A Pastafarian woman wearing a colander
A Dutch court ruled that Mienke de Wilde could not wear a colander in her official I.D. photo because Pastafarianism is not a real religion (Piroschka van de Wouw/ANP/AFP/Getty Images).

In one of the more bizarre cases of religious freedom being challenged around the world, a follower of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster has been denied the right to snap her Dutch passport picture with a colander on her head.

The case went all the way to the highest court in the Netherlands, which ruled that Pastafarianism is not even a real religion thus denying the claim by Nijmegen law student Mienke de Wilde that her religious beliefs should exempt her from a Dutch ban on headwear in official identity photographs.

Despite the setback, De Wilde is considering taking her case to the European court of human rights.

Origins of Flying Spaghetti

Pastor (Pastar?) Bobby Henderson founded the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster back in 2005 to poke fun at Christian fundamentalists on the Kansas State Board of Education hell bent on teaching creationism in American schools. He demanded his belief structure be granted equal time in science classrooms in a now iconic open letter.

According to their Gospel, Pastafarians worship an undetectable god they call the Flying Spaghetti Monster. They pay homage to this deity by wearing a colander as religious headwear and conclude their prayers with "Ramen". At the heart of their gospel are eight pseudo-commandments labeled "I'd Really Rather You Didn'ts" (two of the original ten apparently got lost) that, if followed, will result in an eternal bliss of stripper factories and beer volcanoes. While still on earth, followers vow to reject "crazy nonsense," be kind to all sentient beings and - you guessed it - eat a whole lot of pasta.

"I can imagine that it all looks very odd if you don't believe," De Wilde admitted to a Dutch newspaper. "But that's the case with many faiths if you don't believe in them people who walk on water or divide themselves in two, for example. I find other religions unbelievable."

However, Pastafarians have succeeded in getting recognized in other countries, such as New Zealand, where in 2016 a Pastafarian officiant performed a wedding ceremony. In the United States, a Massachusetts woman was granted the right to wear a colander in her driver's license photo. Despite gaining ground, the status of Pastafarianism remains in dispute in many places.

Pastafarian spaghetti display
Pastafarians claim to be following their faith. Should a government be able to tell them otherwise?

What Makes a Religion?

Bobby Henderson seemed to be making a point about the authenticity of organized religion when he founded the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. Who's to say there's no Flying Spaghetti Monster out there in the universe? Is it really any easier to prove the existence of God, or to justify why Christians gather every Sunday to receive a wafer believed to be the sacred body of a man that rose from the dead to save their souls?

Pastafarianism, at its core, forces us to confront the question of what makes a religion "real." Because despite its satirical roots, there are people out there who legitimately claim it as their faith. If you ask most people what elements are required to establish a religion, they'll say 1) a set of beliefs, and 2) people who follow them.

Would that not qualify Pastafarianism as a legitimate religion?

Future of the Faith

There have certainly been worse civil rights violations over the years than a colander denied, but the implications of the Dutch court's decision does have some people worried. Should the government be in charge of determining the authenticity of religious beliefs?

Society tends to turn its nose up at newer religious movements (such as the International Church of Cannabis), and yet billions of us put faith in older religions with equally dubious claims and fantastical deities that have somehow stood the test of time.

Should the followers of the Flying Spaghetti Monster be given equal treatment?


  1. power to the people's Avatar power to the people

    Pastafarianism-The epitome of idiocy

    1. power to the people's Avatar power to the people

      "There are people out ther who legitimately claim it as their faith".......no.

      1. Sylvi Sterling's Avatar Sylvi Sterling

        Do you believe in the inerrancy of Scripture? Or do you believe that it is a collection of Bronze Age myths? If you believe in a talking snake - I believe in sapient pasta. If you believe in a literal flood covering the Earth - I believe in the saving power of tomato sauce. If you believe that a man rose from the dead - I believe that spaghetti can come to life and fly. Sorry but you CANNOT claim that one set of beliefs is more or less rational than another set of beliefs if BOTH are founded on "faith"! Your god changed water into wine, mine goes well with red wine. Your god created the world in seven days, I believe that my god cooks up perfectly in seven minutes! You eat the flesh of your god and drink his blood, I eat the flesh of my god and drink his sauce. Neither of us will EVER win this, you know.

