I’ve been wanting a tattoo for a long time now. The most nerve-wrecking part of a tattoo for me (and probably for many others) was deciding what I would want on my body that I wouldn’t get sick of. I’ve been a student of Buddhist philosophy for about 7 years now, and it’s greatly changed my life and how I think about things. Definitely important enough to symbolize on my body. I once saw a man in Buckhannon, West Virginia with a tattoo on his neck. It said “Tattoo.” He tattooed the word “tattoo” on his neck. Relatively speaking, my decision to go with an “Om” tattoo seems pretty good to compared to that.

Lots of people have “Om” tattoos. It’s a pretty popular tattoo, as the symbol is used pretty widely by both the Buddhist and Hindu faith. It’s also very commonly symbolized by those who study Yoga. In Buddhism, “Om” is the first sound in the mantra “Om Mani Padme Hum.” For a nice description of this mantra, read the The Dali Lama’s writing here. Each curve of the Om actually represents something. The big curve of the part that looks like a “3” represents the waking state. The small part represents the sleeping state and where they come together and form the third curve on the right represents the dream state.

Once I decided to get the tattoo, I was excited to schedule the appointment. My friend David McCreary had just had an awesome tattoo done by Anthony Dubois, the owner of Stained Skin Tattoo and Art Gallery in Columbus. He introduced me to Anthony and I brought along my Step Brother Luke, who also wanted to get some ink done.

When you get a tattoo (and I assume its the same with a piercing), everyone asks the same thing. “Did it hurt?” Yeah. It hurt. It was manageable, but as Luke said afterward, it wasn’t the worst pain in the world, “but I was ready for it to be done.” The “bee-sting” analogy is pretty spot-on. But as soon as it’s done, it doesn’t hurt anymore. It took a total of about 2 hours with one break.

The tattoo after the first break.


The finished product

I’m really happy with the results. It’s been a week, and it’s not all the way healed yet (it’s just started getting to the itching phase). Once it’s completely done healing, I’ll go back in and see if Anthony wants to do any touch-ups on it. But I love it – it turned out exactly how I pictured it. They say tattoos are addicting – but I’m not sure about that. I do have another one in mind that I’d like to eventually get.

Here’s a gallery of Bad Tattoos for you to enjoy.

That’s all for now.

MK