One of the fastest growing spoof religious movements in the World is the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster (FSM), whose followers sometimes call themselves Pastafarians (a pun on Rastafarianism and Spaghetti pasta). 


FSM began as a protest movement. On the 7th May 2005, Bobby Henderson, a physics graduate in Oregon, sent a satirical open letter of protest to the Kansas State Board Of Education, who had insisted that Intelligent Design (The idea that the World was to complex to have been produced without an intelligent creator) put onto the school curriculums for biology and other sciences to counterweight any theories of evolution and Natural selection on offer.

            Henderson insisted that as a believer in an invisible deity he called the Flying Spaghetti Monster, which was composed of giant meatballs and infinitely long pasta tentacles, his beliefs also had to be added to the school education programmes.


The FSM culture swept through the Internet like a forest fire, and rapidly spawned its own following, and its own cosmology and theology. Few if any of its adherents take it seriously as a religion, though there are Pastafarian missionaries, as well as Spagnostics – those who doubt the FSM is real. In many ways it is the very easy to produce absurdist ways in which Pastafarianism mimics and parodies religious beliefs that make the Church of FSM appeal to the anarchic and irreligious such as myself.


                                                BASIC FSM THEOLOGY


Pastafarianism has its own creation myth – the FSM created the entire universe, beginning with a mountain, trees, and a midget – usually mispelt as 'midgit'. The FSM created the Universe only about 4,000 years ago. It messes with scientific carbon dating apparatus to convince scientists that the World is millions of years old. The FSM is effectively a cosmic prankster.


Heaven is full of beer volcanoes and stripper factories that produce burlesque performers and Chippendales to order for all good Pastafarians who arrive in Heaven.


Morality and ethics in Pastafarianism come down not to the Ten Commandments, but to the eight ‘ I’d rather you didn’ts’.  There would have been ten, but the pirate missionary, Captain Mosey, lost two as he brought them down Mount Salsa. Here are the first two of the 8 Condiments (Commandments) known as the I’d rather you didn’ts.


  1. I'd really rather you didn't act like a sanctimonious holier-than-thou ass when describing my noodly goodness. If some people don't believe in me, that's okay. Really, I'm not that vain. Besides, this isn't about them so don't change the subject.
  2. I'd really rather you didn't use my existence as a means to oppress, subjugate, punish, eviscerate, and/or, you know, be mean to others. I don't require sacrifices, and purity is for drinking water, not people


For the rest, see


FSM did not create by intelligent design alone, but by Unintelligent Design as well. He was drunk during the Creation process which is why some things do not turn out as well as he had hoped, i.e., Jar Jar Binks.


                                                                        PIRATES AND FSM


The original prophets of Pastafarianism were pirates. Though dismissed in folklore as bloodthirsty cutthroats who stole and murdered their way around the Seven Seas, pirates were actually pioneering explorers and scientists who had become influenced by FSM teachings, and helped spread them round the globe. They were more likely to give sweets to children than to murder the passengers of a ship and steal all the valuables on board. Religionists perpetrated the myth of pirates being wicked and pirates fell foul of the authorities of many nations, and found their carefree sailor’s lives and FSM teachings suppressed.   Today, despite the romanticism of films like The Pirates Of The Caribbean, and the works of Robert Louis Stephenson, piracy has been largely stamped out. There are those who genuinely steal on the high seas today, using speedboats instead of getaway cars, but they are not pirates as of old.

            Henderson, in his letter to the Kansas schools, noted with graphs and carts, that the decline of piracy since the 18th century shows a stark parallel to the increase in global warming, and civil unrest around the world. It is clear that the great Noodliness, the FSM wants the pirates back – and he will continue to smite our world with misery until pirate culture is revived. Many Pastafrarians therefore dress and act as pirates at every opportunity.


                                    MY PASTAFARIANISM


As an atheist, following my disastrous years in Catholicism and the religious cult, Divine Light Mission (see BRAINWASHING) a spoof belief like FSM is a gift from the Gods (or from the supermarket).


