— Nicholas Roerich Russian painter, writer, archaeologist, theosophist, enlightener, philosopher 1874 - 1947
Context: I was asked to collect information where the symbols of our Banner of Peace could be found. It turned out that the symbol of the Holy Trinity has been scattered all over the world. This has been explained in various ways. Some say it means the past, present and future, bound by the ring of eternity. Others find it more palatable to explain it as religion, knowledge and art in the ring of Culture. Obviously there were various explanations already in the ancient times, but the symbol, the sign itself had become fixed all over the world. … You can find it on the ancient icon in Bar depicting St. Nicholas. The same is on the centuries-old image of St. Sergius. It is on the image of Holy Trinity. It is on the coat of arms of Samarkand. It is on ancient Ethiopian and Coptic antiquities. It is on Mongolian rocks. It is on Tibetan rings. The steed of happiness on the Himalayan Mountains passes bears the same flaming sign. It is on all the brooches of Lahuli, Ladakhi and Himalayan Mountains. It is on Buddhist banners. Going back to the Neolithic depths we can find the same sign in the ornaments decorating their pottery. … And that is why the symbol was chose for all uniting Banner as the symbol that has passed through centuries, more exactly — millennia. The symbol was not a mere decorating ornament all over, it bore a very special meaning. Collecting all its images together, we might prove that it is the most extensively spread and ancient one among all the symbols of mankind. No one can claim that it belongs but to one religion or is based on the only one folk-lore. It would be very beneficial to glance at the evolution of human consciousness in its variegated forms.
Notes on the Banner of Peace (24 May 1939)