        1. Glenn P Ordell's Avatar Glenn P Ordell

          Gosh Darn, Sylvi Sterling,

          How can you expect to keep a good argument going when you reduce the problem to such a simple equation...

          On the other hand, the next thing you know, your little enclave of spaghetti snappers will start to say that some sooths are better than others, and that will really get some of those deep thinkers confused...

          They will begin to accuse you of any variety of sins, such as (forgive them, oh holy one, for they sin), the very saying of sooths. Some may even threaten to perform strange religious ceremonies upon you, like burning you at the stake.

          So, having specht mein "words of wisdom," I will give you an iceball's chance in hell of redeeming yourself from those infamous, infernal, eternal flames. You poor thing, I can smell you singeing all the way over here out in the middle of the blue pacific...

          The self-annointed are gonna get ya'll.

          Aloha from the southernmost county of the United States, the Big Island and County of Hawaii, Rev. Glenn

          1. Mark's Avatar Mark

            1000 years from now pastafarians will be divide into the church of the white sauce, the pestopastafarians, and the fringe group GF pastafarians. The GFer's will be fighting for the right to erect a statue at the Arkansas state capitol... Humans don't change much.

        2. power to the people's Avatar power to the people

          I can't argue with that.....or can I? MOST religions are based on years (thousands) of "stories", some actual history and various other things. The pastamonster is based on a group getting together in one of their mom's basement, and asking "How can we be a pain in the asses of those crazy religious people?" I will concede to you that you can believe what you want to believe. However, you I and the "reverend" Glenn know that it's a cartoon version of a religion and made up to satisfy a few hundred bandwagon jumping smartasses. ;-)

          1. Rev. Matt's Avatar Rev. Matt

            I don’t think you understand the point. So, I’ll explain again. The church of the FSM is a thought experiment! It asserts the existence of a god and points out that exactly the same amount of evidence exists for the FSM as any other god.

        3. Rev. Rene's Avatar Rev. Rene

          Sylvi,Sylvi, Sylvi, after all this, a church of common sense??? Millions will flock to you, after the Trump guy is done, and although many will persecute you your belief in common sense will in about two thousand years be revered!!!

        4. Sharmagne Leland-St.John-Sylbert's Avatar Sharmagne Leland-St.John-Sylbert

          I had fun trying on colanders in IKEA in Italy ?? today. Much more fun than trying to find the exit! We were born with spirituality then “ man” invented Religion and it sort of went downhill from there. IMHO, the only good thing about the Catholic religion is the window treatments.

    2. Barry's Avatar Barry

      Go talk to your invisible god.

      1. power to the people's Avatar power to the people

        Funny thing Barry.....I do all the time.

        1. Barry's Avatar Barry

          Does he answer? If so they a place for you

          1. power to the people's Avatar power to the people

            All the time. :-)

          2. Glenn P Ordell's Avatar Glenn P Ordell

            Wow, I did not know "they" is!!!

    3. Daniel's Avatar Daniel

      I’m sure that many Jewish people thought the arrival of Christianity was a display of idiocy too. Not to say I believe in divine spaghetti, but if others do, and if it helps them lead a better life then so be it. I think a true measure of an actual religion is to what extent it serves the followers and benefits them and their communities. Who knows maybe the church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster could have regular worship ceremonies where they serve their god up to feed the homeless. Even so, like most religions, the true test will be the “Protestants” of this religion who claim the actual diety is plain noodles and break away to form the “Reformed church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster”

