The unalome symbol, one of the most sought-after tattoos in the world today, is originally a Hindu representation that graphically reminiscences Shiva’s third eye. This symbol also embodies wisdom and a path to excellence. In this article, I will discuss the meaning of unalome symbol, its placements, and different designs.
What Is the Pronunciation of Unalome?
Unalome syllable is unalo-me (I separated the syllables with dashes). U – uh, yoo, oo, ů N – nuh A – æ, ā, ah, ā-uh, uh L – luh, ul O – ah, ō, uh, oo, ů M – muh. The E – eh, ee is silent. You can also check out this audio clip.
Different Meanings of Unalome in Hinduism and Buddhism
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When people talk about Hindu and Buddhist symbols, the first one that comes to mind is the unalome symbol. This is a very common design and it can be seen tattooed on hundreds of thousands of people around the globe. Its global acceptance comes from its artistic shape. Because this symbol has become so popular, I thought it would be great to explain its meaning.
In the Hindu religion, the unalome symbol characterizes the Third Eye of Lord Shiva — the highest Hindu God. Lord Shiva is also referred to as the Destroyer because he is responsible for removing all obstacles in people’s lives and further. He sits on top of the hierarchy, from where he watches over the universe and transforms everything in it as he wishes.
The unalome symbol has several patterns, each of which has a special meaning. For instance, the spiral at the bottom signifies the eye and the life, which is given to you without any visible direction. This means that you are the one who has to discover your way. The line with knots originating from the spiral going up represents the different spiritual milestones of your life.
The knots signify lessons that you have to learn and overcome in life as you pursue your path to reach the top, which has the lotus flower. This flower represents perfection. In Hinduism, the flower represents Moksha (enlightenment). Put simply, the lotus flower means that when you reach the top and open your spiritual lotus, you free yourself from the circle of birth and death, as well as rebirth.
Although the meaning of unalome symbol is the same in the Buddhist religion, it looks a bit different. For instance, the Buddhist unalome has a seated Buddha at the bottom. It also has a half-moon over the seated Buddha’s head, which indicates enlightenment in the dark. Above the half-moon is a spiral with a line of knots that go up toward the universe.
Buddha was a philosopher, meditator, mendicant, religious leader, and spiritual teacher who lived in Nepal, India. He was the founder of Buddhism, and the word Buddha means the “awakened one” or the “enlightened one”. The word also represents a person who is free of ignorance and obstacles.
In Buddhism, the unalome symbol represents the path to enlightenment. The spiral characterizes the crown or head of Buddha. It is also the beginning of the unalome. As you progress through life’s path, the twists and turns and ups and downs in the pattern signify the struggles of life.
The symbol exemplifies the existence of human beings on this earthly plane and nurtures people’s awareness of their roles in life. According to Buddha, the unalome symbol is about scrutinizing your actions and learning from them. By doing so, you will be able to realize the meaning of magnanimity.
Male and Female Unalome Symbols
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If you are contemplating getting a unalome tattoo, it is important to understand what the symbol means as well as its latest variations. Most importantly, you need to be aware of what the symbol represents for both males and females. The truth is that the unalome symbol can represent both masculine and feminine energy depending on its placement.
For instance, if the spiral is at the bottom of the symbol and facing right, it is considered masculine in the Buddhist religion. And if the spiral is facing left and inwards, it is feminine. Today, people are taking some elements of the symbol that they like to create a final design that they are pleased to wear as a tattoo.
Unalome Tattoo Designs
Previously, unalome tattoos were designed as standalone tattoos without any modifications. But since tattoo artists have always endeavored to break away from the norm and try something different, most of them have started to integrate their own ideas into the unalome symbol. Some are even creating new and distinctive unalome designs that look completely different from the original one.
Lotus Flower Tattoos
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Many tattoo artists are coming up with new variants of the lotus flower while others are adding different symbols like triangles, dots, lines, and arrows to it. Sometimes you will come across different types of unalome tattoos with eyes. These eyes have different meanings depending on their placement, style, and the owner of the tattoo.
For example, the eyes could mean vision, clarity, Christianity, protection, soul, intelligence, focus, life, guardianship, prophecy, or deception. There are many other symbols that people choose to integrate into their unalome tattoos, including the Om sign, which is a sacred syllable designed to signify the core of the universe and the Celtic symbol that represents power, strength, and wisdom.
Different Body Placements of Unalome Tattoos
Unalome tattoos can be placed on different parts of the body, depending on a person’s preference and its meaning. For instance, most women prefer to place this tattoo in the middle of the breast area. For this part of the body, the unalome tattoo should be big enough to fill the space. Alternatively, your unalome tattoo can be placed within a larger tattoo.
Other common locations are the wrist, back of the neck, between shoulder blades, back of the ear, and forearm. Unalome tattoos in these areas often consist of extensive designs and additional features like a lotus flower, an eye, a half-moon, and other variations.
However, most Buddhists and Hindus are against the idea of placing unalome tattoos on the feet because they consider the feet to be dirty and unholy. Therefore, if you want to fully embrace the spiritual meaning of the unalome symbol and uphold its sacredness, never put it on your feet.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is unalome tattoo offensive?
It is not offensive to have a tattoo of the unalome symbol. However, it can be considered offensive by some people if you place it on some parts of the body like the feet. Because of the sacredness of the symbol, it should not be placed on the feet because they are considered to be always dirty.
What does an unalome lotus flower mean?
The Lotus flower is considered in different cultures, especially in Hindu and Buddhist religions, as a sign of cleanliness, enlightenment, self-regeneration, and renaissance. Its features resemble the human state: even when the roots are in dirty waters, the plant continues to produce beautiful flowers.
I hope that this article has helped you to understand the meaning of the unalome symbol and how you can wear it as a tattoo. I also hope that you have learned the different designs of unalome tattoos and their perfect body placements.
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