“Jonita

How Namaste was bastardized to NamaF*CKINGStay

It’s not a special religious or cultural request from us people of Indian origin, it’s just that you use what you take with respect and dignity, and it’s just good manners and common sense.

The Hello Joburg Magazine’s Beauty & Lifestyle editor, Bianca Spinner unleashed some fury from South African Indians.

Spinner took it upon herself to feel it ok to bastardize. the term Namaste. The promotion was around a yoga retreat, which read out ‘NamaFuckingStay’ on her Instagram story.

Source: Bianca Spinner’s Instagram story

So, we’ve decided to hand out some valued information to Bianca.

First off ‘Namaste’ is an important phrase to Hindus, it is more than just a word to us, it has a key focus on religion. Out of all religious greetings, the most misused and mainstream one has to be Namaste.

In Hinduism, Namaste is a respectful greeting when giving namaskar and means “I bow to the divine in you”.

A few examples of the abuse of the term are:

  • Namaste in bed
  • Namaslay
  • Namaste-away
  • Namaste at the bar
  • Namaste bitches

Let’s not forget NamaFuckingStay thanks to you, Bianca Spinner.

ALSO READ: Kardashian’s mock Hindu gods in two bizarre paintings

If you have to consider a visit to our ancestral homeland of India, you will realize that nobody there actually goes ‘Namaste’ after yoga classes in India.

Yoga for anyone is perfect however there’s a line drawn when appropriating yogic culture in a westernized context.

It’s just a ‘white people thing’ to feel inclusive I guess, when it comes to saying ‘Namaste’ at the end of the class.

Bianca should have actually googled the meaning of Namaste before misappropriating the word to suit her entertainment on Instagram.

She admits she has a problem, but we have a problem with your apology Bianca

Soon after receiving messages from angry people of Indian origin, Bianca Spinner issued an apology on her Instagram story.

She admits to using vulgarity excessively, however the context of how she used it was the problem for most of our readers and us as well.

Going on about being so respectful in your Instagram story is just seriously BS. You should be aware of the culture & history behind the word ‘Namaste’ before you decided to rape it.

Watch her apology here

Namaste is here for everyone to appreciate, not for everyone to appropriate.”

Cultural appropriation is harmful when those like Hello Joburg Mag’s editor adopted Namaste and unknowingly ignorant or willfully dismissed the dynamics of using the work in a derogatory nature.

ALSO READ: Kardashian’s mock Hindu gods in two bizarre paintings

Cultural appropriation is harmful when bits and pieces of culture are extracted and/or commodified for personal or corporate benefit without respect for the culture or tradition at large.

Context matters and you should have been careful of that, post 1994 a country like South Africa with over a million South African’s of Indian origin. Did you really thing you would get away with ‘NamaFUCKINGStay’?

I think when it comes to people of Indian origin; colonization and then apartheid impacted our determination to never let our cultures or race be picked on again. We have that right.

In South Africa – for our readers abroad – using the word ‘coolie’ or ‘K-word’ can land you within the arm of the law with serious consequences.

We all have a responsibility to be respectful and aware of how we’re consuming and engaging with traditions. Hence this article, because it’s really easy to slip behind a veil of privileged ignorance.

Just by this simple yet sacred greeting, it transforms the way you view it and therefore, should be using it. Such words and phrases are here for everyone to appreciate, not for everyone to appropriate. There’s a huge difference.

This isn’t a special religious or cultural request from us people of Indian origin, it’s just that you use what you take with respect and dignity, and it’s just good manners and common sense.

First and foremost, we are all students, and as such we would do well to humble and educate ourselves and you failed horribly, Bianca.

By Naufal Khan

ALSO READ: Kardashian’s mock Hindu gods in two bizarre paintings

“Jonita

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