All Beings are connected. It is impossible to be disconnected.

Many indigenous peoples of the New World hold butterflies in a special place in their culture and butterfly motifs were used everywhere including ceramics, stone carvings, mural paintings, codices, feather work, wood carvings, and gold ornaments. They appear not only in pure form, but in many highly stylized renditions, sometimes so abstract that they were frequently misinterpreted by pioneer archaeologists.

Xochiquetzal, symbolized by a Mayan mythological butterfly, was called “precious flower” and regarded as a mother goddess, goddess of love, goddess of flowers, as patron of all fine arts, as the symbol of beauty, as the symbol of fire, as a symbol of the spirits of the dead, as the patron of domestic laborers and as the patron of warriors killed in battle.

Itzpapalotl, the Aztec “obsidian butterfly,” was a mother goddess, goddess of obsidian and knives, of human sacrifice and of war, the personification of the Earth, the patron of women who died in childbirth and more.

Massive figures of warrior-priests (about 15 feet high) have breastplates decorated with a butterfly motif. Along with the snake, the butterfly was one of the most frequently represented animals of Ancient Mexico that held deeply religious symbolism. Butterflies represented fire, soul, death, warriors, travelers, and hummingbirds. They were a component of many poems and songs.

The butterfly has come to mean many things to many people, collectively and individually. Some of its symbolism includes: resurrection, transition, celebration, lightness, time, soul, transformation, joy, unquestioning embrace, keeping the faith, grace…

I celebrate the beauty of the butterfly, recognizing it’s rich spirituality and honoring it as I would myself. For, if butterflies are said to carry the souls of our ancestors, then isn’t it quite possible that all creatures, great and small, possess the essence of intelligence beyond what we are presently conscious of? We have much to remember.

Nature has so much beauty to behold and the butterfly is an exquisite example of the precious miracle of life.

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