The cloning debate. Cult and Globalization.
translation by Mirela Bogdan
orinal text in french
Debate over the announcement of the first coned human baby.
27 December 09:26:15
Miami, Florida (Reuters)-The American press has confirmed today that Clonaid, an American company linked to the Raelian sect, will announce on Friday the birth of the first cloned baby in history.
During a press conference expected to take place, at 09:00 am Hollywood (Florida) at north of Miami, (14:00GMT) 02:00 pm, Clonaid will announce whether the little girl is in healthy condition.
No company representative has been found to confirm the news yet.
Last week, at Reuters, director of Clonaid and leading member of the Raelian Movement Brigitte Boiselier, has announced that last March a human had been cloned and that the baby girl was due shortly.
She added that of the 10 cloned embryos implanted, five had resulted in miscarriage. She has confirmed that another 4 cloned babies are due for next year.
Brigitte Boiselier is a 45-year-old French biochemist linked to Raelians whose headquarters are in Quebec and who advocate free love and believe that life on earth had been created by extraterrestrial being.
Severino Antinori, the Italian doctor known for having helped a 62 year old woman to give birth in 1994, has announced at the end of November that a woman impregnated with a cloned embryo was due to give birth in January. Since then Clonaid has been competing with Antinori.
Several among those specialized in reproduction and sects have reacted strongly to Clonaid’s statement and consider it only a publicity stunt.
Raelian Movement or pseudo-religious scientist following. The cloning debate. Cult and Globalization.
Mel Vadeker, 29th December 2002.
Global reactions denouncing human reproductive cloning are strong, particularly when the process is used by a presumed to be “religious” sectarian movement for publicity purposes.
Turning science into a religion is just another symptom of the collapse of ideologies and beliefs promptly taken advantage of by multinational companies, who patent without control or morality the human genome, and cults (scientific or religious) which take advantage of the gap in the legal system to set up a new ideological dictatorship based on the re-appropriation and manipulation of biotechnology.
This is not the first cult to use science to glorify its ideologies and in order to control public opinion. As expected, the Raelian movement manipulates the press and tries to promote its cause by using propaganda.
Some observers have been witnessing with some fear the degree of influence cults have worldwide, and which follows the globalization of crime and terrorism. To begin with, we had the globalization of crime and terrorism. Now we can rely on a global intellectual fraud and manipulation, and all lucrative or pseudo-religious purposes. There is nothing new about that, since this irreversible movement was launched some few decades ago.
With a new generation of executives, the Raelian Movement is now exercising tougher control over biotechnology, with the purpose of imposing an ideology. What we believed to be a small and harmless movement has now become symptomatic of a sectarian maturity. The texts written by the Guru Claude Vorilhon are proof of the progressively radicalized ideology.
Every time there is a gap in the law the Raelians, like many other similar cults, take full advantage of it. And as the guru likes to remind us:
`To say that the movement is a fraud is both disrespectful and intolerant. Would you then tell Catholics that they are members of a human fraud? It is insulting and slanderous. It is true that I cannot prove I am telling the truth, yet nobody can prove I am not. `
We can believe this to be a reaction to provocation. However, his challenging position is simply an additional way to reinforce his beliefs and consolidate an influential strategy on certain laical beliefs. This has allowed him to manipulate both his close followers and the rest of the world. Indeed, this is a classic disinformation strategy, where our inability to prove the lies makes it easier for the Raelian Guru to impose a relative point of view, whose set of ideologies has previously been established. Should we be able to prove its falseness, a strategic retreat would occur, aiming to protect the sect from all external threats. The sect’s senior executives, the Guru’s right-hand men, who use the frailty of human psychology to their advantage, orchestrate all this.
The fundamental message is based on the Guru’s messianic revelation. The Raelian Movement avoids dialectic confrontation with the rest of the world. The Movement forbids the revelation of its contradictions to the members of its community, for all form of challenge to the Guru’s convictions and aiming to verify their truth is prohibited to its members. In order to avoid all counter-propaganda the Guru has devised a strategy to preserve his ideological interests and those of his senior executives: those who do not follow the same ideological outlines are then asked to leave. That is how the movement presents itself: as an open religious group anybody can join and leave as they wish. In reality however, despite remaining open to membership, the movement avoids at all any internal debate questioning the validity of the doctrine.
The ideology or Raelian doctrine, if we can call it as such, is based on this major event: On 13 December 1973, in France, Claude Vorilhon (alias Rael), former singer and sports journalist and founder of the movement, claims that near Clermont-Ferrand, he had had an encounter with an extraterrestrial being who had revealed him the secret of humanity: the human race was created in laboratory and brought to earth 25.000 years ago.
From then on and over the years, a whole ideology has been developed. A strange philosophy has taken shape:
- Claude Vorilhon, alias Rael, is half-brother to Jesus, and the last prophet:
- The Raelian Movement has adapted certain aspects of science to religion;
- The movement advocates total freedom of thought, sexual freedom and a quest for pleasure;
- He claims to be the child of an alien and an earth woman, like it had been for his half-brother Jesus Christ;
- Rael is an individualist and an atheist;
- Cloning is the way to immortality;
- One should not rely upon our extraterrestrial creators the Elohim, anymore, but enter the process of Elohimization: to be our own masters and in control of our destiny. Like gods themselves, earthmen will thus create life on other planets.