      1. Robin White's Avatar Robin White

        Back the truck up Daniel... The Jews of today will admit that all the stars were aligned correctly, and Jesus was born in the right time period for Messiah. The Jews of the 1st Century were VERY aware of every movement Jesus made! The hierarchy of the Temple (the High Priest Caiaphas and his daddy-in-Law, Annas - who never actually stepped down and was the most highly respected authority of the age) had hired spies following Jesus as his band of disciples followed. (I speak of the hundreds that followed him everywhere - those numbers grew to thousands when he came toward larger cities. I am not speaking of his 12 Apostles who were beside him and heard his every word he spoke). These spies relieved one another from time to time to report back to Ciaphas and the the powers that be. The 1st Century Jews had everything laid out precisely as they wanted. They had their Temple, they could add laws (millstones, addendums to Levitical Law to make their lives easier, and the common Jew’s life harder. For example, one that is Biblical... Jesus had quite a fit, throwing the money changer’s tables calling them “sons of their father, Satan,” I’m sorry, but if that’s not swearing, I don’t know what is?! In any case, this is a righteous anger out of love for the poor whom we are supposed to love and take care of, NOT take advantage of. What these MCs were doing was calling the people’s animals imperfect when they were, taking them, and charging them a fee + their not-imperfect animal to get an animal authorized by the priests of the temple. The people could physically see with their own eyes that these animals were flawed, blemished, and FAR from perfect! What were they to do? Jesus stepped in, and told them off! Stealing from the poor and middle class to give more to the rich. The hierarchy KNEW exactly who Jesus was! They were informed of his teachings, his miracles, every prophecy he fulfilled. They called him a rebel and a rabelrouser, contentious and a blasphemer instead of Messiah...for 1 simple reason. Well, several actually, but 1 reason for them. Their power and money had to be protected at all costs!!! They knew, they absolutely knew! Every priest, scribe, and member of the Sanhedrin knew, BUT that’s all. The rest were illiterate, and relied on the knowledge of these 100ish men to teach them in the ways of G-d. They chose to hide Jesus from the masses. Only the disciples, those who saw, felt, experienced, and believed his miracles and teachings knew He was the long awaited Messiah. Other reasons, two come to mind. 1. Prophecy had to be fulfilled. 2. There had to be time between his 1st and 2nd coming for OUR sakes - time for the Gentiles to be grafted into the vine. Though, those aren’t relevant here. I really hope this helps. I hope it adds insight. I hope it eggs you on to add to your history education. I’d suggest theology textbooks ?. The ones used in Christian Universities, as the Internet is OH SO corrupt when it comes to religion. I trust very few Christian websites, and none that ask for donations! Those preachers have billions of dollars, yet they need $50 from me? I’m poor and disabled, homebound with Progressive MS! They should be sending me checks, NOT asking me for mine. Nor would I trust a ministry that had a human’s name on it!! This makes me instantly green, as in, I need to vomit. Kenneth Copeland Ministries, Jesse Duplantis Ministries, Creflo Dollar Ministries. WAIT? WHAT?! I thought our churches and Ministries were all about pointing to Jesus! We should never steal G-d’s glory! Every person who does will not enjoy their end. They’re making the same mistakes as the 1st century Jews!!! Stoppit! The good news is many of us can read. I’ve been a Pastor and Professor for 30 years (my specialty is OT Survey 1-4, 1&2 are universally required to becoming a Pastor.) If you’d like assistance in choosing books let me know. If you have any questions let me know. If you’d like me to shut-up let me know. I am a teacher by calling, but had to leave because of this blasted disease! No boohoos! G-d knows what’s what. He has a plan and a purpose. My best friend since we were 9 is an Orthodox Jew. We got sick the same month. We’ve always respected each other’s religion. She loves the words of our Jesus. She was brainwashed like most Jews into believing that Christianity is all Paul’s fault. He made it all up. Pretty astonishing for one man if you ask me. One man to write the whole NT, and make each gospel sound different from the others... Matthew for the Jew Luke for the Greek Mark for the Roman John for the Spirit filled Christian. He then made up things onlyJesus and Jesus’ best friend John could have known - magic oooo! THEN, just for kicks, he talked 11 men + himself into dying a martyrs death for a pretend story, WOW! Paul must have been a sensational salesman!! After debating my best friend for 35 years, we got sick. We live across the street from one another, so at the time she was diagnosed, I spent a lot of time at her house. She was diagnosed with cancer, so with chemo and radiation + our 6 children and 2 working husbands... she needed me to hold her hair and her hand once her hair left, and feeding, clothing, homework, love, and bedtime stories for the 6 kids, 6 dogs, 3 cats, and 2 guinea pigs, all snuggled in a queen sized bed and 2 bunk beds. Sounds like a lot, but said children went to school, and all 6 went to Hebrew school 3 times a week, so they were gone til 7;30pm. This gave my friend and I plenty of time to study Tanakh (OT but in a different order and not separated Kings, Chronicles, Samuel). All the words are the same though. I still haven’t figured out why Christians have divided those books into First and Second for no apparent reason???? TaNaKah = T - Torah - Law N - Nevi’im - Prophets K - Ketuvim - Writings Jewish writing doesn’t do vowels. Anyway, we study specific books, specific chapters, then move to specific topics. I have big study encyclopedias from Matthew Henry, Charles Spurgeon, and Oswald Chambers. She has big study encyclopedias from the infamous Rabbi Maimonides aka Rambam, and Rabbi Akiva aka Akiba. It’s quite astonishing how different we two see things, but it has helped us both grow exponentially!! I’d never consider writing nor delivering a sermon without both points of view considered. I’d suggest you do the same. All you really have to do now is type “Maimonides on Exodus 20” into Google’s search engine, and it will be hand delivered to you. I wish you nothing but happy studies, and a brilliant memory. May G-d bless you today and always. p.s. Yes, my kitchen is Kosher. It doesn’t have to be, but I am the one who can cook - she burns water. I love her kids as my own, and they needed sustenance. This was the only way. p.p.s. My best friend is now a born again Christian! Her dad, the Rabbi, is as well. If you’d like to hear their stories, let me know.

