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   Undertoad  Wednesday Jan 26 11:45 AM

1/26/2005: Hindu swastika



According to Hindu mythology, Swastika is the sign of prosperity. It wasn't their fault that it came to represent Nazism and thus a kind of evil. And so Hindus have launched a campaign to reclaim the swastika from its Nazi past and reinstate the 5,000-year-old emblem as a symbol of good luck.

Marketing is important, even to religions and schools of thought. But in this case they have a pretty difficult way to go. I'm not sure I could be convinced that this is a symbol of luck and/or prosperity. I don't mind if the Hindus use it differently, but I don't expect them to change our culture's notion of what it is.

All of which is very strange, when you think about it; it's just a symbol, just a mark, just a set of lines. Or is it?



glatt  Wednesday Jan 26 11:51 AM

I remember seeing swastikas in the Southwest in rock paintings by the Navahos? or another native american tribe. I thought some damn punk kids had vandalized the place, but found out later I was wrong.



Beestie  Wednesday Jan 26 12:18 PM

Who named it the "Swastika?" Is that the original name or is that what the Nazi's named it??



Happy Monkey  Wednesday Jan 26 12:45 PM

Apparently they hired some British royalty to help their marketing effort...



xoxoxoBruce  Wednesday Jan 26 12:51 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beestie
Who named it the "Swastika?" Is that the original name or is that what the Nazi's named it??
(Pronunciation Key)swas·ti·ka Listen: [ swst-k ]
n.
An ancient cosmic or religious symbol formed by a Greek cross with the ends of the arms bent at right angles in either a clockwise or a counterclockwise direction.
Such a symbol with a clockwise bend to the arms, used as the emblem of the Nazi party and of the German state under Adolf Hitler, officially adopted in 1935.
---------------------------------------------------------------
[Sanskrit svastika, sign of good luck, swastika, from svasti, well-being; see (e)su- in Indo-European roots.]


RQuinn  Wednesday Jan 26 12:52 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beestie
Who named it the "Swastika?" Is that the original name or is that what the Nazi's named it??
It's from the sanskrit "svastika" which means something like well-being.


mmmmbacon  Wednesday Jan 26 01:45 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by xoxoxoBruce
[Sanskrit svastika, sign of good luck, swastika, from svasti, well-being; see (e)su- in Indo-European roots.]
But did the Nazis first call that symbol a swastika, or were the Hindus already calling it that?


mmmmbacon  Wednesday Jan 26 01:52 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Undertoad
All of which is very strange, when you think about it; it's just a symbol, just a mark, just a set of lines. Or is it?
I don't think it's that strange, since just about everything in our culture is one symbol or another. Even the physical objects we surround ourselves do double duty as symbols (cars, clothes). And symbols have all the power we assign to them. The collective power of social investment in a symbol is what gives it its meaning.

This particular symbol is about as powerful as a symbol gets, not just because of what it stands for, but also for the sheer number of people on this planet that know the symbol. It truly transcends the boundary of any one culture. Which is why this effort by the Hindus is not just insensitive to the rest of the world, but doomed to failure. It's not their symbol anymore.


mrputter  Wednesday Jan 26 02:01 PM

And then, of course, some may be familiar with the picture of the Edmonton Swastikas, a Canadian girls' hockey team from 1916...

<IMG SRC="http://www.trichotomy.ca/images/edmontonswastikas.jpg" />



Troubleshooter  Wednesday Jan 26 02:09 PM

Why is it insensitive for a group to try to reclaim their religious emblem of peace and prosperity from a group that turned it into a secular emblem of hate and persecution?



glatt  Wednesday Jan 26 02:10 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmmmbacon
It truly transcends the boundary of any one culture. Which is why this effort by the Hindus is not just insensitive to the rest of the world, but doomed to failure. It's not their symbol anymore.
But the whole point is that they are trying to change the world's idea of what the symbol is. It may be hard, but it isn't impossible.

Reminds me of U2 saying on Rattle and Hum that they were stealing "Helter Skelter" back from Manson, who stole it from the Beatles.

When I was a kid in the 70's we would "xerox" things at the library if we needed them for a book report. Now I "photocopy" things at work. I never made a consious effort to switch the words I use to describe that action. It was a successful campaign by Xerox, adopted by much of society, that got me to think differently.

If Xerox can get me to change my language, maybe these guys can get me to think about that symbol differently.


magilla  Wednesday Jan 26 02:13 PM

There was a lot of resentment against the Finns during and after World War II when pictures were seen of swastikas painted on aircraft:

http://www.swastika-info.com/en/arti...061679609.html

(Any plane buffs out there? Is that a Brewster Buffalo? I know the US sent a few over to aid the Finns vs the Russians).

Supposedly, the Nazis didhelp the Finns when they were invaded by Russia, but the Finns were using swastikas long before the Nazis came to power.



mmmmbacon  Wednesday Jan 26 02:18 PM

(edited to add this quote)

Quote:
Why is it insensitive for a group to try to reclaim their religious emblem of peace and prosperity from a group that turned it into a secular emblem of hate and persecution?
Because it's no longer a symbol of peace and well-being. How do you think Jews feel about that picture? People are still very sensitive to that symbol, as witnessed lately with the whole Prince Harry debacle.

Look, I'm no political-correctness policeman, but I think it's important to keep that symbol as it is as a reminder of what happened. It'd be a shame if its meaning got diluted, and besides, how confusing would it be if some part of the world associated it with peace and well-being, and another part of the world associated it with the most famous genocide in human history? Talk about your mixed messages.


