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The symbol of Swastika is known to signify peace, prosperity, and good fortune in the religious cultures of Eurasia. In fact, this symbol is considered very significant in Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism. But, at the same time, it has become one of the most misunderstood religious symbols and has been globally banned in many countries.
The reason why the symbol of Swastika is banned in many countries is because of its association with Adolf Hitler's extreme political ideology, Nazism, as Swastika as its official symbol.
Austria, France, Latvia, Spain, Germany, and Russia are amongst the many countries that have banned the display and use of the Swastika.
Moreover, last week Victoria in Australia is preparing to become the first-ever state to ban the public display of the Swastika. This is a step towards an expansion of anti-vilification laws in the state.
Representation of the Swastika on the flag of Adolf Hitler's Nazi Movement.Photo by Flickr.
Now, we must know and understand what went wrong with this symbol, which is sacred and signifies all-good things.
For a very, very long time, in India, the Swastika is the first emblem that is worshipped or even drawn before any sacred and auspicious ceremonies as this symbol in Sanskrit represents 'well-being'. But, the Swastika lost all its credibility when it was wrongfully used by Adolf Hitler.
In fact, it is believed that if this symbol is worshipped properly, then it gives positive results. But if it is abused, then it gives negative results. So, when Adolf Hitler rotated the Swastika at 45 degrees, it slowly and steadily brought misery not only to Adolf Hitler and his theory of Nazism but also to all the people who were associated with him.
Therefore, in order to give the kind of respect and credibility which the Swastika deserves, World Interfaith Harmony Week which was held in New York in February this year, interfaith groups appealed to the United Nations to recognize and acknowledge the Swastika as an important and peaceful symbol. In fact, they also differentiated it from the Hakenkreuz or "Hooked Cross" of Adolf Hitler.
Keywords: Swastika, Symbol, Nazism, Hinduism, Adolf Hitler, United Nations, Buddhism, Jainism
The Khajuraho Temples are located in the Chattarpur district of Madhya Pradesh, India. These temples are associated with two religions, namely, Hinduism and Jainism. Interestingly, this site has been well recognised by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), and was given the title of “World Heritage Site" by the organisation.
It is believed that these temples were built between 885 AD and 1050 AD by the Chandela Dynasty.Now, who were the Chandelas? An interesting story is on its way for you. Once there was a woman, named Hemvati, who was very beautiful and gorgeous, hailed from modern day Varanasi. It is believed that Hemvati was the daughter of a priest.One day, while she was bathing in the nearby village pond, Lord Chandra, the God of the Moon, became enchanted by her beauty, and decided to spend the night with her in human form. Following this event, Hemvati became pregnant in the morning.
So, she asked Lord Chandra as to what she should do now, as she will not be accepted by her family and village. To this, Lord Chandra replied that she will find refuge along the banks of the Karnavati river, and her upcoming child will go on to become a great king. As expected, Hemvati was rejected by her family and was thrown out of the village for her unexpected pregnancy. But, she followed the advice of Lord Chandra, and took refuge near the Karnavati river. Soon, Hemvati's son was born, and out of respect for Lord Chandra, she named him, Chandravarman.
As it was said by Lord Chandra that Hemvati's child would become a great king, the prophecy was becoming true with passing days. Chandravarman became a successful king by defeating many kings and their kingdoms. But still, there was a blemish on the king's face because he did not had a father.
So one day, Chandravarman ordered a cabinet of Bramhins to help him solve this problem. Surprisingly, majority of Brahmins suggested that he should make 84 statues depicting sexual acts around his place of birth, which was near the Karnavati, in order to normalise the act of “illegitimate sex", which means getting indulged in the act of sexual intimacy without being married.
Hence, Khajuraho Temples are famous because they depict how “illegitimate sex", “polygamy" “polyandry", and even “homosexuality", are all normal phenomena, and it is completely fine.
Keywords: Khajuraho Temples, India, UNESCO, Sexual Intimacy, History, Chandela Dynasty.
American newspaper based in the New York city, recently published an article in which they called many members of the Taliban government as “stalwarts".
The article was published on September 7, 2021, and the headline of the article was: “Taliban Appoint Stalwarts to Top Government Posts".
It must be noted that since a very long time, the United States of America (USA) is of the view that Taliban is a "movement" and not a terrorist group. According to the USA, all that the Taliban does, be it bombing or killing, is because they are fighting for their “rights" and “dignity".
The article which was published by the New York Times on September 7 also stated how the forming of the Taliban government is justified, as Afghanistan has been struggling for stability since 2001.
At the same time, the same article mentioned that many members of Taliban are recognised as terrorists by the United Nations and United States, too. And now, the irony is that these recognised terrorists are set to lead a country!
The article by the New York Times was published when the Taliban announced a 33-all men-member cabinet of the Afghanistan government which will be headed by Mullah Muhammad Hassan Akhund, the new Afghan prime minister.
It must be noted that this was not the first time when the New York Times glorified the Taliban. Earlier, too, this news agency has published many articles which were not “for" the Taliban, but they neither were “against" them.
To understand the approach behind this act, it must be noted that these kinds of articles are written in order to gain sympathy the of readers, so that they start viewing terrorists as victims of oppression. This, in the end, leads to nothing but chaos, and poses a great threat to the world community.
Keywords: USA, New York Times, United Nations, Taliban, Afghanistan, Government, Politics.
The United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) said Algeria stopped selling leaded gasoline in July, making it the last country to end its sale and marking an "official end" of leaded gasoline use in cars.
Wealthy countries began phasing out leaded gasoline in the 1970s and 1980s due to health and environmental concerns, but some countries continued to sell it.
UNEP began a final push to ban leaded gasoline in 2002.
"The successful enforcement of the ban on leaded petrol is a huge milestone for global health and our environment," UNEP Executive Director Inger Andersen said in a statement.
Lead was first added to gas nearly 100 years ago, ostensibly to improve engine performance.
Leaded gas is still used on some small airplanes, according to The Associated Press. (VOA/RN)
Keywords: United Nations, Leaded Gasoline, Environment