Deities for commercial ads. -a slur on Hindu society


Hindu religion is very vast, precise, bold, broad and clear. It lends itself for open discussion, as Hindu mythology has a spiritual as well as a scientific base. It is always ready to answer any question and preclude any doubt in anyone’s mind by providing substance of reason, thought through scientific and spiritual analysis. It does accept any question from any one to equip him with the right answer. Even criticism which it accepts gladly gets totally subdued and even vanished when the critics find answers based on reason, truth and genuineness.
But today when we look at our Hindu society, the so called advanced society, we feel ourselves out of countenance, as it has embraced the culture of ultra modernity having lent itself completely to materialistic and glamorous world full of deviations and distractions leading us away from our cultural heritage and values. Shocked and upset we stand to know as to how the, present Hindu society having given itself to the so called modern and glamorous world to claim itself as ultramodern society, has kept its eyes shut on one most unfortunate and sordid aspect which is damaging our religious character, cultural behavior and outlook.
Are we so much lost in the din of the present hustle and bustle of the materialistic and glamorous society that we have become dumb and deaf and even blind to see that the present big business houses have not spared even our deities (Gods & Godesses) from being made as the cheap means of commercial ads for the better sale of their goods through print and electronic media by labeling the goods and commodities after the names of various deities and pasting and printing the sacred photographs and pictures on the packets of cosmetics, crackers, Beedi pkts, Note Books, Diaries, Pan Massalas and in the advertisement columns of various newspapers. We find Ganesh Beedies, Sarsoti Oil, Laxmi Dhoop Packets and so many other commodity packets with names and photos of the deities on the cover of the packets being sold in the market one day while the same photos and empty packet covers are seen lying scattered on the streets and dirty lanes and in drains under the feet of passers-by, the next day or a few days after. Is it not a slur on our society and desecration to our deities?
Even on various calendars printed by the businessmen for publicity of their shopping centers and goods, we find photographs of our Avtars, Prophets and deities. As the time goes on page by page of the calendar is removed and thrown out or torn to pieces to find a place in a dust bin or a side drain. The photographs and pictures of the deities should be allowed at the Pooja places alone, be it a temple within a house or outside at a proper location. There should be a complete ban to display any photo, picture of any deity anywhere other than the specific places of worship. Only on a particular occasion of religious ceremony, the sacred photographs and pictures be allowed to be displayed. There should be a blanket ban on the commercial ads depicting deities and their pictures and photographs in any manner for their sale proceeds or publicity. This is a great sin hurting sentiments of the people.
Our Hindu society has falsely advanced so much that it feels itself having left its cultural heritage very far behind so much so that today our electronic media does not have even the least hesitation to reflect (display) on T.V. Screen our ancient religious Yodhas like Arjuna getting allured by the sight and the smell and quality of present cosmetics forgetting to shoot the arrow in the Soyambra. Is it not a mockery of Hindu culture? Are the ancient religious personalities to be depicted as comedians on the screen. This is really disheartening. Will the press or the electronic media even dare to project the deities or prophets of other religions for commercial ads? No, never at all and nor should they. Let our Hindu society learn a lesson from Islamic and Sikh religion who really mean and give tremendous respect to their religion, prophets and Gur or deities. Let all of us have regard for our and other religions and the deities, Avtars, Gurus and prophets as also for the various cultures. Let us not wander in the hollow and emply wilderness of glamour and materialism of today which is bound to deviate us from our ideals and values.
Let the Govt. of India and the State Governments impose complete ban on use of name of deities and their photographs and pictures in commercial ads or display of, their picture/photos in any form anywhere other than the specific places of worship. Let a law be enacted to prevent the menace and save the sanctity of Avtars, deities and religion.
Let a better sense prevail in our Hindu Society to see that our religious and cultural values are preserved and don’t become a victim at the hands of the so called ultra modernity of the present day culture of glamour and materialism.
(The writer is retired Ex-Engineer)

editorial article
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