So you want to start a religion?

So there I am sitting outside of the Sidewalk Café on a beautiful fall day about two years ago trying to grab a bite to eat before Chemistry began at 5.  As I am sitting there trying to enjoy my FLAME BROILED Whopper I notice someone walked by and sat a small yellow business card on my table.  Curiosity fortunately got the better of me and as I started to read the card a huge smile slid across my face.  “Man was created from extra terrestrials…” this is how I became known as the Raёlian expert. 
            Looking up I noticed that the man had disappeared and my gaze was reflected with other people sharing my own disbelief of what had just occurred.  To sum up the card it was informing of the belief that “god” is an alien, and that I need to come to the East Flamingo library and learn more.  I was intrigued and started mentally planning my week in order to make attendance; however this was followed immediately with thoughts dripping in extreme paranoia.  I assumed if I decided to attend upon entering the room I would be bound, gagged, drugged, or whatever sort of trickery that is performed by scoundrels to drag level headed individuals such as myself into cults.  So unfortunately it seemed I would never know more about the Raёlian movement until I looked at the card and I noticed… they have a website.
            If you have not seen please drop what you’re doing and look at it.  The flash introduction alone is enough to make you piss yourself laughing for a week, and yet it still seems to get better.  The awkward support of cloning, the call to action of building an embassy to welcome back our alien fathers and the sheer size of the group’s affiliation is hilarious and frightening at the same time.  After viewing this treasure trove of entertainment I immediately informed damn near everyone I could who would get it, and they too saw the beauty of something like this coming into birth.
            For those of you who truly have not a clue as to what I am referring to let me give you the Raёlian rundown.  On December 13th 1973 approximately 8 years, factoring in leap years, from my birthday a French journalist by the name of Raёl (see the connection) encountered a four foot tall, almond eyed alien that looks surprisingly like Jesus or a long haired Michael Jackson.  I wish I was kidding here, but if you have doubts go to the website and see the eerie truth for yourself.  Regardless alien Jesus or Yahweh, if you’re nasty, told him “We were the ones who made all life on earth, you mistook us for gods, we were at the origin of your main religions.  Now that you are mature enough to understand this, we would like to enter official contact through an embassy."  It doesn’t stop there that is only the beginning of this science fiction web of logic and fancy that they attempt to prove any way humanly possible.  Silly them though because they really have to look no further for hard evidence then of the artifacts proving alien ancestry in the X-Files TV series.
            Two years later however the name Raёl has ceased to be an inside joke with my friends and now has evolved into a popular culture reference.  This is all thanks to their claim in the wonderful world of cloning and unfortunate inability to back it up.  Today after even hearing the name Raёl thoughts of cults and ridicule easily jump into peoples mind; however the groups’ lack of an ability to provide evidence is surprisingly akin to darn near every other religions lack of acquiring proof of their omens.  Thusly one would assume that the whole point of the cloning media blitz was nothing short of a Raёlian recruitment drive. 
            If you want to start a religion basically what you need is something magical, powerful, and/or shiny.  Religions back in the day have things such as the Dead Sea scrolls, the Ark of the Covenant, Noah’s ark, and so much more.  However thousands of years passing and multiple changes in government provide good reason for these relics of faith falling off the face of the Earth.  Now John Smith Jr. throwing together Mormonism about 173 years ago well he was able to garner faith with magic rocks, magic parchments, and talismans.  So now put yourself in Raёl’s shoes, you started your own religion and it’s not going so well, new members aren’t coming in the way you’d like, so what do you do?  Oh wait, we’re all about cloning… let’s say we made a clone!  BAM!  So now the followers will start pouring in, and don’t be surprised it you don’t start feeling the tingle of the Raёlian revolution as days pass.
            Regardless of why they are in the news, the beautiful thing about the popularity gain of the Raёlian movement to me is that it is providing an effective looking glass to religion.  Not just any religions mind you, yet more strongly to other “modern” ones, such as Mormonism.  Even though Mormonism is just a subtle variation to the ongoing theme in organized religion, the silliness of the Raёlian movement should be threatening to any small shelf life belief structure because more comparisons can be made to them then any other in existence.  Part of me just wants the Raёlians to only be the beginning and given that Jedi has appeared as a religious affiliation in the 2002 European census as well as in Australia 70 thousand people (about 0.37% of the population) wrote “Jedi” in the religion line; I think that this is just the tip of the temple and we are either getting extremely closer to some sort of strange post apocalyptic future, or (cross your fingers!) a beautiful star trekkian utopia.