(RNS) Hindu critics say Urban Outfitters’ new duvet cover featuring Lord Ganesh is insensitive to their faith and have asked that the item be pulled.

Decorative or artistic depictions of Ganesha are more appropriate than those that have a functional purpose, such as images of him on rugs and bedspreads, according to Rajan Zed, president of Universial Society of Hinduism.

Decorative or artistic depictions of Ganesha are more appropriate than those that have a functional purpose, such as images of him on rugs and bedspreads, according to Rajan Zed, president of Universial Society of Hinduism. Creative Commons image by Nemo's great uncle

The cover, available online for $129-169, depicts the elephant-head Hindu deity who symbolizes wisdom.

Criticism of the retailer comes barely a week after Wal-Mart, Amazon and Sears came under fire for selling a commemorative poster featuring a photo from the Dachau concentration camp’s main gate.

Rajan Zed, president of Universal Society of Hinduism, has asked Urban Outfitters to take the duvet cover off the market.

“You can put him in a frame and on the wall. That is fine,” Zed said. “But not to be put on the bed, on which you lie and your feet will go on. That is very inappropriate.”

Zed urged Urban Outfitters to remove Lord Ganesh socks from stores in December. The retailer responded by quickly pulling the socks and issuing an apology.

Urban Outfitters, which sells other Lord Ganesh items, including a tank toppillows and wall tapestry, declined to comment.

Murali Balaji, director of education at the Hindu American Foundation, said he doesn’t think the duvet cover is offensive but it worries him about the future.

“They really don’t get it,” Balaji said, and he predicted that what he called the company’s “hipster racism” will continue.

Urban Outfitters has upset other religious groups. In 2012, the company sold a shirt that resembled the yellow Star of David patch Jews were forced to wear in Nazi Germany. And in March the retailer was asked to remove a shirt that said “Jesus, I’m Drunk” with a picture of Jesus holding a beer.

In the future, Balaji wants Urban Outfitters to talk to Hindu community leaders before putting items involving their religion on shelves.

YS/MG END ADAMS

 

13 Comments

  1. Hmm. I wonder if they did remove the “jesus I am drunk” shirt or if they just thought, screw it they are just christians.

    Kudos for showing respect to the Hindus beliefs though. Its nice that they did, because they didn’t have to.

    • If they sold underwear depicting the crucifixion, Bible thumping miscreants like yourself would burn the stores down.

      Now is it:

      Jesus: I am drunk

      Or

      Jesus, I am drunk

      The punctuation counts.

      • And I’m certain to then be beated down and arrested by the local militarized police….in this land of “free”.

        Geez, I bet it I just protested a front the store, and someone with a lot of face piercings (liberal) pointed at me and screamed “bigot”,”hater”,”racist” or fill_in_the_blank”phobe” it would end in the same result.

        If I decided to return the favor, the assault on my religious worldview, by making fun of the people who hold a secular worldview…it would yield the same result. Inevitably some federally protected sub species of american would take offense, the same reaction I had to my assault, but there emotional state trumps mine in the american legal system and in the worthless collective thought of our society.

        • So you, larry, get to stand there and call names, as you did…and don’t have to worry about defending yourself from the same.

          As it against the laws of this “free and equal society” to upset or return assault to you special people.

          Again, enjoy your shield. It only means you already lost.

        • “And I’m certain to then be beated down and arrested by the local militarized police….in this land of “free”.”

          That is the price you pay for being a destructive harmful jerk. Tough luck. The laws are not too keen on giving people a right to destroy the property or do harm to others even if you say God wanted you to do it.

          I, who has never let needles puncture my body in any intentional manner unless it was a medically proscribed method of delivering medication, would just laugh at the protests of the bearded unwashed quasi-australopithicine in front of the store.

          Your religious viewpoint amounts to nothing more than saying, “follow me or else”. Nothing worthy of respect. You are entitled to holding the view, but I am not entitled to take it seriously in anything I do. You have no problem giving offense to other religions and faiths but have a tough time taking it. Typical spineless thumper.

          Maybe you should try Russia. I heard they are fawning over violent stupid Christian types over there.

