Rael, also recognized as Claude Vorilhon, serves as the founder and head of the Raelian Movement, a UFO religion postulating that humans originated from extraterrestrial entities referred to as Elohim.
His persona is the focal point of a recent Netflix documentary titled Rael: The Alien Prophet, delving into his life, doctrines, and controversies. Whereabouts and endeavors of this enigmatic figure unfold below.
The Encounter and the Message
Born in France in 1946, Rael initially pursued careers in pop music and sports journalism until an extraordinary encounter in 1973 altered his trajectory. Claiming contact with an extraterrestrial entity named Yahweh, Rael asserted that he was escorted onto a spaceship, where Yahweh disclosed humanity’s true genesis.
According to Rael, the Elohim, including Yahweh, orchestrated genetic engineering to craft humans and all terrestrial life forms. Furthermore, Rael declared himself the ultimate messenger tasked with disseminating the Elohim’s message and preparing humanity for their return.
Purportedly endowed with a book named The Book Which Tells the Truth, Rael asserted its contents elucidated the universe’s secrets and the Elohim’s history. He also claimed to have visited another planet, encountering cloned versions of renowned figures like Albert Einstein, Marilyn Monroe, and Adolf Hitler.
The Movement and the Mission
Establishing the Raelian Movement in 1974, Rael garnered adherents who embraced his vision. Followers anticipate the Elohim’s return to Earth, envisioning the construction of an embassy in Jerusalem. They advocate for eternal life through cloning and mind transfer and seek spiritual and physical augmentation via meditation and sensual experiences.
Boasting a global membership exceeding 100,000 across 100 nations, the Raelian Movement spearheads initiatives like Clonaid, which purportedly achieved the first human clone in 2002, and Rael Academy, nurturing future Elohim ambassadors.
Additionally, initiatives like GoTopless champion women’s right to public toplessness. Festivals such as the First Encounter Day, the Happiness Academy, and the Swastika Rehabilitation Day punctuate their calendar.
The Controversies and the Criticisms
Over the years, Rael and his movement encountered a slew of controversies and criticisms:
Plagiarism: Accusations surfaced of Rael plagiarizing his teachings from sources like Jean Sendy and Osho.
Cult Allegations: Rael faced accusations of presiding over a cult that manipulates and exploits adherents, particularly pressuring women into sexual activities and financial contributions.
Fraud Claims: Rael’s purported encounters with the Elohim, interplanetary voyages, and human cloning claims drew skepticism for lack of evidence.
Extremism: Criticisms mounted over Rael’s purported promotion of extremist ideologies like anti-Semitism, Holocaust denial, racism, eugenics, and pedophilia.
Aged 77, Rael remains active, dwelling in Japan amidst a devoted following while traversing the globe for lectures and seminars. The Netflix documentary, Rael: The Alien Prophet, released in February 2024, offers insights into his perspectives on life and his movement.
Rael adamantly asserts his status as the Elohim’s messenger, refuting all criticisms as conspiracy-fueled slander. Embracing controversy, Rael continues to captivate and polarize, underscoring the enduring intrigue surrounding his message and actions.