Upset Hindus are urging Seattle headquartered luxury department stores chain Nordstrom for immediate withdrawal of erect penis shaped vase named after Hindu deity Shiva; calling it highly inappropriate.
Distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada today, said that Lord Shiva and Shivalinga were highly revered in Hinduism and were meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not used as a vase for holding cut flowers, which might end up as a decoration in toilet/bathroom/etc. Inappropriate usage of Hindu deities or concepts or symbols for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurts the devotees.
Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, also urged Nordstrom Co-Presidents—Blake W. Nordstrom, Peter E. Nordstrom, Erik B. Nordstrom—to offer a formal apology.
Hinduism was the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about 1.1 billion adherents and a rich philosophical thought and it should not be taken frivolously. Symbols of any faith, larger or smaller, should not be mishandled, Rajan Zed noted.
Zed further said that such trivialization of Hindu deity was disturbing to the Hindus world over. Hindus were for free artistic expression and speech as much as anybody else if not more. But faith was something sacred and attempts at trivializing it hurt the followers, Zed added.
Shiva Ceramic Vase, described on Nordstrom website as— “this curvy, iconic vase in blush-pink ceramic makes a marvelous showcase for a spray of blooms.”, was priced at $600.
Lord Shiva, along with Lord Brahma and Lord Vishnu, forms the great triad of Hindu deities. There are about three million Hindus in USA.
Publicly traded Nordstrom, Inc.; with 380 stores in 40 states, Canada and Puerto Rico; and serving 96 countries online through Nordstrom.com; claims to be “a leading fashion retailer offering compelling clothing, shoes and accessories for men, women and children”. Founded in 1901, it states: “Fashion changes. Shopping changes. Our commitment to happy customers doesn’t.”