A recent US court decision in Nebraska ruled that “that FSMism is not a ‘religion’ within the meaning of the relevant US federal statutes and constitutional jurisprudence. It is, rather, a parody, intended to advance an argument about science, the evolution of life, and the place of religion in public education..
The court ruled that ” it is evident to the Court that FSMism is not a belief system addressing ‘deep and imponderable’ matters: it is a satirical rejoinder to a certain strain of religious argument”.
The case came about when Stephen Cavanaugh, a prisoner in the Nebraska State Penitentiary, claimed that he is “Pastafarian” – a believer in the divine Flying Spaghetti Monster who practices “FSMism.” .
The “church” has been battling to gain legal recognition around the world, with mixed success. It was formed in 2005 as a way to poke fun at efforts in Kansas public schools to teach not only evolution, but also “intelligent design” – the idea that the universe must have had a creator
Nevertheless, New Zealand on Saturday hosted the world’s first Pastafarian wedding, conducted by the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. The group, which began in the US as a protest against religion encroaching into public schools, has gained legitimacy in New Zealand, where authorities recently decided it can officiate weddings.