Hindus are upset over comparison of blue-colored villain Apocalypse with their deity Lord Krishna in the recently released official trailer of “X-Men: Apocalypse” action-adventure Hollywood superhero movie releasing in May 2016.
Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada today, said that such trivialization of Lord Krishna, who was highly revered in Hinduism, was quite inappropriate and disturbing to the devotees.
Lord Krishna was meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not for pushing movies for mercantile greed of filmmakers, Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, pointed out.
This trailer indicated Apocalypse saying: I have been called many things over many lifetimes—Ra, Krishna, Yahweh.
Rajan Zed urged director Bryan Singer to delete all the references to Lord Krishna from the trailer and the final movie, unless those were true to the scriptures. Inappropriate usage of Hindu deities or concepts for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurt the devotees and confused non-Hindus about Hinduism.
Hinduism was the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about one billion adherents and a rich philosophical thought and it should not be taken frivolously. Symbols of any faith, larger or smaller, should not be mishandled, Zed noted.
Rajan Zed further said that Hindus were for free artistic expression and speech as much as anybody else if not more. But faith was something sacred and attempts at trivializing it hurt the followers, Zed stated and added that insensitive handling of faith traditions sometimes resulted in pillaging serious spiritual doctrines and revered symbols.
Hindus welcomed Hollywood to immerse in Hinduism, but taking it seriously and respectfully and not for refashioning Hinduism concepts and symbols just to further its agenda. Hollywood was welcome to make movies about Lord Krishna or other Hindu deities but the final product should be true to the scriptures and not a fantasized or a re-imagined version, Zed indicated.
Rajan Zed suggested that Hollywood executives should be sent for training in religious and cultural sensitivity so that they had an understanding of the feelings of audiences and communities when creating new products. If makers of “X-Men: Apocalypse” or other Hollywood executives needed any expertise on Hinduism related issues, he or other Hindu scholars would gladly provide the resources, Zed added.
Lord Krishna, usually depicted as blue-skinned, is the eighth avatar (incarnation) of Lord Vishnu and subject of major Hindu scriptures such as the Bhagavad-Gita (Song of the Lord) and Bhagavad-Purana. There are about three million Hindus in USA and moksh (liberation) is the ultimate goal of Hinduism.
“X-Men: Apocalypse” of 20th Century Fox stars Golden Globes nominated James McAvoy, Oscar nominated Michael Fassbender and Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence. Its official website talks about Apocalypse as: Since the dawn of civilization, he was worshipped as a god.