Church of the Invisible Pink Unicorn

Church Of the Invisible Pink Unicorn – Unicorn Worship or a Parody?

Have you heard of the Church of the Invisible Pink Unicorn (IPU)? The name “church” is misleading, though, because it is not really a church. It is a parody religion founded by a group of atheists. The IPU mostly takes action on the internet. No real unicorn worship, then? I’m afraid not.

Let´s have a closer look at this strange movement. Who founded the IPU and what is it all about?

The IPU even has its own manifesto, a belief system and testimonials by her “followers”. There are other movements similar to the IPU. Finally, does the IPU parody work, or is it turning against itself?

What Is the Church of the Invisible Pink Unicorn?

The Church of the Invisible Pink Unicorn was founded on alt.atheism Usenet newsgroup on July 7th 1990. The point was to satirize theistic beliefs, especially monotheistic religions. The God is replaced by the Invisible Pink Unicorn. She is both pink and invisible. This is contradictory, obviously, because if she is invisible, how do you know she is pink?

Because of the invisibility, no one can prove IPU doesn’t exist. This satirizes theistic beliefs about God. While no one can prove God exists, there is no proof of his non-existence either, because you can´t see the God.

By replacing the word ´God´ in any theistic dogma with the ´Invisible Pink Unicorn´, the advocates of IPU are trying to prove how irrational these dogmas are.

From 1994 to 1995, a group of college students on the ISCA Telnet-based BBS developed the idea further. They created a manifesto for this parody religion.

“Blessed Be Her Holy Hooves” and Other IPU Quotes

There are many beliefs and legends about the Invisible Pink Unicorn. These are some of the best Invisible Pink Unicorn quotes I found.

Blessed Be Her Holy Hooves.

An epithet the “followers” of the Invisible Pink Unicorn refer to her with.

Her Horniness

Another epithet for the IPU.

Her Pinkness

Yet another epithet for “Blessed Be Her Holy Hooves”.

Invisible pink unicorns are beings of great spiritual power. We know this because they are capable of being invisible and pink at the same time.

Like all religions, the Faith of the Invisible Pink Unicorns is based upon both logic and faith. We have faith that they are pink; we logically know that they are invisible because we can´t see them.

Serah Eley, the primary author of the Invisible Pink Unicorn manifesto.

I was driving home with just a half tank of gas, which was not nearly enough for the distance. Because I had no money for gas, I decided to pray for the IPU for help.

Her Holiness worked in mysterious ways by creating a strong wind up the central valley, which incidentally brought large amounts of rain. This tail wind improved my gas mileage just enough for me to reach my driveway.

The wind apparently caused widespread flooding down the entire valley, but I suspect the people who got flooded were unbelievers living contrary to the laws of the Great Invisible Pink Unicorn.

An IPU “follower´s” testimonial on the Rationalwiki.

We believe in one Unicorn, The Pink, The Invisible.

Part of the creed of the IPU.

Just because you haven´t seen a unicorn doesn’t mean they don´t exist. I haven’t seen quarks, electrons, or Peter Murphy for that matter, but I still accept their existence even though I have no direct evidence for their existence.

Unicorns are special creatures which exist seemingly in the imagination but there isn’t any reason they can´t exist. Horses with horns in their foreheads who can only be approached by virgins are perfectly logical, their existence has not been confirmed yet.

Rich Daniel, “the grand high llama” of the IPU.

Other Beliefs About the Invisible Pink Unicorn

washing machines


Some people claim the Invisible Pink Unicorn may show herself to true believers, but remains invisible to unbelievers.

If your socks have gone missing in the laundry, you are blessed by the Invisible Pink Unicorn. This explains why socks tend to disappear in the laundry; the Invisible Pink Unicorn takes them.

Nobody knows what she does with them, though. Anyhow, according to the Church of the Invisible Pink Unicorn, you should be joyful that the Invisible Pink Unicorn chose you to sacrifice your sock.

If you find a hole in your sock, it is a sign that the Invisible Pink Unicorn has pierced it with her holy horn.

It is also a good sign, if you open the washing machine, and the whole wash has got dyed pink. This means Her Pinkness has taken a ride in the spinning laundry, making love with one of her chosen Stallions.

