Eye of the Medicine Man Symbol
Eye of the Medicine Man Symbol
Avia, I recently got this tattoo, the eye of the medicine man symbol. It's a symbol for wisdom and awareness, on the inside of my left wrist. I got it because it represents my belief in many native American teachings, because they were and are such a wise and reverent people.
Anyway, after getting this tattoo, I showed it to a friend who is a religion major, and she said getting this symbol of a single eye on my left wrist actually carried a negative connotation.
She said that any symbol that shows one eye is a symbol of evil, and that I should have gotten it on my right arm instead. She also suggested I get a second eye tattooed next to the eye I have now, in order to give the image a more positive light.
I did take this into consideration, however, I wanted to look more into it first, because my friend focuses more on eastern religions, whereas I focus more on Native American beliefs.
So what I'm asking is, in Native American traditions and beliefs, does a single eye really represent evil, or can it still represent a positive energy? Also, is there anything wrong in having this tattoo on my left wrist as opposed to my right, as my freind said? Should I get a second eye tattoo, or can I just have the one and still have it represent a positive energy?
Avia's Response to "Eye of the Medicine Man Symbol"
Hi Corby, thanks for your submission.
Your question reminds me of a Q&A I published on my blog about the power of symbols several years ago. Check out the blog post, I think you'll find it enlightening. Here's the link (a new browser window will open): The Power of a Symbol: The Not-so-Evil Eye as an Example)
In a nutshell, we must be anchored
in our own beliefs about our personal symbols.
Said another way, if your symbol sings to your soul, then it is right for you - regardless
of what any one says.
Your symbol resonates with power primarily because of the reasons you selected it.
When you got this tattoo, you believed it represented a very specific set of attributes, yes? Cling to these attributes Corby. Do not waiver from your initial intent. Do not flounder in doubt.
That said, you really don't need a validation - from me, or your friend, or anybody.
However, I can tell you this symbol is not
evil (left, right, by itself or otherwise).
The link you gave to this symbol on Symbols.com
is painfully (and disappointingly) brief. This is regrettable, as the symbol deserves so much more than two sentences to convey its expansive implications.A quick symbolic interpretation....
You can see the rhombus is concentric - with objects sharing the same center.
rhombus is symbolic of a larger (cosmic, universal, worldly) network. For example: The "four corners" of the world, the four winds, the four initial tribes of humankind. The outer rhombus is the MACROcosm, and represents the four-sided structures of the large-scale universe/creation.
The inner rhombus is a reflective feature. Because we are talking about BROAD VISION (namely, the eye
of the medicine man symbol), we are dealing with themes of metaphysical sight
A medicine man sees with far
greater vision that with just his physical eyes. So, the inner rhombus is symbolic of the interaction between man and his environment. The inner rhombus is the MICROcosm, the inner world.
The dot in the center is the eye, all seeing, all knowing, and observing the play between man, spirit and environment
. It's the objective sight of the macrocosm, microcosm and how each is influenced by their interactions.
This is a lovely symbolic testiment to the devotion of the medicine man
to see this world (and his/her role in it) with clarity and objectivity.
This eye of the medicine man symbol is a statement of spiritual vision - a kind of vision that recognizes the interconnectivity of all things.
Share this with your friend, and (no offense intended) encourage her to be a little more open-minded
next time she feels compelled kibosh your or any one else's symbolic ideals.
Choosing personal symbols is highly personal, and I'm always striving to hammer this point home.
You chose this eye of the medicine man symbol for very specific reasons. Stick to those, and allow no one to sway you from your convictions.
Hope this helps.
AviaOther pages of interest:Symbolic Meaning of EyesPower of Symbols: What's an "Evil Eye?"
(on my blog)Tattoo Symbolism Native American SymbolismCreating Your Own Personal Symbols