Upset Hindus are urging Los Gatos (California) based ecommerce firm Whimzy Tees for immediate withdrawal of “swim briefs” carrying images of Hindu deities Lord Shiva and Lord Ganesha; calling these highly inappropriate.
Distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada today, said that Lord Shiva and Lord Ganesha were highly revered in Hinduism and were meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not to adorn one’s legs, thighs, groin, genitals and pelvis. Inappropriate usage of sacred Hindu deities or concepts or symbols or icons for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurt the devotees.
Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, also urged Whimzy Tees and its CEO to offer a formal apology; besides withdrawing Shiva Swim Briefs and Ganesha Swim Briefs from their website and resellers’ websites/stores.
Ecommerce companies should not be in the business of religious appropriation, sacrilege, and ridiculing entire communities. It was deeply trivializing of immensely venerated Lord Shiva and Lord Ganesha to be displayed on swim briefs, Rajan Zed emphasized.
Hinduism was the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about 1.2 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; Zed noted.
Rajan Zed further said that such trivialization of Hindu deities 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.
In Hinduism, Lord Shiva, along with Lord Brahma and Lord Vishnu, forms the great triad of Hindu deities. Lord Ganesha is worshipped as god of wisdom and remover of obstacles and is invoked before the beginning of any major undertaking. There are about three million Hindus in USA.
Description of these objectionable swim briefs at Whimzy Tees, priced at $34.50 each, claims that these “compression mini-shorts” “hug in all the right places”. Whimzy Tees, whose tagline is “bringing art to fashion”, sells “tees, sweatshirts, rashguards and more”. “Slip on something from Whimzy Tees and start turning heads”, it states.