I’ve supported the co-creation of a lot of Heart Chakra and some Throat Chakra sacred tattoo designs, but this latest one is one that combines Throat and Heart in one! Yesterday was a very stormy and brrrrr day outside, with huge winds and thunder storms – almost hurricane-like! Wild and fun and an excellent day for channeling some creative inspiration through sacred tattoo design. As I danced within the inner realms this design (pictured above) is what poured through the channels. I was really inspired by the beautiful energy of my client and new friend, finding that the more open and courageously vulnerable each person is in opening up and sharing, the more divinely open the flow between us for creative channeling.
There were a lot of things my client shared of their personal journey that were all important, however for this first tattoo (of perhaps more to come) I was drawn to certain elements that were speaking loudly and felt most powerful for their path in the now.
This piece was created for their upper back area, lying center between the shoulders, with the dream catcher near the lower back of the neck, and design continuing down thymus (higher heart) and flowing down into the heart region. The size is almost 9 inches across by about 10 ½ inches long. (Whenever there is a lot of detail I recommend not going too small.)
As shared, this piece will be empowering for both the Throat and Heart Chakras. My client has a strong spiritual connection with a healer/teacher path, as well an affinity to native spiritual traditions and shamanism, and a connection with Mother Earth, crystals, nature, and the Faeries. There are many symbols present in this design that are subtle, but imbued within it.
We have the encircling wreath of flowers and leaves that crisscross at bottom – integrating, but also represent that connection of Oneness, eternal cycling of energy, etc. and of course the Earth energy in abundant blossom for manifestation and grounding. Then we have the shaman/healer/Mother Earth/Faery Queen representation at center. She wears a gown of leaves, flowers and spirals with a large unfurling leaf at her Solar Plexus Chakra extending in all directions and with a crystal at its center that is revealed. She wears a spiral necklace and spirals in her hair – the cosmic spiral and journey of life. She wears two feathers and leaves also in her hair, as well as a crystal head band that lies on her Third Eye Chakra. Her gown also at top is designed as a heart, which is subtly mirrored also below it – mirroring of a twin soul connection for them and also of an integrated heart both grounded and divinely opened. It is made of feathers, and leaves and with almost firey feather edges to be like that subtle sacred firey heart symbol. She stands centered, grounded and balance, in peaceful grace, courageously and vulnerably opening her heart to the world and revealing her true nature of giving and love – arms wide open to the flow of giving and receiving, palms open to embrace life and offer her love in service. The four directions are represented by flowers and leaves at each, and of course the dream catcher, with one sacred feather hanging from it, above the Crown Chakra of the woman at center, but will lay over the Throat Chakra of client – supporting their truth and authenticity to be communicated and shared with the world from their heart center, which the design connects through. Both hands reach out and are met with fully blossomed flowers, giving and receiving the nurturing abundance of life, as well as from her right hand, a beautiful bird emerges, representing freedom, joy of life both personally and collectively and flying courageously out into the world to spread their gifts to share with others. And rather than literal wings, I have the energy of emanating heart energy shown in the markings of almost lightning-like energy coming from center, but they also can be subtle, energetic symbolism of ethereal wings.
Here is some cool information I found on the symbolism of some of the images conveyed in this sacred tattoo design, you may find interesting.
Feathers symbolize truth, speed, lightness, flight, ascension – spiritual evolution to a higher plane. Feathers were worn by Native American Chiefs to symbolize their communication with Spirit, and to express their celestial wisdom. Also in the Native American Indian culture, feathers represented the power of the thunder gods, along with the power of air and wind. Native American Pueblo Indians would pay homage to the Feathered Sun which is a symbol of the cosmos and the center of existence. Another symbol meaning of feathers also revolves around prayer, and the Pueblo use feather sticks as they dance in prayer for rain during solstice rituals. As a Celtic Symbol meaning, the feather was worn by Druids in the form of ornate feathered robes. Celtic Druids donned these robes in ceremonies to invoke the sky gods and gain knowledge of the celestial realm. It was believed that the feathered cloak along with the presence of the sky gods would allow the Druid to transcend the earthly plane and enter the ethereal realm. The Egyptians believed that feathers were symbolic of sky gods too. Ma’at, the Egyptian goddess of justice, would weigh the hearts of the newly dead in the underworld against the weight of a feather to determine the worthiness of his or her soul. In Christianity feathers represented virtues. In fact, an image of three feathers were made into signet rings – each feather symbolizing Charity, hope, and faith. These rings were worn as a symbol of a virtuous soul – they were also used as wax seals. The ring would be dipped in warm wax then pressed against documents to seal the closure. The recipient would know the documents came from a virtuous man by the indication of the three-feather symbol in the wax. In dreams feathers mean travel or the ability to move more freely in life.
