The Immense Power of Symbolism
Sometimes change is borne out of necessity, sometimes change is achieved, and sometimes change is thrust upon us! This post, I feel, is necessary due to the appropriation of symbols by sectors of society that are extreme in prejudice and intolerance...
For around 15 years I have used as a representation for my business a symbol that is borrowed and adapted from Norse mythology. The symbol is called a Valknut ( Odin's Knot or knot of the fallen ); it is supposed to represent the gods power to bind and unbind, thereby also representing life and death and the transition between ( and therefore a re-birth ) as well as being associated with magic and especially with magic of the mind and the power to give inspiration and courage, or to take it away.
I chose the symbol for many reasons not least of which are the points above with its allegorical meaning that naturally lends itself to creativity and magic and furthermore, that in its design, it is like an infinity loop, having no beginning or end point of interlinking triangles ( and triangles within triangles ). Its historical meanings, also have the inference of a respectful veneration of those that had come before. This was a deference to my particular belief and respect to the notion that as magicians we "stand on the shoulders of giants". I honestly believe it to be true and the greatest respect I have, and what I enjoy most about magic and mentalism, is the ingenuity of thought, the creative thinking of magicians and the brilliance of the devious and deceiving methods conceived of and used to create something of wonder and beauty for art and entertainment. It is a secretive and unknown art-form; the genius of inspired thought that goes in to creating effects of illusion and it has my sincere interest and respect and my utmost appreciation.
So with all that, what's the problem...?
Well the problem is that now the symbol has been appropriated by white supremacy groups. What they see in it I don't exactly know, however, it is probably a simplistic white or Aryan pride association with war, death and the afterlife. It is not exclusively or only associated with white supremacy groups, some non racist pagans and Northern Europeans have their own unique ties to this symbolism, but, it is now an unfortunate symbol because, now the immense power of symbolism ties it to racism; much like the use of the swastika by the nazi party created the most hateful symbol of modern times ( - for Hindus the swastika is a venerated symbol of the sun ) ...
So, change is thrust upon me and I intend to remove my use of the symbol in my logo from this day forward. We do need to guard against intolerance and hatred at all times, and that extends to everything we can control.