In the UK, there is less of a threat to introduce Intelligent Design to the science curriculum, but the mainstream churches still insist on religious assembly, force many shops to close for religious festivals, and only religious spokes-people get to talk on morality in much of the public media.  Such thinking can only be changed through piracy and increased Pasta consumption.


 ID claims are based on a simple false premise - If you found a wristwatch on the ground you wouldn't assume that it was growing there but that it was created by a watch-maker - the theory goes on to argue that the Universe, and life on earth, in its complexity, cannot have just arrived without a maker either. Such theories have existed since the days of Aristotle. Such theories have just as quickly been refuted throughout the centuries.  To explain something by saying that it had a divine creator must logically demand that the creator’s own origin needs to be explained.  Even the mighty Flying Spaghetti Monster must have been produced from an original recipe.  For many religionists however, the search for ultimate origin stops with the notion of the Creator, and few Pastafarians seek the original great Chef responsible for the cookbook. In reality ID belongs in the philosophy of religion - it has no scientific method or approach to its subject - at best it deserves a passing mention but not equal billing with scientific biological evolutionary theory. In the UK it is not taught in science as it is not recognized, - it gets some mention in comparative religious studies at best.


                                    RIVAL GODS


The FSM has his rival gods, just as the Judao-Christian deity does. A mighty war has raged for centuries between the FSM and the Invisible Pink Unicorn, which was originally created as a philosophical conceit on the lines that if we cannot see invisible pink unicorns, we cannot prove that they exist, or that they are pink.  The FSM, himself invisible as he touches all with his Noodly Appendage has been enraged by the horned horse interloper, and the war has raged ever since. One day their conflict will end the world by dropping a tree on the Midgit. You can see a summary of the epic war and how it could go right here - When the war comes our way, we must be ready with our pirate ships to give defense to His Noodliness.  The Mighty Meaty (also available in Vegetarian versions) FSM admires human fortitude, or ‘Meatitude ‘ for spreading his meaty goodness around the land – Meatitude is a pun on beatitude - a willingness to promote FSM culture, eat pasta and tell everyone about the FSM.  He will touch you with his Noodly Appendage and on reaching heaven; you will get your own beer volcano for sure. (Stripper factory optional).  The Meaty FSM also praises human ‘Noodliness’, (intelligence and wit, especially in argument against the crackpot creationist and Intelligent Design obsessed fundamentalists in charge of other faiths.


Some religionists fail to see the joke. In The US a student who turns up to school in pirate costume on Fridays to pledge his support for the FSM has been sent home and risks disciplinary action up to an including his expulsion. Such a stance against him has echoes of the recent UK cases against a flight attendant who wished to wear her crucifix while on duty (though I might see flight crew having more faith in God than in the plane itself distressing), and a Muslim teacher, sacked for refusing to remove her face covering veils.


Spaghetti and pasta have mysterious origins, just like any God.  Few can agree whether or not Marco Polo first brought Pasta to Europe or not.  Pasta is also very flexible as a food stuff – being sold in strings, hoops and even as alphabetti-spaghetti, Some restaurants have started selling a mysterious substance called antepasta, or anti-pasta, which may be a product from the ovens of the Invisible Pink Unicorn.  Anti-Pasta is like anti-mater. If you let anti-pasta and true pasta mix, you may no longer have a restaurant.


So, to your pirate ships, me hearties, and take pasta – get scurvy, and get busy – faster – faster pasta pasta – the hour of the Invisible Pink Unicorn is coming – you can see him now just over there… oh, no you can’t. I forgot. He’s invisible.


                                    Capt.’s Arrr-thur Chappell. 


Photos of my model FSG



USEFUL WEBSITE LINKS The official FSM Church page.


One of many related pages -  The FSM discussion forum.


FSM pages on Myspace 


Arthur Chappell