Am I an Atheist or a Pastafarian?

Published October 17th, 2007 by Bobby Henderson

An essay by Tyler Naffin:

For as long as I have known the meaning of the term, I have considered myself an atheist. Recently however, I have begun to reconsider my atheism. The cause of this reconsideration is Pastafarianism. Pastafarianism is a religion that was brought to my attention when I read an article in the November 2006 issue of Wired magazine called The New Atheism. In an interview with renowned atheist and evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins, he mentioned the deity of Pastafarianism, the Flying Spaghetti Monster. At first I thought nothing of it, but a few weeks later I noticed a YouTube clip that had a Flying Spaghetti Monster sighting in Germany. As soon as I discovered that His Noodiliness was not a figment of Dawkins imagination, I began to research the Flying Spaghetti Monster. I discovered that it was part of the Pastafarian religion, and upon learning of some of its tenets, I was instantly converted. But this would seem to be at odds with my atheism, to believe in a god. Since then, I have been in a constant struggle to decide what I believe.

Now there has to be a reason that a firm atheist such as me would be converted to a theistic religion like Pastafarianism so easily, while rejecting other religions like Christianity and Islam. Therefore I will briefly explain Pastafarianism, while forgoing the pirate regalia usually required to be worn when teaching the ways of the religion. In the beginning, the Flying Spaghetti Monster created the Universe, presumably when he was drunk. This aspect, known as Unintelligent Design, has successfully been used to explained disco and Jar Jar Binks, among other things. His Noodiliness created pirates as absolute divine beings. The declining numbers of pirates over recent years has caused the Flying Spaghetti Monster to become angry and punish us through global warming. Heaven consists of beer volcanoes and a stripper factory, while there is no known equivalent to Hell. This in a nutshell, is Pastafarianism.

By now you must be thinking that I am a certified nut for believing in such a thing. You would also not be the first person to think such a thing on the grounds that I believe in the Flying Spaghetti Monster. However I shall tell you that I do not truly believe that all of existence was created by a flying blob of spaghetti surrounding two meatballs. I never have. But I still claim that I do. The reason for that is because Pastafarianism is an excellent satire of Christianity and religion in general. A closer examination of Pastafarianism would reveal that it has many parallels to Christianity. For instance, while the Bible has Moses and the Ten Commandments, the Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster has Captain Mosey and the eight I’d Really Rather You Didn’ts. True to the nature of a satire, Pastafarianism causes one to look more critically at the acceptance of absurdities within the Judeo-Christian beliefs because of such parallels. But the question of why I consider myself a Pastafarian still exists, and it is a question I struggle to answer.

I use Pastafarianism to criticize the beliefs of Christians by pointing out the parallels between Christianity and Pastafarianism and how the beliefs of Pastafarianism, while absurd, are in essence the same as Christianity. After all, there is as much evidence supporting the Judeo-Christian god as there is for the Flying Spaghetti Monster. The only problem is that there are few Christians that I know at a personal level, and thus few Christians to criticize. As for my atheism, I continue to read up on many topics, including the Bible, in order to prepare myself for a debate with a Christian in areas where invoking the Flying Spaghetti Monster is unable to help. Now for the question of whether I am I an atheist or a Pastafarian, I have come to this conclusion: I will consider myself an atheist in a broad sense, such as to what group I consider myself a part of, like if I am ever asked a survey question about my religion. On the other hand, I will consider myself a Pastafarian when it comes to a personal discussion with someone in which I can properly explain my beliefs. I feel confident that I can always justify that my belief in the Flying Spaghetti Monster is no more wrong than belief in any other deity. At least we have a graph!

Well, there are many religions, but I suppose they all worship the same God.
-Bertrand Russell

You might say that because science can explain just about everything but not quite, it’s wrong to say therefore we don’t need God. It is also, I suppose, wrong to say we don’t need the Flying Spaghetti Monster, unicorns, Thor, Wotan, Jupiter, or fairies at the bottom of the garden. There’s an infinite number of things that some people at one time or another have believed in, and an infinite number of things that nobody has believed in. If there’s not the slightest reason to believe in any of those things, why bother? The onus is on somebody who says, I want to believe in God, Flying Spaghetti Monster, fairies, or whatever it is. It is not up to us to disprove it.
-Richard Dawkins

