SEATTLE, WA (PATCH) – Nordstrom executives are apologizing for selling a penis-shaped vase named “Shiva,” a major Hindu deity. Nordstrom removed the product from its website within hours of being contacted by Hindu activists.

On Nov. 25, Rajan Zed, president of the Universal Society of Hinduism, contacted Seattle-based Nordstrom about the vase. He said it was “highly insensitive” to sell a product that would reduce Shiva to a vessel for flowers – not to mention the penis shape.

Co-President Erik Nordstrom wrote in an email to Zed:

“Thank you for writing and bringing this matter to my attention. We certainly do not want to carry merchandise that offends anyone, especially for religious reasons. Please know that the vase has been removed from our website. I hope you will accept my apologies for any disappointment we have caused you or others.”

(A company spokesperson confirmed that Erik Nordstrom personally responded to Zed.)

Although Nordstrom has stopped selling the $600 Shiva Flower Vase, other sites still carry it. The vase was created by Italian designer Ettore Sottsass in the early 1970s.

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