Mayan Tattoo Ideas
If you're considering Mayan tattoo ideas, here are some thoughts about the Hunab Ku symbolism. Read on for origin and symbolism of this symbol for your next tattoo adventure.
The Hunab Ku is believed to be ancient Mayan symbol which is a center feature in their sacred wheels of time or calendar systems. There are also theories the symbol may belong to the ancient Aztecs. The symbol is a vital cornerstone into understanding the cycles of life (and also the core feature to understanding Mayan myths).
The Hunab Ku symbol translates to mean: "One Giver of Movement and Measure" or "The One Source of Energy." With this kind of powerful concentration of energy, the Hunab Ku is also a symbolic representation of god; the one god, or the high god among the Mayans (although this observation hasn't been proven, and you should read the "note" section at the end of this post).
And so, the Hunab Ku tattoo, can eloquently represent...
According to Mayan scholar Jose Arguelles, the Hunab Ku is the principle of life beyond the cosmos. He says "It may be described as possessing a simultaneous spin and counter-spin motion radiating outward from a center-point of indescribable energy that pulses at a specific rate. That pulse is the principle of life and all-pervading consciousness imminent in all phenomenon."
Visually, we can see this symbol depicts the ancient tenet of balance in all things. It's even reminiscent of the classic yin yang symbol found in Asian symbology. We see an equal balance of light and dark in the Hunab ku tattoo. Ergo, this carries deep symbolism of finding a balance. Balance in polarities like...
Note: As with all ancient symbols, origins and traditional meanings can get fuzzy over time. It's important to know this symbol (illustrated above) is likely a modernization, and probably doesn't look exactly as it did in ancient Mesoamerica.
Furthermore, there is very little agreement about the actual meaning of the Hunab Ku. My thoughts on the the Hunab Ku concept are based on my observations of the indigenous culture and my impressions about the symbol. With a little research, you'll find varying ideas about Hunab Ku.
At the end of the day, all you can rely on is what your heart and soul tells you about this piece. Personally, I think that's how our ancient Mayan and Aztec ancestors would want it.
For more Mayan tattoo ideas and other pages of interest, click on the links at the end of this page.
An Important Note About Signs, Symbols and Their Meanings
Signs and symbols cultivate their meanings according to culture, context, passage of time in society as well as mass societal opinion. What's cool and highly important is that signs and symbols earn their most powerful meanings from our own personal perspectives.
This website strives to provide you with the best, time-honored information when defining signs and symbols. However, in the final analysis, "Beauty (and symbolism) is in the eye of the beholder."
Having said that, it's in our best interest to invest the time to do personal research on symbolic events happening to us. This website is just one perspective in an ocean of variety and diversity in the realm of symbolism. So dive in! There is a whole universe of deeper meanings to explore! You can start your research by clicking on the links at the end or to the side of this page. Odds are good I've got a follow-up article about this symbolic topic. ;)
As always, thanks for your willingness to learn more about the language of symbolism. It's a language that is universal and everywhere. It's super-groovy to travel with you on your symbolic path, and maybe offer a little translation along the way. Thanks for reading and exploring!