143873 Views
833 Comments

Treat other religions with respect

Published July 9th, 2010 by Bobby Henderson

When I first found this site, I was thoroughly amused.  I understand and even agree with your argument on the teaching of the Theory of Intelligent Design in public schools.  Your way of presenting this was very amusing, and wittily got your opinion expressed on the subject matter.

I sincerely wish I would’ve stopped scanning your website after reading your letter.
It was the attitude of the rest of the website that made me stop and feel terrible for the people who disagree with you.  From the video of the Flying Spaghetti Monster float performing a "religious action" on a random person to the tab specially designed for hate mail, I was instantly turned off to your concept of how you express your opinions.

Believing in something is one thing, but pounding others into the dust–pretty much BEGGING for the opportunity for someone to argue with you?  That’s something entirely different.  I know people must be begging for the hate mail that only screams at what a dumb religion yours is… just so that you can slam your argument into their faces. 

I think your message got lost a long time ago, Bobby.  It’s really sad… you had a good thing going, I think.  It’s really sad that your message of "don’t teach Intelligent Design in our schools" turned into "religion is pointless", which then turned into "everyone who believes in a religion is below me, and that gives me the right to completely disrespect everything they stand for".  It’s really sad that people join this group just so that they can slam onto other people.  Because really?  What are you hoping to accomplish at this point?

I may not agree with Christianity 100%, but I do believe "Do Unto Others" is a great philosophy to live by.  So is "Turn The Other Cheek".  Basically, treat other religions with respect… but if they don’t honor your viewpoints back?  Take the high road.  Maybe make a simple comment (like your letter) and be done with it.  By dragging it out like this, you’re making yourself look bad… and that’s all.

Thank you for your time,
-Alfred



833 Responses to “Treat other religions with respect”

  1. Justin Chase says:

    He says in the letter:
    ‘… turned into “religion is pointless”, which then turned into “everyone who believes in a religion is below me, and that gives me the right to completely disrespect everything they stand for”.’

    To tell a pastafarian that their beliefs or messages are disrespectful or convey a negative meaning is hypocrisy. By saying this you’re clearly not taking the religion seriously and that is disrespectful itself. How can a religion convey the message “religion is pointless” if you regard it as an actual religion? That’s disrespectful. Pastafarianism deserves the exact same amount of respect as every other religion.

    The ironic thing is that by disrespecting Pastafarianism you are actually, by proxy, disrespecting every other religion. Pastafarianism parallels every other religion in legitimacy, truthfulness and usefulness. By claiming its message is “religion is pointless” you are revealing that you are identifying flaws in its logic or the obviousness of its wrongness. But what you are missing is that is if this is true for Pastafarianism then this is true for every other religion in the world as well. And if you can’t respect that in Pastafarianism then why would you respect that for any other religion?

    What I’m saying is that you need to either respect Pastafarianism for what it is, or you need to accept that it’s ok to be disrespectful of any religion. Any other position is hypocritical, contradictory and disrespectful.

    He goes on to say:
    “Basically, treat other religions with respect…”.

    I’m sorry, but no. I would be inclined to treat people who are also religious with respect, if I feel they’re worthy, but I can’t think of a single religion worth respecting. And apparently neither do a lot of non-pastafarians since they (evidenced by the hate mail tab) feel it’s perfectly fine to disrespect pastafarians. All these religions are crying because their feelings are getting hurt. Maybe what they need is their own hate mail tabs. Maybe what they need is to actually listen to the criticisms once and turn an introspective eye towards the one who really needs it.

    And yes I’m including Pastafarianism in the list of religions not worth respecting. It’s not. Bring on the disrespect. But again, it’s only not worth respecting because it parallels every other religion in legitimacy, truthfulness and usefulness… which is to say none. By disrespecting Pastafarianism you are disrespecting every other religion simultaneously and hopefully the fact that requesting respect for some religions while not for others is actually hypocrisy will finally become self evident to you. Then when you realize it’s also a fact that Pastafarianism is actually not worth respecting… well then you’ll learn that no religion is worth respecting.

    I have no respect for that which is not true. I have no respect for blind faith when none is required. And I especially have no respect for anyone who would wield the former tools for their own selfish ends.

    Also regarding hate mail:
    I think the hate mail tab is the best part about this site. Partly because it encourages people to argue and discuss, I personally think argument is healthy and an excellent way to learn and teach. But also because it displays confidence, resiliency and transparency. You don’t need some PR filter that censors only good messages coming in, you want the bad ones too. You want to read those things and really ask yourself if they’re right and if you can learn something from it and change. But then again perhaps they’re wrong and reading responses from others is exactly what they need to learn… and sometimes they’re just good for a laugh.

