yoga ink redux

There are three things that I spend most of my yoga earnings on: more yoga, India, and tattoos.

This is (dare I say it?) the completion of a tattoo project that started in the late 1970s, an era before AIDS when tattoo artists used the same needles on everyone after sterilization in an autoclave. My first artist was named Snake. Snake tattooed that little flower that is to the left of the butterfly. I took some Tylenol with codeine because I was afraid of what a tattoo needle would feel like. That little flower took all of 10 minutes and the codeine didn’t kick in until I got back home. Now look at me, and what you see aren’t the only ones I have.

It’s the Kali yantra surrounded by hibiscus, her flowers. They will be red and “this form of the Kālī yantra is used for her representation as one of the ten Mahavidyas or main forms of Devi…an additional Shakti triangle is “hidden” by the circle and ring of lotus petals circumscribing the central portion of the yantra. This probably signifies the “hidden” true nature of Devi as Maya (illusion).”

“In the center is a group of five triangles. Each point represents one of the fifteen Kali Nityas or eternities, one for each day of the waning Moon. In the eight petals are eight Bhairavas and eight Bhairavis, coupling together.”

The Kali Yantra contains within it the transformative energy of change.

When we internalize this energy and surrender to its sweet transformative power of love, we begin our inward journey toward healing and spiritual growth. According to the Tantric tradition, the 36 corners of the Yantra represent the 36 principles (tattvas) of creation, from the Most Transcendent to the most minute expression of Materiality. The bindu is the central point, the seat of the soul, the Atman; the internal link with Brahman the Absolute. The bindu is also Kali, and all the phenomenal world emanates out from Her. In the Tantric tradition, Kali as the energy (Shakti) aspect of material nature is united with the Absolute (Shiva) for the sake of creation.”

In an arch above the yantra will be “love devotion surrender” in Sanskrit.

Put a fork in it. I’m done.
(tattoos by Serena Lander)

“Sadashiva is without energy (lifeless) when Mahakali is manifest. He also is like a corpse when in union with Shakti. Clearly, without Shakti, the primordial god is lifeless and cannot act.” — Todala Tantra, I

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5 thoughts on “yoga ink redux

  1. As you know, I'm very “pro” tattoos. But to be more specific, I'm “pro” especially beautiful work like yours!

    Love it!

    And Kali is my mahavidya. Will have to tell you about that ceremony some time and the entire day that preceded it. Talk about magic!


  2. You absolutely MUST go to Kolkata…I resonated more with Kalighat (next to Mother Theresa's place) where the “bad” Kali resides (go figure 😉 ) more so than Dakshineswar where “good” Kali resides and where Ramakrishna lived. very different energies for me.


  3. Wow, fantastic!! Love it!

    I want to do another one and a BIG one this time…

    This is amazing. Will it be ready when you come to Brazil?

    My devotion goes to Durga, my loved one.


  4. Linda, you are way cooler than I am with all those tattoos!

    the subject of the post is kind of timely too, as I was looking up books on the Tantra tradition (sorting through the good stuff from the sex manuals). Any recommendations? I'm going to a huge book sale tomorrw and I hope to get lucky.

    Anyhoo, did you get any interest from the yoga teacher I connected with you for doing a workshop in NS? If not, I can try another.


Satya is balanced with Ahimsa - No Trolls Allowed

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