Troubleshooter  Wednesday Jan 26 02:31 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmmmbacon
Because it's no longer a symbol of peace and well-being.
But you see, that's where you're wrong. It never stopped being a symbol of peace and well-being. It now has two meanings.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmmmbacon
How do you think Jews feel about that picture?
Quite honestly that is their problem, not the problem of the millions of hindus around the world who feel quite differently about it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmmmbacon
People are still very sensitive to that symbol, as witnessed lately with the whole Prince Harry debacle.
Please don't use the royals as an example for anything, it can only hurt your credibility.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmmmbacon
Look, I'm no political-correctness policeman, but I think it's important to keep that symbol as it is as a reminder of what happened.
But by wanting to squash the feelings of a people who have been using that symbol for longer than a number of the countries in this world have existed, just because someone is offended by it, then you are exactly that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmmmbacon
It'd be a shame if its meaning got diluted, and besides, how confusing would it be if some part of the world associated it with peace and well-being, and another part of the world associated it with the most famous genocide in human history? Talk about your mixed messages.
It's not diluting something to return it to the 5000 +/- meaning it has carried. Quite the opposite I believe.

And as to mixed messages, it's not sending a mixed message. A hindu walking around with a swastika around his neck as a talisman is only doing it for himself.


mmmmbacon  Wednesday Jan 26 02:32 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by glatt
But the whole point is that they are trying to change the world's idea of what the symbol is. It may be hard, but it isn't impossible.
I don't think this issue is about whether it can be done (which I doubt), so much as it is about whether it should be done. Your analogy to the symbol of 'xerox' falls a tad short, since few (if any) people have an emotional attachment to the word you use for copying papers.

I have sympathy for those Hindus who feel like they've lost an important cultural symbol, and I understand why they want it back. But it's not theirs anymore. To try and change the meaning of that symbol does a disservice to all those that died in the shadow of the swastika. I'm not Jewish, but I can't imagine too many Jews who would be willing to embrace the swastika as a symbol of peace. The only positive I see in this is that the world is reminded that the symbol had a history before Nazism, but I don't think it's got a future beyond that, nor should it, imo.


Troubleshooter  Wednesday Jan 26 02:34 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmmmbacon
I'm not Jewish
Have you at least asked a jew?


mmmmbacon  Wednesday Jan 26 02:52 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Troubleshooter
But you see, that's where you're wrong. It never stopped being a symbol of peace and well-being. It now has two meanings.

(regarding Jews): Quite honestly that is their problem, not the problem of the millions of hindus around the world who feel quite differently about it.
Well, as you mentioned, it's probably had 5000 meanings in the past. What's important is, what does that symbol mean now, and to whom? Maybe you're right, that the millions of Hindus still use the swastika as a symbol of peace, even now. I honestly don't know. That would surprise the hell out of me though, if true.

Quote:
But by wanting to squash the feelings of a people who have been using that symbol for longer than a number of the countries in this world have existed, just because someone is offended by it, then you are exactly that.
No, I'm objecting not because I'm afraid Jews will be offended by Hindus trying to reclaim this as a symbol of peace, but because to do so dishonors those who have died at the hands of a man wearing a swastika.

Actually, I'm objecting precisely because I want people to continue to be offended by the swastika. I want it to stand as a reminder of what we're all capable of if we allow ourselves, like the German people did, to become the tools of a tyrannical government in the service of slaughtering 'inferior' people. Genocide is happening right now, somewhere. Let people everywhere know what the swastika means - and it don't mean peace. Sorry, Hindus.

If anything, anyone who supports the Hindus here is more of a PC policeman than I am! You're more concerned with the cultural sensitivities of the Hindu and their symbol, than about a very important lesson in human history. Bottom line is, the swastika is about learning from our history and not condemning ourselves to repeat the mistakes of our past. Let's not lose that lesson just because Hindus say "it was our symbol first!" (besides, would anyone be surprised if they stole it from another culture?)


mmmmbacon  Wednesday Jan 26 02:54 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Troubleshooter
Have you at least asked a jew?
Give me a break. Can't you find something better than that to pick on?


Beestie  Wednesday Jan 26 02:54 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmmmbacon
...But it's not theirs anymore. To try and change the meaning of that symbol does a disservice to all those that died in the shadow of the swastika....
What about the disservice that was done to the people that revered it? To say "its not theirs anymore" is awfully cavalier. If someone murdered 6M people under the sign of the cross, I don't think it would be fair to ask Christians to "find something else."


mmmmbacon  Wednesday Jan 26 03:04 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beestie
What about the disservice that was done to the people that revered it? To say "its not theirs anymore" is awfully cavalier. If someone murdered 6M people under the sign of the cross, I don't think it would be fair to ask Christians to "find something else."
I didn't say it was fair that the Nazis appropriated their symbol in their quest for world domination. What I'm saying is that it's more important, now, for the symbol to stand for that episode in human history, than it is to uphold some ambiguous cultural ownership policy about who owned what symbol first. To do so diminishes the power of the lesson that the swastika stands for now.


YellowBolt  Wednesday Jan 26 03:40 PM

There is a significant difference between the Nazi swastika and those used by the Asians.

But first, a little tidbit... the swastika, at least in Buddhist theology, is a symbol of purification and the state one reaches when enlightened. The Nazi's took that symbol and warped it into the genocide of all but their white/blonde/blue-eyed/etc super race. Quite unfortunate, really...

The biggest difference is that the Nazi swastika is rotated 45 degrees so that it looks kind of like a diamond. The traditional swastika is more square-like. You'll notice that the Canadian Swastika team uses the traditional alignment for the swastika.



Troubleshooter  Wednesday Jan 26 04:28 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmmmbacon
Give me a break. Can't you find something better than that to pick on?
The question serves to determine your qualification to judge who should be offended by it.