All holy days of other religions are also holy days of the Invisible Pink Unicorn. The holiest day of the year is 1st of April.

42 is a significant number for the followers of the IPU. That is because in Douglas Adams´ book Hitchhiker´s Guide To The Galaxy,the answer to the question “what is the meaning of life, the universe and everything?” is 42.

The Purple Oyster of Doom is the devil of the IPU. According to a legend, the Purple Oyster was once on the same side with the Invisible Pink Unicorn.

This wicked mollusk was cast away from the green pastures, because he tried to convince the atheists, that the Invisible Pink Unicorn prefers pepperoni and mushroom pizza to pineapple and ham pizza.

On the other hand, some “followers” of the IPU claim she is a vegetarian. If that is the case, IPU likes neither pepperoni and mushroom pizza or pineapple and ham pizza.

The IPU Logo

The IPU logo portraits a mathematical void symbol and a unicorn. The void symbol refers to nothingness; there is no faith and no god. It has become the symbol of atheism. Some atheists wear necklaces with the IPU symbol and some even have it tattooed on their skin. The logo was created in 2013 by Tim Ahrentløv.

The logo is copyrighted, but it is allowed to represent it as a symbol of atheism. It is meant to be a symbol of friendly atheism.

Similar Ideologies

Russell´s Teapotrussells teapot - teapot in space

The philosopher Bertrand Russell made a teapot analogy. If he would claim without any proof, that a teapot orbits the Sun between the Earth and Mars, he should not expect anyone to believe his claim. Even though no one could prove there was no teapot in space, he would have to be the one who proves his claim.

The analogy means if someone claims something exists, he is the one responsible to prove his claims. It is not up to others to prove this something does notexist. This analogy was applied to religion; It is not up to unbelievers to prove there is no God, even though religious people claim there is.

The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster

The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, or Pastafarianism, was founded in 2005 by Bobby Henderson to protest against teaching creationism in public schools in United States. It is a social movement, but it is an actual religion for some people. According to Pastafarianism, the Flying Spaghetti Monster created the universe.

The Invisible Pink Unicorn – Is Atheism Turning Against Itself?

I´m a big fan of parodies and satires. Anything can be parodied, and it´s fine by me. But does the IPU parody work?

A fundamental part of the IPU parody is the claim, that the Invisible Pink Unicorn belief system is logical. This satirizes religions that claim their religious beliefs are logical. This does kind of work, because it is obvious that the idea of the Invisible Pink Unicorn is not logical. Neither are the beliefs of many religions logical.

The thing is, though, should faith even be logical? Faith is about trusting and believing, even when there is no proof of something. It is not about logical thinking.

Is there anything wrong with just believing, then? In my opinion, there is not, whether you believe in God or unicorns. Not everything can be seen with eyes. The problem is that something that cannot be proven or explained with logic, is being attempted to be explained with reason and logic. This is where many religions as well as atheism fail. Atheists want proof and logic, but religions are also trying to give proof and logic to their beliefs.

In its own absoluteness, atheism is becoming a sort of religion itself. Religions, on the other hand, are adopting the ideas of atheism by trying to prove their beliefs with logic. What I don´t understand is, why try to prove something uncertain to be certain?

What also distracts me about atheism is, that it seems as if the only options would be to be a Christian or to be an atheist. Even if the options would be expanded to practicing any religion or being an atheist, those are far too limited categories for the diversity of spiritual worldviews.

It never seems to be mentioned there are other variations too, like being spiritual but not practicing a specific religion. Believing in unicorns, even! Is this where the Invisible Pink Unicorn comes in? Not exactly, unless some people actually find spirituality in this pink little unicorn goddess.

Because there is one more thing the founders of IPU did not take into account. While the atheists founded IPU as a parody religion with a sole purpose to satirize theistic beliefs, how can they be sure it won´t become a “real” religion over time?

Just because it started as a parody, it does not mean someone could not actually start believing in the Invisible Pink Unicorn. After all, she is a unicorn. And the mystery of disappeared socks would finally get an explanation!

a missing sock on a branch

Unicorn Worship or a Parody?

Today´s post went a little bit deep. But what else to expect when you write about an atheistic parody religion, of which “followers” worship an invisible pink unicorn goddess? It was an interesting journey to me exploring this phenomenon, though. I hope it was for you as well.