      2. Johnny Doeseph's Avatar Johnny Doeseph

        No one really believes in it (I hope), but it is mostly a joke, done ironically, but at the end of the day I believe that everyone should have freedom of religion unless it directly harms others.

      3. Glenn P Ordell's Avatar Glenn P Ordell

        Hell, I protest just about anything else, but does that mean that all of those idiots out there are likely to join up with that new Protestant movement and start their own anti-Italian style noodles church? And if they do, would not they be practicing some sort of prejudice against Italians? Sounds like a lot of the same reasons the original Christian Church divided up into so many sects. And as a sidenote, Daniel, those that are using this forum for the purposes of protesting the original concept presented in this thread probably do not have a single clue about that which we speak because they were too busy playing googly eyes with a member of the opposite sex, or because they are too stupid to understand compound sentences that drag on a bit, or simply lack the necessary linguistic skills required to ascertain the finer points of what we say...

        1. Robin White's Avatar Robin White

          Pastor Glenn, I have to draw the line at mean again. There’s no need to call most of us who DO understand, stupid. There’s is nothing wrong with playing goo-goo eyes with the one you love. I’ve been married 33 years, and what’s wrong with that? Makes me dumber than a rock, or what? p.s. A sect is false and not part of the Christianity. Our divisions are silly, and over silly things - but they’re called denominations, not sects. The Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormons would be considered sects. They are not Christian in any way - the same as you’d say of a Messianic Jew is not Jewish. Further, we are truly only 3 very large denominations (Catholic, Protestant, & Orthodox) all denominations fit under the umbrella of one of those three. Just adding to your knowledge. Teaching is nice, being mean to other ministers is not. Enjoy your day.

    4. Rev Ned's Avatar Rev Ned

      No sillier than any other “religion”.

  1. Catherine Ohrin-Greipp, MSW, ADS, OM's Avatar Catherine Ohrin-Greipp, MSW, ADS, OM

    This is as silly as some of the other religious institutions who have ridiculous tenets too, like some white bearded guy in the sky who watches over everyone, waits to punish them, and like Aladdin, sometimes grants wishes and sometimes doesn't. . But to each her own. The government should stay completely out of this. If the Pastafarians claim their belief system is a religious one, then who is anyone else not a member to question it's authenticity.

    1. power to the people's Avatar power to the people

      See, that's the problem....YOU think the Christian "God" is what you've described here because you choose to envision that.

      But that's not exactly "who He is". lol.

      1. Glenn P Ordell's Avatar Glenn P Ordell

        What most people seem to have a difficult time understanding is that Jesus Christ spoke using the Aramaic language (not Hebrew, although he may have did, do, done too when he needed to address the scribes and the Pharisees.) With that notable exception of St. Paul's letter, which used the ancient Greek language to communicate with the Corinthians, the remainder of the Old and New Testament of the Bible was written in Aramaic

        So What? Well, the Aramaic language is rather unique compared to the modern languages that are used today. Aramaic is a "referential" language, meaning that a presumption is made on the part of the person speaking that the listeners understand the references being made.

        Hence "the eye of the needle" was a reference to a gate in the city of Jerusalem that was made by Jesus Christ in the Holy Scriptures. To get through that gate, a rich man would have to "humble" himself by getting off the hump of his camel and walk through that gate on his own two feet.

        Of course, rich man of that day really tried to avoid such acts of humility, as if in so doing, they would appear to be a very pedestrian commoner.