If you're not a jew, it's not up to you in my opinion.


mmmmbacon  Wednesday Jan 26 05:50 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Troubleshooter
The question serves to determine your qualification to judge who should be offended by it.

If you're not a jew, it's not up to you in my opinion.
It's an educated guess. Is it really that much of a stretch to guess that Jews will be offended by a scene of people making a swastika out of candles and calling it a symbol of peace? I'm not Jewish, and I'm kind of offended by it, for reasons I've outlined in other comments in this thread.

Anyway, whether or not Jews (or anyone else) are offended by that image is only a minor point, as far as I'm concerned.


footfootfoot  Wednesday Jan 26 07:57 PM

Some Jews don't eat Bacon, can we get mmmmmbacon to change his user name to someting less treif? How about mmmmmtofu? or mmmmchicken? Or maybe just mmmm?

Why don't we just kowtow to everyone's personal sensitivity and then kill a bunch of palestinians to show how sensitive we are to people's feelings.

Oh yeah, I mean kill them after we just take their land. My bad.



axlrosen  Wednesday Jan 26 08:59 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmmmbacon
Maybe you're right, that the millions of Hindus still use the swastika as a symbol of peace, even now. I honestly don't know. That would surprise the hell out of me though, if true.
I believe it is true, I've actually heard this before.

So, suppose the Nazis had used a cross, or a star of David, or a flag with stars and stripes as their symbol? Would it be wrong for Christians, Jews, or Americans to keep using that symbol that means so much to them?

I think of it this way. The swastika has been a symbol used by Hindus for thousands of years, and they didn't stop when the Nazis came along. But there's probably a lot of misunderstanding when non-Hindus see this, so my thinking is that they're trying to tell the world, hey, we use this symbol as well, and when we use it, it doesn't mean we want to kill anybody. Just to help clear up any miscommunication.

I think people can understand context more than you give them credit for. When they see a swastika spray-painted on a tombstone in Georgia, they know it means something a lot different than when it's formed from thousands of candles in India. Just like people know the difference when they hear the "N word" in a rap song vs. me walking down the street yelling it at black people.

Do you think that without swastikas, people will forget about the Holocaust?


busterb  Wednesday Jan 26 09:35 PM

I'm thinking the Old Capitol museum in Jackson, MS. has a Swastika in the floor. Built around 1839.



xoxoxoBruce  Wednesday Jan 26 10:24 PM

Damn Rednecks.
I'm with axlrosen, don't underestimate the unwashed masses, they understand.
I don't think any of the gang bikers will be covering their swastika tattoos because the Hindus call for it's return as a symbol of good things.



mmmmbacon  Wednesday Jan 26 11:26 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by axlrosen
I believe it is true, I've actually heard this before.

So, suppose the Nazis had used a cross, or a star of David, or a flag with stars and stripes as their symbol? Would it be wrong for Christians, Jews, or Americans to keep using that symbol that means so much to them?
No, it wouldn't be wrong for them to keep using it. I have no problem with Hindus using the swastika for their own culturally relevant reasons. And if all this is is a campaign to clear up misunderstandings, I have no problem with that either, but that's not the way I read it.

In introducing this, Undertoad said:
Quote:
I'm not sure I could be convinced that this is a symbol of luck and/or prosperity. I don't mind if the Hindus use it differently, but I don't expect them to change our culture's notion of what it is.
I agree. My objection is with the Hindus trying to change my notion of what the symbol means, if indeed that's what they're trying to do.

Quote:
I think people can understand context more than you give them credit for. When they see a swastika spray-painted on a tombstone in Georgia, they know it means something a lot different than when it's formed from thousands of candles in India. Just like people know the difference when they hear the "N word" in a rap song vs. me walking down the street yelling it at black people.
Maybe I haven't made myself clear enough, but my issue here really isn't with how people will react to the Hindus, whether they are offended or whatever. It has to do with the symbol that the swastika has become, and the importance of the history it represents - a history that really transcends any one culture. The story of the Nazi swastika applies as much to Rwanda in the nineties or Manifest Destiny (as we cleared out those pesky Indians). If what the Hindus are trying to do is transform the swastika into a symbol of peace, I object to that because it renders impotent a powerful symbol of the kind of evil that propels common men and women to participate in the mass killing of a stigmatized group of people.

Quote:
Do you think that without swastikas, people will forget about the Holocaust?
People will forget about the holocaust anyway, as the generations pass. It's human nature. That's why we need reminders. That's why we build museums and memorials, and teach this stuff to our kids, despite the difficulty of the questions they ask. My question to you (and I'm assuming you're not a Hindu) is, if you had to choose, would you want your kids to grow up thinking the swastika is a symbol of peace, or a symbol of genocide?

By the way, thank you for your thoughtful post.


richlevy  Wednesday Jan 26 11:36 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmmmbacon
To try and change the meaning of that symbol does a disservice to all those that died in the shadow of the swastika. I'm not Jewish, but I can't imagine too many Jews who would be willing to embrace the swastika as a symbol of peace. The only positive I see in this is that the world is reminded that the symbol had a history before Nazism, but I don't think it's got a future beyond that, nor should it, imo.
Well, I can't speak for the rest of the Jewish race, but if Hindu's had it for 2000 years before the Nazis used it, they have every right to have it back. You don't see Christians giving up the cross just because the Klan likes to burn them. Intent counts for a lot. If Prince Harry just happened to be wearing a robe with a Swastika on it given to him by the Dali Lama, I might be caught off guard, but would accept the circumstances.

