Oroborus
Pronounciation
or-oh-BOR-us

just beginning the research, but've been thinking about this for a while.

Oroborus is a well-known symbol. scully had it tattooed on her lower back in X-files.

the most common interpretations of this symbol include:

source There are two primary types of Ouroboros: one which merely holds the tip of its tail between its jaws, and one which swallows it(self). The former is static. It describes a circle, and partakes of the symbolic meaning of the circle, which is perfect, eternal, and divides the universe into inside and outside. It is a magic barrier or circle of protection, and represents eternal life and perfection. The Ouroboros that swallows its tail is dynamic. It describes a spiral force, and partakes of the symbolic meaning of the spiral, which is cyclical, moving, changing, evolving. If we follow mentally the consequences of a serpent swallowing its tail, we see that in a magical sense it will reduce itself to a single point and vanish from the universe utterly. Hence the Ouroboros swallowing its tail represents the gateway between our universe and the absolute, or to put it more poetically, the Eye of God. [3]

The worm, snake, serpent or dragon biting or swallowing its own tail is a powerful symbol of infinity, and also of universal nature, of completion, perfection and totality, the endless round of embodied existence, the union of the chthonic with the celestial. Parallels abound - the figure-8 symbol of infinity (quite possibly derived from the uroboros), the Chinese yin-yang symbol, the Buddhist wheel of Life, etc.

but there was an interpretation that i was inspired by while reading Nothing Special: Living Zen, but i'll have to go back to that book to find it. but it's basically this, more or less:

source a less frequently contemplated interpretation of ouroboros has to do with darkness. Consider the yin/yang (which is actually a trinity, not a duality) or another such symbol, with the ring around it seen as the serpent swallowing its tail. One's mind is usually led to think of the circle as containing that which is within it, but it can also be seen as the border of that which lies beyond the inner meaning. In the case of the yin/yang for example, since it symbolizes the oneness of all things, the yin and yang seperate-yet-as-one (call them love and will... will loves to will and love wills to love...they are part of one another and are even as one) and representing all the universe/reality that exists. In this light the ouroboros becomes the edge of the outer darkness; the potential of all that is not or is not yet concieved and created; the surface of the deep; the great mystery; the unknown.

i don't see this as something negative, dark, morbid. rather i see it as a boundary that needs to be crossed. an end to the cycle. a frontier to that which is beyond.

so, i'm thinking of getting a tattoo of the Oroborus RELEASING the tail from it's mouth. the visual of the release should be fairly pronounced, so that it's clear that a breaking free has occured. i have seen Oroborus pictures where the mouth doesn't quite grasp the tail. so i want it clear what's happening.

instead of a serpent, i want a dragon.

i want something inside the (broken) circle created by the Oroborus. perhaps a chinese or japanese character. i was thinking arabic or hindi, but couldn't easily find arabic or hindi translation sites.

chinese or japanese characters i may use might be one of these words: beyond, release, frontier, break, liberate. i'm thinkin' "beyond".

 

 

 

NOTES:
OUROBOROS
Alternative spellings include: Oroborus, Uroboros, and Oureboros.

Pronounciation
Or-O-bOr-Os,

http://abacus.best.vwh.net/oro/ouroboros.html
http://www.spirasolaris.ca/sbb4f.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ouroboros
http://www.literate-lemur.com/ouroboros2/


Ouroboros ("the tail-devourer") is the symbolization of concepts such as
completion, perfection and totality, the endless round of existence, etc.
It is usually represented as a worm or serpent with its tail in its mouth.

ENDLESS ROUND OF EXISTENCE

The worm, snake, serpent or dragon biting or swallowing its own tail is a
powerful symbol of infinity, and also of universal nature, of completion,
perfection and totality, the endless round of embodied existence, the union
of the chthonic with the celestial.  Parallels abound - the figure-8 symbol
of infinity (quite possibly derived from the uroboros), the Chinese yin-yang
symbol, the Buddhist wheel of Life, etc.

http://www.transtopia.org/symbolism.html

There are two primary types of Ouroboros: one which merely holds the tip of
its tail between its jaws, and one which swallows it(self). The former is
static. It describes a circle, and partakes of the symbolic meaning of the
circle, which is perfect, eternal, and divides the universe into inside and
outside. It is a magic barrier or circle of protection, and represents eternal
life and perfection. The Ouroboros that swallows its tail is dynamic. It
describes a spiral force, and partakes of the symbolic meaning of the spiral,
which is cyclical, moving, changing, evolving. If we follow mentally the
consequences of a serpent swallowing its tail, we see that in a magical sense
it will reduce itself to a single point and vanish from the universe utterly.
Hence the Ouroboros swallowing its tail represents the gateway between our
universe and the absolute, or to put it more poetically, the Eye of God. [3]

http://everything2.com/index.pl?node=ouroboros

Symbolism
The "tail-devourer" is a very common symbol in alchemy and magic. It occurs
around the world in various forms, and is generally said to be a symbol of
eternity. There are two basic types: a serpent or serpentine creature with the
curved or looped tip of its own tail held between its jaws; or a serpent or
serpentine creature swallowing the end of its own tail. These types are not
usually distinguished, but they have completely different meanings.

The Ouroboros that holds its tail between its jaws is static. It describes a
circle, and partakes of the symbolic meaning of the circle, which is perfect,
eternal, and divides the universe into inside and outside. It is a magic
barrier or circle of protection, and represents eternal life and perfection.
A magic circle defines any concept or object or place, and gives it a unique
identity, by separating it from everything else.

By contrast, the Ouroboros that swallows its tail is dynamic. It describes a
spiral force, and partakes of the symbolic meaning of the spiral, which is
cyclical, moving, changing, evolving. If we follow mentally the consequences
of a serpent swallowing its tail, we see that in a magical sense it will reduce
itself to a single point and vanish from the universe utterly. Hence the
Ouroboros swallowing its tail represents the gateway between our universe and
the absolute, or to put it more poetically, the Eye of God. The fully expressed
form of this symbol would be a spiral line that expands from a point and traces
the skin of a three-dimensional torus or doughnut shape as it reaches its
maximum expansion and contracts back in upon the same point that is both its
origin and destination. This dynamic form of the Ouroboros is a magical model
for the present cycle of our universe, which expanded from a point with spiral
energy, and will ultimately collapse back into that point at the end of the
present cycle.


http://www.chinalanguage.com/CCDICT/

unknown - hmmf

beyond
  - border; boundary; frontier; far and remote places; wilds; beyond the frontier

release
  - release; let go; loosen; unleash; relax; easy

free
  - let go; release; free; liberate; loosen


japanese:
http://dict.regex.info/cgi-bin/j-e/dict

beyond
  - goshi . (n-suf) across; over; beyond; (P)
  - konosaki . (n-adv) beyond this point; from now on; after this
  - mongai . (n) outside a gate; beyond one's area of expertise
  - tengai . (n) beyond the heavens; farthest regions
  - toorikosu . (v5s) to go past (a place or thing); to go beyond
  - wakugai . (n) beyond (the) limits; (P)

release
  - hakkei . (n) (MA) release internal power (martial arts term)
  - kaihou . (n,vs) release; unleashing; liberation; emancipation; (P)

unknown - feh

frontier
  - furontia . (n) frontier; (P)  (too long)

break
  - dakai . (n) break in the deadlock; (P)
  - fukkireru . (v1) to break through; to become unbound by; to ooze out
  - furihanasu . (v5s) to break free of

free
  - tokihanasu . (v5s) to liberate; to set free