Taken from The Joy Of Sects
Country of origin: France
Gods and guiding voices: Raël, the Elohim
Membership: 55,000 claimed worldwide
Texts: Claude Vorilhon: The Message Given To Me By Extraterrestrials; Claude Vorilhon: Sensual Meditation: Awakening The Mind By Awakening The Body; Claude Vorilhon: Space Aliens Took Me To Their Planet; Claude Vorilhon: Yes To Human Cloning: Eternal Human Life Thanks To Science; Claude Vorilhon: Let’s Welcome Our Fathers From Outer Space: They Created Humanity In Their Laboratories
Basic beliefs: Humanity was created 25,000 years ago, cloned by alien scientists called the Elohim. We need to set up an embassy for the Elohim so they can come back to Earth. Meanwhile, let’s have some sexy massages.
The advocates of Raëlism are either scientific geniuses or promotional masterminds – and as their prophet and founder Raël has pointed out, they win both ways. In late December 2002 they gained front-page headlines throughout the world when they claimed that researchers in their company Clonaid had created the world’s first human clone. This was a baby girl called Eve, whom Clonaid claimed was genetically identical to one of its parents. She was born by Caesarean section on the night after Christmas.
Top scientists quickly derided the claim as a technological impossibility. Clonaid initially promised to allow them to carry out independent tests, but then withdrew the offer, saying that they were concerned about the welfare of Eve and her ‘parents’ and wanted to protect themselves from prosecution (human cloning is illegal in most countries). The world’s press began to dismiss the whole thing as a hoax – but not before Raël and his movement had received millions of dollars’ worth of free publicity and ensured human cloning remained where they wanted it on the political agenda – right at the top.
Cloning is a subject dear to Raël’s heart. He not only teaches that the process will form the key to human immortality (when technology is advanced far enough to transfer the memory and personality of a person into their genetically identical double) but also that it was the way in which humanity was created in the first place. We were, he says, cooked up 25,000 years ago as part of a scientific experiment in the laboratories of a race of benevolent space aliens called the Elohim.
Raël first came across the Elohim in 1973 when he still went by the name of Claude Vorilhon and worked as a motoring journalist. According to his book The Message Given To Me By Extraterrestrials, Vorilhon was walking in a volcanic mountain range in his native France when he came across a flying object the size of a small bus sporting a cone with a flashing red light on top and hovering several metres above the ground. A four-foot-tall extraterrestrial in a green, one-piece suit, and with almond-shaped eyes, long, black hair, a black beard and slightly greenish skin, stepped out of this spacecraft and told Vorilhon that he had been selected to spread a message of love, peace and fraternity to all humanity. Vorilhon spent the next few days with the little man – who was called Yahweh, just like the creator of humanity in the Bible – and learned all about the history of the Elohim. He also began to understand his own mission to help set up an embassy for these aliens so that they can eventually make their official reappearance on Earth and give us their wisdom and technology.
A couple of years later, when Vorilhon had taken on the name Raël and was already telling the world of his experiences, the Elohim whisked him away for a holiday on their home planet. There, the Elohim piped knowledge directly into his brain and he met several of Earth’s other leading prophets, including Jesus, Buddha, Joseph Smith (see The Latter-day Saints) and Mohammed. Jesus, said Raël, is a very beautiful man – and very thin.
Later, a robot showed Raël to his room and asked him if he wanted a female companion. Raël, who has something of a reputation as a ladies’ man, said Oui. He was then presented with a beautiful, brunette, biological sex robot. Then a blonde appeared. Then a redhead. Then a ‘magnificent’ black woman. Then a ‘very fine’ Chinese lady and then another voluptuous Asian. Raël just couldn’t decide which of the ‘girls’ to test drive. Luckily, the robot said he could take all six and he shared an ‘unforgettable’ bath with them.
There’s good news for humanity, as Raël says that soon we will all be serviced by these endlessly compliant nanobots. He acknowledges that ‘feminists’ might not like the idea – but then he points out that nobody has any problem about using washing machines or a dishwasher, so why should it be different with sex robots? What’s more, he says, all this android action will remove the curse of jealousy from human relations forever.
Even before the robots came along, Raël had plenty of ways of keeping his followers happy. He’s a firm believer in freedom within consensual adult relationships, and many adherents have been attracted to his Sensual Meditation seminars where he teaches them how to awaken the potential of their bodies for pleasure and love, how to get in touch with their erogenous zones, and how to inspect their bottoms using a mirror.
Until Clonaid was set up in the late 1990s, it was these erotic aspects of Raël’s movement that caused the most controversy. Critics claimed that lonely men were attracted to the group in the hope of getting some orgy action. Raël meanwhile (or ‘His Holiness’ as he preferred to be called), in contradiction to his liberationist philosophy, was said to have told many of his most attractive female followers that they must preserve their sexual favours for the unique enjoyment of the prophets. Of course, this would have redounded to Raël’s advantage, as there’s only one prophet around at the moment – him.
In spite of these criticisms, the group has so far been mercifully free of any of the accusations of paedophilia and physical or mental abuse that plague other similar groups. Anti-cult activists have now focused their attention on the apparent scam relating to human cloning. The Raëlists, for their part, claim to have produced another twelve cloned babies since Eve and say that thanks to all the publicity they’ve been getting, their membership has risen to around the 65,000 mark and their beliefs have spread to more than 80 countries. Because of the secrecy that now surrounds their cloning operations, these assertions are no more – or less – verifiable than Raël’s declarations about his frequent contacts with the Elohim.
Eminem was made an honorary priest of the Raëlian movement after the release of his anti-George W Bush video ‘Mosh’. The prophet Raël declared that the video was ‘wonderful’ and a great example of the kind of freedom of speech that Bush is threatening with his ‘Patriot Acts’ and anti-terrorist legislation.
Unusually, the eloquent potty-mouthed rapper had nothing to say about the receipt of this honorary title.
Taken from The Joy Of Sects
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