The Broken and Twisted Cross from the East
The swastika...which as such always has been and always will be anti-Semitic.
- Mein Kampf, by Adolf Hitler
Hatred makes the straight crooked.
- Old Jewish Proverb
One of the little known facts concerning the swastika, and perhaps one that is of the utmost importance, is that the Eastern religions of Buddhism and Hinduism have drastically changed their symbolic use of the swastika since the terrible days of Nazism earlier in the 20th century. Apparently, both of these religions tended to use the Swastika twisted to the Left (the Nazi Swastika), rather than the Swastika twisted to the Right, thus favoring it in their own religious iconography, writings, and architecture. Even today, the swastika is found throughout the towns and cities of India, as well as other Asian nations, and it is the exact same symbol that the Nazis used during World War II. The facts are this:
The [swastika] appears to have first been used in Neolithic Eurasia, perhaps representing the movement of the sun through the sky. To this day it is a sacred symbol in Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Odinism. It is a common sight on temples or houses in India or Indonesia. Swastikas also have an ancient history in Europe, appearing on artifacts from pre-Christian European cultures.
Various Swastikas in History
Put bluntly, both Swastikas are age-old Pagan symbols which have no place in the Judeo-Christian tradition, except perhaps as a symbol of evil or something to be avoided in the least. Now, at the dawn of the third millenium, Buddhism happens to be no longer using the Nazi swastika and is, instead, nearly always using the Swastika twisted to the Right as the 'official' symbol of their faith. This is actually a very recent decision on the part of the Buddhist leadership. The so-called 'ancient' Buddhist folk-lore has been changed to fit and enhance their modern public image as a religion of goodness and peace, rather than a barbaric Pagan faith destined to go extinct.
In reality, it remains completely untrue to say that Buddhism, let alone Hinduism, did not actively use the Swastika twisted to the Left, namely the Nazi swastika for many, many centuries. They both did, and there is ample proof that the recent switch between swastikas is nothing more than a ploy of the Eastern religions to disassociate themselves from the Nazis, their genocidal policies, and to avoid any and all blame. One source notes:
Can there be two completely opposite meanings for one symbol?...Since the Nazis use of the swastika, some people are trying to differentiate the two meanings of the swastika by varying its direction - trying to make the clockwise, Nazi version of the swastika mean hate and death while the counter-clockwise version would hold the ancient meaning of the symbol, life and good-luck. Until the Nazis used this symbol, the swastika was used by many cultures throughout the past 3,000 years to represent life, sun, power, strength, and good luck.
Buddhism, in particular, is now avoiding any and all use of the Nazi swastika (Left Hand) and has fabricated their own folk-lore to match this modern myth. One source states that in today's world, 'Buddhists almost always use the left-facing swastika,' namely the Right Hand swastika, or sauvastika, which the Nazis did not utilize during the World War II. Historically speaking, this is a deliberate falsehood which allows Buddhism to cover up, ignore, and even deny their long and extensive use of the Nazi swastika as a religious symbol of goodness and well being. At best, both symbols were used as one researcher notes specifically:
In the footprints of Buddha the Buddhists recognize...auspicious signs, the first of them being the Svastika...the fourth is the Sauvastika, or that with the arms turned to the left.
- Burnouf (1852)
This means that the distinction between the two swastikas is little more than a modern attempt to explain, or explain away, the ikon of the Nazis as compared to that of Buddhism and/or Hinduism. In reality, both swastikas, sometimes known as the swastika (Left) and the sauvastika (Right), were used in the East with the same meaning for both ikons. Two different sources state the following:
Although the more common form is the right-facing swastika, the symbol is used in both orientations for the sake of balance in Hinduism.
In ancient times, the direction of the swastika was interchangeable as can be seen on an ancient Chinese silk drawing.
Thus the confused, modern distinction about the two swastikas should be discarded and then re-evaluated in a proper manner. One must understand that the Eastern religions deliberately use this broken, twisted symbol as a ikon of goodness, instead of evil as the Bible does in several places, mainly because they are Pagan religions outside of Judeo-Christian monotheism. All things considered, any notion 'that sauwastikas are considered "evil" or inauspicious versions of the auspicious swastika in Indian religions' are without validity especially since Buddhism 'counts the svastika and the sauvastika equally among the...auspicious signs.' Another researcher also confesses doubts about any distinction between the two symbols:
Would it not be simpler to admit that the direction of the branches is of secondary importance in the symbolism of the gammadion (swastika)? When it is desired to symbolize the progress of the sun...little attention will have been paid to the direction given to the rays.
- D'Alviella (1894)
In addition to this general lack of distinction between the two ikons, the alternative name for the Swastika twisted to the Right as a so-called sauvastika, rather just another swastika, also happens to be a historical fiction that was invented by scholars in the West. Namely, 'the term sauvastika thus cannot be confirmed as authentic and is probably due to' 19th century Western researchers making things up as they go along. Well the damage is done, and once again Paganism gets off without any blame for the evil and wickedness inherent in the swastika.
Most tellingly, the Eastern religions readily admit in their folklore, both Swastikas are emblems which have demonic origins and was initially created by a diabolical serpent being as a emblem for 'good luck'. Careful to use the other swastika, the sauvastika (Cross twisted to the Right), these Pagan faiths, like Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism, now insist that this ikon has always represented good luck, blessings, and the light of the sun while the swastika used by the Nazis always symbolized bad luck or misfortune. As already discussed previously, this is a modern fable, a Pagan fairy tale, which is historically invalid. As one source writes:
Some contemporary writers assert that the swastika as used in Nazi Germany is in fact the "evil sauwastika". Since the swastika on the Flag of Nazi Germany was "right-facing" when displayed one-sided, this requires a redefinition of "sauwastika" as the variant current in Hinduism, and the "swastika proper" as the "left-facing" one current in Buddhism, contrary to [historical evidence]. The notion that Hitler deliberately inverted the "good left-facing" Buddhist swastika is, however, wholly unsupported by any historical evidence.
Simply put, the swastika is, in fact, an Eastern, or Asian, symbol that never really caught on in the West, most probably due to the spiritual power, influence, and importance of the Christian Cross, an ikon that is mainly opposed to the broken crookedness, the asymmetry of the Swastika. One scholar notes that this ikon 'is rarely seen on its own in Western architecture'.
The history is this: long before Nazism came to power in Germany in 1933, the Eastern nations were using both Swastikas frequently and, never forget, as a crucial and integral part of their religion. Along with the somewhat black/white circle of Yin/Yang, the Swastika, most especially the Swastika twisted to the Left, played a prominent role in the religious symbolism of both Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism for many centuries. These Pagan faiths have called what is crooked, straight. They have claimed that what is broken, is actually well-made, and what is evil, good. One should remember the Book of Isaiah which laments: 'Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil.' The proper Biblical understanding of the Pagan swastikas can be summarized as follows:
The Right and Left Hands of Paganism