The Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster

The Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster

CAN I GET A “RAMEN” FROM THE CONGREGATION?! Behold the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster (FSM), today’s fastest growing carbohydrate-based religion. According to church founder Bobby Henderson, the universe and all life within it were created by a mystical and divine being: the Flying Spaghetti Monster. What drives the FSM’s devout followers, a.k.a. Pastafarians? Some say it’s the assuring touch from the FSM’s “noodly appendage.” Then there are those who love the worship service, which is conducted in pirate talk and attended by congregants in dashing buccaneer garb. Still others are drawn to the Church’s flimsy moral standards, religious holidays every Friday, or the fact that Pastafarian heaven is way cooler: Does your heaven have a Stripper Factory and a Beer Volcano? Intelligent Design has finally met its match–and it has nothing to do with apes or the Olive Garden of Eden. Within these pages, Bobby Henderson outlines the true facts– dispelling such malicious myths as evolution (“only a theory”), science (“only a lot of theories”), and whether we’re really descended from apes (fact: Humans share 95 percent of their DNA with chimpanzees, but they share 99.9 percent with pirates!) See what impressively credentialed top scientists have to say: “If Intelligent Design is taught in schools, equal time should be given to the FSM theory and the non-FSM theory.” –Professor Douglas Shaw, Ph.D. “Do not be hypocritical. Allow equal time for other alternative ‘theories’ like FSMism, which is by far the tastier choice.” –J. Simon, Ph.D. “In my scientific opinion, when comparing the two theories, FSM theory seems to be more valid than classic ID theory.” –Afshin Beheshti, Ph.D. Read the book and decide for yourself! From the Trade Paperback edition.

Invented Religions

Imagination, Fiction and Faith

Invented Religions

Utilizing contemporary scholarship on secularization, individualism, and consumer capitalism, this book explores religious movements founded in the West which are intentionally fictional: Discordianism, the Church of All Worlds, the Church of the SubGenius, and Jediism. Their continued appeal and success, principally in America but gaining wider audience through the 1980s and 1990s, is chiefly as a result of underground publishing and the internet. This book deals with immensely popular subject matter: Jediism developed from George Lucas' Star Wars films; the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, founded by 26-year-old student Bobby Henderson in 2005 as a protest against the teaching of Intelligent Design in schools; Discordianism and the Church of the SubGenius which retain strong followings and participation rates among college students. The Church of All Worlds' focus on Gaia theology and environmental issues makes it a popular focus of attention. The continued success of these groups of Invented Religions provide a unique opportunity to explore the nature of late/post-modern religious forms, including the use of fiction as part of a bricolage for spirituality, identity-formation, and personal orientation.

Are We Postmodern Yet?

And Were We Ever?

Are We Postmodern Yet?

In this book, Reinhold Kramer explores a variety of important social changes, including the resistance to objective measures of truth, the rise of “How-I-Feel” ethics, the ascendancy of individualism, the immersion in cyber-simulations, the push toward globalization and multilateralism, and the decline of political and religious faiths. He argues that the displacement, since the 1990s, of grand narratives by ego-based narratives and small narratives has proven inadequate, and that selective adherence, pluralist adaptation, and humanism are more worthy replacements. Relying on evolutionary psychology as much as on Charles Taylor, Kramer argues that no single answer is possible to the book title’s question, but that the term “postmodernity” – referring to the era, not to postmodernism – still usefully describes major currents within the contemporary world.

On the New Concept Creatio Ex-Rotatione

On the New Concept Creatio Ex-Rotatione

It is known that the Big Bang theory was based on the concept of creation ex nihilo, after ancient Greek philosophers. In this paper, we discuss the concept of creatio ex nihilo, as well as two other approaches - Intelligent Design and Emergence Theory. We argue that beside the above three approaches, a new concept called creatio ex-rotatione offers a resolution to the long standing disputes between beginning and eternity of the Universe. We agree with Vaas: [h]ow a conceptual and perhaps physical solution of the temporal aspect of Immanuel Kant’s “first antinomy of pure reason” is possible, i.e., how our universe in some respect could have both a beginning and an eternal existence. Therefore, paradoxically, there might have been a time before time or a beginning of time in time.” By computational simulation, we also show how a model of early Universe with rotation can fit this new picture.

The Religion and Theology Student Writer's Manual and Reader's Guide

The Religion and Theology Student Writer's Manual and Reader's Guide

The Religion Student Writer’s Manual and Reader’s Guide, is a set of instructions and exercises that sequentially develop citizenship, academic, and professional skills while providing students with knowledge about a wide range of religious concepts, phenomena, and information sources. Part 1 begins by teaching students about reading and writing in introductory religion. It focuses on the crafts of writing and scholarship by providing the basics of grammar, style, formats and source citation, and then introduces students to a variety of rich information resources including the religious journals and the Library of Congress. Part 2 prepares students to research, read, write, review, and critique religious scholarship. Finally, Part 3 provides for the practice of religious scholarship in advanced courses such as the history of religion and contemporary approaches to the study of religion.

The Beginning and the End

The Meaning of Life in a Cosmological Perspective

The Beginning and the End

In this fascinating journey to the edge of science, Vidal takes on big philosophical questions: Does our universe have a beginning and an end or is it cyclic? Are we alone in the universe? What is the role of intelligent life, if any, in cosmic evolution? Grounded in science and committed to philosophical rigor, this book presents an evolutionary worldview where the rise of intelligent life is not an accident, but may well be the key to unlocking the universe's deepest mysteries. Vidal shows how the fine-tuning controversy can be advanced with computer simulations. He also explores whether natural or artificial selection could hold on a cosmic scale. In perhaps his boldest hypothesis, he argues that signs of advanced extraterrestrial civilizations are already present in our astrophysical data. His conclusions invite us to see the meaning of life, evolution and intelligence from a novel cosmological framework that should stir debate for years to come.

Global Climate Change

Convergence of Disciplines

Global Climate Change

Mark Twain's comment that everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it no longer applies: human activities have altered the global climate, and governments are having to act now to avoid more extreme perturbations. Global Climate Change examines the factors responsible for global climate change and the geophysical, biological, economic, legal, and cultural consequences of such changes. The book highlights the complexity of decision-making under uncertainty, contrasting the methods that various disciplines employ to evaluate past and future conditions