If you follow celebrity news, you’ve probably seen some pictures over the past few years of some of our favorite stars sporting a little dot in between their eyes, otherwise known as the bindi. This beauty mark has been received from South Asian tradition (particularly Hinduism), and we’ve got to admit– we love it!
Here you can see Selena Gomez sporting one. It kind of fits in with the pseudo-Eastern/Middle Eastern/Indian/something far away feeling of her video for the song “Come & Get It.” While some people have raised concerns about the style (and the song) being a form of appropriation, we want to defend Selena here. As a member of Hispanic culture, she has a right to Spanish musical tradition, and Andalusian culture is heavily indebted to the 800-year rule of Islam. Granted, the majority of India isn’t today Muslim, but during the Golden Age of Islam, ideas were being trafficked back and forth across the Din at a breakneck pace. TL;DR– the past is complicated, but Hispanic culture has a right to a lot of Middle Eastern/South Asian stuff.
Oooookay, so then there’s Katy Perry. Here she is rocking a bindi. She uses a bunch of Near Eastern imagery in her “Dark Horse” video. For fuck’s sake, she had an elephant at her wedding; thankfully we’ve since moved past the elephant in the room that was her divorce. But calls against Perry have gone further than simple appropriation– some have actually called the “Dark Horse” video blasphemous as she waves her hands and magically turns a man into dust who should have been protected by the Name of Allah.
(Atheists, you are invited to snicker a bit here. We will wait for you to compose yourselves before we move forward.)
The thing is, we think that the bindi looks hot as hell on these girls. There’s something about it that attracts attention and psychic power to their faces, and it’s wonderful. If only there was an older tradition that we all share that could make this work?
It turns out there is something– trepanning. As early as the Neolithic period, skulls have been found with holes drilled in them. And don’t think this was just some sort of prehistoric brutality or torture– the patients lived. Healed bone is found around the edges of the burr hole.
The practice is found on both sides of the Atlantic, and dates back at least to 6500 BCE. It seems to have been quite popular amongst the Mesoamericans in pre-Colombian times, along with other skull-modification procedures.
While the bindi may help release the energies of the Anja chakra, a burr hole drilled into the skull can release demons. Bart Hughes in 1965 drilled a hole into his own skull with a Black & Decker power drill and released his inner energies, resulting in a permanent high!
Along with beauty concerns, think about some of our starlets who are resorting to drugs and other methods of reaching this level of consciousness. Miley Cyrus singing about needing cocaine and molly? How about a hole in the head instead? It’s quick, it’s natural, and it’s almost certainly not going to cause death if you are extremely, extremely cautious.
We assume that very, very little could go wrong. And since it dates back to the Neolithic, there’s no worry about appropriation! (Unless, that is, we stole it from the Neanderthals.)
ADAM WEISHAUPT is a Professor of Law at the University of Ingolstadt. His hobbies include rationalism, masonry, and opposition to Kantian idealism.