After the Swastika - the Sunwheel is probably one of the most instantly recognisable pagan symbols used within Pan-European and White Nationalist circles.
The symbol of the Sunwheel - also called a Sun Cross, Eye of Odin (Wotan Woden etc.) has many meanings - and is slightly different to the 'celtic cross' which I believe has it origins in the Sunwheel symbol, but was later Christianised, as we will see now -
If we look at these images of very old 'Celtic Crosses' we see that they are in fact Sunwheels which were based on top of a Pillar (the Irminsul). Over time the Pillar became incorporated and the Sunwheel and became a 'Celtic Cross'.
Like the Swastika - the original Sunwheel had even length arms - it was a 'rotational' symbol which represented the turning of the Year (the word Yule means 'wheel' which represented the final turn of the yearly cycle before entering a new year).
The four arms often represent -
- the four directions of North, East, South and West. (This are the names of four dwarves who hold up the sky in Northern mythology) - hence the Sunwheel is a SOLAR symbol.
- the four seasons of the year - Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter - again symbolised as a turning wheel.
There are two other aspects of the Sunwheel which are sometimes overlooked. The outer circle represents the 'Enternal' (the never ending, evolution, change etc.) whilst the 'cross' represents the 'Finite' (the fixed, limited, restricted etc.). These two opposites are combined to form the Sunwheel. It is this combination of opposites that makes the Sunwheel a symbol for the 'Eye of Woden' - as Woden is blind in one eye. Woden sacrificed one eye at the Well of Memory, in order to gain insight into the future. Thus his seeing eye represents the 'outlooking' eternal eye, whilst his blind eye represents the 'inward' eye of wisdom. Again we have a union of opposites.
The Sunwheel as a Nationalist emblem.
As we have seen, the Sunwheel is certainly a suitable substitute for the swastika as a Solar symbol. The sign is often combined with national colours - with these examples below.
During the Second Brothers War, the Nasjonal Samling used a Sunwheel as their emblem. The colours for the Sunwheel were based on the colours of St Olafs cross. The Nasjonal Samling headed by Vidkun Quisling, were pro-pagan.
The Suncross of the Nasjonal Samling.
In the United Kingdom the British Movement also uses the Sunwheel as their emblem. Founded in 1962 by the late National Socialist Colin Jordan, the BM use a Sunwheel based on the colours of the Union Jack.
The Sunwheel of the British Movement.