Tattoos of Tibetan Refugees: Pasang


[VIDEO] Pasang came to India in 2007 with the same aim as many youth, to get an education, and have an audience with the Dalai Lama. His skin bears the marks of Western, Tibetan and Chinese cultures.

Pasang got his first tattoos in Tibet, both were done by hand with an thread-wrapped needle soaked in ink. He says, while having a Tibetan tattoo is trendy, that, “Many of my friends know Chinese, plus people don’t pay much attention to Tibetan language. They think having Chinese tattoo is cooler.” His forearm reads A bad boy turned good is worth more that tons of gold.

After he arrived in India, he found he had a lot of time on his hands, bored, he had a friend tattoo a dragon on his chest and an eagle on his back. They were done by ‘drawing’ on the design with the thick ink found inside a ball point pen. Then, a needle was steadily poked into this to push the thick ink into his skin.

Pasang, like all those interviewed in this series said he certainly not have left Tibet had it not been invaded. His aim is to go abroad, “I escaped from Tibet without any papers, so it is obviously dangerous for me to go back. Besides I don’t see any hope for my future especially with intensifying restrictions inside Tibet. So going abroad in the hope to stand on my own feet is the only option for me.”

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