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Egyptian Sacred Tattoo Design – Layers of Symbolism in Elegant Simplicity

Custom Egyptian Sacred Tattoo Design

Symbols work in the most amazing way. They are like codes to speak directly with the divine mind. ~Christopher Penczak

I’ve been in process of designing some empowering sacred tattoos for an amazingly courageous, conscious client who I honor deeply. She has been experiencing the transformative power of her “Spiritual Skin” portals in incredible ways. The soul sisterhood we have reawakened and nurtured in this process has enabled such a beautiful and clear channel of trust, honor, respect and unconditional love to flow. These are the root foundations that not only make for a powerful partnering, but allow for clarity of the energy to manifest beautifully.

“I strongly and passionately believe that Sacred Skin – Tattoos – are a potent, powerful, remarkable, miraculous process of transforming reality.  I am so drawn to it, and so moved by it – like nothing else!  Working with you is like working with my own heart,” shares my beautiful client. (read her full testimonial below)

In co-creative collaboration with her, and in partnership with her spiritually-attuned tattoo artist, we are supporting her beautiful journey into the heart of her power. I love her enthusiasm, openness and readiness to step up and forward. Each piece we design, she has embodied immediately into her experience and on her skin. Amazing!

This is the third piece we have manifested through our intimate journey together of unveiling the core of her energetic intents. This sacred design came through boldly and with purity and clarity, conveying a simple elegance and powerful grace – regal even.

Egyptian imagery is very precise, but embodies layers of symbolism, so this was not a surprise to me.

I was immediately excited when she approached me about this new piece, feeling the energy even before any vision was received or knowing what would come through. And we both embraced the process of patient percolation to allow the perfect symbolism to channel in its own timing. Every sacred tattoo is unique in its own way and carries a vibration relative to the soul who will embody it.

Without going into the personal meanings this tattoo has for its wearer, I will share that in its simplicity it is simultaneously deeply rooted in all of the symbolism of the Egyptian Goddesses Hathor and Ma’at and, in essence, all of the things my client is bringing more into her experience. This is represented through the stylized sun disc and horns of Hathor and the feathers of Ma’at. It combines these powerful symbols with the Egyptian Lotus.

Hathor is the Goddess of love, beauty, the arts, music, dance, joy, fertility, motherhood, and divine feminine. She can be fierce and protective in her mother role, as well as is Queen of the Heavens, the night sky and day sky –  along with the Goddess Nut she is associated with the Milky Way during the third millennium B.C. The four legs of the celestial cow representing Hathor could be seen as the pillars on which the sky was supported with the stars on their bellies constituting the Milky Way on which Ra, representing the sun, sailed. At times Hathor is the Eye of Ra and considered his daughter, wife, but also Ra’s mother. Horus the Elder, an early form of Horus – God of light – sometimes was the son, or the husband of Hathor. (the Egyptian pantheon of Gods and Goddesses is in intricate interwoven web.)

Ma’at is the Goddess of truth, justice, morality, harmony, and balance. Her feather represents both love and truth. The hieroglyph that meant “love” is called the feathers of Maat, and features two or three feathers close together. Her feather was also the feather of truth and the measure that determined whether the souls (considered to reside in the heart) of the departed would reach the paradise of afterlife successfully.

I stylized the disc and horns with crossed feathers at top of the disc to represent the weighing of truth and integrative, empowered balance between all duality within and without that create wholeness and unity. The feathers also representing love and the lightness of heart that grace life in flight, sitting atop the sun disc – or an eye of light. This sits between Hathor’s mothering horns and her celestial pillars to the sky and Milky Way.

The lotus flower is a symbol of the sun, of creation and rebirth. Because at night the flower closes and sinks underwater, at dawn it rises and opens again. According to one creation myth it was a giant lotus which first rose out of the watery chaos at the beginning of time. From this giant lotus the sun itself rose on the first day. It is a symbol of Upper Egypt, but often it was shown with its long stems intertwined with papyrus reeds (a symbol of Lower Egypt), as representation of the unification of the two lands.

All this symbolism (and more) to say how something seemingly simplistic can embody so much potency. These symbols contained in sacred tattoo designs are encoded keys that go directly to the divine heart and soul to activate, awaken, transform… personal portals to empowered experiences.

If interested in co-creating your own sacred tattoo design in partnership with me, you can contact to begin the journey. Visit What is a Tattoo Design Consultation for more information.


About the Sacred Journey of Spiritual Skin Tattoos with Tania Marie:

To me, getting tattoos has always been about the spiritual meaning of them.  I would get to a point in my life when I would want to have a design that would signify an important accomplishment or change in my life. 

I have searched through many different means, ways to transform my life.  I have never experienced anything as powerful and life-altering in a positive way as the experience of tattoos as Sacred and Spiritual. 

I began to try to find out if anyone else had these same experiences, if anyone else cared about the Sacred and Spiritual Energetic shifts that can occur with Tattoos.  In my searching, I found Tania Marie who wrote a beautiful book called Spiritual Skin – Sacred Tattoos More Than Skin Deep.  I was drawn to her book by the title, and it enhanced my experience even more.

Eventually, I was compelled to email Tania and discuss the possibility of having her work with me to design some Sacred Tattoos for me. 

It is almost impossible to put into words what this experience has meant and continues to mean to me in my personal life.  The process of co-creating with Tania, Sacred Skin that is meaningful and life-changing, is so much more than just designing a beautiful tattoo.  So much more than mere ink on skin.  Any good artist can create a beautiful design.  But I know of no one who does the kind of work that Tania does. 

Working with Tania is like working with someone on a different plane – someone who takes what you say about who you are, and listens to the energy behind your words.  Tania has the beautiful ability and gift of being able to read a client’s energy and also to read the energy that is coming through from the universe that is most needed for the journey of wholeness to be made complete in the sacred tattoo design.

My heart and soul trusts this woman with complete openness and faith in her incredible ability to truly listen.  This is a rare, rare gift, and it shows in the designs she creates for me.

My life has changed, and continues to change, in miraculous ways due to the Spiritual Skin designed by Tania Marie especially for me.  These Sacred Designs are so much more than beautiful ink on skin – they truly are portals to different depths of experience of the fullness and wholeness of life.

I am blessed and honored beyond measure to be a part of such a Sacred and Transformative Process – working with this beautiful human being to bring in the healing designs that are what I need at that time. 

May you be blessed with your choice to work with this truly gifted and spiritual woman.  You will never regret one second of this choice.

In peace and love,
Mari Braveheart-Dances

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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