When I was in Israel and Palestine during the summer of 2005, I decided to get a tattoo. I had thought it would be cool to get one for awhile, but after seeing the Coptic cross tattoo that some friends of mine had gottein in Cairo, I was determined to get one as well. It turned out that I was in Cairo on the wrong day and so wasn’t able to get one at the cathedral for a couple dollars.
However, while I was in Jerusalem one day to hang out with some folks at Sabeel, Naim Ateek’s daughter, Nevart, said she knew a really great place in West Jerusalem for a tattoo. So we went, I drew him what I was hoping it’d look like and then I sat down and he started. The tattoo artist humored me enough to let me take my picture with him after he was done.
So I figured that’d be it, right? I got my tattoo.
But a few years later, I started to want another one. And then today, after reading Travis Keller’s blog about wanting to get a tattoo, I started thinking about it again.
But the obvious question is – what would I get? Where would I get it? And what am I still going to be okay having inked on my body tomorrow, next week or 20 years from now?
Travis was talking about wanting some Greek or Hebrew words. I have some friends who have gotten similar tattoos. There is one word that I really like: Epektasis. This Greek word is often connected to St. Gregory of Nyssa of “stretching out toward” or “perpetual seeking.” It’s this idea that we are constantly and forever seeking. We are progressing toward and participating in God in love and knowledge. It’d be a little cooler than getting “It’s all about the journey – not the destination” tattooed on myself, but it’s a similar idea. And it’s one that I really resonate with and believe strongly in. So, that’s what I’m thinking right now.
Naturally I’d want to get it around my bulging bicep. Obviously.
Do you have any tattoos? What are they? Any advice or thoughts for me?