Global protest: Sufi Muslims are infuriated that a perfume logo looks similar to their sacred symbol representing “Allah” or God.
Followers of the Maktab Tarighat Oveyssi Shahmaghsoudi School of Islamic Sufism, which has approximately 500,000 adherents worldwide, say the logo, a stylized H lying on its side, is based on an Arabic symbol that spells Allah and depicts harmony and peace.
The daughter of Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger, Georgia May Jagger, was recently caught in a firestorm of protest after appearing in a perfume ad for Just Cavalli while sporting a tattoo of a symbol similar to the one Sufi’s recognize as being sacred.
The campaign – put together by Italian fashion house Roberto Cavalli to promote a designer fragrance – shows Miss Jagger with an ornate H-like symbol on her skin.
In fact, the ad campaign for Just Cavalli has sparked a global protest. So far, demonstrations have taken place in Chicago, London, California, Texas and Germany. Another demonstration is scheduled for Vancouver, B.C. this weekend.
Speaking for the Sufi community, American student Nasim Bahadorani, one of the protest organizers said:
To use something that means so much to us for corporate profit cheapens our sacred symbol. It’s disrespectful, offensive and degrading. We have this sign that to us represents blessed peace. It’s a refuge. To see it disgraced like this for a company to make money is heartbreaking.
Despite the protests and outrage, last May the EU rejected a request by Sufi groups to ban the company from using the sign.