The German Eagle was also a symbol of the Nazi party, yet we Americans use a very similar symbol in our goverment.


mmmmbacon  Wednesday Jan 26 11:55 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by richlevy
Well, I can't speak for the rest of the Jewish race, but if Hindu's had it for 2000 years before the Nazis used it, they have every right to have it back. You don't see Christians giving up the cross just because the Klan likes to burn them. Intent counts for a lot. If Prince Harry just happened to be wearing a robe with a Swastika on it given to him by the Dali Lama, I might be caught off guard, but would accept the circumstances.

The German Eagle was also a symbol of the Nazi party, yet we Americans use a very similar symbol in our goverment.
I'm beginning to wish I hadn't went out on that extremely shaky limb that Jews might be offended by a gorup of people wanting to change the popular conception of a swastika to a symbol of peace.

Isn't there anyone else here thinking "the swastika as a symbol of peace??? you're kidding, right?"

Yes, I get it. That's their old symbol. It just strikes me as horribly naive that they think the rest of the world will want to adopt their symbol over the much more significant meaning it has taken on since the thousands of years they've used it. Actually, there probably is a sizable portion of the world's population that would adopt it, if simply to make the badness go away. After all, that's what we do, repress repress repress!


BrianR  Thursday Jan 27 12:03 AM

Note to magilla

Yes, it IS a Brewster Buffalo. Thank you for asking.

Brian, plane buff



xoxoxoBruce  Thursday Jan 27 04:37 AM

Quote:
Yes, I get it. That's their old symbol. It just strikes me as horribly naive that they think the rest of the world will want to adopt their symbol over the much more significant meaning it has taken on since the thousands of years they've used it.
Since there's no link, we're debating UT's take on the situation and really aren't sure what the Hindu's intentions are. It maybe they just want to use the swastika without the world recoiling in horror as they did with the prince. We witnessed the reaction to the prince but we don't know what kind of heat the hindus get over it.

But yes, I know the western world recoils in horror and that's why I made a defensive statement here.


axlrosen  Thursday Jan 27 10:57 AM

Yes, I think we're all actually mostly in agreement here - we just weren't sure what this campaign is trying to do. So I Googled around and found that this campaign actually is in response to the aftermath of Prince Harry's outfit. People are calling for a Europe-wide ban on displaying swastikas, and Hindus are trying to educate people that the symbol has other meanings than Nazism.

"You find it in houses, temples and in portraits of Hindu gods. A swastika is even painted on the head of a baby who's just had his first hair-cutting sacrament."

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/4188141.stm



Undertoad  Thursday Jan 27 11:06 AM

That's good work ax, thanks!



Trilby  Thursday Jan 27 11:23 AM

Is it ok if I want to fly my Confederate flag?*

*I don't have one, I just want to know if it's ok. I may get one. You never know what you might buy on QVC after a few 7&7's.



Beestie  Thursday Jan 27 12:22 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brianna
Is it ok if I want to fly my Confederate flag?
I was not aware that the Confederate flag was used for anything prior to its use as the Confederate flag that would provide a rationale for flying it other than support for the Confederacy. Enlighten me.


Trilby  Thursday Jan 27 12:25 PM

Some people feel it's a symbol of slavery. Or, support of slavery.



warch  Thursday Jan 27 12:57 PM

Multiple meanings for graphic symbols based on context is a pretty valuable thing to learn. Its literacy. And thousands of years of peaceful and continued use of this mark by non western groups is good to know. Evil will always find or appropriate symbols to aid in their marketing plans.



Troubleshooter  Thursday Jan 27 02:18 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brianna
Is it ok if I want to fly my Confederate flag?*

*I don't have one, I just want to know if it's ok. I may get one. You never know what you might buy on QVC after a few 7&7's.
I'm sensing an attempt at humor here, but since I don't know if it is poor humor or ignorance we'll try this.

Which one?

Stars and Bars the first governmental flag of the CSA


Second governmental flag:


Third governmental flag:


Confederate Battle Flag:


Confederate Naval Jack: mistaken as the flag of the CSA


"Bonnie Blue" the one you never hear about:



Trilby  Thursday Jan 27 02:33 PM

Well, TS, I suppose since it's me, it would have to be both, wouldn't it?

I like the Bonnie Blue. Simple, yet magestic.

Lighten up or get laid or something, will you?



Beestie  Thursday Jan 27 02:43 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brianna
I like the Bonnie Blue. Simple, yet magestic.
Nothing about the Dallas Cowboys is majestic. Except, perhaps, Quitsy Carter's cocaine budget.


Happy Monkey  Thursday Jan 27 02:45 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Troubleshooter
I'm sensing an attempt at humor here, but since I don't know if it is poor humor or ignorance we'll try this.

Which one?
Not knowing which flag is meant, unless otherwise specified, is deliberate ignorance.


Trilby  Thursday Jan 27 02:54 PM

Obviously I meant the Confederate Battle Flag! Sheesh! The one they fly around here in certain neighborhoods during certain anniversary's of certain battles! The battle of Chickamauga, etc.

NOBODY flies the damn Bonnie Blue for crissakes! Not in Ohio, anyway. You fella's continue to fight the good fight, though. Be deadly serious. It's good for your cardiac health. And chicks really dig it.



Happy Monkey  Thursday Jan 27 03:23 PM

Just to be clear, I was saying that Troubleshooter pretending he didn't know which flag you were talking about was deliberate ignorance. Though perhaps I should have called it feigned ignorance. Everyone knows which flag is meant by "Confederate Flag". Bringing up other flags is just an attempt (successful in this case) to deflect a conversation into minutia.



