Home furnishing retailer Ikea has apologised to the Universal Society of Hinduism for a video which 'trivialised' yoga. Ikea had released a video for the Australian market titled 'Ikea product pose Yoga' which drew protests from the Hindu group.
Cecilia Stenberg, a spokeswoman for the Ingka Group press office, in emails to Rajan Zed, founder, Universal Society of Hinduism, apologised for the video and stated: "We are truly sorry and apologise if this commercial from Ikea Retail Australia has been perceived as offensive in any way. We assure you that it was not intentional...the video is unpromoted on social media and Ikea Retail Australia will not re-activate."
Zed thanked Ikea for understanding the concerns but urged Ingka group CEO Jesper Brodin and Inter IKEA group CEO Torbjörn Lööf to completely withdraw the video.
He said, "The 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. 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."
A version of this story first appeared on Campaign India.
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