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I can appreciate a good joke

Published February 15th, 2011 by Bobby Henderson

I can appreciate a good joke as much as any other guy.  But there’s a difference between making a joke and insulting other people.  When you begin to bring in specific religious practice or condemnations for not doing as the religion "requires," that becomes an insult.  Think of it this way: your website is good, but what’s the point of your occasional advertisement on the bottom with a picture of the religious book of FSM saying "Save Your Heathen Soul"?  It directly says to others that if you don’t believe what we tell you, you’re wrong and going to hell.  Yes, I’m a Christian, no I don’t believe most of the things in the church’s past were okay.  I simply choose to believe that there is a God, and if anybody has any questions about my faith, I’ll be happy to answer and guide them if that’s what they want.  If they believe otherwise, I’ll allow them to stay that way, because there’s nothing I can do to force their belief.  All I’m really saying is, think about what purpose each thing you say serves, and whether it’s taking it a step too far.
~DJN

The point of our church is not to offend, but understand it is bound to happen.  Most of us in the Church of FSM are not anti-religion, and we have many Pastafarians who are active members of mainstream religions.  Part of what we’re doing here is questioning ideas considered rude to question.  Or, knocking down religion a peg – however you want to look at it.  We think it’s a dangerous situation for institutions and ideas to be above scrutiny.  

At the risk of spoiling the “Save Your Heathen Soul” joke, I’ll explain it.  You see, Christians often threaten nonbelievers with THEIR hell-place for various sins or sinful lifestyles – either explicitly, or indirectly, or in a judging veiled-friendliness sort of way.  But nonbelievers DON’T BELIEVE IN YOUR HELL.  Aside from the fact that we find it offensive the idea that we need a rulebook to define our morality, it is a strange proposition to be invited to believe in scripture in order to be saved from a consequence of it.  The “Save Your Heathen Soul” joke is a nod to other nonbelievers who have experienced this phenomenon. 

But, DJN, I honestly like Christians, the majority of those I know – and my experience in running the Church of the FSM has only increased my opinion of Christians (really).  I believe that the majority of Christians are thoughtful and open-minded, and that most are members of churches partly because of a belief in God, and partly because of the social benefits and community that being part of a church allows.  I get a ton of emails from thoughtful Christians who understand what we’re doing here at the Church of FSM – people like you who don’t approve of the abuses perpetrated in the Name of God. 

So, understand that around here there is an effort not to offend people, but at the same take a hard look at the strange business of religion. And in this way we give Glory to The Almighty Flying Spaghetti Monster, the one and only True God, who someday I hope Touches you with His Noodly Appendage so that you may know His Loving Embrace. 

-bobby



350 Responses to “I can appreciate a good joke”

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  1. Maddie says:

    Here’s my personal opinion: as a Christian, I beleive in God. I also beleive in humans’ free will. I trust other people can find God in their own way. Pastafarians have God as the Flying Spaghetti Monster. Perfectly acceptable to me. It’s their own choice: as log as theyre happy, as long as they feel they belong, then theyve found God, or (I somewhat hesitate to say this since Im not a Pastafarian myself) His noodliness. I think that Pastafarians are people with good intentions, who say that religion and science can go together, and not everything important has to be deadly serious. I think they are brave to rise up in this modern era of gossip and such.

    • theFewtheProudtheMarinara says:

      Thanks for stopping by, Maddie. And we respect all who respect us. Hope you read the “About” tab.

  2. nunya biz says:

    It is the HATE mail that scares me, just like persons- & this is coming FROM a horror movie fan from way back…persons performing REAL exorcisms SCARE ME…maybe ever since some1 told me that my assigned, inherited religion is EQUATED with the devil…lets b clear on tgis, i m not afraid of a devil i not believe in, just afraid of PEOPLE whom believe in the devil…& whom WITH this belief, RESTRAIN people, say really elaborate scripture verses to concerning going back 2 hell…a WOMAN I WORKED FOR IN THE AREA BEHIND MY BACK WENT AROUND TELLING EVERY1 how, ANY1 NOT accepting christ in their hearts is GOING 2 HELL, , ,& IT is THIS REGARD NOT any actual place or plane, which is EVIL & intentionally hurtful…that some1 would WISH for a person to suffer eternal whatever, just because they lack a similar belief….i dont know that THIS is not some elaborate hoax,,,& say this based upon yhe potential for further internet stalking….anywhere i go for more than a minute, i have had content repeated which for example was unpublished…i decided 2 share things i should not have, because i was doing so unwittingly, anyway…& have no longer any faith in security of devices or privacy…everything i say will b made a lie…THAT is the devil…& if i were 2 stick around, i would only insult persons whom will misread my intent & think i m talking about them, when i m talking about THEM….the other them whom took care of THAT pesky problem…(me). if hate mail is not read, does it still exist? yes. SOME of the folks i have mentioned r prob members, here…which makes this just…like anywhere else…& regret 2 say such.

