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A Warning

Published April 9th, 2011 by Bobby Henderson

While I am not of your "religion". I will not trash your website like the majority of the blundering baboons around here, instead I am here to support not your religion, but your attempt to keep religion and education separate. The constitution gives the people not only of freedom of religion but freedom from it. By teaching religion in any public school you are effectively taking away that right. Many, however argue that it is by "majority rules" that the teaching is decided. This argument is stultifying to many of  the proponents of this argument, because if this was true, slavery would still be legal.

I am a Hindu and have an open mind to virtually all religions. I know that this religion is not a real religion; but an attempt to show the errors and flaws of most organized religion and those who support it’s full integration into state affairs. I support your attempt to show how religion should not be taught in public education. The majority of people ranting on your website are not venting against the concept of separation of religion and public education, but against your satire of their religion.

Yet, I must warn you not to take this to far. You’re tab with the word hate mail is almost doing this. I am not worried too much about this, but the whole thing will make some people very irate. It might push some maniac over the edge and cause them to grab a gun and go after you. This has happened in the past, remember Malcolm X? Thus, I propose that you put somewhere on your front page of the site, that this is not an actual religion but an attempt to keep religion out of public schools.

Thank You,

A concerned supporter

Nikhil

I don’t think Nikhil meant direct criticism (or veiled threat) with this message.  

I take issue with the idea of real religion, as if such a thing can be defined and agreed upon.  I’ve said it in the past and I still believe strongly that there is no classification of religion without agenda.  I don’t expect mainstream religion (or a government influenced by mainstream religion) to see ours as a real religion because there is every incentive to see us as something else.  A joke, a way to mock their beliefs.  They will see us in terms that serve their purpose.

Most Pastafarians do want to keep religion out of schools, most of us are against tax exemptions (and indirect subsidies) for religious institutions.  We object to the power religion is allowed in government, and the excuses made for leaders of religion.  We’re saddened that it’s still seen as improper to criticize anything related to mainstream religion.

But this isn’t just because we’re Pastafarians.  It’s because Pastafarians are rational, reasonable, intelligent people who are not driven by any particular dogmatic thinking.  We are individuals who reject the concept of faith-over-reason, of indoctrination, and the fact that we’ve formed a group does not mean that we’ve come to these conclusions because that’s the group opinion.

Why does humor invalidate our beliefs?  I see this argument all the time and don’t understand it.  The idea that FSM is not an actual religion because it’s satire or this or that is obviously a joke – so what?  I’d argue that for the same reason Jon Stewart’s Daily Show has value as actual news, FSM has value as actual religion.  Different, yes, but that is the point.  Not everyone gets it – but again, that is the point.  We reject lowest common denominator indoctrination in favor of nuanced thinking

Is it just that mainstream religion is so utterly humorless?  Most religious people I know have a great sense of humor but I think they would agree that the institution of religion is rigid and stifling.  There are obvious areas where it’s not ok to make a joke.  One of the creepiest things I find about religion is that feeling that everyone is trying to act very serious. 

Our religion may not fit the definition of real religion as defined by outsiders.   But make no mistake – we have no ambition for FSM to be similar to mainstream religions.  How we’re classified is not important to us.  And while we understand that not everyone will get what we’re doing and why we’re doing it, it’s not our intention to offend – but nor is it our highest priority to avoid offense. 



132 Responses to “A Warning”

  1. Metal Head says:

    I appreciate your thoughts.

    However, I must comment on: ” It might push some maniac over the edge and cause them to grab a gun and go after you.”

    That would make us true martyrs, hence validating our religion, lol lol.

    But in all seriousness, if someone were to come after me with a gun, there would be a high likelyhood that I’d rend the flesh from his bones. It’s hard to out-crazy someone who used to be among the most fervent of zealots for a recognized religion, and who is now as fervently opposed. Soime lunatic with a gun could kill me, yet envy my position amongst the restfull dead, rather than the maimed living.

  2. Gordon_UK says:

    Bobby

    Why not rename the Hate mail tab to ‘Feedback’ with three subsections ‘Hate mail’, ‘Well meaning’ and ‘Confused loon’? This way we may encourage more people like Nikhil to e-mail in who are well meaning and may add something to our community.

    RAmen
    Gordon

    • CheeseSauce says:

      I have to second this proposal. It seems like we’d actually get some well thought out, coherent, well-meaning letters with actual substance instead of the crazy ramblings that we tend to get most of the time. It also might encourage people who may not be apart of our religion to see more letters like Nikhil’s posted up. I think we could all benefit and still get some good laughs from someone who does send in true hate mail.

