Nazi Torch Marches

TorchOne of the most spectacular (if not the most spectacular) Nazi rituals were, obviously, their nighttime torch marches. Thousands of SA and SS members were marching at night in choreographed formation carrying lit torches, sometimes forming a massive human swastika and always creating a mesmerizing spectacle.

Like the swastika symbol itself, torchlight parades were used by the Nazis to project their power (and the personal power of Adolf Hitler), provide Germans with vital emotional and spiritual nutrition, instill in them loyalty and obedience to the Nazi regime and its Führer and inspire them to make the maximum possible contribution to the victory in the existential war.

Only this time they added to the power of the swastika symbol the immense mystical and magical power of the flame unleashed by torchlight marches. This power allowed Nazis (or so they thought) to establish a mystical spiritual connection with their ancestors – an ancient German race (and even pre-historical Aryan race).

Hitler himself was infatuated with the torch – he described racial purity as ‘the fuel for the torch of human culture’. Which in reality was not the case at all – the human culture was created by a mixture of races, not by a “racially pure” nation.

Interestingly enough, the most famous contemporary torch event – the Olympic torch relay used to literally spark the Opening Games – was a modern reinvention from the 1936 Berlin Olympic Games. The Nazi reinvention.


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