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A new form of body modification

I read an article in Harper's Magazine a little less than a year ago discussing the ancient practice of trepanation. Trepanation is the drilling of a single hole into the skull for the purpose of permanently increasing one's consciousness by increasing blood flow to the brain; its usage as a therapeutic method goes back for centuries. The article caused me to consider a fresh and very possible usage of one of the oldest bastions of body modification. In the article, it was mentioned that a hole drilled in the skull (trepanned) would never close up. This is because the bone itself would never actually re-grow; only skin would grow on the area surrounding the hole. The only danger of this open hole is if something small enough to fit was forced directly into it, which makes the probability of low of any such problems (think about it, a small hole in the skull would not be any more vulnerable to intrusion than the eyes would be). So theoretically speaking, would it not be possible to use trepanation as a form of body art? A series of holes drilled into the skull in a geometric pattern of sorts would be a beautiful, permanent body modification. It could easily be covered by growing out one's hair, whose growth would not be impeded as the holes would not be nearly large enough to cause notable difference. And this is a very key point ­ I'm not talking about a massive quantity of large, gaping holes. If the holes were too large or were located too close together, the structural integrity of the skull would be put at risk. The holes would have to be small and very strategically placed. Drilling them over an extended period of time, rather than in one session would also be recommended so as to minimize the chance of infection and to minimize the trauma to the skull. Some possibilities for designs would be holes in the shape of a triangle, a diamond, or anything simple like that. The end points of a kanji character could be drilled in or the points of one's astrological sign are another idea. I personally like the idea of two straight lines of holes, about three inches apart, of running from the crown of the skull to the anterior hairline. There would have to be a distance of about an inch and a half or more between each hole to not affect the strength of the skull. The angle each hole is drilled at would have to be kept constant also, so as not to make them look asymmetrical in any way. It would be best to treat such a modification just as you would a tattoo. If you are male and there is a moderate possibility of you going bald one day, then do not have any holes drilled. This is unless of course you are extremely secure in your career and are not worried about the possibility of the holes being constantly visible to the public. The same points go for having your head tattooed of course. Use common sense and foresight, never rush into anything, and always remember that choosing such a permanent path is a choice you will never be able to stray from. Also, the alleged benefits of trepanation could be enjoyed in the performing of this modification. While I admit doing such a thing to one's skull seems quite intense, I cannot help but think of the incredible feeling of running my hand across my shaven head and feeling a series of holes beneath my fingertips. It would be absolutely amazing and unique form of self expression. Once the skin healed over the inside of the holes, it would give the effect of them having been there naturally. With such a modification you would have the most open mind on Earth, no arguments about it. You would feel sensations that no one else would ever even be able to imagine imagining.

I wrote this article because I want to show people that the possibilities for interesting and helpful body modifications are nearly endless. I am firmly against doing a modification purely for the sake of doing it. However, good reasons can be found for performing nearly any modification that has been performed. Jon Cobb once said in reference to his reasons for piercing the uvula, "When you put a pair of forceps on a uvula, it feels like you've grabbed the center of the mass of the inside of your head..." I believe this statements sums up part of the importance of having your body modified not only for the look, but for the feelings involved in the actual process. We can much more clearly remember where we were in life by recalling a certain feeling or emotion, than if we simply recall the way we looked at the time. A person can be instantly reminded of who, what, and where they were at the time they got a certain modification due solely to the vast array of feelings and thoughts involved in getting it ­ feelings and thoughts burned too deeply into the mind to ever forget. You cannot know where you are going if you do not know where you have been, modifications tell us exactly where we have been and exactly why we were there.

-- Nathan What do you think? Email: [email protected]


submitted by: Anonymous
on: 15 Oct. 2001
in Scarification

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