Upset Hindus are urging multinational home furnishings retailer IKEA to immediately withdraw its recently launched Australia campaign video “IKEA product pose Yoga” and apologize.
Distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, said that this video unnecessarily and unreasonably trivialized the ancient and serious discipline of yoga, which was highly inappropriate.
Moreover, comparing a yoga-asana with a Martini glass for mercantile greed was quite out-of-line; Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, pointed out.
Rajan Zed further said that inappropriate usage of Hindu concepts or practices or traditions for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurt the devotees. Home furnishing companies should not be in the business of religious appropriation and mocking serious spiritual practices.
Zed also urged Ingka Group CEO Jesper Brodin and Inter IKEA Group CEO Torbjörn Lööf to offer a formal apology and be serious about the IKEA vision “to create a better everyday life for the many people”.
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. Practices/concepts/traditions of any faith, larger or smaller, should not be ridiculed at; Rajan Zed stated.
Yoga is considered union with God, one of the six systems of Hindu philosophy, and mean for transforming consciousness and purification of the Self and attaining liberation; Zed notes.
This campaign video of IKEA Australia asks the viewer to “follow Eve as she takes you through product pose yoga by IKEA” where she displays 15 yoga-asanas associating each with an IKEA product, like “Barbecue tongs”; with a background voice talking about “to quieten the internal fire we have awakened”; ending in Namaste with folded hands.
IKEA, currently headquartered in Delft (Netherlands) and founded in Sweden in 1943, claims to offer “well-designed, functional and affordable, high-quality home furnishing products made with care for people and the environment”. There are ten IKEA stores in Australia itself.