A Collection of Strange Beliefs, Amusing Deceptions, and Dangerous Delusions

Critical Thinker's Dictionary

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swastika

The swastika is a symbol representing the Nazi party and all of the evil that party stood for: anti-Semitism, the Holocaust, hatred of homosexuals, desire to eliminate the handicapped and infirm, etc.

It wasn't always that way. The swastika is an ancient and  frequently recurring symbol, found in many different cultures during many different times. One can find the swastika associated with Hopi Indians, Aztecs, the Celts, Buddhists, Greeks, Hindus (swastika derives from Sanskrit and means to be well), etc.

Whatever and however noble its ancient heritage, the symbol of the swastika has been forever tainted in the West because of its Nazi association.

Some occultists think the swastika has special value because it is found in many cultures that were unaware of each other.  How can this be, they ask, unless there is some universal significance to the symbol? Easy. The symbols that are called swastikas are often quite distinct. Drawing a straight line with perpendicular arms at each end going in opposite directions is one of the simplest drawings possible. Like the cross and the circle, it should be expected to be found repeatedly because of its simplicity. Swastikas are just variations on this theme. Several swastika designs cross 3-line figures. The Nazi has the arms going to the right and tilts the figure so that the tip of one of the arms is at the top. The Jain is the same, only it is not tilted. Other so-called swastikas have no arms and consist of crosses with curved lines.  Some symbols look more like propellers than swastikas. The Aztec symbol looks like a stylized version of Notre Dame's fighting leprechaun. The XFL Football League logo looks like a medieval weapon. The so-called Celtic swastika hardly resembles a swastika in any significant way. The Buddhist and Hopi swastikas look like mirror images of the Nazi symbol; perhaps this is because the Hopi and Buddhist symbols are signs of peace, prosperity, good luck and love, not hate and bigotry.

further reading

Nazi Swastika or Ancient Symbol? Time to Learn the Difference by Chirag Badlani

The Swastika and the Nazis by Servando González

Origins of the swastika - BBC

Last updated December 23, 2013

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