When the aquatic insects known as water nymphs molt, they leave the water and live the rest of their lives on land. Water nymphs who have yet to molt do not know what fate lies beyond the surface, but they know that they must join their brothers there someday.
Just so, we do not know what will happen when we die.
One way we attempt to reconcile our fear of the unknown is through our belief in angels. Angels are the heavenly forms of the souls that have passed on from earth. For some, they are simply a memory, a vision hinted at by inexplicable good luck and providence.
For others, they are real, tangible beings who pass through this vale, casting protection on those whom they cherished during their lifetimes.
Christian society places the statues of angels throughout its holiest places. They grace churches, baptismal fonts, wedding altars, and graveyards. Their existence is a matter of faith. But on a symbolic level, angels also represent all of those who have come before us, who made society what it is, and upon whose shoulders we stand.
People receive the angel statue tattoo for any number of reasons. They can symbolize and solidify one’s faith, mark the life of one who has passed on, or ask for protection from one who may be watching.
All who bear the angel statue tattoo are just like the water nymphs who have not yet surfaced: none know what will befall them when they pass on from this vale, but all have faith that they will live and prosper in the realm that lies beyond.