So, like, take 'er easy, man.
You may not know this, but March 6 is the Day of the Dude. The laid-back holiday celebrates the anniversary of the release of the noir-comedy masterpiece The Big Lebowski, which arrived in theaters on March 6, 1998. The holiday was established in 2010 by the Church of the Latter-Day Dude, aka Dudeism, a tongue-in-cheek religion that claims 200,000 adherents and is devoted to Jeff Bridges' character, the Dude. It's silly, but the Dude is actually a very good role model for not taking things too seriously and accepting life as it happens. After all, "the Dude abides." The website Vocativ has an interview with Oliver Benjamin, the founder of Dudeism, who says this about the origins of the faith:
It was more like the culmination of a long journey. Perhaps more like Paul being blinded on the Road to Dudemascus. I’d been searching for a framework through which to make sense of life for many years, and pretty much after giving up, I stumbled onto the film and I realized that everything I’d studied (yoga, meditation, mysticism, etc.) made more sense when viewed through the humble frame of reference that is the Dude. The Dude is essentially a Taoist sage. But Taoism is hard to understand because it’s so abstract. The Dude helps people to understand the ineffable aspects of Taoism.
The Dudespaper, the official mouthpiece of Dudeism, recommends celebrating by "getting together with like-minded Dudeists, drinking white Russians, watching the sacred film, and going bowling," although any Lebowski-related activity is appropriate. I may celebrate by giving a rug that doesn't belong to me to someone who doesn't deserve it, in honor of Phillip Seymour Hoffman, who some may forget was in this movie.
If you haven't seen the Coen Brothers' classic, today is the perfect day to do yourself a favor and acquaint yourself with what is quite possibly the best comedy ever made (suck it, Some Like It Hot! You may be canonized, but there's no religion devoted to you, and you don't have the line, "say what you want about the tenets of National Socialism, but at least it's an ethos"), and perhaps become better acquainted with Taoist spirituality in the process.
Image via Polygram Filmed Entertainment/clothesonfilm.com