Symbolic Lights

Symbolic Lights are used in non-violent action in most parts of the world for a particular reason. This action entails the use of light producing devices such as torches, lanterns, candles and other tools. They are used in protest marches and parades, though they have also been used in other kinds of protests in the world.

There are many ways in which Symbolic Lights can be used in non violent actions. People taking part in the protests light the candles, torches or lanterns to pass a certain message to the authority or to those whom they feel have offended them. These symbols are commonly used in parades. This is applicable in a way that people taking part in the nonviolent actions converge and parades themselves in a specific location they deem is significant in their action. In most cases, places where the parades are held have a significant meaning to the grievances of those taking part in the nonviolent action.

It is also possible to use protest marches with symbolic lights. Those protesting in a nonviolent manner carry symbolic lights to deliver their message. Such protesters might commence their protests from a specific location and end at another location where the organizers or the leaders will have to give a keynote non-violent speech.

Examples of situations where Symbolic Lights have been used in the world:

  • It is flagrant that there are many occasions or events where Symbolic Lights have been used. The most known example is in South Africa where on 26th June 1953, symbolic lights were used in the anniversary launch of 1952 Defiance campaign. This was organized in a way that Albert Luthuli, the Chief Leader of African National Congress (ANC) applied to Africans and their allies in South Africa and other parts of the continent lo light candles, lanterns or bonfires outside their homes. This was to symbolize the spark of freedom which the South Africans were fighting to get and keep it alive in their hearts.
  • Symbolic lights have also been used in Czechoslovak. This happened three days after Jan Palach died on 19th January 1969 after burning himself in opposition due to Soviet invasion. This saw young people march in Wenceslas Square, Prague in a candlelight ceremony. Those taking part in the march held quite and carried black flags as well as Czechoslovak white, red and blue flag to this squire where Palach had been burned.

Continue reading the 198 Methods of Nonviolent Action.

Also check out The Politics of Nonviolent Action Part One / Part Two / Part Three.

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