The Unalome Symbol

Unalome Symbol
The Unalome symbol is rooted in Buddhism and contains a single spiraling line that ends in a straight line. It represents a person's journey through life. 

The Unalome is famous as a symbol and tattoo among people. It’s a unique symbol that embodies wisdom and the path to excellence. This spiritual symbol is used in religions like Buddhism and Hinduism. 

It’s also commonly used in yoga practices, which have their roots in Hinduism. The Unalome depicts existence on the earth while also showing transcendence. 

History of the Unalome Symbol

The Unalome symbol consists of a spiral at the bottom, twists and knots, and ends with a sleek line and three dots at the top. It’s a common design that people across the globe get as a tattoo. 

unalome symbol
An example of a Unalome tattoo placed on someone’s forearm.

This universally relevant symbol has been common in Eastern culture for many centuries.

Significance in Buddhism 

The Unalome symbol has a spiritual connection to Theravada Buddhism. It represents the path to enlightenment.

The Buddhist view suggests that the Unalome reflects the life path of every individual. It implies that spiritual growth paths can be straight or circular, paved with anxiety, joy, or love.

The Unalome symbol indicates that life’s journey is full of suffering. However, a person must push forward and learn new things, even in difficult and unfortunate times. The Buddhist symbol also teaches its adherents to look at themselves objectively.

The Unalome ultimately symbolizes the road to enlightenment. It teaches that this road isn’t always clear or has a proper direction.

Significance in Hinduism 

The Unalome symbol has a similar connotation in Hinduism. In the Hindu religion, the meaning of the Unalome symbol is that it is the Third Eye of Lord Shiva, the supreme God of the Hindu religion. 

The Unalome and Lord Shiva

Lord Shiva is called the destroyer because he eliminates all obstacles from people’s lives. He takes his place at the top of the hierarchy, from where he looks over the cosmos and changes it as per his wishes. 

Shiva is also known as the protector of the entire universe. He monitors everything and transforms it when necessary. 

The spiral base of the Unalome symbol depicts the eye of Lord Shiva. Humans are given lives with no guidance and have to figure out where to go. The ascending design resembles a line with knots, which signifies spiritual turning points in the lives.

The Unalome with a Lotus Blossom

The knots symbolize obstacles one must overcome to reach the lotus bloom placed at the top. The Lotus blossom is the symbol of perfection in the Hindu religion. Besides that, it represents Moksha, or enlightenment (known as Nirvana in the Buddhist religion).

Moksha indicates that you reach the top summit and open the spiritual lotus to get liberated from the continuous cycle of birth, death, and reincarnation.

What Does the Circle in the Unalome Mean?

At the base of the Unalome lies a circle, a spiritual symbol where the center depicts the start of the journey of enlightenment. The spiral shows fear, anxiety, doubts, uncertainties, and weaknesses a person can face.

The circle in the Unalome symbol can also indicate the inner struggle to let go of earthly desires and possessions. Human beings are materialistic, and the wish to indulge in the comforts and luxuries of life never ends. 

The spiral represents a trap of delusion from which one cannot find a way out. One must think beyond material desires and possessions to escape this spiral. 

What Is The Unalome Lotus?

The Unalome lotus is a simple variation of the traditional symbol, where the lotus replaces the dot. The lotus flower holds much significance in the Buddhist tradition. It represents the spiritual awakening of the Lord Buddha.

The flower is a reminder that all people have the potential and strength to reach awakening. Unalome lotus tattoo also symbolizes purity, rebirth, renunciation, and the presence of Buddha.

The symbol is also popularly associated with Padmasambhava, who introduced Buddhism in Tibet. 

Where Should You Get A Unalome Tattoo?

Unalome designs are popular for tattoos, and people get them in different places. While the middle of the chest is a popular placement for the tattoo, people also get it on the wrist, forearms, neck, and back of the ear and may even add variations.

Since it is a sacred symbol, getting it tattooed on foot might be disrespectful, and even tattoo artists might advise against it.

unalome symbol
Here the Unalome is tattooed on an ankle, a popular place for this symbol as a tattoo.

What Does Unalome Mean For Females?

The Unalome symbol can also have male and female variations depending on the placement. If the base of the Unalome, the spiral bottom, faces right and outward, it is a male Unalome. But in Buddhism, if it faces left and inwards, it is a female Unalome. 

The type of Unalome you pick will determine your energy. To radiate or embrace feminine energy, you must get a Unalome tattoo that points left and inwards. 

A powerful and popular symbol, Unalome has roots in Hindu and Buddhist cultures and traditions. The Unalome symbolizes the path to enlightenment, which makes it one of the most popular tattoo designs among yoga enthusiasts, spiritual people, and religious devotees.

Interested in learning about more religious and mythological symbols? Check out this article on the Metatron Cube!


Vanessa's liberal arts background has prepared her well for Symbol Scholar. A self-proclaimed theology nerd, Vanessa has interests in world religions, Reformation theology, history, and more. When she's not working, Vanessa enjoys spending time with her family, reading, exercising, and watching professional basketball.

Recent Posts