  2. TiltedHorizon says:

    I agreed there is more we can do to be polite in our views but at some point “respect” just becomes willful ignorance. For example, it would have been more “respectful” to not send the Open Letter to the Kansas School Board. Then what? Should we allow ID to be taught as a scientific theory just so no one is offended? How would that be a better solution? To be fair, religion makes itself beyond reproach which means there is no “respectful” way to question it.

  3. Chris Walker says:

    Alfred is really way off base, in the 2nd part of his message anyway, and as such, makes himself a target.
    I’ve spent some time here reading hate mail, and the only “criticism” of other religions i’ve seen here is the Biblical Literalists making fools of themselves. Its clear they’re offended at the idea that people publically disagree with a literal interpretation of Genesis chapter 1.

    As it stands, Alfred sounds like he, along with the bliblcial literalists, it the one that mocking an ENTIRE religion – that of pastafarianism, rather than one specific aspect of another religion – the belief among some Christians in a literal interpretation of the events recounted in Genesis.

  4. Walter Silveira says:

    What an intellectual and moral coward this Alfred is. How classically post-modernist, too. “Oh I you’re right but I’d rather be nice to everyone than actually stand up to liars who corrupt science and oppress anyone who isn’t part of their cult. Can’t we all just get along?” No, no we cannot get along with people who deny basic facts about the world and utilize dishonest reasoning and childhood brainwashing to spread their ideas.

    Troll?

    • Troll says:

      Name-calling- (ie: Intellectual and moral coward; classically post-modernist; troll) Needless to say, mudslinging is generally an ineffective means of conveying an argumentative point and usually indicative of an inability to formulate a reasonable argument against the topic in question. This is generally the bit where an objective intellectual debate pitfalls to biased criticism and violent unthinking malevolence.
      Lack of support- Points made in the aforementioned argument involve both assumed subjects and equally vague under-developed reasoning.
      EX: “No, no we cannot get along with people who deny basic facts about the world…”
      What exactly are these ‘basic facts’ that you are mentioning and why are they relevant?
      “‘Oh I you’re right but I’d rather be nice to everyone than actually stand up to liars who corrupt science and oppress anyone who isn’t part of their cult. Can’t we all just get along?’”
      First of all, the sentence is not even grammatically correct and is not a workable conveyor of the point(?) you’re trying to argue as it lacks continuity and substance. Furthermore, from what I can ascertain, this quotation cannot even be accredited to the subject it is connected to (Alfred) or is any such effort to do so attempted whatsoever other than to play off of the presumed ignorance or apathy of the audience. As far as can be gathered, this quote is most likely just a contrived, heated non-sequiter pulled from the biased and uninformed thought processes of the author and therefore lacks any rational foundation in the point being made in the sentence following it.
      “Troll?”
      I don’t know. Is he? Why is that? What evidence do you have to substantiate that claim?
      Bias- Any productive argument should make at least a marginal attempt to remain objective lest the whole point of discussion (to gather knowledge on the subject of debate) be lost in an irrational flurry of obstinance and pride. The bias inherent in this argument is neither subtle nor necessary and as such neutralizes the probability of an effectual debate. The crux of this problem most likely being that the writer is subject to an all-encompassing mob-mentality in which he, in an action of intellectual and moral cowardice, takes refuge in a well-defended and thoroughly abstract point of community discussion with the intention of shooting down opposition with the intellectual backing of his peers. He is essentially a high-browed phrenic bully, or, to put it more appropriately, a troll.

      • Thursday says:

        “Basic facts” like the Earth is older than 6000 years. Like fossils exist. Like teaching Adam and Eve on an equivalent standing as evolution because they are both ideas is akin to teaching that Superman exists because written texts from days gone by say so. You know, everything this site is about, so Walter didn’t feel like hashing it over yet AGAIN. Or haven’t you read the site?

        “First of all, the sentence is not even grammatically correct and is not a workable conveyor of the point(?) you’re trying to argue as it lacks continuity and substance.”

        If you can’t understand the point made in that sentence, you are too stupid to understand much else written in English. Trust me, you do not want me going through your post and pointing out just the spelling errors, never mind the rest…

        As for accusing someone of being an intellectual coward, I do notice you’ve avoided the issue Walter raised and instead descended into pedantry, as if that would be sufficient.

        Sorry. You lose.

        • Troll says:

          See, now, it’s people like you who really help the militantly misinformed spiritual junkies like Walter thrive in such intellectually charged debates. Let me rehash MY point.

