Debate on the morality of tattoos

The big difference os that a tattoo is permanent where as you can change style of hair, take a t shirt off etc

How can that possibly make any difference???

Piercings are pretty permanent too.

I don’t see how “doing something one day” or “doing something 10 months” or “doing something 100 years” has any basis on morality. It’s either moral or it’s not.

By the very large number of priests with tattoos and the church not condemning them at all in 2000 years, I think it’s clear it is not immoral.

Hey im not making it into a moral question…I agree with you . At our catholic school my boys have a teacher who I couldnt admire more…he has tattoos. .religious ones of prayer hands etc im just saying if you’re thinking about it you have to remember they are permanent and I know of many who regret them…what you do at 18 yrs mighr not be what you want at fat 50yrs!!!

With that I definitely agree. It’s something permanent so best to think long and hard on it. I’ve wanted one for years bounces a few ideas around, but have held off. I think I’ve decided but I’m in no rush.

Tattoos are not the same thing in every culture. Most people I know who have tattoos are: grandmothers/fathers, mothers/fathers, middle school and high school children, regular church-goers, teachers, ka kumu, police officers, public servants, chefs, singers, and finally nice, normal people. But then again, most people I know who have tattoos are Native Hawaiian. To say that tattoos are historically ‘bad’ is just untrue…they have been many different things to different people. Sorry to be so direct, but European culture is not the only culture…and it’s not American culture.

I have about 11 tats on my arms.

One is of Our Lord and one of a Celtic cross. In the process of having some removed via laser! That hurts too!

I dont see anything wrong in having tattoos. Of course, some can be quite offensive etc etc!

Has Europe changed in that tattoos arent traditional and wasnt originally in their culture? I suppose it doesn’t matter because immigration has made the difference? Or why has there been an explosion of the number of people having tattoos. …the last 20 yrs has seen a big difference!

I don’t really know what you’re asking here and I’m not looking to debate anything. There’s really nothing to debate. I’m just saying that I hear over and over again, “Tattoos are historically something that pirates, prisoners, and thugs get. I don’t want to be associated with that” or something to that effect. Which is fine, but it’s a narrow view. Tattoos are historically normal in some cultures, not just something for a subset of people.

I once had a girl chastise me for having a tattoo and she proudly proclaimed, “I would never get a tattoo because I’m traditional!” To which my response was, “I got a tattoo because I’m traditional.” Traditions vary from group to group and to say there is ONE tradition or ONE history for all people is just untrue and narrow.

Me too…its just a point to say tattoos have become very popular for some reason ? Just out of interest thats all!

Oh, yeah, I don’t know why tattoos have become more popular on the mainland US. I’d say it’s a fad, but I guess only time will tell.

I am aware of the military issued tattoos of the past. I was addressing the ones received on their own during the war. Most of these were simple in the message. Like Mother, the Flag, heart with a wife’s or girlfriend’s name, etc. We are obviously in agreement that ink on skin does not effect the person’s character. That was the meaning of my post. Yes, I agree; the message that the tattoo conveys may be relevant to the moral question. And also, in many cultures tattoos are a cultural expression. Just clarifying my post.

Immoral? Clearly not by church standards or most personal standards expressed here.

Wise? Well clearly there is no consensus there.

Yeah, it’s difficult to have a consensus when there are so many variables (different tattoo designs, placement on the body, size, and reasoning of the person getting the tattoo, imagined reasoning of the person getting a tattoo; I could go on.

Here’s one:

"Is, then, the mark of tattooing lawful for the Catholic? Not wishing to exaggerate what may be a small matter, I judge that I speak with the mind of the Church when I say that tattooing is at least unseemly for a Catholic. It surely could weaken Faith in Christ for one to place a non-Christ permanent mark on his body. Our body is the temple of the Holy Ghost, says St. Paul. Let that temple be preserved from unworthy marks.

 "In Christ Jesus,

 "Fr. Stephen Somerville "

And another:

Is getting a tattoo against church teaching? (i chose this forum cause the others were full.)
Answer by Fr. John Echert on 04-28-2005:
"It can be, depending upon it content, location and the intention of the person receiving it. My uncles got tattoos in WWII while in the Navy, of an anchor or something similar; this was commonly done and while they regret it now, with faded colors and the passing of time, it was not a mortal sin when done. But anything intended to be sexually provocative, contrary to religion, or excessive could very well be a mortal sin. Be careful…

"Thanks, James

“Father Echert”

My personal take on tattoos is that if God wanted them on the bodies’ of his children, then we all would have been born with them. And I know some people say get a tattoo for the purpose of remembering a loved one. I still think there are better ways to remember a loved one. Many people also say that they will just get an “innocent” one. Really, what is the point?

It's not just those two antipodes. In much of society it is just stupid to get marked up and get rejected from career opportunities because of it. That does not mean the employer thinks it is "from the devil". There is an unfortunate correlation between tatts and crime in the US.

What would Jesus do? Would it glorify God? If I was wearing a tattoo, it would be the same as saying to my Maker: You made me less than! There is nothing we can add to our bodies to improve its appearance. We are perfect just the way He created us to be.:thumbsup:

What would Jesus do? Does it glorify God? If I was wearing a tattoo, It would be like saying to my Maker: You made me less than! :wave:

I guess it depends on the tattoo.

I have a tatto of our lady on one shoulder and jesus on the other:)

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