Since its introduction in 2005, the mythology of Pastafarianism has grown to encompass pirates, an afterlife with a beer volcano, and more. There is, of course, a snazzy orientation video to welcome you into the Flying Spaghetti Monster’s noodly arms:
In fact, Pastafarianism is an officially recognized religion in three countries—first in Poland, where it became an officially registered religious community in 2014 thanks to a legal technicality, then in the Netherlands this past January. And just this weekend, New Zealand recognized the first legally-binding Pastafarian wedding, officiated by “minestroni” Karen Martyn. The happy couple were wed in the customary pirate’s garb, and Martyn is ready to perform additional ceremonies for any legally eligible adults, explaining to the BBC, “I’ve had people from Russia, from Germany, from Denmark, from all over contacting me and wanting me to marry them in the church because of our non-discriminatory philosophy.” More.
The underlying purpose may be to bring religion into disrepute by organized silliness.
A central characteristic of traditionally recognized religions, protected by conscience rights, is that, whether one thinks them right or wrong, sensible or silly, people do believe them. One somehow knows that these people do not believe what they say.
The result of successful legal challenges would be to undermine the importance of honest belief and conscience as such in determining cases involving religion.
See also: Wow: Court rules for common sense… Flying Spaghetti Monster not a religion Pastafarianism was so obviously a regional cultural parody, and yet… Maybe it’s instructive that it was a North American judge who figured that one out.
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