          Now, this may have been unclear to you before, but the whole purpose of “critiquing” the post as I had was to demonstrate for those who it was not intuitively obvious (yourself) how wanton, haphazard, malicious, unthinking, and just generally misinformed the majority of readers on this website tend to be. Walter is effectively an intellectual weakling hiding behind a well-argued, albeit controversial, idea whose sympathies he can only express through brief, highly biased, non-objective, buzz-word laden outbursts which neither he, nor anyone else can control. By defending his ineptitude, you are in effect, robbing him and everyone else present of the opportunity to grow and learn from what should be a cooperative and informative tool. Which wouldn’t be so bad in itself, except that you do so with an unabashed and evident hostility. I doubt that the number of people who can effectively argue this topic can even begin to match the literal masses of individuals who are just buying into the bandwagon. And before you start saying that I only say this because of some sort of religious or political predjudice, keep in mind that I take the same unaffiliated agnostic stance as the majority of this internet community hold, in fact, my main point is not one against the ploy for religious tolerance but the sheer ineptitude of some of the people arguing it, yourself included. You support absolutely nothing you say! You lay out all of these inflammatory remarks with the hope that some spaghetti monster buff out there who actually cares will follow after you and clarify when someone inevitably disagrees. Not to say it doesn’t work, it works very well. But I’d say that what you have here is a very flawed system and I’d very much appreciate it if you didn’t work to its detriment because it actually is a very interesting premise.

          And as for your technical woes, I checked through my first comment and there were no spelling mistakes, although if there are any I missed that you’d like to point out, I would relish the opportunity.

        • Gordon_UK says:

          Troll, so are you the new site monitor making sure all our posts are up to your academic standards?

          Though if Walter Silveira continues being a part of this community I’m sure he will continue to develop and learn just as I am.

        • Troll says:

          Sorry if I’m more verbose than what you’re normally comfortable with, but please explain to me how I’m wrong and I’ll be more than happy to swallow my words and concede defeat.

        • Gordon_UK says:

          Troll, please point out where I said that you where wrong, all I did is ask a question. Sorry if it was not long winded enough for you.

          As a whole I found Walter Silveira post fairly accurate, his ‘quote’ was quite clearly him paraphrasing and he only asked if he was a troll this was easy to identify by question mark after it.

          Though you are starting to sound like Alfred, are you him by any chance?

          Also see Atsap Revol response to your re-post, out of interest why did you re-post it as soon as the original fell off the ‘Recent Comments’ section?

          G

        • Troll says:

          I never said that you had, I asked that you would.

          The original post had no indication of where the quote came from and was otherwise too vague and esoteric to be considered legitimate.

          Also, if I were Alfred, I think I’d have the courtesy to let you know.

          And to clarify, I reposted to correct a grammatical error.

        • gordon_uk says:

          you said “please explain to me how i am wrong”, please try to keep up.

        • Troll says:

          It’s still just a request. Patronizing me won’t change that.

        • Gordon_UK says:

          But your statement still indicates that I somehow claimed that you where wrong, if wanted me to say if I thought you where wrong then I would expect to see something along the lines of ‘but if you think I’m wrong please explain’ rather then “but please explain to me how I’m wrong”. So though it was a request it was worded poorly.

          Anyway moving on……

          Please explain why Walter Silveira’s paraphrasing of the original letter does not match? I have already said that I found it to be an accurate summing up of the original letter, so far all you have done is try to use a technically to cover up the point being made.

          “Also, if I were Alfred, I think I’d have the courtesy to let you know” but I don’t know that now do I? Personally I still think you are Alfred and that you where so unhappy that someone called you a coward you had to respond.

          Another point on your first post you said “Name-calling Needless to say, mudslinging is generally an ineffective means of conveying an argumentative point and usually indicative of an inability to formulate a reasonable argument against the topic in question”. So is that why you called Atsap Revol “a bucket of horse-piss with a learning disorder”? Now take the time to read some of his posts on other threads and then you may understand why that made you look like a twat!

          Now get your head out of your thesaurus and put together a proper counter argument.

          G

        • Troll says:

          The fact that I asked you to explain how my prior argument was false did not specify that you had done so before, which is why I requested that you do so. Although if we’re going on sheer grammar technicalities, your confusion with ‘where’ and ‘were’ has been getting on my nerves.

          In any case, as I have explained before, The original post had no indication of where the quote came from and was otherwise too vague and esoteric to be considered legitimate. And even if it did allude to the letter, it was riddled with sweeping generalizations and exaggerated assumptions which were neither factual or relevant.