        So, maybe there is some sort of lesson in all of these musings brought upon us by the responses and reasoning of a baker, and the upset that was percieved by others?

        1. power to the people's Avatar power to the people

          That was pretty insightful coming from a guy who misspells, then rips on others for misspelling. ;-)

        2. Sylvi Sterling's Avatar Sylvi Sterling

          Actually, there is another cultural reference that escapes modern folks today! The Needle's Eye was a gate that was only slightly taller than a camel's hump. Meaning that a camel, laden with produce or goods for sale, or whatever cargo was on its back, woulld need to be UNLOADED before walking through the lower gate! If a merchant was wealthy and carrying a lot of fine rugs, brass vases, fine clothing etc. in bales... all that stuff would need to be taken OFF the camel, the camel led through, and then re-packed! This is a DIRECT reference to the fact that, in death, "you cannot take it with you" and also a reference to the fact that when people JOINED the faith that Christ taught (then called "The Way", they gave EVERYTHING that they owned TO the group, and everything, money, land, property, food, clothing, jewelry, EVERYTHING was held in COMMON! So yes, to come into the Kingdom of heaven, you had to "unload your camel" before entering.

          1. Robin White's Avatar Robin White

            Good answer. Love! Love in sacrificial manner. No forcing, just common love for brothers and sisters. If only Christianity could get itself back to that truth. Thank you! Sincerely.

    2. power to the people's Avatar power to the people

      some white bearded guy in the sky who watches over everyone, waits to punish them, and like Aladdin, sometimes grants wishes and sometimes doesn’t.

      Hahahahaha....that's a good one Cathrine. Did you drop out of Catholic Bible school at 5 years old?

      1. Catherine Ohrin-Greipp, MSW, ADS, OM's Avatar Catherine Ohrin-Greipp, MSW, ADS, OM

        No Rev Joe, I completed 12 years of Catholic School, was confirmed and completed Holy Communion ceremonies, and was headed for the convent until I woke up, Hahaaa back at ya.

        1. power to the people's Avatar power to the people

          Ohhhhh. well then. How did I know that?

  1. Dr. J Pace's Avatar Dr. J Pace

    No one can realistically question what someone else believes. It comes down to the golden rule,...if you want your beliefs to be respected, you must respect others.

    1. power to the people's Avatar power to the people

      That is true. As soon as one religion says another is wrong, it negates itself.

      Now, about that flying spagetti thingy....do he have wings or just self propelled? I wanna know, cuz if he don't have wings, I'm in!

    2. Lori's Avatar Lori

      I agree James. Religion is a personal thing, besides I don't think the colander obscures her face, so what's the big deal. Personally, I DO believe the creative Source has a sense of humor and has given us the gift of creativity. We can spiritually connect in what ever way works for us. It is different, but if it makes them happy, who are we to say it's wrong.

    3. Glenn P Ordell's Avatar Glenn P Ordell

      Dear James Pace,

      Please do not post in this forum any longer. Your expression is far to truthfully for many of the readers of this forum to understand. Instead of posting, you can put me on your mailing list because I thought your comment was exceptionally astute.

      1. Glenn P Ordell's Avatar Glenn P Ordell

        Sorry, that should have read "truthful" instead of truthfully."

        1. Glenn P Ordell's Avatar Glenn P Ordell

          ...and "to" was supposed to be "too."

          1. power to the people's Avatar power to the people

            And you made a lame funny about another poster spelling "specifically" wrong, nice.

          2. Glenn P Ordell's Avatar Glenn P Ordell

            At least I am human enough to admit to and correct my errors...

        2. power to the people's Avatar power to the people

          You should probably re-read some of your other responses. You definitely are not.

          1. Carl Elfstrom's Avatar Carl Elfstrom

            To err is human.

      2. power to the people's Avatar power to the people

        Well you know glenn that's funny, because that guy admitted his error, then you went on and on about it. You misspelled the original word, then proceeded to make other errors in your own grammar and spelling, and just made a general ass of yourself. You should take a good look in a mirror and grow up.

        1. Glenn P Ordell's Avatar Glenn P Ordell

          It is hilarious, actually. because a few of those typos I made were intentional. I also was making a joke when I said you should not post anymore. I meant quite the contrary, as I thought your posting was rather fantastic! Perhaps the days when people could enjoy life are gone?