Trilby  Thursday Jan 27 03:39 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Happy Monkey
Just to be clear, I was saying that Troubleshooter pretending he didn't know which flag you were talking about was deliberate ignorance. Though perhaps I should have called it feigned ignorance. Everyone knows which flag is meant by "Confederate Flag". Bringing up other flags is just an attempt (successful in this case) to deflect a conversation into minutia.
Oh. I am really trying not to be so sensitive. I think TS either hates me or he has a wicked crush on me coz he's always trying to make me look bad and I've nothing but the UTMOST respect for him and his snarky ways!

And, confidential to TS-the above was a little joke, honey. A joke.


Troubleshooter  Thursday Jan 27 03:40 PM

I love minutia. Minutia makes the world go 'round.

I was sort of paralleling the whole point about the differences in the various swastikas with the, rather common, mistake about the flags, no attempt at a threadjack.

I'm what you would call, to borrow a phrase from E. E. Doc Smith, a "high tension thinker. I run wide open throttle most of the time. Sometimes it's a benefit, sometimes it's a pain in the ass. See LJ's anxiety thread...



Troubleshooter  Thursday Jan 27 05:56 PM

An idea just occured to me.

Wouldn't banning the swastika be a form of religious persecution or discrimination?

One has to wonder how many temples there are in europe where the symbol is displayed...



xoxoxoBruce  Thursday Jan 27 10:00 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by axlrosen
"You find it in houses, temples and in portraits of Hindu gods. A swastika is even painted on the head of a baby who's just had his first hair-cutting sacrament."

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/4188141.stm
And the next paragraph reads
Quote:
The Hindu swastika faces to the right, unlike the one adopted by the Nazis which faces to the left.
Which is definitely not true. It's the Buddist swastika that faces left.
But thanks for finding that story in that it explains a lot.


mmmmbacon  Friday Jan 28 12:00 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by axlrosen
Yes, I think we're all actually mostly in agreement here - we just weren't sure what this campaign is trying to do. So I Googled around and found that this campaign actually is in response to the aftermath of Prince Harry's outfit. People are calling for a Europe-wide ban on displaying swastikas, and Hindus are trying to educate people that the symbol has other meanings than Nazism.

"You find it in houses, temples and in portraits of Hindu gods. A swastika is even painted on the head of a baby who's just had his first hair-cutting sacrament."

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/4188141.stm
In that light, it all sounds pretty reasonable. Except for the part about a Europe-wide ban on displaying swastikas. File that under Useless Policies to Placate the Public.


javelin  Friday Jan 28 03:43 PM

I'm not Jewish but I think it would a shame if people didn't associate it with the Natzis' so we'd remember the terrible things they did.



Pi  Friday Jan 28 05:31 PM

The germans don't call the swastika "swastika" but "Hakenkreuz" which means "cross with hooks" when they think of the nazi-symbol... so they have 2 different names with 2 meanings for the same symbol. This, I think, makes it lot easier to make a difference...



xoxoxoBruce  Saturday Jan 29 12:27 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by javelin
I'm not Jewish but I think it would a shame if people didn't associate it with the Natzis' so we'd remember the terrible things they did.
Well actually the holocaust was more linked to the SS so the Jews can use that as a symbol of remembrance/reminder. Considering the number of holocaust museums and memorials around the world it's unlikely anyone will soon forget.
So many peoples used variations of the swastika as important symbols in their culture it wouldn't be fair to to say they suddenly have to abandon it because it offends a few. certainly people are smart enough to take it in context.
Oh...and welcome to the Cellar, Javelin.


wolf  Saturday Jan 29 04:05 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beestie
Who named it the "Swastika?" Is that the original name or is that what the Nazi's named it??
I think Swastika is the original name. The German name is "Hakenkreuz" (hooked cross).

I'm all for the reclaiming.

I am actually very concerned by the trend of Germany, and Europe in general to outlaw the Swastika, or other signs and symbols of the NSDAP.

Reminds me far to much of Winston Smith carefully correcting the news.

It also makes it easier for the Holocaust deniers to deny things, if their existance is wiped away, piece by piece.


mmmmbacon  Saturday Jan 29 09:57 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by wolf
I think Swastika is the original name. The German name is "Hakenkreuz" (hooked cross).

I'm all for the reclaiming.

I am actually very concerned by the trend of Germany, and Europe in general to outlaw the Swastika, or other signs and symbols of the NSDAP.

Reminds me far to much of Winston Smith carefully correcting the news.

It also makes it easier for the Holocaust deniers to deny things, if their existance is wiped away, piece by piece.
Absolutely. That's why some of the most valuable exhibits in the holocaust museums are the documents that verify a Nazi conspiracy to systematically murder Jews, gypsies, and other 'undesirables'. I notice those are some of the most prominently displayed items.


OnyxCougar  Thursday Feb 3 12:12 PM

I really don't understand how people can deny the holocaust happened.



Happy Monkey  Thursday Feb 3 01:11 PM

They want to be able to hate Jews without being associated with mass murder, which they can't do without denying the mass murder in the first place.



OnyxCougar  Thursday Feb 3 01:18 PM

so all the pictures and testimonies and people who survived and soldiers who liberated are ?? faking? lying? delusional?



Happy Monkey  Thursday Feb 3 01:26 PM

See this thread. They think it's a conspiracy to trick people into sympathising with Jews.



OnyxCougar  Thursday Feb 3 06:45 PM

Here is a link of a link of a link...

http://www.crystalinks.com/swastika.html



moksha  Sunday Mar 13 01:23 AM

eradication of ignorance through education

Don’t get me wrong , yes the swastika to many people not just Jews , is a reminder of the horror of the holocaust, but its true meaning is not what the majority perceive it to be. In fact it is actually a symbol of peace, creation and oneness with a higher consciousness. Although this has been the general meaning of the symbol for thousands of years in eastern Asia, as well as in parts of Europe, northern Africa and North America, it has become bastardized and distorted by the Nazis, as a symbol of genocide, death, darkness and pure evil.

