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Claude Maurice Marcel Vorilhon
Following what he said was an extraterrestrial encounter in December 1973, he formed the Raëlian Movement and changed his name to Raël (allegedly meaning "messenger of the elohim"). He later published several books, which detail his claims of an encounter with a being called Yahweh in 1973. He traveled the world to promote his books for over 30 years.
The Message, or what Raelian's believe
The Raëlian Movement teaches that life on Earth was scientifically created by a species of extraterrestrials, which they call the Elohim. Members of this species appeared human and when having personal contacts with the descendants of the humans they made, they previously misinformed (on purpose) early humanity that they were angels, cherubim or gods. Raëlians believe messengers, or prophets, of the Elohim include Buddha, Jesus, and others who informed humans of each era. The founder of Raëlism, members claim, received the final message of the Elohim and that its purpose is to inform the world about Elohim and that if humans become aware and peaceful enough, they wish to be welcomed by them.
In the meantime, it's up to the followers of Maitreya (Rael) to make the world ready. But what if they don't succeed, I ask. What if humans just aren't going to evolve fast enough to build the embassy on the Elohim's timetable? Nicole says they've considered that possibility — and there's a "Plan B." If the human race fails to evolve fast enough, we will probably wind up destroying ourselves with our high technology. And if that happens, then certain people will be spared — anybody who's followed Rael, plus certain people who have been working to make the world a better place.
Why the Raelians are kind of cool when compared to other UFO Cults
Philosophically, Raëlians oppose war and violence in all its forms. Raëlians frequently appear at anti-war rallies dressed as aliens (which seems incongruous since they say that aliens look like humans). Raëlians also embrace free love and nudity. They consider love to be the answer to virtually all of the world's problems. It's been reported that at some Raëlian conferences, attendees wear colored wristbands indicating what gender or genders they'd like to have sex with tonight. Nudity is the de facto uniform at many Raëlian retreats. I have heard from more than one source that sexual tourists to Asia are catching onto the Raëlian movement. Show up in Japan or Korea, find a local Raëlian chapter and pretend to be a fellow Raëlian, and you get all the sex you want; plus it's free and much cleaner and safer than what you get from the back alley brothels. There are affiliated Raëlian organizations dedicated to free love: Raël's Girls, for example, is comprised exclusively of atheist female adult film stars dedicated to Raël. Their web site says "Raël's Girls want to share the understanding that you can be spiritual, you can be happy, without the guilt of God and religion."
In 2002, Clonaid, a company run by Raelian bishop Brigitte Boisselier, made claims worldwide that they had succeeded in creating a human clone, whom was named Eve. However, the Clonaid has refused to allow independent scientists to examine the child or the technology used to create her, ostensibly to protect her privacy. Lacking any peer verification of the claim, the scientific community generally considers Eve to be a hoax.
Interested? Want to join?
A Raelian is someone who publicly recognizes the Elohim as humanity’s creators. Each year presents four opportunities to do so through participation in a demystified Raelian baptism ceremony. The four designated dates are also official Raelian holidays: the first Sunday of April, August 6, October 7 and December 13. The baptism ceremony takes place at 3 p.m. local time worldwide.