        2. Carl Elfstrom's Avatar Carl Elfstrom

          But look at the way Pablo Picasso's Girl In The Mirror saw herself. Albert Ellis' cognitive emotive therapy might work better.

    4. angel's Avatar angel

      It's not a belief, it's a joke...literally! "Pastor (Pastar?) Bobby Henderson founded the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster back in 2005 to poke fun at Christian fundamentalists on the Kansas State Board of Education hell bent on teaching creationism in American schools"

  1. Joe's Avatar Joe

    If they blow something up and kill a bunch of people then it will be a religion.

    1. power to the people's Avatar power to the people

      Go away troll. Back to mommy's basement!

  1. Frank Villari's Avatar Frank Villari

    To quote the article, "Bobby Henderson founded the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster back in 2005 to poke fun at Christian fundamentalists on the Kansas State Board of Education hell bent on teaching creationism in American schools." Fundamental religious beliefs do not create themselves to "poke fun" at other religious fundamentalists. This one admission by the founder should be enough reason for the courts not to give it recognition.

    1. power to the people's Avatar power to the people

      Thank you Frank!

      1. Daniel's Avatar Daniel

        Regardless the reason it was founded, if there are people who believe it and follow it for the benefit of themselves and others then it’s still a religion. Keep in mind that the current Roman Catholic Church was founded back when Emperor Constantine adopted Christianity as the national religion as a political strategy to try and solidify what was left of the Roman Empire. And all sorts of idiocy followed. Including the “abomination of the Saints” so the Romans could still pray to many different statues; and the Roman practice of men having sex with boys-which still plagues the Roman Catholic Church while traumatizing so many innocent lives. Yet, in spite of the historical and ongoing harm caused by “Priest” this organization is somehow beyond the question of whether or not it’s a religion, or just the remnants of failed politics.

    2. Robin White's Avatar Robin White

      Agreed. Thank you Frank.

  1. Seer Orecchiette's Avatar Seer Orecchiette

    Why so much hate? Chill out everyone, pour a drink, eat some pasta and the world will look better to you.

  1. Gary Hynous's Avatar Gary Hynous

    So many comments on this, needless to say, controversial subject. From my point of view, all religions are based on faith and hope. One believes certain things are true and hopes that they are right. Fact is, we'll all get to find out eventually. To me prayer is talking to the God of your understanding and meditation is listening for the answer. Believe whatever you like because at the time of your demise you'll get the answer. Personally, no one on this earth can preach to me from personal experience. The closest I've come to that is what people have experienced when they are on the operating table and are clinically dead for a period of time. Read Raymond Moody's book to find out what some of this doctor's patients experienced while he operated on them and they were deemed to be dead for a while. What they related could be attributed to the random firings of dying brain cells or perhaps something greater than this I prefer the latter explanation.

  1. angel's Avatar angel

    This was a joke, nothing more, nothing less!!

    1. Carl Elfstrom's Avatar Carl Elfstrom

      Yeah angel, but we're all addicted to this blog and have to talk about something, so we try to make the best out of whatever silly story they hand us.

  1. Bill Fox's Avatar Bill Fox

    Germany doesn't really have "freedom of religion".

    1. Carl Elfstrom's Avatar Carl Elfstrom

      I'm glad I'm not German.

    2. Judge's Avatar Judge

      Old Bill and Carl, Dutch means people from Holland, not Germany :)

  1. Judge's Avatar Judge

    The Apostles of Christ were eye witnesses to Resurrection, and they were all killed for that belief. Tell me who would die for a lie? or for the spaghetti monster. That is the difference between Christianity and all the other man made religions

    1. minister james's Avatar minister james

      Ummm, many, many thousands of Imperial Japanese soldiers, sailors and airmen (not to mention civilians), perished serving their god-emperor in WWII, while killing many other thousands in the name of that same emperor. All died for a lie. May our day be a better one.

      1. Judge's Avatar Judge

        Let me put it different to you James, because you don't seem to understand: Would you die for a lie when you know it is a lie that you told? We are not talking here about war, where soldiers take an oath, but religion. The Japanese Emperor was never considered a god by anyone, those people served their country according to their culture and oath. The Apostles were all killed for their beliefs, beliefs rooted in facts, they witnessed the Resurrection, nobody would die for a story they made up.

