During the past few decades, tattooing has come a long way from a societal taboo to a widespread trend. A tattoo used to be something you got in the army from a suspicious-looking guy or something you don’t remember getting after a friend’s bachelor party. Nowadays, tattoo artists are respected craftsmen and women earning good money in fancy studios. Today, we bring you a collection of small tattoos packed with big meanings, from Viking symbols to the symbolism behind the semi-colon tattoo.
1. Moon Phases
The Moon phases symbolize the circle of life and its cyclical nature. This tattoo has even more meaning for those born in the sign of Cancer, as the Moon is their patron planet.
The gibbous and quarters, the new and the full Moon symbolize time, karma, life, death and rebirth.
2. Inguz Symbol
The Inguz is a symbol from Ancient Greece which is the embodiment of the saying “Where there is a will, there is a way.” A powerful inspiration to get you through the highs and lows of life.
The lotus grows in murky, muddy waters but what’s below it never affects the grandioseness of its bloom. In Ancient China the lotus flower was a symbol of enlightenment achieved against the odds.
4. Ohm Symbol
The “Ohm” is an incantation used in yoga for channeling intense creative and spiritual powers. This powerful mantra represents four different states of consciousness and illusion: waking (jagrat), dreaming (swapna), deep sleep (sushupti), transcendental state (turiya) and the world of illusion (maya).
5. Exploration Glyph
The term “glyph” comes from “hieroglyphics,” the vast series of symbols used for writing by the ancient Egyptians. This glyph symbolizes exploration and is therefore perfect for travelers, wanderers and explorers, both in the physical and in the spiritual sense.
The anchor symbolizes strength and stability, it can be a reference to an important person that gives us strength in our lives, or just something a seaman would like to have on his body.
7. Alchemy Symbol
Alchemy is a protoscience dedicated to the transformation of matter. Through the centuries, uncountable numbers of people dedicated everything to the improbable goal of turning basic metals into gold or discovering an elixir for immortality. Today, this alchemists’ symbol stands for balance and artistic creativity.
8. Viking Symbol
A tattoo for Scandinavians or the admirers of Viking history and culture. Anyone of Danish or Scandinavian descent will especially appreciate this tattoo. This minimalist symbol means “Create your own reality” and was used by the ancient Norsemen.
9. Open Delta Symbol
Delta is the fourth letter in the Greek alphabet and signifies the number 4. Here we have an open Delta which symbolizes the openness to change and discovery.
10. Malin Symbol
This is a Swedish symbol that can be traced back to the city of Skövde in southern Sweden. It is called “The Malin” and it means that one has to face setbacks to be able to move forward.
11. Zen Circle
This minimalistic tattoo has a very deep meaning. An incomplete circle thicker on one side, symbolizes zen. The zen circle means enlightenment, the universe, and inner strength.
12. Ship Tattoo
Ship tattoos of all shapes and sizes usually symbolize the same thing: a journey or an adventure. Corny as it sounds, this is a little reminder that one should never lose the wanderlust for the great adventure called life.
A semi-colon tattoo means exactly what the semi-colon symbol itself means: a sentence or thought that could have stopped but kept going instead.
Project Semi-Colon is a movement in which people who considered taking their lives, but didn’t. The members of the movement usually have a semi-colon tattooed on their wrists in recognition of their inner strength to keep going instead of giving up.