      • Ez nam says:

        I third this, and I have no arguments to add to it

        • Duke says:

          I fourth this. Definitely a good idea. Having Hate Mail on the front page makes it look sort of like the Pirate Bay (Legal Threats), it just doesn’t feel that serious. And also, the more complex the layout, the cooler. You could have something like, clicking on the tab to bring down a mini menu with several choices (“on hover” is too irritating).

  3. Big Guy says:

    “There have been no sects in the Christian world, however absurd, which have not endeavored to support their opinions by arguments drawn from Scripture. Sanctification is not to be understood here as a separation from ordinary use or consecration to some special use, although this meaning is often present in Scripture, sometimes referring to outward and sometimes to inward or effectual separation. The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose.

    What’s a Gravatar?

    If it’s free sign me up, if not I’ll pass and leave you folks this message alone.

    • Noodlity says:

      Am I the only one here who reads the quote to mean “The bible is so disjointed and self-contradicting that anyone can cherry-pick arguments from it to support any sort of purpose” ?

      • Big Guy says:

        Take what we want and leave the rest.

        (Laurence Sterne)
        “There have been no sects in the Christian world, however absurd, which have not endeavored to support their opinions by arguments drawn from Scripture”

        Every silly religious disagreement has usually been used to start another religion. IE: many arguments many religions.

        (William Ames)
        “Sanctification is not to be understood here as a separation from ordinary use or consecration to some special use, although this meaning is often present in Scripture, sometimes referring to outward and sometimes to inward or effectual separation.”

        Celebrating religions physical and spiritual essence for absurd selfish gratification is hypocritical.

        changing the subject
        The truth of procreation is evident the logic is unmistakable.

        Truth/logic (XY boy XX girl) + (procreation) = one or more babies

        Can the spaghetti monster create life?

        • tekhedd says:

          “Take what we want and leave the rest.”

          Yes. This is what people mean when they say “cherry-picking.”

          “Can the spaghetti monster create life?”

          Yes, he created all life on earth. It is written.

    • PirateOnPtree says:

      So Christian factionalism is totally OK, and the Good Book is still as sacrosanct as ever… But all the other religions and this parody of them is still somehow wrong, and this causes you to continue to embarrass yourself on this message board night after night? BG, you don’t get it at all. We’re not just against your religion, we want everyone to see that none of them are true, (save the Revealed Word of His Noodlyness, Peace and Sauce Be Upon Him.)

  4. Big Guy says:

    I forgot to add CFSM is sacrilegiously sacrosanct as well!

    I bad?

    Is not the sin against the holy spirit but one of few that will never be forgiven?

  5. Ode to a Grasshopper says:

    Thanks Bobby, you summed it up perfectly.

  6. I'm Brian and so's my wife. says:

    At last, some sane, respectful and articulate criticism.

    That said, I think cowering in the face of violence or the threat of violence is a dreadful position to take. The unhinged should never be allowed to bully others into silence.

    If we capitulate to these loonies in any way, we cede the free thought we so cherish.

    • TiltedHorizon says:

      I could not have said it better. Just so you know, I tried to click ‘like’ about a million times but it only allows the one.

  7. Rev Toni Rigatoni says:

    TiltedHorizon, I agree too; I clicked it for you! Can someone click it for me?

    Sauce be with you,
    The Reverend

  8. Big Guy says:

    @I’m Brian and so’s my wife. says:

    Capitulation is what religion is all about. Giving up free will makes you a vessel for what ever flows in.
    Caution sign ahead “be careful what you believe in” free will and freedom always compete

    • Dr. Astronomer says:

      I’m Brian and so’s my wife is not talking about submitting or not submitting to god/gods/goddess/etc., but about not submitting to loonies and/or violent loonies. Unless think you that “cowering in the face of violence [by crazy persons]” equates to “cowering in the face of god”? In that case, I might actually agree with you, but I would still also agree that it is “a dreadful position to take”. Regardless, I certainly do not cower before the FSM and I am still a vessel for “what ever flows in”, usually beer.

      • Metal Head says:

        I never cower in the face of a fictitious entity.

        Well, unless you’re talking about the Keebler Elves; I have a strange phobia.

        The only thing scary about “God” is that people beleive in him, and are often willing to fight and kill in his name.

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