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Swastik

Meaning and uses of Swastika
The Swastika is a sacred symbol in Indian tradition. It is the symbol of auspiciousness, prosperity, and good fortune. Hindus use the swastika to mark the opening pages of account books, thresholds, doors, and offerings. Among the Jains it is the emblem of their seventh Tirthankara. In the Buddhist tradition, the swastika symbolizes the feet or footprints of the Buddha and is often used to mark at the beginning of texts. Modern Tibetan Buddhism uses it as a clothing decoration. With the spread of Buddhism, it has passed into the iconography of China and Japan where it has been used to denote plurality, eternity, abundance, prosperity and long life. It is sometimes used in Japan to symbolize the Buddha's mind.

For Hindus, the four limbs of the swastika denote

1. Four Vedas – Rig Veda, Sama Veda, Yajur Veda and Atharva Veda - Symbolizing auspiciousness
2. Four goals of life - Dharma (virtue), Artha (success), Kama (pleasure) and Moksha (release) - denoting prosperity in each area
3. Four stages of life – Brahmacharya(Student), Grihasta (Householder), Vanaprastha (Retired person) and Sanyasa (Ascetic) - signifying good fortune for each stage
4. Four directions – North, South, East and West - symbolizing the Divine omnipresence
5. Four seasons - Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter - symbolizing the cyclic nature of time
6. Four Yugas (era) of the world-cycle - Satya Yuga, Treta Yuga, Dvapara Yuga and Kali Yuga - symbolizing the natural evolution of the universe
7. Four Varnas (social classes) – Brahmans (Priests, Teachers, and Intellectuals), Kshatriyas (Warriors, Police, and Administrators), Vaishyas (Farmers, Merchants, and Business People) and Shudras (Artisans and Workers) – symbolizing the progress and synergy among social classes
8. Four paths of Yoga – Jnana Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, Karma Yoga and Raja Yoga - - symbolizing union with the divine