Skateboarding and Faith
We hear the comments time and time again to “keep God out of skateboarding”. Transworld Skateboarding even stated in an article from 2003 that, “Since the earliest days of the sport, the influence of religion and spirituality has been present in skateboarding. From the number of moms who freaked out in the late 80s upon realizing that Natas Kaupas’ first name spelled backward is ‘Satan,’ and countless ads and graphics that have promoted and insulted all types of spirituality, to numerous professionals who outwardly choose to express their faith and spiritual beliefs – religion is a seemingly common fixture in skateboard marketing.”
Even Dave Carnie, the editor in chief from the retired classic Big Brother skate magazine understood the relation between religion and skate when he said, “Religion is probably the most controversial subject humans have to deal with, since it purports to be the sentry gates between life and death – and we all know controversy sells.” When you look a a rider’s board graphics, it’s like getting a glimpse into what they love and what they want to portray to others. If God is what matters most in a skater’s life, it is only natural that their board graphics have something to do with what they love. Salman Agah offered a unique perspective for those who do not agree, “If some stranger came up to me and asked me if I had debt, and I told him that I did, and he told me that he would clear my debt and that I’m free of it, I would be filled with joy and free of my burden. I would naturally tell everyone. So it is with Christ. Christians who share their faith do so out of humility and charity.”
Lets be honest. Regardless of what you believe, we all know that skateboarding takes faith. It takes faith to jump down a set of stairs with confidence that this piece of wood with four wheels will land under your feet in one piece. It takes faith to get up and try again after a gnarly bail. It takes faith to have the confidence that landing the trick you see in your mind is in fact possible. The same is true in life, without faith to stand again when we fall, life just seems impossible at times. Just like skateboarding, we are all in search of balance, confidence and direction. We need an inspires drive and motivation to keep going. With faith we can see the possibilities. Our hope is that by living out our faith and loving even those who may not yet know the God we serve, that we might be a tool He uses to give others hope. So, the controversy of “religion” and skate has been a long-time discussion among the skate community. For us, we choose to stand for Christ and what He has done for us.