After reading a few chapters from Beautiful Souls the non-fiction text written by Eyal Press, I realized I did not understand the meaning of the term swastika. My project in this brief paper is to research the term swastika to gain a better understanding of the term and the text Beautiful Souls. The reference to swastika is found in chapter 4, Correcting Mistakes , which gives an account of Press explaining how Paul Gruninger had done everything he had to help the Jews alone but his actions were also known.He supports his claim by first including a quote of how the police has been doing illegal attempts to enter Switzerland from the border surveillance command before the investigation of Paul Gruninger, then by introducing Valentin Keel, a former trade unionist who’s office was directly in front of Gruninger but saw Jewish refugees enter, then by using the statistics of the trial of how Keel knew everything, and finally by using historical context of the hundreds of fugitives who were welcomed to Switzerland after the Soviet Union crashed the Prague Spring.On page 41, Press says, “Emblazoned on it was a swastika and, next to this, the letter J, along with a black-and-white photo of a slightly bewildered-looking dark-haired boy. ” But what exactly is swastika? One source that offers quite a bit of Borbon 2 information on swastika is the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. According to this source, the swastika has been through history and even 5,000 years before Adolf Hitler designed the Nazi Flag. It was originally from the Sanskrit swastika which means “good fortune” and has numerous other meanings. It’s also been used in Neolithic Eurasia, Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Odinism. ushmm. org) Another rich source of informations on swastika is the Jewish Virtual Library. This source explains how German nationalists chose to use the swastika because it associated with the Aryan race. Adolf Hitler said the swastika symbolized the victory of Aryan man as it officially became the emblem for the Nazi Party on August 7, 1920, at the Salzburg Congress. (jewishvirtuallibrary. org) So, what has been learned from these two sources is that swastika is a symbol that was used in many generations and is associated in many cultures. It has represented life, sun, power, and good luck.The swastika is mostly known as the symbol for the Nazi Party in the 19th century under Adolf Hitler to symbolize the victory of the Aryan race. Before researching this information I thought swastika meant a symbol that represented hate for Jewish people and their culture. I also have a better understanding on how the German consulate had given Erich Ishmael Bilig a passport that was emblazoned with a swastika to represent the Nazi’s. We now know swastika and understand this new information, making it clear that this additional research has further broadened our understanding of Beautiful Souls.