“Do you believe in Yeezus? Because I believe in Yeezus.” This is the introduction to the dogma of Yeezianity, a new religious movement that has recently gained viral status on the internet. Said by The Guardian to be “fuelled largely by teenagers on the internet who were born with iPads instead of hands”, this new religious movement is based entirely on the premise that rapper/producer Kanye West is a “divine being sent by God to usher in a new age of humanity.” (yeezianity.com)
I’m sure many people would look at this religion as a bunch of kids trying to gain the attention of a celebrity, or even gain their 15 minutes of internet fame but I would like to give the creator credit. Brian Liebman, 23, recently revealed himself as the founder of Yeezianity. Although he was framed by The Daily Mail as lazy and privileged he seems to have legitimate creative goals as an artist and producer and told The Christian Post that he was misrepresented. This religion he has founded has not only gained numerous followers in a very short time but, in my opinion, also has a claim at being a legitimate religion.
Can Yeezianity be a true religion? This is a complicated question as religion itself does not have an agreed upon definition. Yeezianity has a solid set of spiritual beliefs laid out in writing by the creator; this is one of the only things that many accepted religions have in common. These beliefs are simple but that is one of the reasons so many young people are interested in this movement; for youth today a religion like this is much more accessible and relatable than the complicated dogma of many mainstream religions. To quote Liebman himself, “the idea of becoming like Jesus is intimidating…but Yeezus is attainable…Yeezus is a realistic current day model of Jesus.” Whether you agree with his statements or not, it is undoubtedly true that in this age of constant information and instant gratification young people will gravitate towards simple, attainable ideals like this. Another claim for the religious status of Yeezianity is that it will help people. It creates a sense of belonging to young people who may not find it in the religion of their parents or even in their home life or at school. Yeezianity also welcomes people of all backgrounds; it even states on its website that you may follow other religions while you follow the way of Yeezus. Though you may not see that this movement has a place in your life, do not be too quick to make a judgment on its merit before its role, and the role of other groups like it, in our world is fully realized.