Thursday, October 27, 2005

The hijacking of Swastika / Swastik

A few days ago, I came across a photo-blog by two Americans who've visited India recently and what caught my attention is that these two guys were initially surprised ( they later found out its significance) to find the symbol of Swastika/Swastik being widely & prominently used everywhere in India.

Like most Westerners they too though that it kind of represents an allegiance to the philosophy of the Hitlers' Nazi Party or an acceptance of fascism and racism , of which the symbol is generally associated with in the West. Most of the Westerners would have shown the same reaction on their first visit to India as they are all unaware of its significance and importance in the Hindu way of life in India.

Swastika has been in use by the Hindus for thousands of years now. It is a symbol of good luck and auspiciousness for Hindus. It could be widely seen all over India on temples, houses, shops, new vehicles or machines etc.,I myself , having a Hindu brought up, have seen it being marked on my books during the festival of Lord Ganesha , on the wedding cards of my cousins and relatives and we even have it marked on the entrance of the meditation and puja room in our house and, to be honest I never thought of it in any other way than I knew it was.

It is really sad to see that such taboo is attached to a symbol because one crazy racist party hijacked it to represent there ideology. That's crazy!!!! It is like doing the same to the cross because of it being used by the crusaders during the 11th and 13th centuries or for the KKK using it as a prominent symbol. It sounds ridiculous right!

And after seeing the above mentioned blog I made some research on this topic and found out that Swastika was used by various civilizations during various periods of time and still certain cultures around the world use it in the similar way as the Hindus do. ( Check this! )

Now it is up to the large number of expats of these cultures present around the world to enlighten the world about the misconceptions on the use of Swastika and should see to that the neo-Nazi parties,still present in some parties of the world, stop using it to represent their ideology which one shouldn't forget resulted in one of the darkest moments known in history.

Update: And if you believe in this cause and would like to get the icon up in your blog then go over to this place and try out the code!

I'd like to make clear that i purely see this as a cultural issue and not as a religious or any other issue. I deeply respect and understand the complexity of this issue and what it means for the Holocaust Survivors around the world. I no way or ever will endorse the repulsive and unacceptable ideology of the Nazis.

1 comment:

Dr. Alamandrax said...

In case you're still interested in this, you might want to check out an earlier discussion[madhoo.com] on the same topic.