I don’t want to change people’s views of the swastika I just want to highlight that there is a whole history of the swastika before Nazism. Before people become judgmental about the symbol’s use in today’s religions, they should educate themselves on its true meaning, a meaning that is completely opposite to the warped views of Hitler.

Therefore if one is offended by the use of the symbol for religious purposes one can be able to understand that the swastika symbolizes a completely different meaning than what the tyrannical Nazi party used it to represent.



xoxoxoBruce  Sunday Mar 13 03:53 PM

You're right moksha, most people will upon seeing any variation of a swastika immediately think of the Nazis. But if they think a little before reacting negatively, everybody wins.
Welcome to the Cellar.



xoxoxoBruce  Tuesday Mar 22 05:26 AM

I wonder where this playground is?



Happy Monkey  Tuesday Mar 22 08:04 AM

That's too bad, because it's actually a pretty ingenious design. Making something work equivalently and not look like a swastika would be difficult.



mitheral  Friday Apr 1 12:28 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmmmbacon
(edited to add this quote)
Because it's no longer a symbol of peace and well-being. How do you think Jews feel about that picture? People are still very sensitive to that symbol, as witnessed lately with the whole Prince Harry debacle.

Look, I'm no political-correctness policeman, but I think it's important to keep that symbol as it is as a reminder of what happened. It'd be a shame if its meaning got diluted, and besides, how confusing would it be if some part of the world associated it with peace and well-being, and another part of the world associated it with the most famous genocide in human history? Talk about your mixed messages.
But it only a symbol/reminder of the Nazis to the western world. For 700 million Hindus it's meaning is much different. Even if they never convince the rest of the world to use the swastika (I doubt we'll ever see that hockey team in Edmonton again) at least they can build awareness that the symbol has two meanings. That way the number of ignorant knee jerkers who see a swastika and start pointing and yelling Nazi will be reduced.

If the Nazis had chosen the cross would you be calling for every christian to stop using that symbol?


BigV  Friday Apr 1 12:32 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Happy Monkey
That's too bad, because it's actually a pretty ingenious design. Making something work equivalently and not look like a swastika would be difficult.
try three crossbars. do you see a star of david now? or a box or circle design. sure, this one's easy to envision, and construct. but not the only simple effective design.


lookout123  Friday Apr 1 12:34 PM

Quote:
I wonder where this playground is?
they have that exact same toy at my son's school. it is a very good school, so i figured i could overlook the white supremacy thing.


i Love India  Sunday Apr 10 01:42 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by mitheral
But it only a symbol/reminder of the Nazis to the western world. For 700 million Hindus it's meaning is much different. Even if they never convince the rest of the world to use the swastika (I doubt we'll ever see that hockey team in Edmonton again) at least they can build awareness that the symbol has two meanings. That way the number of ignorant knee jerkers who see a swastika and start pointing and yelling Nazi will be reduced.

If the Nazis had chosen the cross would you be calling for every christian to stop using that symbol?
I completly agree with you. In hindi it is called a swastik and the Nazi took the symbol from Hinduism and used it in a bad very. In India and Hindus all over the world still use it. Why not, it is our relgious symbol. Just like the person before me said "If the Nazis had choosen the cross would you be calling for every christan to stop using that symbol?" The anwser is no you wouldn't because American's always think that they are right and they are the best. The fact is you are not. As a country, America, we need to start showing respect to all people around the world. And before you talk about something make sure you know what you are talking about because most people here don't even know the TRUE meaning of the swastik and just think it is a bad symbol. I am hindu and I use the symbol because its meaning has not changed for thousands of years and never will just because some dumb people used it in a bad way does not mean we bad! Thank you, that is all.


xoxoxoBruce  Sunday Apr 10 03:37 AM

Welcome to the Cellar India.

Quote:
most people here don't even know the TRUE meaning of the swastik and just think it is a bad symbol.
Uh ..have you read the thread? You know, the 29 posts that preceded yours.


Sun_Sparkz  Sunday Apr 10 09:49 PM

i'm pretty new to the whole genocide, nazi VS jew thing. but of late ive seen a few movies and read up on a few things and it just baffles me how so many jews were taken prisioner by the germans. Why did they not fight back - surely the massive number of jews could have taken on a few guards?

And i am yet to hear the story from the nazi point of view. How could a normal human being be brainwashed into killing children, babies, women and men in cold blood, and (in the movies) have it be the same as us squashing an ant in our sandwhich?

i obviously have a lot to learn about it, i know, but there is so much i dont understand about it. I mean, maybe the symbol is good luck - and thats why the germans had so much success in overpowering the jews?

do we have any jewish cellarites or any cellarites whose decended from nazi/ german backgrounds?



Troubleshooter  Sunday Apr 10 10:47 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sun_Sparkz
...I mean, maybe the symbol is good luck - and thats why the germans had so much success in overpowering the jews?...
No, it was the Spear of Destiny that did that.


Happy Monkey  Sunday Apr 10 11:00 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sun_Sparkz
i'm pretty new to the whole genocide, nazi VS jew thing. but of late ive seen a few movies and read up on a few things and it just baffles me how so many jews were taken prisioner by the germans. Why did they not fight back - surely the massive number of jews could have taken on a few guards?
You could ask the same about any prison. Except in most prisons there's more discouragement of execution of prisoners.