It should also be pointed out that while expanding itself, the movement’s ideology also appropriates itself of literature in order to increase its accessibility. The development of the movement on an international scale contributes to discrepancies with the early harmless ideology. This can be noted while studying the movement’s conception of the new world order.
Rael has invented a new political theory of democracy, a vision of the world government based on geniocracy: geniuses capable of ruling people must be selected from among the population and only those with a superior IQ will be eligible. At the same time he has developed a philosophy advocating eugenics, a hierarchy of human race, hedonism and sexual awakening of children. This has earned the movement trials in France and Belgium, following numerous abuses made by some of its members. The relocation of the headquarters (of Rael and his executives) to Canada is also justified by a less restrictive legislation on new religious movements. The desire to be recognized as a true religion, with its priests and its churches, seems a feasible dream in Canada, where the advantages of such situation are appreciated for the international increase in popularity starting from North America.
When looking at the movement’s history, one can better understand the Raelian attempts to gain control over the (human) embryo through various bogus biotechnology companies or alliances lacking any ethical approach to science.
What must be understood is that Clonaid’s excessive media coverage is the result of a well thought communications strategy. Clonaid and the Raelian philosophy have clearly displayed their expectations in terms of contributing to the world’s future. It is a double victory, that of propaganda and that of mastering reproductive cloning. As a result, people will regard Clonaid and Rael as the first company in history to have offered cloning on demand, and thus proving its technical competence and the Raelian superiority. The message of Elohim is thus respected, and the proof of its truthfulness is based upon this argumentation. The Raelian ideologies would be at risk should human cloning and the rivendication of paternity of the human reproductive cloning fail. Scientific ev idence has little relevance and since this is above all a planetary communications strategy, a proof that the Raelian Movement has entirely succeeded.
It is believed that disinformation will then be used in order to prove that cloning has succeeded, that the child is doing well and that there are no repercussions. Material evidence will not be offered and this in order to safeguard the children’s lives from being exposed to the media. If doubts persist, and this because of lack of evidence, this publicity-grabbing campaign will succeed in its bluff. This will happen particularly if the other parties interested in cloning face certain difficulties in pursuit of their proposed objectives. The scientific world is aware that all mammals cloned up until now, have been suffering from growth problems, organic disorders and deformities. However, reproductive cloning is far from the utopia it had been much announced to be. As an advertising campaign, the world will then see the following subliminal message: ‘Clonaid will guarantee you a healthy cloning without repercussions.’ One would have then understood that all this publicity stunts are nothing but a scientist propaganda aiming to promote the Raelian Movement.
“Man is a religious animal”, Rael said one day “He needs to believe and hope no matter how false or completely irrational his believes are.” With this quotation, the Guru declares the relativity of the ideologies, believes and values. If everything were allowed, worse included, would mean going back to the oldest and most dangerous philosophy This is a rather cynical remark about men.
How can this contradiction coexist with the Raelian Movement? The hard-line members are trapped in a delirious and paranoiac way of thinking. The more one tries to convince them of their mistakes, the stronger the Guru’s ideology becomes: people being against us means that we are in the right; if we are persecuted it means that we are on the right path.
What remains to be established is whether our gullibility is used by the Reaelians in order to promote their movement free. Does Clonaid have the means to do what it claims to be able to: can it break the medical, scientific and ethical triple taboo caused by reproductive cloning? What legal tools does the international community have in order to prevent this from happening one day?
Cloning is a new instrument offering distressed people, like those who have lost a loved one, or those who dream of immortality or of a pure descent, hope. Cloning is becoming the answer to unhappiness and will guarantee the fulfilment of the wildest utopias. If we are not careful, they could become our worse nightmares: a biotechnology war over the control of the human embryo. The genes war has already begun. These battles are now won with patents and certificates. Is the human embryo and that of any other living species’ humanity’s world heritage, or is it intellectual property of those holding patents on biotechnology? There are of course some ethical limits that humanity has to give itself and banning to impose. This race for reproductive cloning is immoral for many reasons and is symptomatic of reason failing over boundless madness. Are we going to allow ‘doctor Strangelove’ and those obsessed with fame, to take advantage of globalization firstly to satisfy their fantasies and secondly to enrich themselves? Has the world become sectarian? The world citizen is certainly unprepared, for nowadays one must rely on the globalized tools of propaganda and the many guises of media warfare.
Dangers and threats are quickening. We have religious sects, the interference in science of pseudo-religious groups, company or post-industrial sects that spread marketable or political propaganda, military-industrial pression groups, organized crime, Mafioso or financial. The list then goes on for we have all sorts of things in this world. Their size varies also from macro group of influence to human micro group.
It is impossible for all sects or totalitarian groups hold the truth, despite the many Gurus who have proclaimed themselves the Messiah, and witnessed their followers putting them on God-like pedestals, even going as far as to sacrifice their own lives. If one were able to reunite the entire world Gurus at one table, competition would most certainly devastate them. They cannot all claim to hold the true and only universal message, look at one another and least of all can they judge themselves when faced with their contradictions. Emotional control based on a totalitarian logic is used to avoid any cause for rejection among followers: the only true message is the one coming from the Guru. Submission is achieved through censorship and mental manipulation. The whole entire organization has p roved itself. Not all senior executives are indoctrinated. They are rather cynical and calculating and can take advantage of a situation for shameful or despicable financial purposes. The history of sectarian movements has shown the existence of infallible common steps and procedures.
What is feared for the future is the war of sects or the wars of totalitarian influence leading to the collapse of the principle of humanity