Despite the symbol’s troubled history in the west, the swastika still holds a meaning of fortune for temples visited by Drew Barrymore on a trip to Japan.
Fans were left feeling confused after Drew Barrymore was spotted carrying an incense stick with a swastika symbol on it to a temple in Japan. Drew Barrymore was visiting the Senso-ji temple in Asakusa when she carried an incense holder that featured the swastika in its originally intended meaning. The famous actress shared a photo with her holding the controversial symbol along with many images of her trip.
The swastika is conventionally associated with Nazi Germany in the Western part of the world, however, it remains a sacred symbol in Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism. It is considered normal practice in several Asian nations to wear the Swastika, as it is seen as a sacred symbol of peace and good luck. Onlookers outside of the region should not consider Drew Barrymore’s use of the symbol as offensive.
The Swastika is also known as the gammadion cross, cross cramponmeé, or manji is a symbol considered to be very sacred and auspicious in Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism. The word is derived from the Sanskrit svastika meaning “good fortune.” The swastika is also a standardized Chinese character, present in the Japanese character set as well.
P.R. Sarkar, a Sanskrit scholar said in 1979 that the symbol can have either a positive or negative meaning in Hinduism based on how it is drawn. The right-handed swastika is a symbol of the God Vishnu and the sun. Another source states that the right-handed version is a symbol of the sun and the Hindu sun god Surya. The swastika is imitating the rotation of the god’s arms and the course taken by the sun as it rises and falls daily. The left-handed version is a symbol of Kali and Magic; Kali is a terrifying Hindu goddess of the night. Both versions of the symbol have been seen in forms of architecture, clothing, and decorations for festivals and weddings alike.
In Buddhism, the symbol of the swastika represents good fortune, abundance, prosperity, and eternity. It is often found carved on the feet and heart of Buddha statues.