What is this?
An ancient symbol
When people see a Swastika on a Hindu or Buddhist temple they are often very surprised. Many of us don’t know that the swastika symbol is actually more than 3,000 years old and throughout history has been used by many cultures, religions and countries, including Hinduism, Buddhism and ancient Scandinavia as a symbol of good fortune. In the old Indian language of Sanskrit, it means ‘all is well.’
In fact, prior to World War II, even Coca Cola and The Boy Scouts used the symbol for a time. This all seems very strange when we think upon all of the terrible things that the swastika has since come to represent.
Today, the swastika is widely recognized as the symbol used by the German Nazi Party during World War II (1939-1945), led by Adolf Hitler. The black, four-armed emblem was used on flags, arm bands, coins, military uniforms and equipment.
Sixty million people were killed in the war, including the genocide of over six million Jewish men, women and children who were indiscriminately killed by the Nazi Party during The Holocaust. That’s why for many people the swastika is a very very negative symbol. But when you visit Hindi or Buddhist temples, you can see swastikas all over.
Something to think about…
The use of the swastika was banned in Germany after World War II. Do you think mankind will one day remember what the ancient swastika symbol stood for? Or do you think its use during World War II has changed its meaning forever?