Founded by a group of atheists in the 1990’s, the Church of the Invisible Pink Unicorn has become an internet phenomenon and fake religion with its sole purpose to satirize theistic beliefs. The “goddess”, Invisible Pink Unicorn is a contradictory character because of her claimed pinkness; how can you know she´s pink, if she is invisible?

In order to satirize religions, the IPU mimics characteristics of established religions. The IPU has its own manifesto, testimonials and holy days.

The IPU even explains the mystery of socks gone missing in laundry; the Invisible Pink Unicorn has taken them. The IPU logo has become a symbol of atheism.

The IPU is a clever and funny parody religion, but the flaws of atheism become flaws of the Church of the Invisible Pink Unicorn too. Atheists seem to adore logic too much, and religions are falling into the same trap. Trying to explain the inexplicable with logic and reason is doomed to fail.

I did find an excellent quote by Rich Daniel, “the grand high llama” of the IPU. Actually, this is the best quote I’ve heard for a while, and I can feel some true unicorn spirit in his words!

The IPU doesn’t make logical sense, but neither do the laws of physics. They make sense to cult members who undergo a lengthy initiation, namely physicists.

Nothing in the universe makes sense, the IPU is merely the first being to be honest about it. The universe just is, only logic makes us act in strange ways.

Logic is what starts wars, causes misery, starts famine and makes a really bad cup of tea. Rejecting logic is the first step to enlightenment.

Logic is what tells you to cut your hair, buy sensible shoes, that your aspirations in life are a BMW, things from The Sharper Image catalog, and that wearing velvet, lace and lots of mascara is a silly idea.

Now, that is something I wanted to hear; everything that is logical is not good, and all illogical things are not bad. Are unicorns even logical, after all? Of course not, even if they´re not the pink and invisible ones. But they sure make life much happier!

Read more about unicorns and religion on the post about unicorns in the Bible.

I´d love to read your thought about the Church of the Invisible Pink Unicorn. Do you think their parody works? Why, or why not? Which one of their beliefs is your favorite, or which one do you find the funniest?

18 thoughts on “Church Of the Invisible Pink Unicorn – Unicorn Worship or a Parody?”

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    Wow, I’d never heard of IPU. That’s hilarious. I think I’m with the atheists on this. I think we just can’t think too hard about it because it’s not serious to begin with. As for which of their beliefs is the funniest, the reason for clothes turning pink in the wash was certainly unexpected! Thanks for this amusing post.

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      Hi Joey,

      I´m happy to hear you had a laugh. I did too, when I read about all the beliefs of the IPU. I think doing laundry is going to be more fun now that we know all that. 😀

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    haha! What an interesting and entertaining read. I love the way you can analyse and critically review logic and the IPU with their satirical aspects of religion and their creation of the invisible pink unicorn. I wasn’t aware of the IPU’s existence, but I’m really not surprised, and I can see where it’s come from. It does challenge how one looks at religion, but I also think it’s okay to have beliefs whether there’s evidence or not. It’s up to the individual what they choose to believe. I think there’s a very real risk that someone could actually turn their ideas of the IPU into a faith of their own, so in some ways the IPU could become contradictory to its own existence. Individuals will make up their own mind and create their own beliefs. And who’s to question that? Thanks for sharing your ideas.

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      Thank you for your feedback, Kat. Exactly, the Flying Spaghetti Monster has already become a religion, so that might happen to the IPU as well. I got the idea, though, that the founder of the Flying Spaghetti Monster is OK with that. But the atheists might not be happy, if the IPU became a real religion.

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    I think I will get out my telescope and look for the teapot. If I can find it, maybe there is some truth to the Invisible Pink Unicorn and we can stop the debate.
    There was a lot thinking to do after reading this post. Mostly reflecting on what each person thinks about the world around them, each will have their own thoughts and what they believe in. As we are different, we should not take others thoughts as our own, each person should make their own path.
    The laundry part of this takes on a new life, I always thought that a Gremlin was responsible for my laundry issues, is there a religion for them.
    John

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      I agree with you, John. People should think themselves, what they really believe in, not just adopt other people´s ideas without any criticism. Let me know if you spot the teapot in space!

      I haven’t heard of a Gremlin religion, but there are other religions based on movies, like Dudeism. And, of course, the Jedi Knight religion!