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.
Journeying Medicine Spoken Through Many Voices From Many Doorways Of One Consciousness
An “ark” by definition and historical understanding was a vessel built by Noah to house and keep safe his family and pairs of every animal of the Earth. It is also known as a sacred chest where the ancient Hebrews kept the two tablets containing the Ten Commandments. In either form, it is seen as a sacred and protective structure that contained the promise of a new life where a new architectural system of life codes would be embraced and instituted to start anew.
We have entered a time when a new way of life and the call for a new code of life is upon us once again. Cycles repeat themselves, as is apparent throughout the history of this Earth for every ancient civilization that has walked upon it. A time comes when change is much needed and there are always messages, signs and guidance being provided if we learn to be present enough to listen and see. This does not necessarily mean the destruction of the Earth is to come, but it does mean the end of a way of life and being is completing and a new form is much needed to be embraced.
According to shamanic belief, everything is alive and carries with it a wisdom and power. Shamanism is found in all cultures of the Earth and is the world’s oldest healing tradition. This ancient, worldwide practice involves engaging with spirit helpers and the forces of the natural world to develop relationships, solve problems and perform healing. Shamans travel to the parallel worlds where time and space have no meaning and use the powers of those worlds, the subconscious and the realities of this world to cause change. They are able to go within and enter an altered state of consciousness at will, in order to contact and utilize a hidden reality that most do not consciously perceive.
According to the shamanic and ceremonial traditions of the Inca, there are those known as naguals. Naguals are a form of very powerful shamans that unlike man that is driven by psychological ego desires, they have none. They are conduits of Spirit, receiving orders from an indefinable and indescribable source. Almost a non-entity, they have learned to break the psychological conditioning of the cognitive division that keeps us cut off from our sources. They can magically assume the physical manifestation of a different entity by shifting into its energy pattern, yet remain the same in Essence, since everything is energy. There are considered to be two different forms of shapeshifting wherein either the luminous body changes into a power animal or the physical body on the Earth plane changes into an animal.
Power animals are essential to shamanic practice, as shamans believe that everyone has power animals. These power animals act as guides or angels, imbuing their individual energy, power and wisdom to guide, heal and protect you. They provide the wisdom of their kind and are not only limited to mammals, but can also be reptiles, insects and sea creatures. Any living creature can serve as a power animal and plants and trees can serve as plant spirit guides, providing their own wisdom.
Depending upon the culture, the gifts each animal provides can vary, yet there are many consistencies across the board as well. It is important to let the animal speak to you in the way meant for you and to be open to their sharing without limitations. Shamanic practice honors with awareness the wisdom and life in all things on Earth, understanding and believing that everything has something to teach. Many western cultures do not get taught to value animals and the gifts they have to help support our lives and the world at large. Animals show up for us in many ways and they are believed to communicate with us by drawing our attention to things, sometimes through repetition. They try to get our attention because they have some wisdom to impart and are most eager to be of service.
We are all connected and we have each been part of all of the cultures, races and religions on the Earth. Animals are transcendent beings that speak to us in a boundless way, free of judgments or enculturated restrictions, which our ego minds would otherwise be closed off to. It is this reason I was guided to bring forth their messages through my paintings, which began as a series called, “Universal ARKitecture of the New Earth.”
The animals have messages for us on individually personal and collective levels and spread their love and wisdom to help us embrace the new energy. These sisters and brothers share the same consciousness and will voice their storytelling messages of healing, each in their own way, offering us keys and insights to a new code of life for embracing. These medicine beings hold antidotes for a new “ARKitectural” plan of the New Earth.
“Universal ARKitecture” was communicated to me and it basically speaks of sacred vessels, which I see as the paintings to be channeled and created, housing within them messages, codings, energy, keys….spoken through the many voices of the animal spirits of the Earth and uniting us through a Universal language and symbolism that is of the Earth and beyond.
Their Essence will encompass an ecclectic tapestry of interwoven threads that span and honor the many ancient, forgotten civilizations and world religions of the Earth’s history, as well as intertwine Earth and Cosmic dimensions, past, present and future. The power animals and shape-shifting “naguals” emerge through timeless energy portals to share their wisdom and powers. This is in effort to help guide us with supportive keys for co-creating a new Earth with conscious awareness, embracive remembrance and visionary innovation. Subliminally sublime is the supportive guidance they offer and the journey began through the path of the Major Arcana of the Tarot and my first piece titled: A Walk Between Worlds: “Hatun Karpay of the Nagual” (The Great Initiation of the Nagual/ Powerful Shaman).
