Tattoo symbols / The heart

Updated: Oct 13, 2018

Let's find out the deeper connection of the heart symbol in tattoo art... Why make this tattoo choice, where to place it, what energy will you get from it!

I guess it is one of the first things you learned to draw since childhood. Even those who declare never to have painted a straight line in their lives, have signed a card with a heart for a finish... In valentine's day you come to detest it. It is an inspiration for sweets, home decorations, cards, logos, fabrics, paintings, jewellery, illustrations... it is one of the most recognisable symbols of modern culture and stands for love and the human heart. But how did it become so popular? What is it's origin?

If we take a walk in nature, we will immediately notice that the heart shape in nature is very common. Leaves, swans kissing, clouds, stones, pedals of flowers, there is no shape that nature doesn't include.

In the prehistoric cave of Magura in Bulgaria the are 7.000-10.000 old paintings that represent figures in everyday activities, calendar phases and some symbolic figures that for some researchers are an evidence of the heart origin symbolism.

According to those studies the heart derives from a stage of consciousness that represents lust and desire. It is painted as male and female forms holding their arms up to the sun and receiving life energy.

Hearts can be seen on the Bible Jesus holds in the Empress Zoë mosaic in the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul. It probably dates from 1239 .

The sacred heart in Roman Catholic church is a representation of the heart of Jesus, drawn with a light around it, a crown of thorns and bleeding. It reminds us of the divine love of Christ for humanity that caused him to suffer in order to save us. The first indications of devotion to the Sacred Heart are found in the eleventh and twelfth centuries in the Benedictine and Cistercian monasteries. It is the absolute empathetic symbol.

The truth is though that the heart symbol with it's present meaning of romantic love was first illustrated during the Middle Ages. This makes sense because romantic love and marriage the way we know it in the Western world today was an invention of those days.