Sun_Sparkz  Sunday Apr 10 11:58 PM

but to get them into imprisonment in the first place is what i am talking about. i mean, just turning up and saying right you 300 ppl get into the back of that truck, or me and my army of 20 men will hurt you.



xoxoxoBruce  Monday Apr 11 12:17 AM

First you disarm the whole civilian population.
Second you create animosity between the Jews and everyone else.
Third you herd the Jews into separate neighborhoods
Fourth you wall the neighborhoods and lock them in at night.
Then you round them up and ship them in boxcars to "labor camps"
It's not that hard.



404Error  Monday Apr 11 01:29 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sun_Sparkz
...it just baffles me how so many jews were taken prisioner by the germans. Why did they not fight back - surely the massive number of jews could have taken on a few guards?...
Easy, one of Hitler's first decrees was to make private gun ownership illegal and which required all Germans to turn their guns in or have them seized and face severe punishment. In this case, when guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. An armed man is a citizen. An unarmed man is a subject.

"To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them," -- George Mason


wolf  Monday Apr 11 01:43 AM



That makes me a VERY good citizen.





etc.


(N.B. Troubleshooter, the little guy in the second pic is also a KelTec product ...)



Sun_Sparkz  Monday Apr 11 02:22 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by 404Error
Easy, one of Hitler's first decrees was to make private gun ownership illegal and which required all Germans to turn their guns in or have them seized and face severe punishment. In this case, when guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. An armed man is a citizen. An unarmed man is a subject.

"To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them," -- George Mason
i have never been armed.
i have never been enslaved.


LCanal  Monday Apr 11 04:59 AM

do we have any jewish cellarites or any cellarites whose decended from nazi/ german backgrounds?
_________________________________________________________________
Can't claim the backgrounds but if I part my hair on the right I bear a scary resemblance to a certain high profile Nazi. A couple of years ago I went to a Halloween Party and my German friend went white when he saw me.



404Error  Monday Apr 11 07:39 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sun_Sparkz
...i have never been enslaved.
Not yet anyway.


CharlieG  Monday Apr 11 08:11 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sun_Sparkz
i have never been armed.
i have never been enslaved.
"People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf."


Troubleshooter  Monday Apr 11 09:08 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sun_Sparkz
i have never been armed.
i have never been enslaved.
Only because enough other people still remember what is necessary to keep it that way.


Sun_Sparkz  Monday Apr 11 09:30 PM

I dont dispute that. but i dont believe that being armed would make any difference to our survival.

I'll never use a gun on a human, if i was going to kill someone then they must deserve it, so then id rather beat then to death with a crow bar then just shoot them.



dar512  Monday Apr 11 10:55 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sun_Sparkz
I'll never use a gun on a human, if i was going to kill someone then they must deserve it, so then id rather beat then to death with a crow bar then just shoot them.

Isn't that just like a wop? Brings a crow bar to a gun fight.

Jim Malone in The Untouchables (paraphrased)


Sun_Sparkz  Monday Apr 11 11:42 PM

whats a WOP?



404Error  Monday Apr 11 11:57 PM

I believe it stands for 'WithOut Papers' but it's used as an offensive terms for a person of Italian descent.



xoxoxoBruce  Tuesday Apr 12 12:00 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sun_Sparkz
I dont dispute that. but i dont believe that being armed would make any difference to our survival.

I'll never use a gun on a human, if i was going to kill someone then they must deserve it, so then id rather beat then to death with a crow bar then just shoot them.
We are all ready to be savage in some cause.

A pistol for the bedroom,
A shotgun over the door,
A 30-06 for reaching out;
You don't need any more.

A wop refers(slang) to an Italian.


wolf  Tuesday Apr 12 01:04 AM

Wop:Italian::Mick:Irishman



wolf  Tuesday Apr 12 01:06 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sun_Sparkz
I dont dispute that. but i dont believe that being armed would make any difference to our survival.
Your survival, perhaps.

Quote:
I'll never use a gun on a human, if i was going to kill someone then they must deserve it, so then id rather beat then to death with a crow bar then just shoot them.
I've heard other antigunners say stuff like this ... if you can't handle killing someone by shooting them, even in defense of your own life, you sure as shit wouldn't be able to beat them to death with a crowbar, even if you had the physical strength to do it.

It takes a lot longer than it looks like in the movies. Or a lucky hit. or 12.


mrnoodle  Tuesday Apr 12 12:56 PM

especially when the first one misses by a little. Then you have a howling terrorist on your hands, and he won't hold still for the coup de grace. but he's still reaching for a gun, so you gotta do it despite his tears and yelling, or you get shot.

waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa*crunch*


you have a stronger stomach than me. I'd rather end the discussion without all the histrionics.



wolf  Tuesday Apr 12 02:16 PM

If someone gets close enough to me to NEED being bashed in the head with a crowbar, I've done something wrong.



lookout123  Wednesday Apr 13 08:06 PM

i think a famous scene from Indiana Jones sums this conversation up well.

Bad guy stands in place demonstrating his mad skills with his sword. the crowd oohs and ahs. Harrison Ford puts a bullet in him and goes back to what he was doing.

'nuff said.



footfootfoot  Wednesday Apr 13 08:32 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by lookout123
i think a famous scene from Indiana Jones sums this conversation up well.

Bad guy stands in place demonstrating his mad skills with his sword. the crowd oohs and ahs. Harrison Ford puts a bullet in him and goes back to what he was doing.

'nuff said.
Almost 'nuff.
I know I'm 'sposed to be in the darkroom redoing all those f*ing prints, but what the hey?

It reminds ME of an old cheech wizard strip when one of Cheech's nemesises (nemesii?) sends an oriental assasin after him. (think circa Bruce Lee)

"LO! Watch me spling about like quicktiger! You not so fast to avoid upcoming Gook devastation!"

BLAM! (shotgun blast)

"Welcome to the west gook."

