UFOs, aliens and the meaning of life … welcome to the Rael world
The truth is out there … way out there, according to a devotee of a bizarre belief system who touched down in Grand Cayman this week in an effort to convert new followers.
With its tales of alien creators from another planet monitoring us from afar, the Raelian movement sounds more like the plot for an episode of the X-Files than the story of creation.
But Andre Julien, who delivered a lecture on the movement to an audience of 27 at the Cayman Conference Centre on Monday, is very serious.
He hopes Caymanians will read the alternative version of the creation story, contained in the movement’s book – Intelligent Design – and see the light.
He has even brought a proposal for Premier Alden McLaughlin to build an embassy in the Cayman Islands to welcome our extra-terrestrial creators back to earth.
But his request of “take me to your leader” fell on deaf ears and he had to leave the proposal with a secretary.
Mr. Julien, from Montreal, Canada, is an emissary for the UFO-based religion, said to have around 100,000 followers worldwide.
Explaining the origin of the movement, Mr. Julien, said the founder Claude Vorilhon, a French motorsports journalist, had encountered the alien race, known as the Elohim, in the crater of a volcano in 1974.
“A space ship came in front of him, a trap door opened and a little being came out. Over the course of six, days he explained to him where we came from,” he said.
Raelians believe life on earth was scientifically created by this species of extra-terrestrials. Their ethics include striving for world peace, democracy and non-violence. They believe that once humanity demonstrates these traits, the alien creators will return to earth.
Mr. Julien, who has also visited the Bahamas to spread the word, accepted it was not always easy to get people to take him seriously. But he said there were a few new devotees that understood the message and wanted to join the faith, including one in Cayman.
Others had taken home copies of the book and were keen to learn more, he said.
“We have a team of different people like me who visit these smaller countries, like Cayman, so that everyone has a chance to know this message, no matter where they are from in the world,” he said.