          While it is true that you have no way of knowing whether or not I’m alfred, it’s also true that I have no way of knowing that you’re not Ronald freaking Mcdonald, and on those grounds, I don’t have to be Alfred in order to be upset that some pissed off spiritually challenged yahoo with a keyboard called someone ELSE a moral and intellectual coward.

          And as far as calling your friend(?) a “bucket of horse piss with a learning disorder” I didn’t actually say that he was, I just wished that he was more intelligent, and as far as that goes, I’m sure there’s more than one way to skin the dumb-ass cat but that particular insult pretty well covered it. And I was not contradicting myself, as you keep insinuating, because I said that name-calling is where “an objective intellectual debate pitfalls to biased criticism and violent unthinking malevolence.” Considering the fact that pasta lover crossed the line and chose to take the low road, I feel perfectly justified in returning the favor, even if it did make me look like a “twat”.

          Now, I wish I could say that this was fun, or that I enjoyed speaking with you, but I’m not quite as keen on misrepresenting the truth as you all tend to be. Feel free to have the last word if you’d like, but I’m not going to be returning to comment. Thank you very much for wasting my time.

        • Gordon_UK says:

          Troll

          I don’t care if you where offended by grammar were ever it was.

          So far all you have managed to get across is that you don’t understand the post in question and that you where upset that someone called some else a coward (not that it had anything to do with you unless you were Alfred).

          So you felt that Atsap Revol post crossed the line? Why because he offered advise on how to improve your writing technique? Odd seen as you have been freely giving your advise out.

          Last word for you….

          TWAT

        • Insightful Ape says:

          Hey troll,
          I just wanted to let you know your feelings toward us are quite mutual.
          Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.

        • Troll says:

          See, now, it’s people like you who really help the militantly misinformed spiritual junkies like Walter thrive in such intellectually charged debates. Let me rehash MY point.

          Now, this may have been unclear to you before, but the whole purpose of “critiquing” the post as I had was to demonstrate for those who it was not intuitively obvious (yourself) how wanton, haphazard, malicious, unthinking, and just generally misinformed the majority of readers on this website tend to be. Walter is effectively an intellectual weakling hiding behind a well-argued, albeit controversial, idea whose sympathies he can only express through brief, highly biased, non-objective, buzz-word laden outbursts which neither he, nor anyone else can control. By defending his ineptitude, you are in effect, robbing him and everyone else present of the opportunity to grow and learn from what should be a cooperative and informative tool. Which wouldn’t be so bad in itself, except that you do so with an unabashed and evident hostility. I doubt that the number of people who can effectively argue this topic can even begin to match the literal masses of individuals who are just buying into the bandwagon. And before you start saying that I only say this because of some sort of religious or political predjudice, keep in mind that I take the same unaffiliated agnostic stance as the majority of this internet community, in fact, my main point is not one against the ploy for religious tolerance but the sheer ineptitude of some of the people arguing it, yourself included. You support absolutely nothing you say. You lay out all of these inflammatory remarks with the hope that some spaghetti monster buff out there who actually cares will follow after you and clarify when someone inevitably disagrees. Not to say it doesn’t work, it works very well. But I’d say that what you have here is a very flawed system and I’d very much appreciate it if you didn’t work to its detriment because it actually is a very interesting premise.

          And as for your technical woes, I checked through my first comment and there were no spelling mistakes, although if there are any I missed that you’d like to point out, I would relish the opportunity.

        • Atsap Revol says:

          Troll, get a copy of “The Elements of Style” by Strunk and White. Learn to write in a less bloated way. Your big words and long sentences stifle communication, not that you really had anything to say.
          -
          Atsap Revol, The Pedantic Pastafarian

        • Troll says:

          If you had more mental accuity than a bucket of horse-piss with a learning disorder, I’m sure you’d realize some of the implications of what I’m saying instead of bad-mouthing an idea I’m not entirely sure you understand. Not that you’d really have anything to say if you did.

        • Drained and Washed Clean says:

          Anyone can use big words. Still doesn’t mean you know what the fuck your talking about…

        • Drained and Washed Clean says:

          Or that you are any less of an asshole.

        • Troll says:

          But the fact remains that I do know what the fuck I’m talking about and that ass-holery reaps ass-holery. You’re attacking me rather than my argument, which doesn’t really help you in getting your point across, that is if you even have a point.

        • Drained and Washed Clean says:

          Do ya now? Your idea of a point is posting the same thing twice.

          So, nope. I’m making no point other than your an asshole.

        • Drained and Washed Clean says:

          And that point I obviously clearly conveyed :)

        • Troll says:

          Which is it would probably be best if you crawled back under whatever god(or otherwise) forsaken rock you came out of. You’re almost wasting as much of your time talking to me as I am listening to you.