The Tarot are a highly symbolic deck of cards consisting of 22 Major Arcana cards and 56 Minor Arcana cards. Arcana means secrets or mysteries, which is why deciphering the symbols is half the gift of the translator, viewer or experiencer of the cards and their images. The original concept of Tarot and deciphering the symbolism they hold dates back to early Egypt and India. The gypsies also used them on the banks of the Mediterranean long before they were used by the Renaissance schools and a revival of their use and interest has surged in the middle of the 19th century and continues today.
The Major Arcana (Latin meaning “big secret”) cards are the first keys to our initial understanding and is at the heart of the Tarot. They deal with the human condition and symbolize a whole range of human life and experience, representing the joys and sorrows each man and woman can experience in a lifetime. They are 22 cards that illustrate the human drama through the strengths, weaknesses, hopes, fears and the lightest and darkest parts of an individual; basically the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual aspects of humankind. This is demonstrated through an archetypal figure or figures that express a specific Essence of real and abstract symbology of a person’s life.
I started with the 21st card, the “World” card, to embark on a journey through an experience of life spoken to us through the animals and all of these elements expressed. It encompassed the ancient Incan symbolism and energy of the four directions and the Incan Medicine Wheel. There is the potential that more paintings will encompass some of or all of the Major Arcana or simply and potently come through as animal spirit guides with collective healing messages for the New Earth. It is hard to foresee the inspired channeling that will come through, as I do not direct the messages and visions received and what is needed. I am a conduit for their expression and can merely share the Essence I am sensing is wanting to reveal.
Either way, each painting will represent a key to a potential new code of life, beginning with completion and ending with completion, as every moment is perfect, whole and complete and constantly cycling into new creation. The “World” card represents all elements coming together, which is where we left off in Essence with the In Lak’ech series of five I created. Each of those paintings represented one of the five elements and now we begin with all five coming together in wholeness through “A Walk Between Worlds,” offering us a way to embrace this wholeness and energy in the now, as our experience of life on Earth, individually and collectively.
We then may move through each of the Major Arcana cards 0-21 starting with the Fool, which marks a new beginning and spiritual awakening. As we learn to integrate the Essence of the symbolism each holds, we then begin to build a new foundation and new Earth code within each of us. This will take us full circle, ending once again with where we started at the “World” card (a whole New World/Earth) and a new model for a new collective experience of wholeness and harmony takes shape. 23 paintings in total, if the Major Arcana channel through in totality, providing supportive, foundational tools that represent a life journey to a new existence as a Conscious Global Human Being collectively connected in Universal Oneness.
It is my hope that these paintings will also help to bring conscious awareness of the animals on the Earth and aid in supporting their precious lives, while providing deeper understanding and compassion amongst us all. We are all connected and every living being holds infinite intelligence integral to the circle of life and has its own unique Essence that creates a colorful thread in the tapestry of magnificence we know as Universal Consciousness.
To order and view a larger image of “A Walk Between Worlds” http://taniamarie.com/gallery2.htm
I am extremely connected to the animal world and power animal guides and totems are prevalent in my spiritual and daily experience. That connection runs very deep, more than I can explain in words, and I feel that they channel through me so that I may share their messages to help integrate into the healing work I do. So it is no wonder that I carry many of them on my “Spiritual Skin” body canvas art of sacred tattoos and that they consistently show up in my paintings and in all aspects of my work. I see no separation between anything and that every thing has its own consciousness equal to our own and is interconnected. It is simply the channel of manifested expression each part of that consciousness chooses to express itself as, that conveys in visual difference, but the heart of their personal petal is from the same flower essence whole. When we understand this, a whole new and beautiful experience of life opens up – and the way we walk through life completely changes.
According to shamanic belief, everything is alive and carries with it a wisdom and power. Shamanism is found in all cultures of the Earth and is the world’s oldest healing tradition. This ancient, worldwide practice involves engaging with spirit helpers and the forces of the natural world to develop relationships, solve problems and perform healing. Shamans travel to the parallel worlds where time and space have no meaning and use the powers of those worlds, the subconscious and the realities of this world to cause change.
I created a painting, the one you see to your right (which you can see larger on my website: www.taniamarie.com) to honor the energy of what I’m sharing here and to provide a healing portal that can be utilized for embracing these energies. I combined the Incan Medicine Wheel, with Tarot, seeing its connection with the World Tarot Card symbolism and created a visionary interpretation of the two synergized.