Tag Archives | Cults

Welsh Satanic Sex Cult Exposed

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Wales. What do you think of? Choral singing? Rugby? Gareth Bale? But probably not satanic sex cults, right? The Mirror does its best to change that, exposing an alleged cult that had a “twisted ideology, based on a bizarre text called the Book of the Law by Aleister Crowley”:

The victim of a satanic sex cult has told how she will never forgive her “evil” mother for putting her through 11 years of hell at the hands of the sick group.

Annabelle Forest was initiated into a notorious sex cult that operated from a quiet Welsh cul-de-sac by her own mum at the age of seven.

Even worse, she was abused by her mother as a teenager under the orders of the cult’s leader Colin Batley – the man she can’t even bring herself to name.

Now a mum herself and living happily in another part of the UK, Annabelle has taken the brave step of recounting her horror in a bid to get others to speak out about suspected abuse.

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Heaven’s Gate: The Online Legacy of a Suicide Cult and the Webmasters Who Stayed Behind

Heaven's GateLong-time disinfonauts know all about Heaven’s Gate, but did you know that the suicide cult’s website is still live and “they” answer email? Gizmodo investigates who’s keeping it going:

Every month, the bills get paid on time. The emails get answered, and any orders filled. Which, for HeavensGate.com, is positively extraordinary. Because as far as the public is aware, every last member of the suicide cult died 17 years ago from a cocktail of arsenic and apple sauce. A few stayed behind, though. Someone had to keep the homepage going.

Today, at first glance, the fully functional, 17-year-old website seems like just one more of the many GeoCities-era relics that litter the internet. Visitor counts, flashing text, Word Art gradients; the whole gang’s here and then some. Dig a little deeper, though, and you’ll find that almost every link adds yet another layer to a wildly extensive dogma, totally earnest in its interweaving of disembodied space aliens, Jesus, secret UFOs, prophets to whom aliens speak, comets coming to save us, and the suicide it takes to get there.

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The Cult of CrossFit

Here at disinformation we’re always alert to weird cults, whether of the suicide variety (Heaven’s Gate) or the brainwashing/cash-draining variety (Scientology). We’ve been following a new cult that’s sweeping America – CrossFit – although we’re not sure that it’s in any way insidious.

Recently I caught up with JC Herz, who’s penned the definitive book on CrossFit, Learning to Breathe Fire: The Rise of CrossFit and the Primal Future of Fitness, to answer some questions:

JC, I discovered CrossFit myself a few years ago when I looked up “what is fitness.” For those who don’t know can you briefly describe what CrossFit it and how it addresses my original search question?

2007 CrossFit Trainer certification

The CrossFit catechism is: “Constantly varied functional movement executed at high intensity across broad time and modal domains.” Which is technical jargon for: Move your whole body (not single muscles in isolation) and heavy weight, lots of different ways, going flat-out for anywhere between four minutes and half an hour.… Read the rest

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China: No Cult Zone

Naval_battle_between_Taiping-Qing_on_Yangtze

Actual photo of Naval battle between Taiping-Qing armies on Yangtze River. The caption in French says: “Canonnade des Taiping contre les jonques de guerre des Tsing qui assiégeaient la capital du Royaume céleste.” (“Taiping cannon fire against the Qing war junks that are assaulting the capital of the celestial kingdom”).

Remember the cult killing in a Chinese McDonald’s by members of the Church of the Almighty God? The Economist examines the history of “cults” in China in light of this recent crime.

via The Economist:

ON AUGUST 21st five members of a banned religious sect known as the Church of the Almighty God went on trial for a murder that has gripped the country. One evening in May, in front of stunned customers at a McDonald’s in the eastern city of Zhaoyuan, in Shandong province, the suspects allegedly beat to death a woman who had refused to give them her phone number.

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How To Escape From Scientology’s Sea Org

2008 06 Sea Arrrgh - I Joined the Sea OrgIt’s supposed to be near-impossible to leave the “church” of Scientology’s elite paramilitary offshoot Sea Org, but Vocativ reports that Jillian Schlesinger found a way:

On the morning that 29-year-old Jillian Schlesinger finally decided to leave the Church of Scientology, she awoke early and wondered whether she was losing her mind. Was she about to do something she’d always regret? A native Californian, she’d spent most of her life in the church. Her parents were Scientologists, as were her friends—basically everyone she knew. If she left, they’d disown her. On the other hand, if she stayed, her misery would continue. Either way, Schlesinger knew her escape attempt would change her life forever.

She was not just a member of the church, she was part of its elite, the Sea Organization, Scientology’s management body of members who sign contracts promising to serve the group for a billion years. She lived at Scientology’s big blue West Coast headquarters on Sunset Boulevard, known as the Pacific Area Command, or PAC Base.

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Raelian UFO Cult Seeking To Build Embassy In Cambodia

embassyWill Cambodia’s Phnom Penh be the greeting point for interplanetary visitors to Earth? The Phnom Penh Post on the Raelian movement’s setting up base:

The world’s largest UFO cult has reached Cambodia. “People are not [ready] yet, but we will keep trying to spread the message,” said Am Vichet, the head of the Cambodian chapter of the Raelian Movement, which believes advanced alien civilisations created life 25,000 years ago in a laboratory. Its mission on this planet is to prepare humankind for their eventual return.

