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Sak Yant Tattoos

Sak Yant Tattoos

A Yant is a sacred geometrical design. These symbols are seen everywhere in South East Asia, and are truly believed to bestow protective charms onto those who have them in their possession. A Sak Yant is protective symbol etched into the skin. “Sak” means “to tap”, and the Bhuddist Monks who give these enchantments literally poke-in these designs with a meter long metal rod.To make things even more extreme, what the ink contains is entirely up to the monk that is giving you the enchantment. He chooses what magical ingredients he would like to work with. I’ve heard rumours of snake venom, chin fat of the deceased, and charcoal from burned enemies.

I don’t know what was in the ink of my tattoo, but what I do know is that I’m supposedly now blessed with good luck and safety (Generally a pretty great thing to have). The truly devoted can have their entire backs covered with spells protecting them from everything; bullets to the bad words of others.

Also… Did I mention that it only costs about 1 USD per Tattoo? These monks definitely aren’t in it for the money, nor the street cred. Each follows the teachings of Bhudda, that means no alcohol, and no touching women.

Yantra tattooing saw a glimpse of mainstream society when Angelina Jolie received 2 while filming “Tomb Raider” in South East Asia. Also, the next time you watch UFC or a Muy Thai fight, look at the fighter’s backs. Quite often you’ll see a few Sak Yants to make them “As slippery as an eel” or “As strong as an ape”.

This was easily one of the most incredible (and a little bit painful) experiences I’ve had travelling. If you didn’t notice in the video, I went back twice for more enchantments.

(For those interested: My tattoos were done by Luang Pi Nunn at Wat Bang Phra near Bangkok, Thailand)

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19 Comments

Seattle Dredge - 11. Jan, 2012 - Reply

Does that mean that women can’t get tattooed? Or do they just do it without touching them? I definitely plan on going there–thanks for the tip, and great video 😀

Mike Corey - 11. Jan, 2012 - Reply

Haha he actually has a big long candle stick he uses to push the girls around, and then makes sure there is a cloth between him and her skin the entire time. Most the girls I saw get tattooed had it done in “Holy Oil” so they could have the enchantment, not not have any marks on their skin after it healed!

Seattle Dredge - 11. Jan, 2012 - Reply

Hahaaa that’s amazing. I’m so going there. Only no holy oil; I do enjoy a good skin-marking :p

Seattle Dredge - 11. Jan, 2012 - Reply

oh and p.s. — love the new site design!

Sara - 06. Mar, 2012 - Reply

Hey this is really cool, Mike! I was wondering what does your tattoo protect against?

have a nice day,
Sara @

Mike Corey - 13. Mar, 2012 - Reply

Hey Sara!

They are suppose to give me good luck and safety. I think I’ll be going back some point to get a really nice one that grants you protection when travelling. I think that’s pretty relevant!

Derek - 27. May, 2012 - Reply

Hello. Just wondering what kind of safety/sanitation they have with the needle/tattooing?? And have you gotten blood work done after you gotten these?

Mike Corey - 11. Jun, 2012 - Reply

It’s a bit “Hit and Miss” for sanitation depending on where you go.
I did some serious research before getting mine done, because there definitely are some serious things to think about. I took Bacteriology, Virology and Parasitology in University so I have a decent understanding on how diseases are spread. I mixed my knowledge from school with the facts on the web and felt comfortable with the decision.
I have not been tested since returning, but I never would have went through with it if I thought I had a risk of catching something. In the end, it’s a judgement call, and we all have to live with our decisions.

Derek - 22. Jun, 2012 - Reply

Did you get them done at the temple just west of Bangkok city?

Mike Corey - 29. Jun, 2012 - Reply

Yup. About 40 mins west. A place called Wat Bang Phra.

Erick - 06. Oct, 2012 - Reply

do they have a tatto design catalogue from which u can choose the design u want?

Mattias - 16. Nov, 2012 - Reply

Hi. I’ll go to wat bang phra in February 2013 and would really appreciate some advice.

Do you know if Luang Pi Nunn is still there? Can’t se him at the sakyant.Com
Site.

Where in the temple is he located?

Really appreciate some help.

Thanks. Mattias from Sweden.

I watched this video last night and just got my Sak Yant today at the very same wat (maybe even by the very same monk!) I let him choose the design and placement (Hah Taew). I was actually his first patron of the day (arrived at 7:45am). Was such an awesome experience, as long as I don’t get hepatitis…

serly - 21. Mar, 2013 - Reply

Just got mine three days ago at Wat Bang Phra, with the same monk, Luang Pi Nunn.

[…] Location/Map: Nakhon Chai Si, Thailand Cost: $2.40 US Useful Notes: You’re encouraged to make an additional donation, and most do. An envelope with $3 (100 baht) placed in the monk’s alms jar is common. For detailed directions to the Wat, check out my friend Ian’s great post. He was inked by the exact same monk, as was Yvonne, Kristin, and Mike. […]

Sam - 27. Jun, 2013 - Reply

What were the rules of abstention that they gave to you?

Mike Corey - 08. Jul, 2013 - Reply

There were a few rules, some of which were pretty specific.
– No eating Pumpkin
– Women can’t sit on you
– Don’t walk under a bridge with a dried river
– Don’t sit on urns
– Only eat Bananas by breaking them into pieces

And some others. I’m trying my best…

Christian Guimaraes - 25. Jun, 2014 - Reply

Hey Mike, awesome video and amazing Sak Yant. I’ve been reading a lot of different information about choosing the Sak Yant. I saw on your video that you actually went through a book containing the different types, did you choose the one you wanted? Also, how did you get special permission to film inside? did you go with a translator?
Thanks for the help, and keep up the great videos!
Take care

thomas jennings - 18. Jul, 2014 - Reply

did u just clean it like a regular tattoo like putting vasaline or and ointment on it