What is Yant?
(Thai: สักยันต์ RTGS: sak yan; Khmer: សាក់យ័ន្ត sak yoan; Burmese: တက်တူးထိုး) is a form of tattooing originally introduced by Khmer people of the Khmer Empire which influenced much of its culture in the region during its reign. It consists of sacred geometrical, animal and deity designs accompanied by Pali phrases that offer power, protection, fortune, charisma and other benefits for the bearer. These days, it remains popular in Cambodia, Thailand, and also in Laos and Myanmar (Burma). Sak means tattoo in Thai and Khmer, while yan, yant and yoan are the Thai and Khmer pronunciation for the Sanskrit word yantra respectively, a type of mystical diagram used in Dharmic religions.
Sak yan designs are normally tattooed by ruesi (the Thai form of rishi), wicha (magic) practitioners, and Buddhist monks, traditionally with a metal rod sharpened to a point (called a khem sak).
The Sacred Tattoos Of ThailanD
In Thailand, everything is connected to Buddhist culture, including their traditional tattoo, Sak Yant. Sak Yant given by monks or masters are believed to bestow mystical powers, passing down till today, it has become a combination of Buddhism and art. Modern Sak Yant improved by senior monks are said to offer benefits such as good fortune, power or charisma.
タイでタトゥーに取り憑かれる?! - Possessed By Ink: Thai Tattoo Festival
Wat Bang Phra Temple is Mecca for traditional Buddhist tattoos, or "Sak Yant", as they are known in Thailand. Here monks tattoo people year round within in the temple grounds and then once a year hold a Sak Yant festival during which those who have received tattoos return to pray and allow their tattoos to manifest themselves fully.
Former Monk Blesses Others With His Spiritual Tattoos | National Geographic
People from around the world travel to Bangkok, Thailand to see famed tattoo master Ajarn Noo Kanpai, seeking blessings and the spiritual powers of his sak yant tattoos.