        1. minister james's Avatar minister james

          With all due respect to you, Monk, I suggest you might study the people, culture and history of Japan a bit more closely. We might refer to people being killed for their religious beliefs other than Christians: the multitude of Jews put to death by pogroms in Czarist Russia and the Germans under the Nazis (not to mention other countries in continental Europe in earlier times)-I don't believe those dead saw their deeply-held religion through the exclusive lens of Christianity any more than the Japanese (other than their deaths often coming at the hands of those possessed of that lens). More recently, we have Christians and Muslims slaughtering each other in the Balkans (and, historically, the Crusades when the Crusaders weren't using the Vatican's imprimatur to freeboot among other Christians along the way), and Muslims (Shia vs. Sunni) dying in the Middle East over deeply-held, but doctrinally different beliefs in their religion. Again, when it comes to doctrine, remember the long and bloody struggles between Catholic and Protestant sects of Christianity in Europe, most recently in Ireland. I respect your faith in your religion, I would hope you might respect others in theirs . An inability to do so (and the religious doctrines denying any possibility of respect of another's religion) has been a great source of suffering and misery in our common human history. My hope is that the founders' principle of avoiding State religions may again gain traction among us, but in light of history and it's detailing of the magnificence and miserableness of human nature I regret to say I'm doubtful. May our day be a better one.

          1. Judge's Avatar Judge

            James, my post is not about people killed for their religious beliefs, you missed the point again. My question was, again, who would die for a story they made up?

          2. minister james's Avatar minister james

            Monk, re: your response below-albeit mostly by their own hands, the ruling circle of the Nazi Party at the end of WWII comes to mind. Please remember, at this point in history, the origins of ALL of the 'great' religions are stories that one chooses to believe or not, presumably because one narrative or the other deeply resonates with the listener/reader. Neither you or I, or anyone else currently living on planet Earth were around to personally witness the lives of Abraham, Jesus (stories recorded by the Apostles), Mohammed, the Buddha, the Hindu revered, or the origins of the myriad of other religions through the ages. The Christian narrative is the one that overwhelmingly resonates with you, and many others, and I understand that you embrace these stories on faith, even though you weren't a direct witness. I respect that you do, even though I, and many others, don't. As Gary Hynous said above, we will all, individually, know what lies past this plane of existence soon enough. The responsibility to treat each other respectfully (if not with love) in the now lies with each of each of us. To seek a genuine relationship with the greater universe and it's forces known and unknown is perhaps our greatest personal challenge . The urge to proselytize seems, all too often, to confuse wanting to KNOW God with wanting to BE God, and in that standpoint lies great danger. We can continue to go around endlessly on this subject, but I think all would be better served returning our never-ending tasks of improving our personal spiritual houses. I have greatly enjoyed our discussion. May we all have a better day.

          3. Robin White's Avatar Robin White

            I agree with Monk here. Would the Flying Spaghetti believers die by being sawed in half, crucified upside down, or eaten by lions to protect what they “know to be true,” I could be wrong, but I doubt it.

        2. Don's Avatar Don

          How many non-Christians died at the hands of Christians rather than convert? Using your "Monk Logic" that means their beliefs were as real as yours, right?

      2. Carl Elfstrom's Avatar Carl Elfstrom

        I hope the Japanese don't hear about this, or they'll soon be praying to egg noodles, or wonton soup.

        1. Judge's Avatar Judge

          I believe you are referring to Chinese food, not Japanese :)

    2. Carl Elfstrom's Avatar Carl Elfstrom

      Monk, aren't you supposed to be quietly praying in a monastery, right now ?

      1. Judge's Avatar Judge

        Trolling, Carl? ULC monastery is not a real one...imagine that

  1. Lori's Avatar Lori

    And how many Pagans died for their beliefs? And that was by Christians!

  1. 2dogs's Avatar 2dogs

    If they were a legitimate religion, they could prove it by replicating the Wiech et al experiment with Pastafarians replacing Catholics. They could look at a lasagne while getting zapped.


  1. Secretary3rd's Avatar Secretary3rd

    In the USA they can applied to have their belief seen as a religion. Fill out the 1023 pay the money and away they go.

  1. DJ's Avatar DJ

    I applaud the creativity of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, Peace to all

  1. Pastor Stephen's Avatar Pastor Stephen

    My comment is simply, " Oh My God"

  1. Rev Ned's Avatar Rev Ned

    Actually, Pastafarianism is just as valid as any other religion, whether there's a book to back it up or not.

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