        • Drained and Washed Clean says:

          “Which is it would…” Really? Hmm… But a bit of fun is NEVER a waste of time!

          But if you would like to continue using big words, I suggest you stop making other ones up. Makes you seem less intelligent.

        • Atsap Revol says:

          Oooooooo, the Troll has taken the bait and is hooked. Let’s play him until we can net him and have him stuffed and mounted. I have enough mental acuity to agree with D&WC, you’re an asshole, Mr. Troll.

  5. Mr Cooper (all hail FSM) says:

    it be working captain

    • Eshny says:

      Sorry to ask you such a personal question, but the name ‘Mr Cooper’ sounds very familiar. Did you used to teach a boy named Carwyn? If not, sorry for bothering you.

      • Mr Cooper (allhailfsm) says:

        no, cooper is a common name, its somebody that makes barrels

        • gordon_uk says:

          Are you Tommy Cooper?

        • Mr Cooper (allhailfsm) says:

          lol no
          are you gordon brown? or gordon the gopher? or gordon freeman?

        • Mr Cooper (allhailfsm) says:

          which is awefully convenient as im starting to become a luthier (guitar maker)

        • Anon says:

          Don’t luthiers make violins?

        • Mr Cooper (all hail FSM) says:

          all wooden stringed instruments, but im building a guiatar, and a few ukeleles

        • Gordon_UK says:

          Mr Cooper, It looks as if we have a lot of anti-luthier trolls!

          Gordon the gopher

        • Mr Cooper (allhailfsm) says:

          because of all the thumbs down?
          Gordon you crack me up little buddy

        • pastafazoo'lah-a-hool'ah says:

          would that make you a Luthieran Minister of the FSM?

        • Mr Cooper (allhailfsm) says:

          no, just a regular PASTor (see what i did there)

        • Keith says:

          No, that would make him Episcapalian or Urinarian

        • Eshny says:

          Okay, I figured it was just too big of a coincidence! Sorry to bother you, have a nice day!

        • Mr Cooper (allhailfsm) says:

          in the words of Captian Mosey
          “it be okay matey!”

  6. Reggie Dixon says:

    Alfred – As others have said, the so-called Golden Rule is nothing to do with Christianity. As to your other point we absolutely should ridicule stupid beliefs, what other check is there on them ? Let’s make a deal : When religious fundamentalists stop telling us how we will go to hell and so on, we’ll stop ridiculing them. ridicule is the only rational response to the lunatic fringe.

  7. plumberbob says:

    Alfred,

    Let me start by adding to darkstar’s list of July 9, 2010 at 1:02 PM: Judaism: “What is hateful to you, do not do to your neighbor: this is the whole Torah. The rest is commentary. Now go and study.” Hillel

    Perhaps if you were smart enough to read and follow the directions that were clearly given to you when you entered our site, you would have had your questions answered. After reading the Open Letter and the “About” tab material, you could have learned:

    1) Our mission is the exclusion of religious mythology from the science curricula of public schools.

    2) Our theology is a satire that neither depends on, nor is derivative of any other religion.

    3) We insist that any school board that includes any religious mythology in their science curricula, must also include ours.

    Don’t fight science. Science always wins. It makes religious people seem foolish to battle against facts (see Earth in center of universe), and it takes reasonable people who still harbor faith, and turns them off to religion entirely. To anyone who understands science this is crystal clear and it appears like the creationist zealots are just lying and using deception. If that’s true, why believe them about the other stuff they claim that has no evidence? This is the problem. The world is laughing at you. The internet will hold creationist comments forever and when India, China, and the rest of the world blow our doors off in science, medicine and technology we can point back to the religious types who stirred controversy and taught distrust in science and scientists.

    RAmen

    • Jenny says:

      Plumberbob has forgotten to mention the other important parts of our mission: to dress up like pirates, drink beer, and loan on Kiva.

      • StJason says:

        Doesn’t that seem empty to you? Is that all your life is worth? Protecting education, mocking those who attack you, dressing archaically, drinking and providing micro-loans that really affect people directly rather then enriching a corporate bank. Is that the life you want to live? Don’t you want more…?

        …Actually, it sounds pretty darn okay to me!

  8. Hieronymus Fortesque Lickspittle says:

    Sir Bedevere: …and that, my liege, is how we know the Earth to be banana shaped.
    King Arthur: This new learning amazes me, Sir Bedevere. Explain again how sheep’s bladders may be employed to prevent earthquakes.

    RESPECT MY OPINIONS!!!

    • pastafazoo'lah-ah-hool'ah says:

      you are so weird- i love it

Leave a Reply