by Clete Hux –
Solomon wrote, “There’s nothing new under the sun,” but he wasn’t familiar with Raelians. Granted, the increased attention in the last several years over UFO mania isn’t new. Just when we thought we had seen it all with the “Heaven’s Gate” UFO cult, here come the Raelians, telling us that human life on earth owes its origin to extraterrestrials.
According to their homepage, the Raelian religion is an international non-profit organization with 40,000 members in 85 countries around the world.1 It got its start in 1973, when extraterrestrials (an advanced race) from another planet supposedly made contact with Claude Vorilhon, a French journalist for a racing car magazine. On the morning of December 13, he had an impression that instead of going to work that day, he was to drive to a volcano called Puy-de-Lassolas, near the town Auvergne. There he was approached by a four-foot-tall space creature with pale green skin, almond shaped eyes, and long, dark hair.
Speaking fluent French, the alien took Vorilhon into his bell-shaped spacecraft, where he instructed the Frenchman: “Listen to me carefully. You will tell human beings about this meeting, but you will tell them the truth about what they are, and about what we are. Judging from their reactions, we will know if we can show ourselves freely and officially.”
After his initial meeting, Vorilhon came back five consecutive mornings to be taught by this extraterrestrial. Vorilhon learned that human life on earth was not the result of random evolution, nor the act of just one supernatural “God,” but a deliberate creation by scientifically advanced extraterrestrials. These aliens apparently had mastered the science of genetics and cell biology, and, using DNA, created human beings “in their own image” in laboratories 25,000 years ago. These advanced beings are called the “Elohim” (cf. Gen. 1:26). According to Vorilhon, this word was wrongly translated in the Bible as “God,” but should be rendered “those who came from the sky.”
Raelians believe that traces of this creation story can be found in most ancient religious writings. According to Vorilhon, the Eloha told him: “It is not only in the Bible and the Gospels that there are traces of truth; testimonies can be found in practically every religion. . .”
It was during this meeting with the Eloha, that Vorilhon was given the name Rael. He was informed that he was to be the last prophet for earth. Other prophets such as Moses, Buddha, Jesus, and Muhammad had preceded Rael. Each delivered a message appropriate for their time. Now, Rael’s message for all mankind is one of peace and sensual meditation.
Having accepted the challenge from the Eloha, Rael’s mission is to get the world ready for the return of the Elohim in the year 2025. They will only come in that year on the condition that a UFO embassy for the Elohim be built in Jerusalem. Since his 1973 encounter with the extraterrestrial, he has been writing books and doing “awakening seminars” to fuel the Raelian movement. The techniques taught in these seminars is known as Sensual Meditation, which involves deconditioning oneself from societal values and inhibitions so that one can “appreciate the present in a much deeper way, enjoying every sensation with a maximum of pleasure and love without the paralysis of society’s guilt.” Because of the nature of sensual meditation, many non-Raelians believe that the Raelian Religion is simply about sex, a point that is illustrated by the headline of a news article in the Ottawa Citizen (March 6, 1995) stating “Sex, Extraterrestrials Focus of Church.” The author of this article writes, “Among these (messages given to Rael by ‘aliens’) is a need for people to discover their bodies.”
One particular exercise of this discovery took place in November of 1992. It was a project designed by the Raelians called Operation Condom, in which they distributed 10,000 condoms to students at a Catholic high school in Montreal, Canada. The distribution was the Raelians’ response to the Montreal Catholic School Commission’s decision not to install condom vending machines in the schools. Since then, the Raelians have really stepped up their sexual freedom, offering seminars on the advantages of masturbation, communal orgasm, sexual freedom and pleasure.
Even though there is nothing new under the sun, what are we to make of this new false religion? Space does not allow a full critique of the Raelians, but at least the following points are in order. First, their view of God does not even come close to the biblical view.
Instead of God being one by nature (cf. Isa. 44:6), the Raelians believe in more than one “god.” As we have seen, they believe that “Elohim” means “those who came from the sky.” So, the Raelians advocate a form of polytheism.
Second, they have a different Jesus than the one of the Scriptures. For the Raelians, Jesus, himself a clone, is just one of a number of cosmic prophets through whom the Elohim seek to deliver a message to prepare the world for their arrival. He is not, on their view, the eternal Second Person of the divine Trinity who became a man to save us from our sins.
Third, their view of man is not only unbiblical, but absurd. According to the Raelians, mankind was not created by God. Nor did he evolve as many today believe. Rather, humans exist on earth because we are clones of the “gods” of the Raelian religion who produced our race in laboratories some 25,000 years ago. They also teach that we do not have a soul, and therefore will not have life after death. For them, “eternal life” is possible only through cloning, as individuals are recreated from their DNA. Of course, the clone is not really the same person as the one from which he is cloned.
Fourth, their view of revelation is pluralistic. The Elohim have apparently spoken equally through all the great prophets such as Buddha, Moses, Jesus, and Muhammad. However, in these last days, Rael has been sent to take Christ’s place as the last prophet. But, the Bible teaches that Jesus is the only way to God (John 14:6), and the final prophet (Heb. 1:1-2).
Lastly, their view of sexual freedom runs counter to biblical morality. Raelians set no limits on exploring their sexual appetites. They even hold seminars on “Sensual Meditation” and masturbation in large group settings. The Word of God, of course, limits sexual expression to heterosexual marriage (cf. Gen. 2:23-25).
In our culture, it is not hard for a group like the Raelians to start up. Society has long forgotten the God of the Bible and embraced many foreign gods. Pray that God would use this generation of Christians to bring discernment and the gospel back to this estranged world.
NOTE: Much of the information in this article concerning the beliefs and practices of the Raelians was gathered from the following websites: