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Rescuing a Symbol of Peace, an interview with T.K. Nakagaki with The State of Belief

Michael Palmer - Monday, February 11, 2019

The State Of Belief with Dr. Welton Gaddy sat down with Rev. Dr. T.K. Nakagaki, author of The Buddhist Swastika and Hitler's Cross about the misappropriation of the swastika by the Nazis, overturning its long history as a symbol of peace in Asian religions. Can its original meaning ever be reclaimed?

TK Nakagaki with The Buddhist Swastika and Hitler's Cross

The swastika, for thousands of years, was used by Hindu, Buddhist and Jain communities to bring good luck, safety and peace. But, less than 100 years ago, it was co-opted by the Nazis to symbolize racial purity and Aryan nationalism, and that’s still how it is widely viewed today. To understand how a religious symbol of good luck and well-being became a worldwide symbol of hate and terror, Welton speaks with the Rev. T. K. Nakagaki, a prominent Buddhist and interfaith leader, on his new book, The Buddhist Swastika and Hitler’s Cross: Rescuing a Symbol of Peace from the Forces of Hate.

Listen to the interview here:

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