In the second episode in Raël: The Alien Prophet, called Raël Superstar, a distinctive aspect of Raël’s character is revealed: a philosophy of surrounding oneself with laughter and avoiding serious individuals. Raël, a former race car driver and singer, made quite an impact in the media, donning extravagant costumes that boosted ratings. His flamboyant presence was sought after, and the media circus around him added to his allure.
How Did Rael Pamper Himself?
Pierre Gary, a 67-year-old Raëlian and longtime administrator for the movement, sheds light on their sacred purpose: to welcome their creators, the Elohim. However, a crucial part of this mission, building an embassy, involves financial contributions. Raël set a target date of 2035 to build an embassy, and every Raëlian was asked to contribute 10% of their salary, with an additional 1% for Raël himself. The documentary portrays a growing sense of skepticism and disapproval within the Raëlian community regarding the use of funds. Pierre Gary’s substantial donation of 11,000 francs is highlighted, reflecting the financial commitment of the followers to fund the construction of the alien embassy. However, suspicions arise among some members about Raël’s management of the money, with doubts about whether the embassy will ever materialize or if the funds are being used for personal extravagance. The International Raëlian Church, headed by Raël as the president, manages the finances. Damien, a Raëlian, voices concerns about the lack of transparency, indicating that followers themselves are in the dark about where the money is going. Allegations surface that Raël is living luxuriously, choosing the most opulent hotels, traveling globally, and indulging in fine dining. Raël’s penchant for racing cars becomes another avenue for fundraising within the community. Followers are encouraged to donate for race cars, and those hesitant to contribute are subtly pressured by Raël himself. The sense of obligation creates a feeling of being trapped, as followers are expected to disclose their donation amounts.
How Did The “Ciel, Mon Mardi’s” Interview Pose A Threat To Raël?
The interview with Ciel and Mon Mardi proved to be a significant threat to Raël and the Raëlian movement as it brought to light controversial and disturbing aspects of their beliefs and practices. During the interview, the host, Christophe Dechavanne, confronted Raël with questions about the kind of relationships they form with children within the Raëlian movement. Raël’s response, asserting fanatical freedom in all aspects, including sexual freedom, raised eyebrows and added to the growing concerns about the movement. The interviewer’s surprise at Raël not denying the allegations and at his attempt to distinguish between adults testifying about their experiences and inappropriate actions further fueled the controversy. Former followers, including one who labeled Raël as a “monster,” spoke about disturbing experiences within the cult, such as advocating inappropriate behavior with children. The individual also highlighted manipulative tactics used by Raël, including putting his wife in other men’s arms to climb the hierarchy. These revelations contributed to a negative public perception and raised serious questions about the ethical practices within the Raëlian movement. The interview went beyond allegations of unconventional beliefs and practices, touching on legal matters such as the founding of a swinger’s club by Raël in the name of a cult. The subsequent legal issues and the conviction of Raëlian officials for sexual offenses and corruption of minors added fuel to the fire. The case involving the rape of an 11-year-old girl and allegations that the child’s mother allowed it under the influence of Raël were particularly damning. For Dr. Boisselier, it was really hard, as she lost her job when her employer discovered her Raëlian affiliation. Additionally, her ex-partner learned of her beliefs, leading to the loss of custody of her other children. The negative publicity from the interview and the legal issues further fueled the perception of the Raëlian movement as a dangerous cult engaging in inappropriate and harmful activities. The poll results indicating overwhelming support for banning cults reflected the impact of the interview on public opinion.
Why Did The Raelians Think Of Fleeing From France?
The decision by some Raëlians to consider leaving France was influenced by a series of adverse events following the controversial interview and the subsequent negative media coverage. After the interview, the Raëlian movement faced a significant backlash. Leaflets were distributed, accusing them of incest and pedophilia and labeling them as a dangerous cult. This negative portrayal led to public outrage and contributed to a hostile environment for the Raëlians. They became targets of social exclusion, lost jobs, and encountered various problems in their personal and professional lives. The atmosphere became increasingly challenging, with the movement and its followers being accused of serious crimes and facing persecution. The aggressive anti-cult campaign in France, fueled by the negative media coverage, created palpable hostility towards Raëlians. This campaign not only affected their social standing but also put their safety at risk, as evidenced by the death threats received by Raël. In response to this heightened adversity, some Raëlians contemplated leaving France as a means of protecting their well-being and seeking a fresh start for the movement. The decision to flee the country was likely motivated by concerns for their safety, the impact on their personal and professional lives, and the desire to escape the aggressive anti-cult sentiment prevailing in France.
How Was Moving To North America Fruitful?
The Raëlian movement found refuge and opportunities for growth when they moved to North America, escaping the hostile anti-cult atmosphere they faced in France. Damien, a member of the movement, highlighted the positive reception they encountered in North America, particularly in Canada, where people displayed a curious and respectful attitude towards the Raëlians. One significant development was the recognition of the Raëlian movement as a religion in Quebec, Canada. This acknowledgment provided a legal framework that protected their right to practice their beliefs without facing religious discrimination. In Quebec, the followers embraced their religious identity more seriously, referring to their leader, Raël, as the “beloved prophet.”
The move to North America also aligned with the principles of freedom of expression enshrined in the Canadian and American constitutions. This afforded the Raëlians the opportunity to express their beliefs openly and without fear of intense criticism or persecution. The freedom to articulate their unconventional ideas without encountering strong opposition allowed the movement to thrive in this more permissive environment. Raël capitalized on this newfound supportive atmosphere by opening UFOland, an alien-education center in Canada. It also served as a recruitment hub for the Raëlian movement. With a flying saucer reminiscent of Raël’s claimed extraterrestrial encounter, UFOland became a symbol of their beliefs and a tool for spreading their messages, gaining significant publicity in the process. The move to North America, with its open-mindedness, legal recognition, and supportive environment, allowed the Raëlian movement to establish itself more securely and promote its unconventional beliefs without the obstacles it faced in France.