184 Responses to “Am I an Atheist or a Pastafarian?”

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  1. perna de pau says:

    @ El Peatieablo
    Too much for correct spelling, not anywhere near too much

  2. JW says:

    “So God doesn’t approve of homsexuals, huh? May I ask you something? If god made them, why doesn’t he approve if them? Why would he go to all the trouble of making something he hates? If he has an eternal plan, why would he let gays mess it up? The only conclusion I can draw is that either gays are part of your lord’s eternal plan for us, or there is no eternal plan, no “God”.” What would be the point of creating a human that had no right to make it’s own choices. God didn’t create us to be robots, that would be stupid. He created so that he could show us his love, making you do what he wants you to against your will is not love. The thing is that loved us so much that he allows us to make our own decisions, for instance you choose not to believe. You say it’s because of this and that and evidence and such, but when you get right down to it, you just don’t want to, whatever the reasoning might be. He’s not going to force you to love him, he want’s you to do it out of you own free will. So why did he create man, because he wanted someone to love and someone to love Him back. But only if they wanted too might i add. You all speak of all this evidence and what not but you never discuss it from what i have seen, you just make jokes and poke fun, which doesn’t hurt me by the way. You might think that i dont know the evidence, or that i’m not educated, but i assure you that i am probably more educated than most of you on this forum. I have B.S. in Biochemistry, a minor in math and am working on an M.D. but thats not the point. What do you say of the sheer statistical improbability that protein, that we know and love, could have randomly been assembled to yield the life that is evident around us. I mean have you looked at the math against this happening, the numbers are stifling (i’ll be willing to provide them if you want). You want to talk of christianity being illogical, seems to me that most evolutionists can’t could to good, i dont mean to be jerk. Also how do you deal with the fact that for something to evolve at any significant rate it must reproduce wildly (like bacteria). Last time I checked higher order species didn’t yield thousands of offspring. But yet the time table you have established for their evolvement into “us” is considerable shorter

  3. JW says:

    let me finish my previous statement. But yet the time table you have established for their evolvement into “us” is considerable shorter than for the lower order organisms to evolve up the “ladder” that just doesn’t hold up when you do the math. All i’m saying is that for all that we know to arise from just chance and the properties of matter, is absurd. God himself doesn’t have enough time on his hands to wait for evolution you yield anything of merit. Also, how do you explain such irreducible complexities as the human eye, when you take away any part of it, or change it in anyway, it just would function and you’d be useless. How did they come to be that way? Not by chance that’s for sure, that would take way more time than evolution allows for. The fact is that almost all mutations are bad, they kill you, not make you better. We even have many, many mechanisms to prevent mutations. Seems like our “evolved” bodies don’t want anything to do with evolving, they like to just stay the same. Also, you even decrease the probability when you consider that only germinal mutations are passed on to offspring, so those somatic mutations don’t even count. And believe me, the soon to be physician, i’ve seen plenty of germinal muations and not a one of them is good. Spend some time in a clinic, or look at you down’s syndromed cousin, those children are the products of your beloved mutations, tell them that the next time you seem, “your just a big darn mistake johnny, but your takin one for the team, you weakingly, keeping you alive is holding up natural selection.” Also how do you explain that when you change you amino acid in a protein, it totally makes it unfunctional. My point is is that mutations are usually, and i mean almost always bad. So there is no way that there is enough time in the universe to have them add up to what you see around you, unless there is a creator.

  4. JW says:

    i apologize for my typos, i was in a hurry.

  5. perna de pau says:

    @JW: we either believe or not, it is not a deliberate choice. As someone said earlier if someone comes to you tommorow saying he is the son of god who came to save you you either believe him or not (I would rather not).
    If it was just a deliberate, rational choice it would have to be based on evidence and such evidence does not exist (neither for those who believe nor for those who do not).
    Evolution has been already much discussed here. It is just the best explanation for us being around, given the evidence available. It does not explain everything but that is not a reason to bring in another completely unexplained creature.

  6. PacificPam says:

    Pluto. I feel neglected…you haven’t had time to write me…

  7. JW says:

    Ok, i just read that and there is alot of typos, try to look over them, haha, fat chance of that happening

  8. El Peatieablo says:

    JW, you are funny.
    By funny I meant your arguments and attitude, but I have to admit that “alot of typos” is just hilarious. Oh, irony, how I adore you!

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