One of the main goals of Raelism is to build a $20 million embassy for the Elohim, preferably in Israel. Perhaps due to Raelism’s symbol – a swastika enveloped in a Star of David – the movement is banned in the birthplace of Judaism.

So Raelians are looking eastward and, last January, applied to the Council of Ministers in a letter addressed to Prime Minister Hun Sen.

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‘If Everything is Important, Then Nothing is Important’: The Cult of the White Panther

Pic: Image derived from public domain source.

Pic: Image derived from public domain source.

Here’s a great little piece from EsoterX on heirophany, religious revelation in the modern world, and the rise of the cult of the white panther:

Via EsoterX

Our modern, interconnected world is so saturated with significance that its seems highly unlikely that a new religion could find purchase, so we look upon the historical rise and fall of alternate theologies as quaint museum pieces, worthy of examination, but no more vested with cosmological import that the latest political scandal.  But all religions begin somewhere.  Nail a guy to a cross these days, and you better be ready to invoke “stand-your-ground” laws.  Renouncing your princely heritage and travelling South Asia as an ascetic philosopher seems like an exceptionally bad career move.  If you see a burning bush, you’d better call the fire department.  It’s not that these sorts of events go unremarked in the modern world, rather that absolutely everything is steeped in significance worthy of endless hours of commentary, social media exposure, and documentation for future generations.

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Documentary Looks Inside The Heaven’s Gate Cult

Quite possibly the craziest cult ever, Heaven’s Gate was founded by Marshall Applewhite and Bonnie Nettles. Heaven’s Gate members believed that the planet Earth was about to be recycled (wiped clean, renewed, refurbished and rejuvenated), and that the only chance to survive was to leave it immediately. While the group was formally against suicide, they defined “suicide” in their own context to mean “to turn against the Next Level when it is being offered,” and believed that their “human” bodies were only vessels meant to help them on their journey. Inconversation, when referring to a person or a person’s body, they routinely used the word “vehicle”.

This documentary investigates an incident in 1997, where thirty-nine members of the San Diego-based cult “Heaven’s Gate” committed mass suicide. They intended to reach an alien spacecraft which they believed to be following Comet Hale-Bopp, which was at that time brightly visible in the nighttime sky.

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Jonestown: Paradise Lost (documentary)

This is a hybrid documentary about Jim Jones, Peoples Temple, Jonestown, and the victims. This includes the words of some of the survivors and dramatization of the real events. Please feel free to share your thoughts and recommendations.

via Top Documentary Films

An evangelical preacher led nearly a 1,000 followers from the United States deep into the jungles of South America. They would build a new community free of oppression and violence and it was to be their paradise on Earth, but outsiders threatened to expose the dark side of their leader. In one day two worlds collidedand paradise was lost. In November 1978 reporters around the world broke the news that Jim Jones and more than 900 of his followers died.

By the late 1960s and early 70s the streets of America erupted in violence and civil strife. War in Vietnam, civil rights marches and political assassinations played out on television.

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Hostile Spiritual Takeover: Thug Saints in the Cult of Maria Lionza

Maria Lionza RitualIn less than a month, tens of thousands of devotees to the cigar-smoking and liquor-swilling Venezuelan religious cult, El Espiritismo Marialioncero, will make their yearly pilgrimage to Sorte Mountain.  Located there is their most important spiritual site: a shrine to Maria Lionza, their highest deity, the spirit of a departed native chief’s daughter.

It is impossible to pin down exactly who Maria Lionza was, the differing accounts of her history being numerous and varied.  Whether or not she was an actual historical figure is still argued.  Few hints can be gathered from the many disassociated images of her, some showing a crowned, green-eyed girl surrounded by the forest and animals, and some, like the famous statue by Alejandro Colina standing beside the Francisco Fajardo Highway in Caracas, depicting a warrior woman, astride a tapir, holding a female pelvis above her head.

Maria LionzaOne of the more common stories places her birth sometime during the 16th century, among the native Nivar tribe.  Her birth name was Yara, which, in an attempt by the Spanish to Christianize her story, would later be changed to Maria.  It is said that the tribe’s shaman prophesied the coming of a green-eyed girl who would have to be sacrificed to the Great Anaconda to divert the destruction of the tribe.  Yara’s father, upon seeing her eyes, decided to save the baby from her would-be killers, and hid her in a cave.  She grew up there, watched over by twenty-two warriors, until the day she sneaked away and visited the nearby lagoon.  There, the Great Anaconda caught sight of her, and, falling in love with her, demanded she come away with him.  Yara refused, and in retaliation, he swallowed her whole.  But immediately, the Great Anaconda began to swell, displacing the waters of the lagoon, and flooding the village, destroying the tribe.  He continued to swell until he burst, and the unscathed Yara emerged.… Read the rest

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