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Toilet Seat Deities!
Van Dyke's Apologia to the Hindu Community

The partner of the firm Sittin' Pretty Designs - that produced toilet seats with images of Hindu deities - Lamar Van Dyke in an open letter to the US edition of the Indian portal Rediff.com (Nov 22, 2000) has clarified that the company didn’t mean to offend Hindus. Here's an excerpt:



Lord Ganesha on the Toilet Seat Mother Mary on the Toilet Seat
These designs weren't confined to Hinduism (Courtesy: Rediff.com)

"The reality of our company is that we are two women. Two women who make these toilet seats, lovingly, with our own hands, in our own home. If you look closely at the selection available, with the exception of Lord Ganesh, all of the images we are using are representational of the female gender. We feel that it is important to put strong female images out there in the universe to attempt to counteract the negativity that is and has been directed at woman throughout the millennia.

"Kali is one of the strongest female images to have survived the deliberate distortion the patriarchy has placed upon all of our history. The only surviving female figure of the Christian version is the Virgin Mary. We have put her on a seat as well, in the familiar form of Our Lady of Guadalupe. It is simply not up on our Web page yet.

"Our difference of opinion is not based on a lack of respect for the images of Kali and Ganesh. We do have the utmost respect and love for these deities. That is why we are sending them off to live with various people around the world. It seems to be simply a difference of opinion about the toilet and perhaps the entire bathroom as well.

Most of the Sacred Seat Collection has been sold to various yoga studios in the United States. A few have gone to individuals who feel a strong connection to the energy of whichever deity they have chosen to purchase They have, consequently, turned their entire bathrooms into altars dedicated to those particular deities. They have added candles, incense, art and other icons that are important to them. They have created fabulous environments in a room that is usually ignored.

Bathrooms are places in homes where people go to be alone. They provide us with a few minutes alone, focused on ourselves with no interruptions. If you have turned your bathroom into a shrine, then you have the support of the environment you have created to guide your thoughts in the direction you have chosen.

Perhaps it is the bodily function part of the bathroom that has set you off. Interestingly enough, these things are the one thing that all of humanity has in common. I see no negative or positive aspects to this."

Complete Apologia > Rediff.com
News Story > Toilet Seat Deities


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