January 5th 2007 01:20
Does this staircase actually have anything to do with Naz's?
It occurred to me it wasn’t the first Swastika I’d found out of place. We have one in our home, Chinese (I think), pre WWII. I remember asking Mum about it, and her explaining it was a ‘peace symbol’.
This isn’t too far from the truth. The term ‘Swastika’ is derived from Sanskrit, and means good fortune or well being. It is considered a sacred symbol in the religions Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Odinism.
So how does a good little symbol get mixed up with a big bad political party like the Nazis? The story goes along with a bloke called Heinrich Schliemann, who found a couple of Swastikas in the ruins of Troy. His extensive research seemed to confirm the symbol as a specifically Euro-Indian symbol. This is pretty much what suggested to Hitler and his crew that it was a symbol used by the Aryan race, the forefathers of the German people – the perfect symbol of an aggressively patriotic party.
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