  3. nunya biz says:

    &how is it please, 1 of the things makes no sense is clicking 2 c how 2 join & instead of instructions, it says u have already…that is no choice really, which concerns me, enough 2 question this concept, some…to not take self seriously is to do my self a terrible injustice. to take this CONCEPT not so seriously, maybe. ..& other attributes of religions & the people i gave way way too much credit, 2 & me never enough…but self, if there would b a time t b serious, it is now. so, thanks anyway & really honestly for the original letter.ill promo ur site 4 others tho…

    & an open remark to any1 booing the holocaust, things r STILL coming out, new information, here & there. the dead talk…some of that physics meta maybe stuff. if a civil war buff likes 2 dress up & re enact things with cannons, guns, it is considered PATRIOTIC & even fun…not every1 takes it seriously, some, may…but the holocaust gets re enacted in films & every time things like rwanda happen…& is deadly, serious – even adam sandlers pineapple up adolphs turned other cheeks portrayal in whatever movie that was, it is maybe ‘silly’ but intent on imagining if any1 had a moment of revenge, what could have that looked like? but without the disembowling which probably would have actually occurred…i have gotten OH, BOO, HISS holocaust, y do u dwell on THAT, it was a LONG time ago, b positive, look 2 the FUTURE…LIKE 2 MORROW, we r having a CIVIL war RE RE enactment…want 2 come?
    I am sure there r supremacists whom would love 2 have holocaust re enactments, really realistic ones, which is y i kind of dont want 2 forget. ever hear of palestine israel war re enactments or Afghanistan re enactments? i never hear of native american indians having re enactments on thanksgiving, but in grade school, we dressed up as pilgrims & indians which when we had, NO idea of the whole story…when the munich games were interrupted in 72 …they werent, they didnt pause, when a small scale war erupted & hostages were executed & their captors then, , ,but these things r re enacted in movies & in retelling, 2 learn & prevent…we hope…& its okay 2 re enact civil war, just dont think that if u say oh my, another holocaust referrence, PLEASE shut up…that it is really warranted, because have had lots of persons say this in so many words. seriously.

  4. nunya biz says:

    & some really gr8 christians & catholics did perform some very humane acts without which many wouldnt have survived 2 tell their story..& did not mean @ all 2 bash pastafares…& it is a real religion & sorry wiki called it a parody.

    • Apprentice Frederic says:

      I think that “parable” is a better word than “parody”.

  5. nunya biz says:

    NO it is NOT an insult, it is a PRETEXT …many religious faithful have fallen back on practices otherwise dormant, , ,I maintained a kosher diet for a period of time even when not routinely attending temple & know persons that attend temple but, do not keep kosher…and persons doing both g kosher & temple whom still turn the lights on, on day of rest…am i insulting my own religion, individuals, by saying that? hardly. Maybe i meant subtext. I mean u no disrespect. My spouse has never met his father & has no knowledge of this persons religious, political, affiliations & little about cultural,inheritances & his grandpa was excommunicated from catholic church on other side, he mocks what he does understand, all the time & it is not disrespectful. Because he looks different in certain features from other members of family, there were jokes he was told about his background…like the santa claus lies, he really believed he was the lost tribe of another nation, for years…according 2 certain teachings, i am NOT to marry a ‘gentile’…when we have had arguments, there r things we have called one another, which in MY opinion are kinder than words like gentile, or shiksa…& since we do not know a portion of his heritage, it is safe bet I have married a jew, a gentile, a lost tribesman…categorizing like we r some rare breed of stock or a vintage label …

    the movie i couldnt think of earlier, little nicky (separate post). the fact i implied santa was not real, above, would INSULT alot of members of a particular age group & subset. my younger sibling was traumatized when I told her, as she was getting one of her first haircuts, that santa is a myth…we were not even taught to believe in him…its just that so many non jewish members of community, had influenced perceptions…what r u wanting from santa this year little one?

    a gun? water gun? that shoots bubbles, maybe?

    & as for cursing, it is a double edged sword. but if more people f-g cursed when they r outraged instead of penting it all up like good, polite society dictates, & then losing your sh*t going 2 the nearest hunting supplier or ww paraphenalia site to get a gun- where our former pal got the 1 that blew away both himself & wife- we would b better off…he used to scoff @ kosher techniques for livestock euthanizing, saying THATS humane, in a scathing tone…he made me think, anyway. he was kind of right. his wife died of a number of bullets to the chest @ close range. id rather he screamed inappropriate epitaphs…& feel a debt of some kind is owed to their memory, esp as it was not her choice to end, this way…
    they never really took themselves very seriously, until just about then.

    & whomever was complaining about hey, this religion STOLE my best pal, or whatever, ideas r not thieves. they can evolve, 2. evolution baby. if u r really friends or ever were, b 1 now by showing tolerance & just hug eachother like friends do. please.

  6. nunya biz says:

    & the standards 4 hannukah harry r not very set…i dont know any1 that knows what he looks like, how he enters the place, etc…

  7. nunya biz says:

    pointing out that the church discourages condom usage is a loaded gun, depending on circumstances… My keeping kosher or, not, is negligible

  8. nunya biz says:

    & my husband is a real mensch.

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