Those Cute ‘Namaslay’ Puns? They’re Problematic

Namaste puns = cultural appropriation.

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In the years since yoga became popular in the U.S., the word “namaste” has taken on a life of its own. There is a valuable and nuanced conversation about when it is appropriate to use the word in yoga. But outside the studio, “namaste in bed” mugs and “namaslay” T-shirts abound. And these puns and jokes are actually a form of cultural appropriation that’s hurtful and disrespectful.

This week, Susanna Barkataki, author of Embrace Yoga’s Roots, released a YouTube video sharing better ways to honor this sacred word’s reverence.

See also: 

12 Culturally Appropriative Words & Phrases to Stop Using Now

6 Ways to Teach Yoga With Less Cultural Appropriation

What’s the Difference Between Cultural Appropriation & Cultural Appreciation?