I've recently signed up to Twitter. Today I received an email notification that read as follows:
"Raelian Movement (RaelianMovement) is now following your tweets on Twitter."
Almost immediately I accessed my Twitter account and clicked on the block button on my profile. The Raelian movement isn't the sort of organisation I want to be associated with, either in person or in the digital realm. I resent any suggestion that they would consider me so naive as to not see through their thinly veiled attempt at using Twitter as a recruiting tool. For those of you who don't know, the Raelians are one of those bizzare UFO cults that believe that all life on Earth was planted here thousands of years ago by extraterrestrial beings known as the Elohim. The movement was founded by the French con artist Claude Vorilhon, who also uses the pseudonym Rael, in 1974. He fabricated a story about meeting extraterrestrials, who conveniently for Vorilhon spoke French, and his harshest critics assert that his only motive in starting this cult was to enrich himself by fleecing the naive and gullible, which despite the lack of celebrity Raelian adherents, is sadly an all too familiar story. Occasionally they appear in news reports concerning their alleged experiments in human cloning.
I've never had any direct contact with Raelians. Years ago I was in the habit of visiting the Mind Body Spirit festival in Melbourne. One year the Raelian movement had a stand at the festival. I vaguely remember that there was a table with some Raelian literature and a model of a spacecraft. One of these attendants was an odd looking young man with a vacant, spaced out expression, which was very offputting. Needless to say this was one of the less popular stands that year. I overheard another stall attendant deep in conversation with some festival visitors about some no doubt fabricated prophecies which he seemed convinced were true. Out of interest I picked up some Raelian literature. It turned out that this spacecraft model was actually a scale model of an embassy that when completed, will allegedly be used to receive the Elohim when they return to Earth at some undetermined time in the future, ushering in a golden age for humanity. Make of all this what you will.