NOW 'nuff said.



Sun_Sparkz  Friday Apr 15 01:21 AM

ok let me ask you this then:

if guns were JUST invented.. and nobody else had them. ie: you wouldnt have to have one to defend yourself against someone else who had one.

Would agree with anti gun concepts then?

(hunting animals not included, i'm talking about protection)



wolf  Friday Apr 15 01:22 AM

No



Troubleshooter  Friday Apr 15 01:43 PM

Self-defense isn't about fairness or equality. As with most things it is about trumping the other guy.

If he has a stick and I have a gun, he may not have have to die if he's smart.

If he has a stick and I have a stick, we may fight or not depending on if he thinks it would be a fair fight or not.

If he has a stick and I don't, he gets my stuff.

So, no, it's not about morality, it's about survival.



russotto  Friday Apr 15 02:06 PM

Sam Colt's marketing slogan ("Equalizer") still holds. Pretty much any pre-firearm weapon, victory in a fight with equal weapons goes to the strong.

With guns, particularly handguns, the advantages -- to the strong, to the swift, and even to the well-trained -- are much reduced. Though all of those still help.



BigV  Friday Apr 15 03:33 PM

Equalizer, my ass. Equal is rock paper scissors. "Superior-izer" is what is intended to be conveyed. But the fig leaf of only striving to "equalize" the potential situation hides the fear of weakness.

It's just freakin stuff. You can get more stuff, but lose life, game over. I reckon that having surrendered faith and confidence to fear and doubt, that stuff is the next best thing to cling to.



Troubleshooter  Friday Apr 15 03:50 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by BigV
Equalizer, my ass. Equal is rock paper scissors. "Superior-izer" is what is intended to be conveyed. But the fig leaf of only striving to "equalize" the potential situation hides the fear of weakness.

It's just freakin stuff. You can get more stuff, but lose life, game over. I reckon that having surrendered faith and confidence to fear and doubt, that stuff is the next best thing to cling to.
At my, admittedly low, socioeconomic level, stuff is directly related to how much time I have to devote to reacquiring said stuff. Someone taking my stuff is stealing my time, and thus a portion of my life.

It is not weakness to want to maintain equitability of value of my stuff. I will not surrender the fruit of my time and efforts to some monkey who wants a shortcut through life.

If he wants stuff he can get a fucking job, get declared crazy or handicapped to draw a check or he can get ventilated.


xoxoxoBruce  Friday Apr 15 09:37 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by BigV
Equalizer, my ass. Equal is rock paper scissors. "Superior-izer" is what is intended to be conveyed. But the fig leaf of only striving to "equalize" the potential situation hides the fear of weakness.
Your making the mistake of taking the slogan out of it's original context. On the frontier, the nearest "law" might be 3 days ride and everyone was armed. If you have a muzzle loader and he has a carbine, you usually lose. The Colt revolver was the state of the art in speed and reliability, so you couldn't be trumped.

The marquis of Queensbury doesn't apply here...there's no shake hands and come out at the bell. There's no ring doctor to stop the contest. Your life is on the line from even a small wound. During the just pasted Civil War, thousands died from small wounds.

Fast forward to 2005....you have to assume that everyone has a gun. Not everyone does but you don't know which ones.
Altercation with anyone is dangerous business. No matter how big, bad or macho you are, I bet you still can't catch a bullet in your teeth.
It may be a superior-izer... but you can't count on it being anything more than an equalizer.
Like Groucho said, "You Bet Your Life".

Quote:
It's just freakin stuff. You can get more stuff, but lose life, game over. I reckon that having surrendered faith and confidence to fear and doubt, that stuff is the next best thing to cling to.
Surrendering faith and confidence to fear and doubt is exactly what happens if you let them take your stuff.
It's not losing the STUFF..... it's LOSING the stuff.


Rossisaurus  Friday Jul 8 08:14 AM

Just to jump back on the swastika horse for a second, purloining a symbol from one cultural group to be used in other, perhaps devious, ways by another, is not the sole domain of the Nazis. The Christians, when they came across the Pagans "stole" many Pagan rituals of the Yule and the festival of Eostar, to name but two, to, ostensibly, convince the non-Christians of the day that they (the Chistians) were an enlightened bunch, and "Gosh, we can have all sorts of happy days as well. Why don't you celebrate ours and leave your nonsense behind." So, if the first group then tries to use those "purloined" rituals, are the meanings diminished in the eyes of the user? No, I think not. In fact, I think that using a symbol in the way it was originally intended can eradicate the secondary meaning because the primary meaning often makes more sense. For instance, why does the Christian world use the symbol of the bunny at Easter? Simple, it was originally a pagan symbol of fertility (multiplying into life), as was the egg, at celebrations held at about the same time as Christ's crucifixion day. Perhaps the origins of the svastik should be explored so that those still convinced that the new meaning is the only meaning will understand why it was used in the first place (I don't like the notion of posting links, so I won't ... let's just say, I went to google and looked for <<"hindu swastika" origins>> ... the first link it came up with (hinducouncil) was the most interesting). So, what's the point of my posting? Simply, that anyone can use symbols whether originally their own or someone else's. If a symbol has had a negative connotation, research it's origins. If the original meaning was positive, use the symbol in that positive light and the meaning may change for you. If not, try to be sympathetic to those who *have* been using those symbols for many years.
Cheerio



Queen of the Ryche  Friday Jul 8 12:47 PM

thanks Ross. I'm sure many who use a pentagram/pentacle in their current rituals will agree.



xoxoxoBruce  Friday Jul 8 03:27 PM

Welcome to the Cellar Ross.
You're spot on....it's not the symbol but the acts committed in it's name.



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