Santa Monica yoga company removes Hindu god Ganesha from mats after complaints

Yoga practitioners at a studio in Raleigh, NC.
Yoga practitioners at a studio in Raleigh, NC.

A Southern California yoga mat maker has pulled a design featuring a Hindu deity because of a complaint from the Universal Society of Hinduism.

The Santa Monica Daily Press says society president Rajan Zed wrote to YogaMatic.com officials on Jan. 27 demanding that that they stop making mats featuring Lord Ganesha.

The design shows a human body with the head of an elephant. It represents the power of the supreme being that removes obstacles and ensures success in human endeavors.

Zed says Lord Ganesha is one of the most highly revered deities and standing or sitting on a mat with his likeness is inappropriate.

Yogamatic founder William Cawley says his Santa Monica firm removed the design after receiving Zed's letter, adding he apologizes to anyone who may have been offended.