        • @Lles Nats,

          You said, “the assault on my religious worldview”

          Religion:
          “God exists.”
          Where?
          “He’s invisible”
          Then why believe?
          “His invisibility is proof that he gave me free will to deny he exists”

          At least it is only your ridiculous worldview
          that is attacked and not you, personally.
          Because when the shoe is on the other foot, You religious people sure like to do some killing:

          God will kill men, have their children smashed, and have their wives raped (Isaiah 13:15-16).
          God will punish children for the iniquities of their fathers and distant ancestors (Isaiah 14:21).
          God will lay waste to entire cities and make the lands desolate (Jeremiah 4:7).
          God will set people, animals, and even plants on fire because of his anger (Jeremiah 7:20).
          God will send so much evil that people would rather be dead than suffer (Jeremiah 8:3).
          God will give away the property of men, including their wives, to other men (Jeremiah 8:10).
          God will kill young men, and their children will die from a famine (Jeremiah 11:22).
          God will cause everyone to become drunk so father and son will kill one another (Jeremiah 13:14).
          God will not hear the cries of the people or acknowledge their sacrifices (Jeremiah 14:12).
          God will make people hungry enough to eat their own children and friends (Jeremiah 19:9).
          God will burn entire cities with the inhabitants still inside (Jeremiah 50:32).
          God will break people’s bones and knock their teeth out with stones (Lamentations 3:1-16).
          God will force fathers and sons to eat each other and scatter their remembrance (Ezekiel 5:10).
          God will be comforted by killing everyone with pestilence, plagues, and swords (Ezekiel 5:12-13).
          God will lay dead bodies around idols and spread their bones around the alters (Ezekiel 6:5).
          God will kill righteous men and forget their good deeds if they ever turn to sin (Ezekiel 18:24).
          God will turn daughters into whores and wives into adulterers (Hosea 4:13).
          God will kill children when they come out of their mothers’ wombs (Hosea 10:14).
          God will tear people apart and devour them like a lion (Hosea 13:8).
          God will kill children and unborn fetuses because their parents worship other gods (Hosea 13:16).
          God will sell the children of Israel into slavery in a far away land (Joel 3:8).
          God will kill inhabitants of entire cities if they have a corrupt government (Micah 3:9-12).
          God will consume every living thing from the face of the earth (Zephaniah 1:2-3).
          God will send people to steal Jerusalem, rape the women, and enslave the rest (Zechariah 14:2).
          God will send plagues on people and animals to rot away tongues and eyes (Zechariah 14:12-15).

          Lles Nats,
          Your ‘worldview’ is an assault on humanity, a despicable, shameful, incoherent mess. And your worldview is a danger to the world.

          • Dear brother, in Hinduism, we have a belief that we beings, and everything that surrounds us is God, because God created us, therefore there must be a part of IT in us. Like you say your parents created you, that also means, there must be a part of your parents in you. Hinduism focuses on realising that God, present in you. You will find many ashrams in India that help people follow the Vedic way of life as well as helping them realising the God present in them. If you want you can watch this beautiful lady’s video to learn more:http://www.youtube.com/user/MaNithyaSudevi/videos The verses you mentioned above are only views of some people not what God said. In Hinduism, we don’t have strict beliefs. We believe that whichever religion you follow will surely lead to God. Therefore, we believe in diversity. Hinduism itself is practiced in diversity. The people living in Gujarat(INDIA) have traditions varying from those living in Tamil Nadu but yet they are still called Hindus. Don’t hate God or Christianity only because some verses upset you. If you have any doubt, go to some bishop and do ask them what these verses mean. In Hinduism, we surely have holy books with verses which when taken literally can really upset us. That’s why we have priests to make us understand the true meaning of these verses. These verses are figurative and not literal.

    • @Lles Nats,

      “Kudos for showing respect to the Hindus beliefs though.”

      Yes, Hindus deserve a lot of ‘respect’
      for believing in multi-tasking elephant gods who control their lives
      along with Vishnu and hundreds of other gods.

      Makes a lot of sense. Definite props to the Hindus for that.

  2. A bit tangential to this topic but…Doesn’t Urban Outfitters have its own religion yet? What is taking them so long?

    Is this a case of corporate blasphemy? Is there money in pursuing it?
    The ridiculous Hobby Lobby decision will lead to stuff like this.
    The Christian right is going to regret the Hobby Lobby decision.

    Human Laws are inferior to God’s Laws.
    So, since non of us is god – we are doomed.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Comments with many links may be automatically held for moderation.