Friday, 31 October 2014

Czech "Pastafarian" wins right to wear kitchen utensil as official religious head gear

By Kirsty Rigg | Prague Daily Monitor |
5 August 2013

A man who claims his religion requires him to wear a sieve on his head has been granted permission to use a photo of himself wearing it – on his official ID card.

Lukas Novy, a follower of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, says the plastic kitchenware is a crucial part of his “Pastafarian” faith, and he must wear it at all times to respect his deity; a monster made of spaghetti and meatballs.

Czech officials ruled that rejecting his request would be a breach of the country’s religious equality laws, and have subsequently turned the other cheek as the 28 year old, from Brno, updated his ID card with the controversial image.

The Church of the Spaghetti Monster first emerged in the USA in 2005 as a mockery of organised religion. Now the thousands of online followers insist that “Pastafarianism” is a genuine religion, and refer to their almighty as “His Noodliness”.

Followers claim that that universe was created by the ball of noodles after “drinking heavily”.

In a statement from Brno City Hall, spokesman Pavel Zara explained: “The application complies with the laws of the Czech Republic where headgear for religious or medical reasons is permitted if it does not hide the face.”

Fellow “Pastafarian”, known as Soorej Jones Pothoor, said he feels discriminated against because of his unrecognised religion: “They (people of other beliefs) tell that the Lord Jesus is the one who’ll save you, not a ball of Spaghetti you moron.” And I say, “How dare you call my lord a ball of spaghetti, what proof do you have that Jesus will save you, a book? We don’t even need a proof, it’s all around us.”.

The Czech Republic is the second country to accept the cooking utensil as official religious head gear, following Austria when businessman Niko Alm won the right to wear a similar sieve on his driving licence photo. Many countries still refuse to accept the pasta strainer as such, and other people in counties such as Poland have failed.