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    I had not heard of the Church of the Invisible Pink Unicorn, but it definitely reminds me of the Pastafarians who “worship” the Flying Spaghetti Monster (the FSM makes an appearance at our local “con” conference parade each year). It sounds like a group of clever people put together a manifesto to entertain themselves while making some social commentary as well. I don’t see this becoming a major religion, but it can provide some fun for those who live in areas with freedom of religion. 

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      The Flying Spaghetti Monster actually has become a religion, some people have even got a permission to keep a pasta bowl on their head for official passport photos, because the pasta bowl is a religious symbol. Sounds kind of hilarious, but then, who defines what´s a real religion and what is not? 

      The Church of the Invisible Pink Unicorn hasn’t become an actual religion, at least so far. Anyway, I think it´s important to have freedom of religion and even be able to make parody religions such as IPU.

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    An invisible pink unicorn? Gibe me a break that’s very hilarious there. That parody really got me laughing and you pointed it out when I didn’t even realize. Well, I don’t know what to say about this belief because its really ridiculous to me. Well, maybe I’ll just have to keep checking my sock to see if there’s holes or hope my washer makes my clothes pink. Your horniness, this is a good post. Lol

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    Hahaha thank you so much for sharing about this! This is very funny to me on many levels. I think that it takes things from other religions and basically does ad-libbing to make it sound silly. I have heard about other parody religions and I think they are funny and serve a good purpose. I am not religious but I don’t really label myself an atheist either.

    I like what you said about if you’re actually becoming like a religion in its own way. That can happen with any kind of belief system even an anti belief system. Also like you were saying the atheism versus religion thing can actually become a way of black-and-white thinking. That’s why I don’t like to align myself with either extreme. I like to just admit that I don’t know either way.

    I thought your article was very balanced and thoughtful. You have a nice way of thinking. Thank you!

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      Hi Edward,

      Thank you so much for your feedback. I also find the Church of the Invisible Pink Unicorn hilarious. At the same time I agree with you, that any belief system becomes like a religion if it goes to extremes. I have a similar world view as you, I´m not an atheist, but I´m not religious either. I would describe myself as spiritual but not religious.

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    I found this to be very sensitive and also interesting to read about. The church of the invisible pink unicorn? Wow! It is rather disheartening to see this. Though they are trying g to parodied the concept to which religion is based on faith and logic but then, this us utter blasphemous from my own view. Since this is a product of atheists, I think they are trying to form a religion themselves by claiming not to follow a religion or believe in the nonexistence of a God. This topic is huge and in depth. I need to read more concerning this and would surely be back to share more details on it

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      Hi Tracy,

      Thank you for sharing your opinion on the Church of the Invisible Pink Unicorn. I agree with you, atheism seems like a religion on many levels, even though the ideology of atheism is to keep away from religions.

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    I feel the story of this unicorn is really impressive. And actaully haven’t heard of the IPU before and I feel its not in reality. Like you’ve said the atheist just want to mock those who believed  in His existence. I’m particularly amazed when they did your socks get chosen as a item of sacrifice. Although this seem contradicting calling what is invincible pink, so I’ll say it not real.

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      Hi Chloe,

      Thanks for your comment! Because I love unicorns, I´d almost like to believe in the Invisible Pink Unicorn, but I must agree with you she´s a fictional character.

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    To be sincere I never heard about invisible pink unicorn before. I have watch a movie which stated that unicorn is a very powerful creature. If it is spotted in dream, it means the dreamer will become very powerful ( maybe the head) in his life. There are many unbelievable tips am seeing in here about IPU. Actually, everyone is responsible for their own faith and believe. The believer of God only believe that God exist but have never seen Him before. For us to believe something does exist without sighting it means a strong faith. And am sure we will have a solid evidence to prove that. I think the issue of religion is complicated, so it is not worth something one should be fighting for. I have been looking for my golden earrings since two days again. Hope I can find it when I surrender my faith for IPU. Lols. This is a very enlightening review I so much enjoyed and admired. Thanks for sharing.

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      Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Stella. I agree religion is not something people should fight for, because it´s a personal thing and a thing of faith, not logic. I hope the Invisible Pink Unicorn will help you and you´ll find your earrings. 🙂

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