Religious leaders from Christian, Hindu, Buddhist, Jewish and Jain denominations are urging Live Nation to remove Hindu-Buddhist-Jain statues that are located in various night clubs and requested a public apology. The statues are located in eight major US cities in the Foundation Room night-clubs in House of Blues and the religious leaders find them highly inappropriate.
Foundation Room night clubs are a part of the “House of Blues” network of Live Nation Entertainment and are located in Anaheim, Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Houston, Las Vegas, and New Orleans. Live Nation Entertainment’s network also includes Ticketmaster, bringing 40,000 shows and more than 100 festivals to life, selling 500 million tickets per year.
With Live Nation being such a large corporation and having a great deal of influence on the music world, and claiming to be the “world’s leading live entertainment company,” statues of Hindu-Buddhist-Jain icons adorning these music venues is out of line.
Leaders released a joint statement on June 26 saying that, “placing highly revered Hindu-Buddhist-Jain icons to adorn night-clubs was very disrespectful, out-of-line, prone to desecration by patrons, and could be disturbing to the adherents of these [Christian-Hindu-Buddhist-Jewish-Jain] faiths.” The group of religious leaders include: Greek Orthodox Priest Stephen R. Karcher, Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, prominent Buddhist Priest Matthew T. Fisher, well-known Jewish Rabbi ElizaBeth Webb Beyer, and renowned Jain leader Sulekh C. Jain.
President of Universal Society of Hinduism Rajan Zed highlighted that Hindu deities Lord Ganesha, Lord Shiva, Lord Rama, (among others) were meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not to be thrown around loosely in a night-club for dramatic effects or a mercantile agenda. Devotees of these religions would see such denigration of sacred deities as hurtful.
Sulekh C. Jain explained that the statues of Lord Mahavira and Lord Parshvanatha don’t belong in night-clubs and that they belonged in temples for veneration. He then suggested that Live Nation Entertainment could donate these to Jain temples in the USA and the Jain community would gladly pay for their transportation.