Replacement for battle? My two cents...maturity and change...

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Posted by Anne Beltestad on August 14, 2002 at 17:47:56:

In reply to: Re: replacement for battle? posted by Kenzi on August 11, 2002 at 20:30:28:

As a person with two large extensive tattoos who loves henna, here
are my thoughts...

: Perhaps the contempt shown by some in the the tattooed crowd
: for henna is based on the feeling that henna is for those who are
: not only too weak to bear the pain but are too indecisive or too
: lacking in commitment to commit a single design to their skin for
: all eternity.

I agree. Sometimes when i get the "mine's a real one" line I show
them the norse serpent on my arm, well over 20 hours of needle work.
I very rarely see people who have tattoos that extend to the soft
tender part of the underarm, even these "hardcores" (usually guys)
who scoff at henna. This usually shuts them up.
Also, with a client or interested bypasser who seems willing to talk
a bit more, I explain that i feel tattoos are more like an adolescent
approach to body art: "I'll feel like this forever/I am so hardcore
I can take the pain" while henna is more mature: "Things change/life
is transitory". As I near thirty I realize I have to submit to the
everpresent nature of change. Henna seems to do that.
Our culture is very much an immature, adolescent one. War as a
solution to problems (or way to get what one wants), other gratuitous
violence, use of natural resources with no regard for the future,
fear of the unknown...
This is not to denounce those who modify their bodies, myself
included, but the "hardcore" or "macho" feelings often associated
with tattoos (and "flash" like skulls, barbed wire, "tribal" rather
than more meaningful/spiritual work) seem to reflect a society
obsessed with youth, appearance, speed, intensity,
opposed to one more in harmony with natural processes, more gentle,
more reflective.
And here I will go completely off-topic for a moment and mention the
work of Ursula K LeGuin (a resident of Portland OR where I am at the
moment). Her books "Always Coming HOme" and "The Telling" in
particular raise this question of different forms of organization of
human society, and I highly recommend them. Also according to my
sister's friends who've met her she's very nice too.
I don't mean to say newagy/return to the land/ooey-gooey ways of
being (like the people Catherine met at Sirius!) aer the answer, just
that our obsession with "forever" gets us in a lot of trouble (such
as the toxic black cloud killing people in SE Asia at the moment)...
OK, now off my soapbox again and back to wedding planning!


: I don't know the answers but it is interesting to sift through
: ideas and hear different opinions.


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