The Common Good

'The Big Lebowski' Religion Founder Talks 'The High Holiday' Of Dudeism

The statements on dudeism.com relate Dudeism to Eastern religions like Taoism. But at least one Lebowski scholar believes there is a stronger connection to Jewish mysticism. In her book "The Dude Abides: The Gospel According to the Coen Brothers," Cathleen Falsani argues that the Dude fits the criteria for a lamed-vovnik -- one of 36 righteous people on whom the fate of the world rests. According to the Talamud: "It is said that at all times there are 36 special people in the world, and that were it not for them, all of them, if even one of them was missing, the world would come to an end." A lamed-vovnik is usually humble, and doesn't know he's a savior. Does that sound like The Dude to you?

Cathleen Falsani is a good friend of ours and actually has been bestowed the title "Dudey-Sattvah." But aside from being a Dudeist, Cathleen is also a devout Catholic, and her audience is primarily Christian. So it makes sense that she'd employ more Judeo-Christian cognates when trying to dissect the Dude. And that's cool, that's cool.